Switzerland on track for record-breaking summer as temperatures soar
After a record-breaking weekend, a top meteorologist has predicted that the weather in Switzerland will stay hot for the rest of the summer. While this may be positive for sunbathers, Thomas Bucheli, head of SRF’s weather service, warned that consistently high temperatures will cost the economy hundreds of millions of francs in the future.
Switzerland set to break temperature records this summer
Speaking to SonntagsZeitung, Bucheli predicted that temperatures “may get as hot as 40 degrees” this summer. He said “the chances that we will experience a warmer than normal summer is very high. I would be surprised if it went in any other direction.”
It comes after record-breaking temperatures were recorded for the month of May last weekend, with the mercury reaching 32 degrees Celsius in areas of the mountains. On Swiss lakes, the heat and sunshine spawned the first blooms of blue-green algae, a sign that summer has come early to the alpine nation.
“New heat records in the summer are, depending on the weather conditions, very likely,” Bucheli said. He noted that May 2022 has been “far from normal” temperature-wise, as Swiss cantons see highs of over 30 degrees - the hottest temperatures recorded for May since measurements began and some of the hottest temperatures analysts have seen this early in the year.
Exceedingly high temperatures have big impact on economy
There are fears that exceedingly high temperatures will have a knock-on effect on the Swiss economy, particularly for people who work outdoors. SonntagsZeitung predicted that high temperatures would cost the economy 400 million Swiss francs a year in lost revenue, as the weather makes some jobs in Switzerland harder or impossible to do.
The International Labour Organisation, based in Geneva, found that productivity in Switzerland drops by 0,1 percent when temperatures are high, more than twice the amount of production lost due to sick leave. They said that climate change is set to have a massive impact on economies worldwide, and Switzerland will not be an exception.