Prolonged Siberian heat attributed to climate change

18.07.2020

The recent prolonged Siberia heat from January to June 2020 would have been almost impossible without the influence of human-caused climate change, according to a rapid attribution analysis by a team of leading climate scientists, BBC reports.

The researchers from international universities and meteorological services, including the P.P.Shirshov Institute of Oceanology, Russian Academy of Science, also found that temperatures were more than 2°C hotter than they would have been if humans had not influenced the climate by releasing greenhouse gas emissions.

Temperatures in Siberia have been well above average since the start of the year. A new record temperature for the Arctic, 38°C, was recorded in the Russian town of Verkhoyansk on 20 June, while Siberia’s overall temperatures were more than 5°C above average from January to June.

To measure the effect of climate change on these high temperatures, the scientists made use of large collections of computer simulations to compare the climate as it is today, with about 1°C of global warming, with the climate as it would have been without human influence, using the same methods as in past rapid and peer-reviewed studies.

The heat in Siberia has triggered widespread fires, with 1.15 million hectares burning in late June, associated with a release of about 56 million tonnes of carbon dioxide - more than the annual emissions of some industrialised countries such as Switzerland and Norway. (BBC)