Climate Council Releases Angry Summer Report

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By Athena Yenko | March 10, 2014 3:32 PM EST

Climate Council releases its Angry Summer report which details the climate for the summer of 2013-2014 across Australia.

Lesley Hughes from the Climate Council said that hotter and drier climate will increase the risk of bushfires across regions.

"Bushfires, if they're started, are able to carry and spread faster, and more seriously and more intensely, the hotter and drier the conditions. So if we have really hot days, dry weather that's dried out the fuel - those are the conditions that are conducive to bushfires spreading and causing really serious impacts," Ms Hughes said.

Climate change brought the lurid weather patterns across the country. Hence, Ms Hughes called for the government to address the climate change as a pertinent issue.

"We're having difficulty dealing with it now; our children and grandchildren will be having a great deal more difficulty dealing with it in decades to come. It's consistent with the predictions of what happens as the globe warms up. Climate change is making the whole weather system different to what it used to be and along with that is an increase in extreme events," Ms Hughes explained.

Angry Summer Report key Findings:

1. Heatwaves and hot days, drought and rainfall extremes (high and low), and bushfires dominated the 2013/2014 summer.

  • Sydney had its driest summer in twenty-seven years
  • Canberra experienced 20 days of at least 35°C
  • Melbourne experienced its hottest ever 24-hour period (average 35.5°C)
  • Adelaide had a record of 11 days of 42°C or more during the summer
  • Perth had its second hottest summer onrecord

2. Climate change is already increasing the intensity and frequency of many extreme weather events in Australia.

3. Many of our largest population centres stand out as being at increased risk from extreme weather events, including heatwaves, drought and bushfires.

4. The impacts of extreme weather events on people, property, communities and the environment are serious and costly.

5. Limiting the increase in extreme weather activity requires urgent and deep reductions in the emissions of greenhouse gases. The decisions we make this decade will largely determine the severity of climate change and its influence on extreme events for our grandchildren. This is the critical decade for action on climate change.

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