Climate Change Made June’s European Heatwave Five Times More Likely

Photo © giselaatje via Pixabay

The record-breaking heatwave that struck France and other European nations in June 2019 was made at least five — and possibly 100 — times more likely by climate change, scientists have calculated.

Such heatwaves are also about 4 degrees Celsius hotter than a century ago, the researchers say. Furthermore, the heatwaves hitting Europe are more frequent and more severe than climate models have predicted.

June 2019 was the hottest June since 1880, both in Europe and around the world, according to separate data released on Tuesday by the EU’s Copernicus Climate Change Service. In Europe, the temperature was 3 degrees C above the June average a century ago, and globally it was more than 1 degrees C higher.

The European heatwave broke temperature records at many locations in France, Switzerland, Austria, Germany, and Spain. In France, it was broken by more than 1.5 degrees C on June 28, with 45.9 degrees C recorded near the city of Nîmes.

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© Damian Carrington, The Guardian/Yale Environment 360