Climatic Change

, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp 173-183

First online:

Climatic variability on the scale of decades to centuries

  • Charles W. StocktonAffiliated withLaboratory of Tree-Ring Research, University of Arizona

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Climatic variations in the range of 10 to 100 years duration are perhaps of greatest consequence to mankind because; (1) they have a tendency to be regional in nature, (2) they affect third-world countries as well as more developed countries, and (3) they prevail over the planning horizons used in water resources, agriculture and many other disciplines. Documentation of the range of variability experienced regionally for various regions in the western United States as well as North Africa are examined. The recent high water-levels of the Great Salt Lake and other lakes in the Western United States and the prolonged recent drought in North Africa are examples discussed in detail.