UK weather: Why is Britain so hot this year? When will the heatwave end?


The Met Office told Express.co.uk the position and strength of the jet stream, otherwise known as the air currants in the atmosphere, has played a major part in the hot, settled weather the year. 

Global warming could also be a reason why the weather is becoming more extreme. 

A spokesperson said: “During the hot weather the jet stream was not very strong and positioned to the north of the UK for a number of weeks. This meant we were under the influence of high pressure systems at ground level which gave us plenty of dry and sunny weather.

“The heatwave we’ve experienced so far this summer is probably part of natural cycles in the weather, but this ‘weather’ aspect is superimposed on a background of global warming and that could elevate the already high temperatures.

“Global warming of 1C since the industrial revolution is clearly making extreme heat more likely. It is increasing quite significantly the risk of a heatwave. The temperatures of above 30C have gone from being a very rare occurrence to, not a frequent occurrence, but one that is much more likely.

“What we have seen this summer is consistent with predictions that the extreme temperatures across Europe in the summer of 2003 could expect to be ‘normal’ summer conditions for Europe by the 2040s.

“Met Office research into the European 2003 heatwave showed that greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere doubled the chance of the temperatures recorded in 2003 compared to what we’d expect in a pre-industrial world. Also that by the 2040’s the temperatures we saw in 2003 would be an average summer.”

When will the heatwave end?

The hottest day of the year in the UK so far was was recorded on July 26.

Temperatures reached 35.3C in Faversham, Kent.

According to the Met Office, the rest of August will be a mixed bag of weather, as there will be thunderstorms as well as sun weather.

The northern half of the UK should remain dry over the next few weeks.

But the south could be hit by showers and stormy conditions.

Temperatures are also expected to be above normal – or even well above normal – at the start of September.

However, this does not mean temperatures will be boiling.

Above normal could just mean about 1 or 2 degrees higher than average for September, which often has highs of around 19C.



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