UK scientists are saying the bush fires in Australia are a warning of what may be to come around the world. This is in a report from the UK’s Met Office these scientists warned that if the planet increases by 3 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels by the end of this century there could be fires of the kind we’re seeing in Australia in many other places.
BBC science editor David Schuchman has been looking at this day after day. Fire crews braved the frontlines in a crisis that’s still escalating many of the blazes are out of control. Also beyond anyone’s experienced its worst we’ve seen in 21 years. This is the honestly the worst and most on vac she’d been out makes it very hard especially when you got family and commitment all the rest of it in a town in Victoria. A ghostly scene cars burned and gray with ash fires are a natural feature of Australia. But record heat has made them more severe than usual something that had been predicted.
Climate scientists knew this was going to happen at some point whether it was now or ten years from now. We were going to get this perfect storm and it was going to be pretty horrible. We dodged a bullet a couple of years ago when we had a hot summer then but it was eventually going to transpire and this seems to be part of a pattern a new study of wildfires around the world. From the Amazon rainforest to California says human activity is raising temperatures and adding to the threat including in Europe and many other regions. This was Spain in last year, the scientists involved in the research, says the key now is to cut emissions of the gases that are heating the planet in terms of the urgency. It’s getting worse all the time so the sooner we can rein in emissions. This is sooner we can slow the increase in warming and increase the climate change impacts.
David says climate science like many parameters of science advances in relatively small steps and often you may feel you’ve heard this before. But there are little nuances and changes so what they’ve done. This study is review of all recent research into wildfires. Actually they’ve concluded or one conclusion is that overall the global total of wildfires is reduced in area over recent decades. The main reason is that more and more natural grasslands natural forest has been hacked away and converted into farmland.
So that when you get there’s less area for there to be a wildfire on if you like so in a sense it’s quite a mechanical reason for that. But they’ve also found that as the temperature of the planet has warmed and this is the bit that won’t surprise you get more combustible conditions assuming there’s vegetation to burn. Assuming other situations are as they would be to encourage a fire to start if it’s hotter and if it’s drier which you’re going to get with global warming.