Droughts de­stroyed Me­sopotamia

Down to Earth - - THE FORTNIGHT -

A study has shown that the an­cient civil­i­sa­tion of Me­sopotamia col­lapsed due to years of drought re­sult­ing from cli­mate change. A team from Ger­many's T bin­gen Univer­sity an­a­lysed car­bon iso­topes in 1,037 sam­ples of bar­ley grains (12,000 to 2,500 years old) from 33 lo­ca­tions in west Asia and Africa to as­cer­tain if they had enough wa­ter while grow­ing. The re­sults were then com­pared with mod­ern sam­ples from the same re­gions. The com­par­i­son showed that drought­like sit­u­a­tion pre­vailed dur­ing the last years of the civil­i­sa­tion.

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