Climate change made Europe’s summer floods worse

Climate change made Europe’s summer floods worse


Military personnel on an inflatable boat ship past a destroyed house on the Ahr river in Rech, Rhineland-Palatinate, western Germany, on July 21, 2021, after devastating floods hit the region.  | Photo by CHRISTOF STACHE/AFP via Getty Images

Climate change raised the risk of deadly floods that sweptthrough Western Europe in July, new research confirms. As people around the world continue burning fossil fuels and pumping out greenhouse gas emissions, the threat of similar disasters grows.

Already, single-day rainfall events in the affected region are between 3 to 19 percent more intense than they would be without human-caused climate change. Global warming also makes extreme rainfall events like the one thattriggered mid-July floods in Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg between 1.2 and nine times more likely to occur in the region.

At least 220 people died in Germany and Belgium because of swollen rivers and floods that raged through entire towns, knocking…

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