Lightnining and wildfire climate warning

Newcastle University and the Met Office have led a study, published in the Journal Environmental Research Letters, pointing to a picture of changing weather patterns including more frequent storms with more energy.

The researchers found that although these changes could lead to less local lightning there could be an increased risk of wildfires over the mountains and in Northern Europe.

Study co-author, Professor Hayley Fowler of Newcastle University School of Engineering, said: “This is just more bad news for critical national infrastructure in northern Europe, after the damning report Readiness for storms ahead? Critical national infrastructure in an age of climate change by the Joint Committee on the National Security Strategy last week. Our paper has highlighted new risks from increases in lightning, previously unknown, which will require increased investment in climate adaptation measures. Further analysis is needed of the potential impact of these increases in lightning on energy and other critical infrastructure systems to enable policies and measures to be produced that are locally- and sector-relevant for adaptation planning.”

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