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Chilling New Study Finds Australia Is Already Experiencing Climate Change

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Chilling New Study Finds Australia Is Already Experiencing Climate Change

Whenever climate change is mentioned in Australia or around the world, many make predictions about what might happen in 10, 20, 50 or 100 years time.

But a chilling new study has found that the effects of climate change are already being seen Down Under.

The Bureau of Meteorology and CSIRO have teamed up for their twice a year report titled State of the Climate and it's a grim read.

Australia's average temperature has increased 1.44 degrees Celsius compared to 1910, plus or minus 0.24C when you take in extreme heat days or heatwaves into account.

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Karl Braganza, manager of the climate environmental prediction service at the Bureau, said: "What we are seeing now is a more tangible shift in the extremes, so we are starting to feel how that shift in the average is impacting on the extreme events.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

"We don't necessarily feel the 1.44 degree increase in Australia's average temperature but we feel those heatwaves and we feel that fire weather."

Since the previous State of the Climate report, we've experienced the hottest year on record, 2019, and experts worry this will be pretty standard in time.

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In 2019, we had 33 days that were above 39 degrees, compared to just 24 days between 1960 and 2018.

Dr Jaci Brown, research director at the CSIRO's climate science centre, said: "In fact, we think of this decade being hot, but this decade will be one of the coolest in the next hundred years."

The report looks at the climate data from the previous two years and makes projections about our future. What we can expect is more big weather events like devastating bushfires, flooding, severe cyclones and long-lasting droughts.

The coronavirus pandemic has helped reduce our emissions but it's not going to be enough.

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Dr Jaci Brown added: "[It's like] you have been eating junk food for 10 years and you jump on the scales for one day... this is about a very long change. The big challenge for our children and grandchildren is how to flatten this curve."

Dr Brown added that what we have been seeing in the last few years in terms of climate will only get more normal.

She said: "They are the sort of events we should treat as becoming more and more likely as warming continues.

"The message is very clear here. The State of the Climate report shows warming, it shows conditions drying through parts of Australia, and the projections are for hotter and dryer conditions going forward."

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The report predicts Australia will have an increased fire threat, inconsistent rainfall and a more acidic ocean.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: climate change, News, Australia

Stewart Perrie
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