In 2012 a special report
on extreme weather from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concluded that we are likely to see coastal flooding and more extreme precipitation linked to human-induced climate change.
The report indicates that unusually high temperatures as well as more frequent and more intense precipitation and drought can be expected in most parts of the world by the end of the century.
Contributors to the report include experts on disaster recovery and risk management, together with members of the physical sciences and climate change mitigation and adaptation disciplines. The report marked the first time that the scientific literature on extreme events has been synthesised by a single team, It offers “an unprecedented level of detail regarding observed and expected changes in weather and climate extremes, based on a comprehensive assessment of over 1,000 scientific publications”.
Increased dry weather is predicted for southern Africa, north-eastern Brazil, central Europe, Mediterranean countries and central North America.
The report also notes that observations gathered since 1950 suggest it is “very likely” – with a 90 to 100 per cent probability – that there has been an overall decrease in the number of cold days and nights, and an increase in the number of warm days and nights.
The IPCC says that “policies to avoid, prepare for, respond to and recover from the risks of disaster can reduce the impact of these events and increase the resilience of people exposed to extreme events”.
© 2013, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.
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