Four years of hot summers expected in the Netherlands
This year, the Netherlands has experienced an unusually hot summer, with a code orange being issued due to the heat and two heatwaves engulfing the country in a short period of time. Not to mention the drought that did not go unnoticed across the land.
Warm weather ahead
Well, if you thought the weather was just a tad too warm, you won’t have any luck in terms of cooler summers for the next few years. According to a new statistical analysis by KNMI climate researcher Sybren Drijfhout and colleague Florian Sevellec, globally, we are in for another four years of warmer than usual weather.
From now until 2022, the earth will be in the throes of a “warm anomaly”, in addition to the slow advance of global warming due to greenhouse gasses. Although the anomaly may only contribute to temperatures worldwide by a few hundredths of a degree, it could result in heatwaves, extreme weather conditions and hot summers.
Drijfhout credits the coming warm period to a four-year hiatus, roughly between 2010 and 2014, in which the earth’s temperature hardly increased. During this period, it seems as though the extra heat was absorbed by the sea; extra heat which could still be released into the atmosphere, he says. Up until 2022, there is a 70 percent possibility of extra hot summers and higher temperatures in general the world over, the weather model currently reports.
Predicting future weather trends
Predicting the weather so far into the future is no piece of cake, as usually normal weather models cannot forecast the weather reliably past a few weeks and climate models give you an idea of temperatures but no precise figures. In their model, Drijfhout and Sevellec looked at how the temperature changed each year through natural variation.
Their model forecasts five years into the future and at the end of last year they had already figured out that this year would be an exceptionally warm one. The predictions made by the model are, however, not definite, as unforeseen circumstances could occur and mess up the predictions. Drijfhout calls the model a prototype for something that is yet to be released to the market.