Saturday, July 20, 2024

Will 2024 be a year without summer? Here’s what the weather says and why we should fear it

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Recently, the fear of a new year without summer has been growing. Let’s see together what it is and why it scares.

A year without summer

The idea of ​​a year without a summer may seem surreal, but it has actually happened in the past. But let’s see what exactly the phrase “a year without a summer” means.

2024, a year without summer

The year 1816 is known as the Year Without a Summer, or the Year of Poverty. During that period, Extreme summer weather conditions destroyed crops in northern Europe, in the northeastern United States and eastern Canada. These anomalies are mainly attributed to the eruption of the Tambora volcano on the island of Sumbawa, in present-day Indonesia, which occurred between 5 and 15 April 1815. This eruption released huge amounts of volcanic ash into the upper layers of the atmosphere. This caused global temperatures to drop as sunlight was blocked by the ash.

Apart from this, Two other phenomena contributed to global cooling during that period: The Dalton Minimum and the Little Ice Age. The Dalton Minimum was the period in which the Sun was thought to be releasing less energy than usual, while the Little Ice Age was a phase of global cooling that lasted from the Middle Ages until the 1850s.

To understand what awaits us these days We need to look at seasonal forecasts, which provides an overview of expected rainfall and temperatures for the coming months. It is also important to take into account the global climate system, especially the Pacific Ocean, where two important phenomena alternate: La Niña and El Niño.

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What to expect from the climate

La Niña and El Niño are large-scale phenomena that occur on the surface of the tropical Pacific Ocean and affect the global climate. The El Niño phenomenon causes surface water temperatures to become abnormally highWhile the La Niña phenomenon causes cooling. The name El Niño, which means “baby” in Spanish, comes from the fact that abnormally high temperatures peak around Christmas. La Niña, on the other hand, represents the opposite, where ocean water is 1-3 degrees Celsius cooler than average.

What should we expect?

Currently, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the US agency that deals with ocean and atmospheric dynamics, has announced that Surface waters in the Pacific Ocean are warming more than expectedWhich indicates the beginning of the El Niño phenomenon, which is expected to be exceptional this year. Overall, El Niño causes global temperatures to rise, but Mediterranean summers are currently struggling to stabilize, in stark contrast to the global warming trend.
It remains to be seen how the situation will develop in the coming weeks. Weather conditions can still change, affecting the course of the summer. What is certain is that the climate continues to surprise us and challenge our expectations.

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