Shift in balance between precipitation and rainfall was enough to reduce sources of accessible water
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — Relatively minor changes in summer rainfall patterns may have been a big factor in the collapse of the Central American Maya civilization.
The new study relied on sediment data in shallow lakes and moisture records in cave formations reconstruct past climate in the region, finding that the drop in rainfall occurred around the same time the Maya abandoned their cities.
The results serve as a warning for other regions that exist in a delicate balance of climate and water availability, the researchers said.
“Our results show rather modest rainfall reductions between times when the Classic Maya Civilization flourished and its collapse – between AD 800-950,” said Professor Martín Medina-Elizalde, of the Yucatan Center for Scientific Research, one of the primary researchers. (more…)