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Correlations weaken very slightly for PDSI and SM-2m: 0.84 (Central Plains) and 0.83 (Southwest).The correlations remain strong into the 21st century, even as PDSI and the soil moisture variables occasionally diverge in terms of long-term trends.For estimates of observed drought variability over the last millennium (1000–2005), we use data from the NADA, a tree-ring based reconstruction of JJA PDSI. For nearly all models, the 21st century projections under the RCP 8.5 scenario reveal dramatic shifts toward drier conditions. Thank you for your interest in spreading the word about Science Advances.Comparisons between the NADA and model moisture are shown in the bottom panels of Fig. Most models (indicated with a red dot) are significantly drier (one-sided Kolmogorov-Smirnov test, ≤ 0.05) in the latter part of the 21st century (2050–2099) than during their modeled historical intervals (1850–2005). NOTE: We only request your email address so that the person you are recommending the page to knows that you wanted them to see it, and that it is not junk mail. Average moisture conditions (relative to a defined baseline) are denoted by PDSI = 0; negative PDSI values indicate drier than average conditions (droughts), and positive PDSI values indicate wetter than normal conditions (pluvials).
These regions nevertheless experienced extended Medieval-era droughts that were more persistent than any historical event, providing crucial targets in the paleoclimate record for benchmarking the severity of future drought risks.Such “megadrought” events exceeded the duration of any drought observed during the historical record and had profound impacts on regional societies and ecosystems ().A comprehensive understanding of global warming and 21st century drought therefore requires placing projected hydroclimate trends within the context of drought variability over much longer time scales ().Most GCMs provide soil moisture diagnostics, but their land surface models often vary widely in terms of parameterizations and complexity (for example, soil layering and vegetation).There are few large-scale soil moisture measurements that can be easily compared to modeled soil moisture, and none for intervals longer than the satellite record.