UK heatwave due to climate change
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.