Topic ID #17076 - posted 3/19/2012 3:28 AM

Study Links Past Changes in Monsoon to Major Shifts in Indian Civilizations



Jennifer Palmer

Webmaster
News Release
Study Links Past Changes in Monsoon to Major Shifts in Indian Civilizations

A fundamental shift in the Indian monsoon has occurred over the last few millennia, from a steady humid monsoon that favored lush vegetation to extended periods of drought, reports a new study led by researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI). The study has implications for our understanding of the monsoon’s response to climate change.

The Indian peninsula sustains over a billion people, yet it lies at the same latitude as the Sahara Desert. Without a monsoon, most of India would be dry and uninhabitable. The ability to predict the timing and amount of the next year’s monsoon is vital, yet even our knowledge of the monsoon’s past variability remains incomplete.

One key to this understanding lies in the core monsoon zone (CMZ) – a region in the central part of India that is a very sensitive indicator of the monsoon throughout the India peninsula.


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