Hotter day’s here to stay
Friday, 17th January, 2014
By Emily Roberts
As the heat continues around Australia, a new report has found that Australian heatwaves are hotter, longer, earlier and more often.
The report comes as southern Australia swelters through an intense heatwave with temperatures passing 40 degrees in most capital cities.
While Broken Hill wasn’t the hottest city yesterday, residents still had to suffer through temperatures over 42 degrees.
According to a spokesman from the Bureau of Meteorology, the city has had eight days over 35 degrees and four days over 40 degrees.
“It is a reasonable spell for Broken Hill,” he said.
“There was a five-day spell last year over 40 degrees and the longest spell over 40 degrees was in 2009 - with 12 days.
“The longest spell over 35 degrees was 17 days; that occurred twice, once in 1979 and again in 2004.”
The spokesman said to expect days over 40 degrees to continue until the weekend.
“There is a wind change moving through on late Saturday and by Sunday the temperature should drop to 37 degrees.
“It will be a bit milder next week compared to this week. It will be a bit closer to the average temperature for this time of year.”
The Climate Council yesterday released findings from a report written by Professor Will Steffen, who said that climate change was making heat waves more frequent and severe.
“Heat waves have become hotter and longer, and they are starting earlier in the season,” Dr Steffen said.
“Australia has always had hot weather. However, climate change is loading the dice toward more extreme hot weather.”
It was revealed that record hot days and heat waves are expected to increase in the future.
As for the global level, record hot days and warm nights are expected to increase across Australia over the coming decades.
The number of heat waves is also projected to increase significantly.