Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Climate change

Human influence on rainfall

Rising concentrations of anthropogenic greenhouse gases in the atmosphere may already be influencing the intensity of rainfall and increasing the risk of substantial damage from the associated flooding. See Letters p.378 & p.382

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Relevant articles

Open Access articles citing this article.

Access options

Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.

Figure 1: The floods of autumn 2000.



  1. Min, S.-K., Zhang, X., Zwiers, F. W. & Hegerl, G. C. Nature 470, 378–381 (2011).

    ADS  CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  2. Pall, P. et al. Nature 370, 382–385 (2011).

    ADS  Article  Google Scholar 

  3. Allan, R. P., Soden, B. J., John, V. O., Ingram, W. & Good, P. Environ. Res. Lett. 5, 025205 (2010).

    ADS  Article  Google Scholar 

  4. O'Gorman, P. A. & Schneider, T. Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 106, 14773–14777 (2009).

    ADS  CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Held, I. M. & Soden, B. J. J. Clim. 19, 5686–5699 (2006).

    ADS  Article  Google Scholar 

  6. Allen, M. R. & Ingram, W. J. Nature 419, 224–232 (2002).

    ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  7. Trenberth, K. E., Dai, A., Rasmussen, R. M. & Parsons, D. B. Bull. Am. Meteorol. Soc. 84, 1205–1217 (2003).

    ADS  Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Haerter, J. O., Berg, P. & Hagemann, S. Geophys. Res. Lett. 115, D17102, doi:10.1029/2009JD013384 (2010).

    ADS  Article  Google Scholar 

  9. Lenderink, G. & van Meijgaard, E. Environ. Res. Lett. 5, 025208 (2010).

    ADS  Article  Google Scholar 

  10. Wild, M., Grieser, J. & Schär, C. Geophys. Res. Lett. 35, L17706, doi:10.1029/2008GL034842 (2008).

    ADS  Article  Google Scholar 

  11. Andrews, T. et al. Geophys. Res. Lett. 37, L1470, doi:10.1029/2010GL043991 (2010).

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Richard P. Allan.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Allan, R. Human influence on rainfall. Nature 470, 344–345 (2011).

Download citation

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:

This article is cited by


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing