Canada and the northwestern United States are suffering from extreme heat. According to one study, this would have been almost unthinkable without climate change.
Vancouver (DPA) — The past few days of scorching heat in western North America with temperatures of nearly 50 degrees would have been nearly impossible without climate change, according to a study.
Global warming due to greenhouse gases has made a heat wave 150 times more likely in Canada and the United States, according to a high-level international group of climate researchers. However, the World Weather Attribution (WWA) project’s study has not yet been published in a specialist journal.
The scientists compared temperatures in late June and early July with historical data from 1800 onwards. In doing so, they concluded that the heat wave, even given current advances in climate change, was an event that was likely to occur only once in 1,000 years. “Statistical equivalent of real misfortune,” as one message says. Participating researcher Frederick Otto from Oxford University said: “What we see is unprecedented. It is not normal for the heat record to be broken by four or five degrees Celsius.”
Canada in particular, but also the northwest of the United States, was hit by unprecedented heat in the past few weeks. About 260 kilometers northeast of Vancouver, the Canadian community of Lytton measured 49.6 degrees – the record previously held in Canada was 45 degrees. A few days later, the village was almost completely destroyed in an inferno. In the province of British Columbia, there were also more than 700 sudden and unexpected deaths within a week.
The researchers emphasize that it seems highly improbable, but not improbable, that there may be another cause of warming besides the coincidence with global warming: that is, climate change has reached an extent that has not yet Extreme weather phenomena are considered possible to pile up by leaps and bounds. However, the data collected has not yet indicated this.
According to the study, extraordinary events can only foreshadow the future in northern latitudes such as Germany: global warming of two degrees Celsius, which with current emissions will be reached in a few decades, could lead to heat-like events in the north. Let it happen once in 1000 years on average instead of US every five to ten years.
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