Large-scale deforestation could cause monsoon rains to shift south, cutting rainfall in India by nearly a fifth, scientists say.

Deforestation has long been known to cause temperature increases in local areas, but new research published on Tuesday shows a potentially wider impact on monsoon rains.

While releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, deforestation also causes changes in how much light reflects off the Earth's surface and the amount of moisture in the atmosphere from plants transpiring.