Last year ranked in the top 10 for heat, rain and sunshine for the first time, and scientists say Britain’s mild climate is coming to an end
Extreme weather events will increasingly occur in Britain because of the climate crisis, scientists said after data showed that last year was one of the warmest as well as one of the wettest and sunniest on record.
An extremely sunny start to spring 2020 followed the wettest February on record, and a heat wave that hit in August combined to make 2020 the third warmest, fifth wettest and eighth sunniest year on record, according to the State of the UK Climate 2020 report published in the International Journal of Climatology.
Mike Kendon, senior climatologist at the Met Office’s National Climate Information Center and lead author of the study, said: “The U.K. climate is already changing.
The warming we are seeing is broadly consistent with what we are seeing globally… and our climate seems to be getting not only warmer but also wetter, which is consistent with our broad understanding of climate change.”
These extremes can cause serious problems because most of the infrastructure in the U.K. was not built to withstand the kind of rainfall, abnormal temperatures and storms that are likely to occur more frequently.
The U.K. has experienced flooding again in recent days, after a heatwave earlier this month, raising questions about the U.K.’s ability to cope with extreme weather.