The Mayans were an advanced civilization that flourished while cradled in South America in what is currently Guatemala. The society collapsed around 900 A.D. A new research study centered on the Great Blue Hole, an underwater cave in Belize, indicates the reason may be drought. Andre Droxler, a Rice University professor, shows there was an extreme drought in the area from 800 to 900 A.D. A technical summary of the mineral deposit study can be found here.
On a related note, California is in its worst drought in the last 1,200 years – or since roughly the same time of the drought in Belize that may have killed the Mayans. Daniel Griffin led the study and Kevin Anchukaitis co-authored it out of the University of Minnesota. It was funded by the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute. The study is based on tree ring growth and soil moisture. Fortunately for Californians, sprinklers were invented since the last drought which may have ended Mayan civilization.
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