Extreme weather risk high despite Paris Agreement

Postado Fevereiro 15, 2018

The worldwide agreement envisaged to limit global temperature rise to less than 2 degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

Although the difference between the United Nations goal and the actual country commitments is just 1 degree Celsius, it could still increase the possibility of extreme weather events in the near future, according to a study from Stanford University.

A global temperature rise of 1.5 to 2 degrees Celsius if countries that signed the agreement meet its goals. He's a professor earth system science in the university's School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Sciences.

The researchers found that if countries kept their minimum commitment to limit global warming to 2-3 degrees Celsius, it was still likely to result in a more than fivefold increase in the probability of record-breaking warm nights over approximately 50 per cent of Europe, and more than 25 per cent of East Asia.

But even if the target is reached, "we still will be living in a climate that has substantially greater probability of unprecedented events than the one we're in now", said Noah Diffenbaugh, a climate scientist at Stanford University and the paper's lead author. This warming trend could also result in increasing hot days, milder cold nights and shorter freezes, the study claimed.

And about 90 percent of North America, Europe, East Asia and the tropics "still exhibit sizable increases in the probability of record-setting hot, wet, and/or dry events". Previously, they said, people have had to rely on historical data, which no longer apply. A new record was shattered in 2017 for the costliest year in history for hurricanes, fires, floods, drought and other extreme storm events, totaling $306 billion.

Diffenbaugh also urged the world's decision-makers to use "this kind of research" to take proper measures that can help us build resilience now and prepare for climate change effects in the future.