The main purpose of this ongoing blog will be to track planetary extreme, or record temperatures related to climate change. Any reports I see of ETs will be listed below the main topic of the day. I’ll refer to record temperatures as ETs (not extraterrestrials)😉
Main Topic: Attributing Libyan Flooding to Climate Change
Dear Diary. Climate change attribution scientists have had their hands full during 2023. In the United States alone there have been 24-billion-dollar weather disasters that could be tied to aspects of climate change, the latest being horrific flooding that occurred in New York yesterday (probably once New York insurance claims are added up):
Overseas one of the easiest events for scientists to attribute climate change to was recent Libyan flooding from Medicane Daniel. Here is a good summary of what scientists looked at in their determination from Desdemona Despair:
Horrific Libya flooding made up to 50 times more likely by planet-warming pollution, scientists find – “Through these events we are already seeing how climate change and human factors can combine to create compounding and cascading impacts” – Desdemona Despair
Horrific Libya flooding made up to 50 times more likely by planet-warming pollution, scientists find – “Through these events we are already seeing how climate change and human factors can combine to create
September 30, 2023
Heavy rainfall caused catastrophic flooding in Derna, northeastern Libya, on 11 September 2023. Photo: AFP / Getty Images
By Laura Paddison
19 September 2023
(CNN) – The deadly rainfall which caused catastrophic flooding and destruction in Libya, as well as other parts of the Mediterranean, this month was made much more likely and worse by the human-caused climate crisis, in addition to other human factors, according to a new scientific analysis [Interplay of climate change-exacerbated rainfall, exposure and vulnerability led to widespread impacts in the Mediterranean region –Des].
The World Weather Attribution initiative – a team of scientists that analyze the role of climate change in the aftermath of extreme weather events – found planet-warming pollution made the deadly rainfall in Libya up to 50 times more likely to occur and 50% worse. They also found the extreme rainfall that hit Greece, Turkey and Bulgaria was made up to 10 times more likely.
Destruction from the rainfall was worsened by a tangle of other factors, including inadequate infrastructure and building in flood-prone areas, according to the analysis published Tuesday.
A man carries a girl and a dog in the flooded village of Palamas near the city of Karditsa, central Greece, on 8 September 2023. Photo: Angelos Tzortzinis / AFP / Getty Images
Extreme rainfall has swept across large parts of the Mediterranean region since the start of the month.
On 3 September 2023, Spain saw huge amounts of rain over the course of just a few hours, leading to floods which killed at least six people. Then Storm Daniel formed, causing severe flooding over four days in Greece, Turkey, and Bulgaria.
At least 17 people died in Greece and large stretches of farmland in the central part of the country were left under water, causing damage experts say could take years to recover from. Storm Daniel also caused at least seven deaths in Turkey and four in Bulgaria.
By far the most catastrophic impacts, however, were in Libya.
Gaining energy from the unusually warm waters of the Mediterranean, Storm Daniel dumped record amounts of rainfall in parts of the country’s northeast, leading to the collapse of two dams and resulting in a 7-meter (23-foot) wave of water slamming into the city of Derna, sweeping people and buildings into the sea.
Official estimates suggest around 4,000 people were killed, while more than 10,000 remain missing.
Aerial view of destroyed houses in the city of Derna on 16 September 2023, after a powerful storm and heavy rainfall hit Libya. Photo: Zohra Bensemra / Reuters
To understand the impact of climate change on the likelihood and intensity of this heavy rainfall, WWA scientists analyzed climate data as well as climate models, which allow them to compare today’s climate – around 1.2 degrees Celsius warmer than pre-industrial levels – to a world without climate change.
They found in Libya, not only did climate change make the extreme rainfall up to 50 times more likely, it also made it up to 50% more intense.
An event as severe as the one the country experienced is unusual even in today’s warmer climate, the report found, and can be expected around once in every 600 years.
For Greece, Turkey, and Bulgaria, climate change made the rainfall up to 10 times more likely and up to 40% heavier, the analysis found.
The kind of extreme rainfall this region experienced is likely to happen around once every 10 years, according to the report. Although for central Greece, which bore the brunt of the destruction between the three countries, it is only expected to happen around once in every 80 to 250 years.
Aerial view of a collapsed bridge near the Pinios River Delta on the coast of Larissa, Greece, ten days after Storm Daniel, on 14 September 2023. Photo: Konstantinos Tsakalidis / SOOC / AFP / Getty Images
The WWA scientists acknowledged that there remain uncertainties with the findings. It is not possible to definitively rule out the possibility the climate crisis had no impact on the floods, the report authors said. But, they added, there are “multiple reasons we can be confident that climate change did make the events more likely.”
Scientific research has long linked climate change to more intense rainfall. Studies have found that for every 1 degree Celsius of warming, the air can hold around 7% more moisture.
What united many of the places the analysis focused on was the collision of the climate crisis and high levels of vulnerability, the report found. In central Greece, many communities live in flood-prone areas. In Libya, a lethal cocktail of aging, poorly-maintained infrastructure, a lack of warnings and deep political fractures turned a crisis into a humanitarian catastrophe.
“Through these events we are already seeing how climate change and human factors can combine to create compounding and cascading impacts,” Maja Vahlberg, of the Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre and a report author, said on a call with reporters.
A view of devastation in disaster zones after the floods caused by the Storm Daniel ravaged the region in Derna, Libya on Tuesday, 12 September 2023. Photo: Abdullah Mohammed Bonja / Anadolu Agency / Getty Images
Steps can be taken to mitigate the risk, according to the report, including better early warning systems and evacuation plans.
“Reducing vulnerability and increasing resilience to all types of extreme weather is paramount for saving lives,” Friederike Otto, senior lecturer in climate science at Grantham Institute for Climate Change and the Environment, at Imperial College London, said in a statement.
Karsten Haustein, a climate researcher at Leipzig University in Germany who was not involved in the study, said the findings show how rare these extreme rainfall events would have been in a world without climate change.
It’s “a remarkable result,” he told CNN.
Jasper Knight, a geoscientist at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa, also not involved in the study, said that the results shine a light on how climate change is affecting extreme events in the Mediterranean, a region which tends not to receive much attention.
But, he told CNN, “we also need more in-depth analysis based on longer and more accurate records.”
Here are some other “ET’s” recorded from around the planet the last couple of days, their consequences, and some extreme temperature outlooks, as well as any extreme precipitation reports:
An exceptional heat wave in spreading in US Plains with temperatures exceeding 95F far North,even 99F in Iowa/Nebraska border.— Extreme Temperatures Around The World (@extremetemps) September 30, 2023
Dozens stations are at record levels and by tomorrow October 1st and following days,monthly records will fall in a large scale
Historic October heat wave pic.twitter.com/4jRNzK2jIg
September 2023 Worldwide Extreme Temperatures: (Celsius)— Extreme Temperatures Around The World (@extremetemps) September 30, 2023
Northern Hemisphere Highest:50.1C Omidieh (Iran) 11 September
NH Lowest:-40.0C Summit (Greenland) 21 September
SH Highest:44.5C Villamontes (Bolivia) 17 September
SH Lowest:-80.6C Vostok (Antarctica) 8 September
Extraordinary in #Australia,arguably the most extreme in its climatic history with hundreds of records smashed nearly every single day of this month— Extreme Temperatures Around The World (@extremetemps) September 30, 2023
Monthly records today
35.9 Port Lincoln
25.0 Cygnet Bay
24.9 Barrow Island
28.7 Frankston https://t.co/l9nA1Ux3Mi
Egyptian Heat Wave:— Extreme Temperatures Around The World (@extremetemps) September 30, 2023
Today 30 September temperatures are still at record levels both for the highest Tmax and highest tmin ever recorded so late.
Hottest stations were:
45.3C South Valley University
Reminder:Egyptian all time high in October is 45.3C https://t.co/OTa5ZA5qjb
Harsh heat wave in Eastern South Africa, temperatures shot to 42C on the coast at Mbazwana shattering the monthly record.— Extreme Temperatures Around The World (@extremetemps) September 30, 2023
39C/40C also on the Botswana and Namibian highlands at >1000m asl.
Next days the heat will return in the West with >40C in Northern Cape pic.twitter.com/A96CbPbKmz
Update on South America Heat Wave:— Extreme Temperatures Around The World (@extremetemps) September 30, 2023
Exceptional 37.0C yesterday at New Amsterdam, Guyanese coast, all time record highest temperature destroyed, first 36C and 37C at the same time.
Records have been falling by hundreds nearly in the whole South America in the past weeks https://t.co/9984nugrf1
More records to add in #Brazil— Extreme Temperatures Around The World (@extremetemps) September 30, 2023
42.4C 25 September at Oeiras ties the highest temperature ever recorded in the PIAUI STATE
36 New Amsterdam all time high
39 Yurimaguas https://t.co/45jnIQfRTC
RAINFALL RECORD NYC— Extreme Temperatures Around The World (@extremetemps) September 29, 2023
JFK Airport New York City total now is 7.83 inches (198.88mm) of rainfall.
This breaks the old rainfall record in a calendar day of 7.80in set in August 2011. https://t.co/byl1QZt3Rc
Here is More Climate and Weather News from Saturday:
(As usual, this will be a fluid post in which more information gets added during the day as it crosses my radar, crediting all who have put it on-line. Items will be archived on this site for posterity. In most instances click on the pictures of each tweet to see each article. The most noteworthy items will be listed first.)
According to the major Copernicus update to the IPCC's AR6 published in June, the remaining carbon budget that gives the world an 83% chance of staying below 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming is 100 gigatons—about two years of current emissions. https://t.co/RUcaZ6swEh— David Wallace-Wells (@dwallacewells) September 30, 2023
‘We’re not doomed yet’: climate scientist Michael Mann on our last chance to save human civilisation | My interview with the great @DPCarrington of The @Guardian on "#OurFragileMoment: How Lessons from Earth's Past Can Help Us Survive the Climate Crisis": https://t.co/Pel2wrLBFh— Prof Michael E. Mann (@MichaelEMann) September 30, 2023
If the smoke isn’t hitting the East Coast, Canadian wildfires are “out of sight out of mind” for many. But our wildfire season continues to accelerate. The area burned over the past week alone = that of nearly an entire typical fire season across Canada. https://t.co/dBP9GU1RPe— The Real Prof. Katharine Hayhoe (@KHayhoe) September 30, 2023
Temperature anomalies over land so far this year compared to every January-August period over the last 100 years— Zack Labe (@ZLabe) September 30, 2023
[Questions about the data? Look here: https://t.co/Y7TeMNRXTb] pic.twitter.com/eLXxCpFhzj
A brilliant follow up:— Prof. Eliot Jacobson (@EliotJacobson) September 30, 2023
"The reason people can believe that everything is going to be OK is because they have not taken the time to comprehend all the different things that are going wrong simultaneously, nor how seriously these things are going wrong."https://t.co/RHHRZ7WrzE
Media asleep as the Doomsday Antarctica Thwaites glacier loses much of its buffering zone— GO GREEN (@ECOWARRIORSS) September 30, 2023
Thwaites glacier size of Florida holds 2 feet of sea level but more importantly, it is the “backstop” for four other glaciers which holds an additional 10-13 feet of sea level rise https://t.co/yHgaPb8A6G
Pinning point five collapsed, the sea ice barrier buttressing Thwaites and Pine Island Glacier. https://t.co/qoQRrjPxju— Paul Beckwith (@PaulHBeckwith) September 30, 2023
CO2 is not plant foodhttps://t.co/yipwcHK2Mn— Andrew Dessler (@AndrewDessler) October 1, 2023
No surprise.— Dr. Jonathan Foley (@GlobalEcoGuy) September 29, 2023
Most comprehensive study of the carbon footprint of foods confirms it.
“the average carbon footprint of plant-based foods amounts to … only 10.7% of animal-based foods”
Beef is even worse.
That’s why shifting diets is a climate solution. https://t.co/5kBHujs3TZ
Today’s News on Sustainable, Traditional Polluting Energy from Fossil Fuel, and the Green Revolution:
EVs are much more efficient and the grids, even in dirty energy states, are still cleaner than burning gas directly. This doesn’t include the production of vehicle, which in EVs was more greenhouse intensive. But at last check you make up the difference after a year of driving. https://t.co/ucb8smj87v— Jeff Berardelli (@WeatherProf) October 1, 2023
#SundayMorning Reading: "Key strategies…were to double #renewableenergy capacity every year and to transition mainly to electric vehicles within the next decade."https://t.co/KaKlyY2F4Q pic.twitter.com/rgqIRT6h4z— Silicon Valley North (@CCLSVN) October 1, 2023
More from the Weather Department:
Alight Mark. I'll play ball.— Matthew Cappucci (@MatthewCappucci) September 30, 2023
You gave me a Top 20 list of wettest days in NYC. The period of record is 1869-2023.
8 of the top 20 wettest days occurred in the past 30 years (1993-2023).
Only 2 in the first 30 years of that period (1869-1899.) [1/4] https://t.co/gSgaJ68OBk
Casual curious check on #Phillipe & #Rina: Still both in the Atlantic no less than 500 miles east and northeast of the Leeward Islands, showing no signs of threatening the Caribbean. The smaller Rina orbits stronger Phillipe, which could end up absorbing Rina and strengthening. pic.twitter.com/1V0bzsGFw0— John Morales (@JohnMoralesTV) September 30, 2023
Watching Developing Tropical Storm Koinu for possible impact to far northern Philippines and then Southern Taiwan pic.twitter.com/9wvXdTYVFU— James Wilson (@tornadokid3) September 30, 2023
If you’d like to read how orbital cycles — called “Milankovich Cycles — affect the weather/climate (on scales of tens of thousands of years), and why *humans dominate* when it comes to driving ongoing climate warming, order “Extreme Weather for Kids,” which comes out in March. https://t.co/LjfxZrkchW pic.twitter.com/SOlGHZ8bBB— Matthew Cappucci (@MatthewCappucci) September 30, 2023
💨 Incoming! The first Arctic blast (🔵) of the season is forecast to reach the Midwest & Northeast U.S. in about a week…— Ben Noll (@BenNollWeather) September 30, 2023
The first frost may happen in many places & flakes could even fly in the mountains! ❄️ pic.twitter.com/Kig5g3g1XL
More on the Environment:
We are destroying her— GO GREEN (@ECOWARRIORSS) October 1, 2023
Astronauts describe Earth like seeing “a tiny, fragile ball of life hanging in the void, shielded and nourished by a paper-thin atmosphere” and as “a fragile oasis” for the only life that we know of in entire universe by @SadhbhOhttps://t.co/KTc7EXymwA
Microplastics have invaded nearly every part of the Earth, where they can harm living creatures and even potentially influence the climate.— Yale Environment 360 (@YaleE360) September 30, 2023
Clouds are no exception, researchers discovered.
Read more @YaleE360: https://t.co/NSd0AHnLbR pic.twitter.com/0bEL87EnHe
More on Other Science and the Beauty of Earth and this Universe:
Woooah!! 🌎🌍🌏💃🕺— Iban Ameztoy (@i_ameztoy) September 30, 2023
First full tectonic plate reconstruction of the last billion years – spanning nearly a quarter of the Earth’s existence. Research & timelapse by an international team of scientists including experts from the University of Adelaide pic.twitter.com/h8eoUuN8wl
“For the first time, it is possible for water, produced by sunlight, to be even cheaper than tap water,” says Lenan Zhang, a research scientist in MIT’s Device Research Laboratory. https://t.co/R2kEL9iX9v— David Wallace-Wells (@dwallacewells) September 30, 2023