New study projects impacts for world’s drylands
Hikers enjoying the view at Colorado National Monument, near Grand Junction. Researchers say recreation economies in the world’s drier zones are likely to take a big hit from global warming in the next few decades. @bberwyn photo.
Global warming is bad enough on its own for the world’s drylands, but when you add in the impacts of population growth, development and the increasing demand for water, the future looks downright grim.
The end result will be conditions that are detrimental to the recreation economy, wildlife habitat, water availability and other resources in hyper-arid landscapes, according to a recent paper published in Ecosphere. Drylands are of concern because broad-scale changes in these systems have the potential to affect 36 percent of the world’s human population.
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