Geophysical Research Letters

Evaporation changes over the contiguous United States and the former USSR: A reassessment

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Abstract

Observed decreases in pan evaporation over most of the United States and the former USSR during the post-WWII period, if interpreted as a decrease in actual evaporation, are at odds with increases in temperature and precipitation over many regions of these two countries. Using parallel observations of actual and pan evaporation at six Russian, one Latvian, and one U.S. experimental sites, we recalibrate trends in pan evaporation to make them more representative of actual evaporation changes. After applying this transformation, pan evaporation time series over southern Russia and most of the United States reveal an increasing trend in actual evaporation during the past forty years.

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