A global transition to flash droughts under climate change

Flash droughts have occurred frequently worldwide, with a rapid onset that challenges drought monitoring and forecasting capabilities. However, there is no consensus on whether flash droughts have become the new normal because slow droughts may also increase. In this study, we show that drought intensification rates have sped up over subseasonal time scales and that there has been a transition toward more flash droughts over 74% of the global regions identified by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Special Report on Extreme Events during the past 64 years.