This Inside Climate News article discusses why 2018’s hemispheric heat wave wasn’t possible without climate change, scientists say. Heat waves are covering wider areas, and people are suffering the consequences. With 2°C of warming, most summers will look like 2018, scientists say.
A study presented this week at a scientific conference in Vienna now shows that last summer’s extreme heat was an “unprecedented” hemispheric event that would not have happened without heat-trapping greenhouse gas pollution, the researchers said, and that it lasted longer and was more widespread across the Northern Hemisphere than previously realized.
Research has shown that increasing global temperatures are causing more frequent, prolonged heat waves. But this study maps the spreading geographical extent of extreme heat events and shows last summer’s heat as a hemispheric event.