The world is getting warmer, senior climatologist Blair Trewin told the Bendigo Advertiser this week as the region’s residents sweltered through a heatwave.
From 1957 – 1992, Bendigo recorded an average of 0.4 days of temperatures above 40 degrees each January.
The Bureau of Meteorology has recorded five, 40-plus days at the Bendigo Airport so far this year.
That equates to about a third of the 15 days of 2019 for which there were complete records at the time of writing – an electrical fault prevented the automatic weather station at the airport from taking any measurements in the two weeks to January 3.
Dr Trewin said hot days were becoming more common each year in Australia, reflecting a worldwide warming pattern.
For years, scientists have been warning of climate change and its effects.
And, for too long, it has seemed their findings and recommendations have been overshadowed by controversy about whether climate change is real and who, or what, is responsible – both for causing the issue, and for addressing it.
‘It is the hottest ever summer one after another, which is incredibly worrying,’ one reader wrote.
Another said the weather trends, ‘should wake people up’.
Gauging public opinion by posts on social media can be about as accurate as checking one’s reflection in a funhouse mirror.
But it seems, as weather events worldwide become more extreme, like more people are realising the danger of failing to act to reduce the effects of climate change.
Youth-led rallies have certainly shown the next generation of leaders is passionate about the issue.
And there has never been a better time to act, with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change this week warning the ‘window for action’ to limit global warming to a maximum of two degrees above pre-industrial levels ‘is rapidly closing’.
- Emma D’Agostino, journalist
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