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#BigAussieHeat in one infographic

January 11th, 2013 · 4 Comments


This infographic comes from Get Up Australia and is from here. For a printable version.

  • The hottest average maximum temperature ever recorded across Australia – 40.33 degrees, was set on Monday surpassing the old record of 40.17 °C set in 1976. (Bureau of Meteorology)
  • The number of consecutive days where the national average maximum daily temperature exceeded 39°C has also been broken this week—seven (7) days (between 2–8 January 2013), almost doubling the previous record of four (4) consecutive days in 1973, (BOM)
  • According to the National Climate Data Centre, nine of the 10 hottest years on record have been since 2000 (the other is 1998).
  • While temperatures vary on a local and regional scale, globally it has now been 27 years since the world experienced a month that was colder than average. “If you’re 27 or younger, you’ve never experienced a colder-than-average month” - Philip Bump, Grist, November 16, 2012.
  • The CSIRO has found Australian annual average daily maximum temperatures have steadily increased in the last hundred years, with most of the warming trend occurring since 1970.
  • The Bushfire CRC (Cooperative Research Centre) says large areas of southern Australia, from the east coast to the west coast, face “above average fire potential” in the summer of 2012-13. According to the Climate Institute extreme fire danger days are expected to rise more than 15 per cent in south-eastern Australia.
  • The last four months of 2012 - globally - were the hottest on record. (British Met Office) and 2012 was the hottest year the continental United States of America has ever recorded.(”2012 Was the Hottest Year in U.S. History. And Yes - It’s Climate Change”, Bryan Walsh, TIME 8 January, 2013).
  • The hot-dry trend is expected to continue, with the Climate Commission predicting large increases in the number of days over 35°C this century.
  • Around the world, 2013 could be the hottest ever recorded by modern instrumentation, according to a recent study by Britain’s Met Office. If that turns out to be accurate, 2013 would surpass the previous record, held jointly by 2005 and 2010.

Get used to record-breaking heat: bureau
This article includes perspectives from climate scientists at the Bureau of Meteoroloy on recent hot weather and some international evidence about the changing global climate.

Ben Cubby, Get used to record-breaking heat: bureau, 9 January 2013, The Age.

Australia faces another week of ‘catastrophic’ heat
This article provides a useful outline of the connection between climate change and the recent heatwave.

Andy Coghlan and Michael Slezak, Australia faces another week of ‘catastrophic’ heat, 8 January 2012, New Scientist website.

Extreme January heat
This Special climate Statement from the Bureau of Meteorology summarises the weather conditions during the recent heatwave.

Bureau of Meteorology, Extreme January heat, 7 January 2013, Bureau of Meteorology website.

Grim Warning on extreme weather for Australia
This Climate Commission report summarises the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report on extreme conditions and disasters and deals with the impact of climate change on heat, rain, drought, fire, cyclones and sea-level rise.

Climate Commission, Grim Warning on extreme weather for Australia Climate Commission website.

The human impact of heatwaves and extreme weather

  • “But the greatest threat to human health, says Liz Hanna of the Australian National University, is the heat itself.” “[It] directly causes more deaths than fires, floods and all natural events combined in Australia.” When it gets hotter than 35 °C, people have difficulty maintaining normal body temperature, putting strain on the heart. Babies, older people and those with heart conditions are most at risk.”
  • This report from the Climate Commission summarises research on the impact of climate change on physical and mental health and communities.

    Climate Institute, The human impact of heatwaves and extreme weather, 9 January 2013, Climate Institute website: media briefs.

    State of the Climate - 2012
    This report jointly produced in 2012 by the CSIRO and Australian Bureau of Meteorology provides an updated summary of observations and trends in Australia’s changing climate.

    CSIRO and the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, State of the Climate - 2012 13 March 2012, CSIRO website.

    Tags: climate change

    4 responses so far ↓

    • 1 Move aside Star Wars, Mark Ruffalo calls for “Declaration of War on Climate Change” at WH site // Jan 13, 2013 at 1:10 pm

      [...] Australia is burning up with #BigAussieHeat, Arctic Ice mass/extent is falling much faster than climate modeling predicted, climate change impacts are doing damage around the globe, species are going extinct, … [...]

    • 2 Mark Ruffalo Calls for White House to Declare War on Climate Change | "Global Possibilities" // Jan 13, 2013 at 4:16 pm

      [...] Australia is burning up with #BigAussieHeat, Arctic Ice mass/extent is falling much faster than climate modeling predicted, climate change impacts are doing damage around the globe, species are going extinct, … [...]

    • 3 “increasingly gloomy about the future of human civilization” // Jan 15, 2013 at 9:56 am

      [...] Australia shattered records for extended period of high (over 39C) temperature — as the #BigAussieHeat struck the entire continent. (Eight of the top twenty days in Australia’s temperture record have come in 2013 — eight days in a row.) And, a new color (purple) had to be added to the weather reporting to report temperatures above 50C (122F). (For compelling images from the #BigAussieHeat.) [...]

    • 4 And the drought moves on … // Jan 27, 2013 at 4:32 pm

      [...] Australia has been in the news lately due to the extreme droughts in their part of the world. When I read the Aussie stories, I couldn’t help but see the parallels between there and Oklahoma and Texas droughts. The last two summers here locally, it was so hot that baby birds, like those flying foxes were dropping out of the trees, some adult birds dropped out of the skies, because the heat was so intense that they were overheated and dehydrated and weakened. I rescued a Mississippi Kite last year, and some Jays as well. [...]

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