Hydro-Meteo-Climate Variability, Surface-Atmosphere Coupling, and Flash Drought Development Across the Great Plains – New Insights from a 5-Year Study
The climate of the Great Plains (GP) of North America is characterized by orthogonal gradients of temperature and precipitation extending from the Gulf of Mexico in the south to the coniferous forests of Canada in the north, bordered on the west by the Rocky Mountains, and spread east into the interior regions of North America. As a result, significant biodiversity exists across relatively short distances within the region, which provides numerous opportunities for diverse agricultural activities. Because the gradient of precipitation is large across the GP, multiple factors can lead to significant variability in environmental conditions at periods spanning from seasonal to interannual and to decadal scales. The region has also shown significant coupling between the surface and the atmosphere, especially during the warm season. It often experiences hydrometeorological and hydroclimatological transitions with embedded extremes, which yield significant impacts to agriculture and ecosystem. This presentation will highlight new insights gained from a recent 5-year study focused on hydrometeorological and hydroclimatological variability over the GP with specific attention to the linkage between surface-atmosphere coupling and flash drought development.
Dr. Basara received his B.S. in Atmospheric Science from Purdue University and M.S./Ph.D. in Meteorology from the University of Oklahoma. He served as Director of Research for the Oklahoma Climatological Survey before joining the SoM as an Associate Professor in 2012. In addition, he is the Director of the OU’s Kessler Atmospheric and Ecological Field Station. His research interests are focused on the interactions between weather, climate, water, and ecosystems from local to global scales, and, in particular, on the land-atmosphere interactions. In 2014, he was named a Kavli Fellow of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences