Switzerland on track for hottest year ever recorded

Switzerland on track for hottest year ever recorded

After three separate heatwaves, the subsequent threat of water shortages, and some ski resorts having to delay the start of their season because of a lack of snow, it is perhaps unsurprising to learn that 2022 has been a particularly warm year for Switzerland. Now, a report by Meteonews has confirmed that the alpine nation is on track for its hottest year ever.

With almost certainty, 2022 will be the hottest year in Switzerland

The report found that even with six weeks of the year left, "with a probability bordering on certainty", 2022 will be the hottest year Switzerland has ever seen. Even if November and December are colder than average, it is highly unlikely to stop the record from being broken. Meteonews noted that since measurements began in 1864, no other year has seen such a mild winter, spring and autumn, and such a scorching summer.

Average temperatures in 2022 have been 1,7 degrees Celsius higher than the long-term average recorded between 1991 and 2020. Currently, 2022 has been an average of 0,5 degrees warmer than 2018 - the previous hottest year on record.

Paris climate goals have already failed in Switzerland

Despite an average April and a slightly colder September, monthly temperatures have regularly exceeded the 30-year average. Temperatures last month were 3,8 degrees hotter than usual, making it the hottest October on record.

The excessively high temperatures and good weather in the summer may have come as good news for tourists and swimmers in Swiss lakes and rivers, but the period from May to August was between 2,5 and 2,7 degrees warmer than usual, spelling dire consequences for fish and other wildlife populations.

Finally, in a sobering warning, Meteonews concluded that annual average temperatures in Switzerland are now two degrees above pre-industrial levels. This means that, technically speaking, the goal to restrict temperature rises to 1,5 degrees above pre-industrial levels - set by the Paris Climate Agreement and reaffirmed by COP26 - has already been exceeded in Switzerland.

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Jan studied in York and Sheffield in the UK, obtaining a master's in broadcast journalism and a bachelor's in history. He has worked as a radio DJ, TV presenter, and...

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