As temperature breaks the 30.5° Celsius record in Lapland1,2 and Central European countries face floods, the concern of authorities grows across entire Europe both for safety and economy.
While tornadoes hit USA3 and Argentina4, in the old continent the spring brought other climatic alerts. The economies of southern European countries, like Italy or Spain, suffer from a particularly cold and rainy season, which – among other drawbacks – means less agricultural production5 and weaker tourism demand6. Other dangerous meteorological phenomena like whirlwinds have also interested the region7, but northern countries are not immune, as for instance Netherlands also experienced a weak tornado8.
Meanwhile floods strike the city of Prague in the Czech Republic, the Bavarian region of Germany9 and touch Austria10. The capitals of Slovakia and Hungary as well as other important cities prepare their defenses against the raise of Danube River11. Summer is around the corner and it should bring a relief together with better weather conditions. Depending on how well the reality will follow the forecasts, nevertheless a particularly hot summer could also bring issues like water supply, irrigation and forest fires, especially across Eastern Europe and Western Russia12. At the opposite, Western Europe will probably experience an anomalous fresh good-season13.
The causal link between severe weather and global warming is still not universally accepted14, for various political or skeptic arguments. All of these phenomena have been already observed in the past, but what is left aside and – more or less intentionally – forgot is the fact that frequency has changed. As expected, the counters show a higher average number of floods or tornadoes per year15. Together with larger temperature fluctuations come hotter than normal summers and colder than normal winters, and also increased differences among local measurements and global trend. Not to forget, as the Arctic ice cap is melting, the Gulf Stream – that makes Europe benefit from sweeter seasons than American zones at the same parallels – will progressively shortening its action range. Various international agencies are at work for studying the long-term changes of North Atlantic Ocean circulation16 and their shattering economic side effects17.
Newspapers covering the aftermath stories about what’s left after tornadoes or floods flourish, but this is worryingly still not connected to the global warming, that does not find enough space on headlines18. Summer is coming, but this does not mean we should relax. Global warming has come back too in 2013, in meeting agendas19 and hopefully in political decisions after the next United Nations Climate Change Conference, scheduled for November20. Whether you’re tanning in the north or you’re saving the harvest in the south, this summer could be a good season for letting people know better on what scientists already agree21: we must care about.
- Kaikkien aikojen toukokuun lämpöennätys rikki Lapissa
- Pendant que la France grelotte, il fait près de 30 degrés dans le cercle polaire
- At least nine dead after deadly tornadoes hit Oklahoma City region
- 2013 Argentina floods
- If it’s good weather you want, don’t bother with Europe
- List of European tornadoes and tornado outbreak
- Tornado in Nederlands?
- Merkel Tours Flood Disaster Areas in Europe
- Prague Braces for Cresting River as Floods Paralyze City
- Bulgaria puts watch on rising Danube River levels
- WSI: No Change to Gloomy Summer Outlook for UK/Western Europe
- Météo 2013 : une année sans été?
- No Need to Panic About Global Warming
- Are there more tornadoes because of global warming?
- “Thermohaline Overturning – at Risk?”
- Environmental Defense Fund
- “Global warming” in Google Trends
- Climate change back on the agenda at forum meeting
- 2013 United Nations Climate Change Conference
- Quantifying the consensus on anthropogenic global warming in the scientific literature