UK heat­wave due to cli­mate change

China Daily - - WORLD - By JONATHAN POW­ELL in Lon­don [email protected]­nadai­

Hu­man-in­duced cli­mate change made this year’s record-break­ing UK sum­mer tem­per­a­tures about 30 times more likely than they would be nat­u­rally, ac­cord­ing to a re­cent study by the United King­dom’s na­tional weather ser­vice.

An­nounc­ing their find­ings at global cli­mate talks in Ka­tow­ice, Poland, re­searchers said that the im­pact of global warm­ing on the hot sum­mer was sig­nif­i­cant.

“Cli­mate change has made the heat­wave we had this sum­mer much more likely, about 30 times more likely than it would have been had we not changed our cli­mate through our emis­sions of green­house gases,” said Pro­fes­sor Pe­ter Stott, who car­ried out the anal­y­sis.

“If we look back over many cen­turies, we can see that the sum­mer like 2018 was a very rare event be­fore the In­dus­trial Rev­o­lu­tion when we started pump­ing out green­house gases into the at­mos­phere.”

The re­searchers said that in a world without warm­ing the chances of hav­ing a heat­wave are around 0.4 per­cent every year. Cli­mate change has tipped the odds sig­nif­i­cantly to around 12 per­cent every year. The his­tor­i­cal record, they ar­gue, strength­ens their case.

“We have ob­ser­va­tional in­for­ma­tion in Eng­land go­ing right back to 1659, and if you look at the pe­riod be­fore we re­ally started to af­fect our cli­mate there was only one sum­mer in 1826 that was warmer than 2018. In that whole 200 years of data there was only one year as warm as this, so that re­ally bears out what we are say­ing,” said Stott.

The blaz­ing sum­mer of 2018 was the joint warm­est for the UK.

It tied with 1976, 2003 and 2006 as the warm­est since records be­gan in 1910.

The steep tem­per­a­tures that sus­tained across most parts of the UK peaked on July 27 when 35.6 C was recorded at Felsham in Suf­folk.

Now re­searchers have an­a­lyzed the ob­served data us­ing cli­mate mod­els that can sim­u­late the world with or without the im­pact of fos­sil fuel emis­sions.

Re­cent stud­ies have un­der­lined the scale of the im­pact that the burn­ing of fos­sil fu­els is hav­ing on the cli­mate. Con­cen­tra­tions of car­bon emis­sions reached a record high this year, ac­cord­ing to a study by the World Me­te­o­ro­log­i­cal Or­ga­ni­za­tion.

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