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  • Tuesday, July 31, 2018

    How To Know What Climate Change Causes

    Droughts, Heat Waves and Floods: How to Tell When Climate Change Is to Blame; Weather forecasters will soon provide instant assessments of global warming’s influence on extreme events

    Quirin Schiermeier, July 30, 2018 (Scientific American)

    “…[New University of Oxford computer modeling shows] climate change made the current heatwave] more than twice as likely to occur in many places…Germany’s national weather agency is preparing to be the first in the world to offer rapid assessments of [human-induced climate change’s] connection to particular meteorological events [like heatwaves and floods]. By 2019 or 2020, the agency hopes to post its findings on social media almost instantly, with full public reports following one or two weeks after an event…The European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) in Reading, UK, is preparing to pilot a similar programme by 2020…[A]fter more than 170 studies in peer-reviewed journals, attribution science is poised to burst out of the lab and move into the everyday world.

    …[Disasters] are likely to become more common because the build-up of greenhouse gases is altering the atmosphere…But extreme weather can also arise from natural cycles…Researchers say that teasing out the role of human-induced global warming—as opposed to natural fluctuations—in individual weather extremes will help city planners, engineers and home-owners to understand which kinds of floods, droughts and other weather calamities are increasing in risk. And surveys suggest that people are more likely to support policies focused on adapting to climate-change impacts when they have just experienced extreme weather, so quickly verifying a connection between a regional event and climate change, or ruling it out, could be particularly effective…” click here for more

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