• Barbara Moran

    Barbara Moran, Senior Science Writer

    Barbara Moran is a science writer in Brookline, Mass. Profile

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There are 3 comments on When Earth Speaks to Sky

  1. This year it has been a wet year (2018) here in north central Nebraska. They will forecast little rain sometimes no rain and we will get it. I have kidded that when they are forecasting a .25 inch that it means we will get 2.5 inches. When we are dry, they can forecast all the rain that they want and the clouds come and go and we do not get rain. If their statement is true, we would never stop raining since the ground is only wet after a rain. After 2 or 3 days without rain, our ground would be dry so we would not be able to get rain. What I see happening for us is, in the wet year, we can add moisture to the air and since we are also cooler (more vegetation means cooler and more moisture in the air from transpiration), more of the moisture will reach the ground. When we are dry, we depend on all the moisture coming in the air. Also this means that the moisture has to travel through dry warm air before reaching the ground. If not enough moisture is available to travel that distance, the dry warm air will just evaporate that moisture and hold it in the air and we get no rain. A lot of times we have to wait for the change in season to bring the moisture so that we can have regular rains again. As far as land practices, anything that we do that causes the air to be hot and dry means less rain and anything that we do that supports more healthy vegetation means more rain. Also you need to consider dew. A lot of moisture can be removed by dew. I am supposing that in the east, when they get dry, the dew is not taken out and with the extra heat of being dry, the thermal then brings the rain.

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