In Europe temperatures have risen more than twice as fast as the global average over the past 30 years. This was reported by the World Weather Organization (WMO) in Geneva, which, together with the European earth observation system Copernicus in Reading, presented the climate status report Europe on Wednesday. The focus is on the period up to 2021, not 2022.
Between 1991 and 2021, temperatures in Europe rose by an average of 0.5 degrees per decade. They are rising particularly rapidly in the Arctic and in the higher northern latitudes of the world. In addition, the air over continents warms up faster on average than over oceans.
According to the report, the Alpine glaciers lost around 30 meters of their ice thickness between 1997 and 2021. The Greenland ice sheet is melting, accelerating sea level rise. In the summer of 2021, rain instead of snow was recorded at the highest point at a good 3,200 meters for the first time since measurements began in the 1980s.
“As the warming trend continues, exceptional heat, Forest firesflooding and other impacts of climate change are affecting society, the economy and ecosystems,” the WMO said.
However, the WMO praises the European Union as a model region when it comes to curbing greenhouse gas emissions. In the EU, emissions fell by 31 percent between 1990 and 2020. “In Europe we are seeing the world warming live and this shows us that even well-prepared societies are not immune to the effects of extreme weather events,” said WMO President Petteri Taalas.