Huihui Fenga and Mingyang Zhang

Scientific Reports

Published date December 11, 2015

Global land moisture trends: drier in dry and wetter in wet over land

  • States the “dry gets drier, wet gets wetter” (DGDWGW) paradigm is widely accepted in global moisture change
  • Examines global moisture trends using satellite soil moisture for the past 35 years (1979–2013)
  • Results indicate that approximately 30% of global land has experienced robust moisture trends (22.16% have become drier, and 7.14% have become wetter)
  • Finds that only 15.12% of the land areas have followed the DGDWGW paradigm, whereas 7.77% have experienced the opposite trend
  • Finds that there is a significant “drier in dry, wetter in wet” (DIDWIW) trend paradigm; 52.69% of the drying trend occurred in arid regions, and 48.34% of the wetter trend occurred in the humid regions
  • Overall, 51.63% of the trends followed the DIDWIW paradigm, and 26.93% followed the opposite trend
  • Identifies the DGDWGW and DIDWIW paradigms in low precipitation-induced arid regions in which the dry soil led to an increasing sensible heat flux and temperature and subsequently potential evapotranspiration