Europe and US are under high heatwaves
Without human-induced climate change, the heatwaves that ravaged Europe and the US in July would have been “virtually impossible.”
Moreover, the burning of fossil fuels made parts of China 50 times more likely to experience heatwaves.
Southern Europe experienced a 2.5C hotter heatwave due to climate change, according to the study.
According to experts, almost all societies are unprepared for deadly extreme heat.
Since higher temperatures are no longer “rare,” the study’s authors say that the world must adapt to them.
According to Julie Arrighi from the Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre and one of the authors, heat is among the deadliest disasters.
According to her, countries need to build heat-resistant homes, create “cool centers” for shelter, and plant more trees to cool cities.
There were record temperatures in parts of China, the southern US, and Spain in July. Thousands of people were under red alerts for extreme heat for days.
The extreme heat can pose a serious threat to life, especially to the elderly. During last year’s heatwaves in Europe, more than 61,000 people died from heat-related causes, according to one study.
“This study demonstrates once again how much climate change is playing a role in what we are currently experiencing,” said Friederike Otto of Imperial College London.
Global temperatures are rising due to decades of humans pumping greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
However, not all extreme weather events are directly linked to climate change due to natural weather patterns as well.
The World Weather Attribution group in the UK, US, and Netherlands studied recent heatwaves to identify the fingerprint of climate change.
During the heatwaves, the researchers used computer models to simulate a world without the effects of emissions pumped into the atmosphere.
As a result of climate change, the North American heatwave was 2°C (3.6°F) hotter and the Chinese heatwave was 1°C hotter.
Since humans began burning fossil fuels, the world has warmed by 1.1C.
During the next two to five years, these events will occur every two to five years if the temperature rises by 2C, which many experts believe is very likely as countries fail to reduce their emissions fast enough.
The study also examined El Nio’s role, a powerful natural climate fluctuation that began in June. By raising warm waters to the surface of the tropical Pacific ocean and pushing heat into the atmosphere, it leads to higher global temperatures.
In the study, El Nio probably played a small role, but higher temperatures caused by burning fossil fuels were the main cause of more intense heatwaves.
Climate records have fallen in recent weeks, including global average temperatures and sea surface temperatures, especially in the North Atlantic.
There is no precedent for the speed and timing of the collapse, and experts warn that more records may tumble in the coming weeks.
At the weekend, thousands of people were forced to evacuate hotels in Greece due to dangerous wildfires. According to experts, the hot and dry weather created favourable conditions for fires to spread.