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Queensland flood cause found to be three-fold

A quarter of the extreme precipitation that led to the Queensland floods has been found to have come from a third, until now unknown, source.

The floods were thought to have been caused by a record La Nina event (cooling of water in the equatorial Pacific) in combination with a tropical cyclone. Now it has been shown that record high sea surface temperatures also contributed to the record rainfall, which was 154% above the usual rate.

If the observed warming trend of sea surface temperatures continues, future La Nina events are more likely to produce extreme events such as the Queensland floods.

Read more at UNSW Sydney

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