According to a study published on Friday, climate change caused by human activity is ten times more likely to cause a July heatwave in the UK.
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Temperatures in the United Kingdom exceeded 40°C on 19 July, the first heat wave to hit the country like the rest of Western Europe, sparking fires and damaging homes around London.
An international team of researchers modeled the probability of such a heat wave in the pre-industrial climate and compared this probability with the current climate, which means that global average temperatures are 1.2 ° C warmer than in the pre-industrial era.
They focused on records set in the worst affected areas of the UK, Central England and East Wales. This shows that this probability increases at least tenfold with global warming.
According to the study, extreme events affecting Europe have exceeded climate models’ predictions.
“In Europe and other parts of the world, we are recording extreme heat waves, resulting in extreme temperatures increasing faster than most climate models suggest,” says Friedrich Otto of the Grantham Institute at Imperial College. London.
“This is a worrying finding that unless carbon emissions are reduced quickly, the effects of climate change on extreme heat in Europe, which are already very dangerous, will be worse than expected,” he continues.