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Texas: Growth, Climate Change and Water

Scorched_corn_fields,_Castroville,_TX,_2011_IMG_3231The stars at night are big and bright, deep in the heart of Texas. But the prairie sky is wide and dry, deep in the heart of Texas.

The unprecedented drought conditions across the United States, which began last year (and have their roots in a climatological trend that started in 2010), are especially alarming in Texas – the fastest growing state in the country (it added 4.3 million residents last decade). As reported in the San Antonio Express News, persistent drought and continued growth could mean devastating water shortages, which would have a serious impact on households, the “$100 billion per year livestock and agricultural industries,” and other water-intensive industries like fracking and computer manufacturing.

The bad news is that climate change increases the likelihood of continued and persistent drought. According to NOAA and the Met Office, last year’s drought in Texas was 20 times more likely because of climate change. Furthermore, as temperatures are set to continue increasing, these conditions will likely become more frequent.

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