Climate change is already creating more rain – NRK Norway – An overview of news from different parts of the country

Climate change is already creating more rain – NRK Norway – An overview of news from different parts of the country

– Climate change has already created more rain in the Oslo region, says Anita Werbe Tyrdal. Norwegian Climate Service Centre.

– We already have a sharp increase in temperature on the globe, and all theories and all measurements show an increase in extreme precipitation at the same time. The United Nations Climate Panel says so.

The week started with rain in eastern Norway.

In just 20 minutes on Monday, Oslo received more than half of its normal monthly rainfall for May.

Between 1.40 pm and 2.00 pm, the rain gauge at Blindern recorded 31.6 millimeters.

60 millimeters is normal for the whole month of May. The Bureau of Meteorology reports on Twitter/X.

Photo: Javier Ernesto Ariz Chavez / NRK

More heavy rain

Europe has seen more and more rain in recent years, and this is linked to climate change, according to the UN Climate Panel.

In Norway, the number and amount of heavy rainfall has increased in recent decades.

– When we put the long series we have together into a general picture, we see that most areas have increased, he says.

– It's especially the shower activity we see in mid-summer that increases the most, Tyrdall explains.

At the measuring station in Blindern, it rained twice as much as before. These are the longest measurements ever made by the meteorological station.

It's hard to say exactly how much more rain has fallen in Oslo, because the rain doesn't necessarily hit the measuring station in Blindern, to say there is a real increase:

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– What we can say is that there is a statistically significant increase in both the highest reading and the number of incidents per year, Tyrdal says.

The driving rain is the place to tell Oslo

Many had to wade through waterways in the capital on Monday.

Photo: Javier Ernesto Ariz Chavez / NRK

This is how climate change creates more rain

Man-made CO₂ and other greenhouse gases have already warmed the world.

As it warms, the water evaporates into the atmosphere. A warmer climate means more water can be held in the atmosphere, according to the Climate Group.

So, a warmer world gets more droughts – but more intense precipitation when it rains first.

– Globally, the rainfed area around the world has decreased, so precipitation is increasing, while the amount of precipitation is increasing. “We're getting more and more of these localized, heavy rainfall events,” Tyrdal says.

On Monday, massive flooding hit Oslo.

Can it be stopped?

For every degree the world warms, scientists expect the number of extreme precipitation events to nearly double.

With today's climate policy, the world is heading for 2.8 degrees of warming, according to UNEP. So far, the world has warmed 1.1 degrees since pre-industrial times.

– Climate models show that while it will continue to warm and continue to release greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, we will get even more heavy rains, says climate researcher Tore Furevik, director of the Nansen Center.

He says drastic emissions cuts are needed to slow growth.

– and ideally, one should move towards zero emissions as soon as possible. The faster you reduce emissions, the smaller the effects.

Styren, Oslo, 27 May 2024
Photo: Javier Ernesto Ariz Chavez / NRK

Have to adapt

At the same time, society is more focused on adapting to a new normal. Furevik says several measures can be taken locally to limit the damaging effects of heavy rain.

– In cities, it is more about dealing with storm water. This means you have a drainage system that can carry water away quickly.

But the challenges grow exponentially with scale, says Furevik. He cites a situation similar to the extreme weather “Hans” in which heavy rains and rivers rose in large parts of eastern Norway.

– It is very difficult to adapt when you get it in a very large area.

The driving rain is the place to tell Oslo

Tram and car in pouring rain at Solli plas in Oslo.

Photo: Javier Ernesto Ariz Chavez / NRK

28.05.2024, at 21.53 hrs

28.05.2024, at 22.18 hrs

Joshi Akinjide

Joshi Akinjide

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