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Hundreds of years of history encapsulated in a grain of wood warn of the danger to the South American agricultural system

Trees are known by scientists as historians who do not lie. On Earth there are forests that have stood there for hundreds of years, they are much older than many generations of humans combined. The forests stand there, witnessing the change of climate, experiencing each year of drought and floods.

All these histories are carefully and meticulously recorded in each wood grain. When an old tree grows old and dies, scientists can cut the trunk of a tree to find out about its life. From there, they will give themselves a look for hundreds of years, something that only a generation of people could not see.

A study published this week in the Proceedings of the American Academy summarizes a history of more than 600 years of Earth’s climate, written in the wood grain of South American forests. These valuable data demonstrate us to the anomalies of Earth’s climate beginning in the 20th century.

Skeptics, who have considered climate change to be a story invented by some scientists, will certainly change their perspective when looking here. Because the forests are the most honest historians we’ve ever had.

The research was conducted by scientists from Columbia University. In it, they surveyed the wood grain of 186 ancient trees distributed in South American countries including Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, Paraguay, Bolivia, southern Brazil and Peru.

The decoded data from these wood grain has enabled scientists to create a Drought Map for South America (SADA). This map records the changes in humidity throughout the six centuries of the continent, highlighting one of the most severe drought periods since the 1930s. It also reveals the fact that it has been since 1960. , South America is experiencing repeated periodic droughts, every 10 years.

The decoded data from the wood grain is completely consistent with the historical meteorology record of humans, proving that the forests did not lie.

South America is currently having an emergency gap with extreme climate events“Astronomical researcher Mariano Morales, a member of the Argentine Council of Science and Technology, said that the recent drought cycle in recent years is threatening the survival of continental agriculture. South America.

Agronologists say some of the food systems here are in danger of collapse. And if that were to happen, the event would also be recorded by the wood grain.

In the past, scientists also found wood grain patterns that witnessed two prolonged droughts that led to the collapse of two Central American civilizations. Hundred-year-old bald cypress trees reveal the cruel truths that occurred in the age of the Toltecs and Aztecs, two native Mexican civilizations.

Hundreds of years of history encapsulated in a grain of wood warn of the danger to the South American agricultural system | Explore

The Toltecs flourished between the 9th and 11th centuries. But a 19-year drought seemed to bring down their capital, the ancient city of Tula, leading to the decline of the empire. preparations. The Aztec civilization, which lasted from the 16th century to the 18th century, was devastated by famine, which also stemmed from drought and extreme weather.

So will civilizations in South America now end like the Toltecs or the Aztecs? “If that has happened in the past, it means history can repeat “, said Professor Richard Seager, from Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University. Even according to him, climate events from now until 2050 can take place much stronger and more extreme.

Recently, Argentina and Chile have suffered one of the worst droughts in history. It is worth mentioning that the opposite context is taking place in the southeast of the continent, where the humidity is abnormally high. This model occurs due to climate change, and although scientists don’t want to attribute all human responsibility, we all know what humans are doing to create problems.

“We do not want to jump down a cliff and say it is entirely caused by climate change“, says paleontologist Edward Cook from Comunbia University. “There are many natural changes that can mimic man-made climate change.”

One theory suggests that the variability of the weather and the extreme extremes of the climate originates from the amount of greenhouse gases accumulated over hundreds of years, starting in the 20th century. Researchers identify three factors The main factor in the change of South American climate in the last 60 years.

Firstly, it is the circulating sea surface temperature changes in the Pacific and Atlantic. The second is a western wind belt blowing around Antarctica called the annular wind zone. And the third is the phenomenon of Hadley distributing warm and moist air from the equator.

“Events are increasingly extreme in accordance with the impact of human activities”, Morales said. Only, the wood grain itself cannot provide direct evidence for that.

Hundreds of years of history encapsulated in a grain of wood warn of the danger to the South American agricultural system | Explore

Forests only sense and record climate change from the soil and the amount of water around their roots. These are historians who do not judge, comment, and hold no accountability.

But no matter where the cause comes from, scientists hope that the story told by the wood grain will give us a glimpse through history to plan the future for what is happening. out.

What humans are doing to their planet will undoubtedly make the Earth even angrier. “Looking ahead, flood and drought events will increase along with global warming“warns Jason Smerdon from Columbia University.

We must prepare for every scenario, if we don’t want to be part of the traumatic history recorded in the wood.

Refer Sciencealert, Americanscientific

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