Westerly winds have blown across central Asia for at least 42 million years

The gusting westerly winds that dominate the climate in central Asia, setting the pattern of dryness and location of central Asian deserts, have blown mostly unchanged for 42 million years. A University of Washington geologist led a team that has discovered a surprising resilience to one of the world’s dominant weather systems. The finding could help long-term climate forecasts, since it suggests these winds are likely to persist through radical climate shifts.

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