May 27, 2024

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Increased flooding in the Mediterranean region linked to global warming  Weather News

Increased flooding in the Mediterranean region linked to global warming Weather News

Climate change has worsened rainfall in recent weeks, but human factors have turned extreme weather into a humanitarian disaster. This was made clear by research conducted on Tuesday by a group of climate scientists from the World Weather Attribution (WWA).

The researchers calculated that the chance of heavy rainfall in countries such as Greece, Bulgaria and Turkey has increased tenfold due to human-caused global warming. In Libya, heavy rains, such as those that struck the country ten days ago, could fall up to fifty times more frequently than in a scenario without climate change.

Extreme weather can turn into a humanitarian disaster, as in Libya, when buildings or dams in flooded areas are poorly maintained. Other human factors, such as deforestation and the consequences of conflict in the country, also played a role in the severity of the disaster. There may have been thousands of deaths in Derna.

In Greece, changes to the landscape have led to greater flood damage. Due to urbanization and deforestation, more people and homes were affected, and there was less paved surface to absorb stormwater.

For the study, scientists analyzed and compared climate data with simulations of a world without global warming. Temperatures have reached 1.2°C worldwide since the Industrial Revolution. The group warns that the results are based on mathematical uncertainties.

Danger hotspot

Co-author Frederic Otto of Imperial College London explains that it is difficult to determine the contribution of global warming to floods. It seems easier for heat waves and wildfires. “The Mediterranean region is a hotspot for risks related to global warming,” Otto said. “Resiliency to extreme weather conditions must be significantly increased in the region to save human lives in the future.”

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WWA is an international group of researchers conducting studies on the links between extreme weather and climate change, based on computer models.

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