Increasingly hot summers in Italy and in the Mediterranean

By end of century peaks will be 4-8 times higher

12 February, 12:08

    (ANSAmed) - ROME, FEBRUARY 12 - Italian and the Mediterranean summers will be increasingly hot over the coming years, according to a study by researchers from the Chinese academy of metereological sciences in Beijing published by the magazine Nature Communications.

    The group led by Yang Chen has analyzed temperatures from 1960 to 2012 across the northern hemisphere, noting that each decade a day of extreme heat was added on average globally across the hemisphere, each hotter by 0.28 degrees per decade due to climate change and manmade greenhouse gases.

    ''The increase in the frequency and intensity of these extreme events will be more marked in western and southern Europe with the Mediterranean, therefore in Italy as well, and in the southern US, southeast Canada and China'', said Marina Baldi, a climatologist of the National research council (CNR).

    Researchers forecast future changes based on two possible scenarios. One included a global temperature increase by 1.5 degrees in which the frequency of these extreme heatwaves could increase from 4 to 32 days for summer with a moderate level of greenhouse gas emissions, and from 8 to 69 days with a high level of emissions by the end of the century.

    If global temperatures should increase by 2, an additional five days of extreme heat should be added to the toll, the researchers said.

    ''In general - continued Baldi - there is a sensible increase in the frequency of these extreme events and their intensity at a temperature level. In Europe and in the Mediterranean another study carried out between 1960 and 2017 for example showed that extremely hot days grew were an additional 8-9 for each decade''. The study made a global average of an entire hemisphere, which embraces extremely vast countries and areas, with different climates, ''showing how not all of the hemisphere is behaving in the same way. The high variability of these phenomena still needs to be fully explained'', continued Baldi.

    Mediterranean areas registered the ''most visible and tangible'' climate change with a rise in temperatures of 1.4 degrees compared to the pre-industrial era, compared to other areas where it totaled one degree. ''More energy is accumulated and more extreme events produced, from drought to floods'', as a consequence. (ANSAmed).

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