Global heating could bring many more bouts of severe drought as well as increased flooding to Africa than previously forecast, scientists have warned. New research says the continent will experience many will get more severe,” said Elizabeth Kendon of the Met Office’s Hadley Centre in Exeter. “The wet extreme will get worse, but also the appearance of dry spells during the growing season will also get more severe.” This meteorological double whammy is blamed on the burning of fossil fuels, which is increasing levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and causing it to heat up. Last month levels of carbon dioxide reached 415 parts per million, their highest level since Homo sapiens first appeared on Earth – and scientists warn that they are likely to continue on this upward curve for several decades. Global temperatures will be raised dangerously as a result.
Observer 16th June 2019 read more »
Northern India is in the midst of a long and deadly heatwave that began more than two weeks ago, an occurrence that is predicted to become more severe due to climate change. Six of the hottest years ever recorded in India have taken place this century. “It’s historically unusual, but for the past decade we have had the highest temperature every year. This is becoming the new normal,” said Tarun Gopalakrishnan, deputy programme manager for climate at the Centre For Science and Environment, an Indian think-tank. Economists believe these more frequent and prolonged heatwaves, which take a significant economic toll in terms of heat-related deaths and lost labour productivity, will be one of the most visible near-term results of global warming. Big cities with dense populations in already hot climates, such as India’s sprawling capital, will be among the worst affected. The temperature in New Delhi touched a record 48C on June 10 as the city of more than 21m people sizzled. In Churu, in arid Rajasthan province on the edge of the Thar desert, it has exceeded 50C twice this month, just missing the record 51C hit during a heatwave two years ago.
FT 15th June 2019 read more »