Three methods for examining climatic extremes over the historical period were updated to include data from the last decade (2011-2020). The analysis shows that, particularly in the tropics, the mean climate has shifted by four standard deviations away from the historical average - a level of warming that would be essentially impossible to access without anthropogenic climate change. Meanwhile monthly temperature records are being broken consistent with a simple statistical model that attributes the excess records to global warming. In addition, 1-in-4 rainfall records in the last decade can be attributed to climate change. As temperatures continue to increase, these unprecedented changes will expand into higher latitude regions too.

Different indicators of the changing frequency of extremes in a warming climate over the historical period until 2020. See publication for details.

Robinson, A., Lehmann, J., Barriopedro, D., Rahmstorf, S. and Coumou, D.: Increasing heat and rainfall extremes now far outside the historical climate, NPJ Climate and Atmospheric Science, 45, 1-4, doi:10.1038/s41612-021-00202-w, 2021.

Other links

Nota de prensa de la Universidad Complutense de Madrid.

Press release from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research