February 26, 2024

Heatwaves and Climate Change [Video]

This image, which uses data from the Copernicus Sentinel-3 objectives radiometer instrument, shows the temperature level of the land surface in southern France, Spain, and northern Africa on the early morning of July 17, 2022. It is worth noting the difference between air temperature and land-surface temperature. Air temperature level, given in our daily weather condition forecasts, is a measure of how hot the air is above the ground. Land-surface temperature rather is a procedure of how hot the real surface would feel to the touch. The image plainly shows that, in some locations, the surface area of the land reached a whopping 55 ° C (131 ° F). Considering Copernicus Sentinel-3 got these data in the morning, the temperature level would have increased through the afternoon. Credit: Contains customized Copernicus Sentinel information (2022 ), processed by ESA, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO
The series of heatwaves we are presently experiencing in western Europe is a clear indication of human-induced worldwide warming. ESAs Clement Albergel describes how we monitor these occasions utilizing satellites such as the Copernicus Sentinel-3 mission and puts them in the context of the long-lasting climate information record generated through ESAs Climate Change Initiative.

Video Transcript:

The series of heatwaves we have been experiencing in Western Europe are the clearest sign of global warming brought on by human activities, our emission of greenhouse gas in the atmosphere.
To better comprehend the irregularity of our climate system, we require observations. Satellite earth observations such as those operated by the European Space Agency in partnership with the European Commission in the context of the Copernicus Program are particularly useful as they offer worldwide coverage, harmony, quick measurement, and continuity.
Copernicus is powered by a dedicated family of satellites, the Sentinels.
Sentinel 3 is an instrument a radiometer that measures land surface area temperature level. In the last two weeks of July, it has measured record-breaking land surface temperature. More than 45 degrees celsius in the UK, more than 50 degrees celsius in France, and more than 60 in Spain.
We can also combine land surface area temperature level from Sentinel 3 with those from previous satellites in order to develop long period of time series. Whichs what we carry out in the context of ESAs climate program, the environment change effort.
We put together information from different satellites in order to establish worldwide scale long-lasting satellite-derived time series of crucial parts of the environment system, likewise referred to as vital environment variables. Land surface area temperature is one of them.
We have recently launched a 25 years climate data record of land surface temperature and the data indicate a stable boost of about 0.2 degrees celsius per years on average at a worldwide scale with strong local variability.
Heat waves can likewise be followed by wildfire. Very high temperature levels combined with low air humidity and dry greenery increase the risk of wildfire in case there is a source of ignition.
Satellites are extremely helpful as they permit the monitoring of different fire attributes. From a risk evaluation perspective, we can detect locations that are prone and dry to wildfire outbreaks, we can monitor actively flaming fires, smoldering fire, in addition to burn location, the scar let on the ground by fire. We can keep track of smoke plumes along with trace gas in the atmosphere.
When combined to exceptionally low level of rainfall is droughts, another repercussion of prolonged heat waves. Soils are getting drier and numerous rivers in Europe have now reached level low record.
Images obtained by Sentinel-2 reveal part of the Po Valley near Piacenza in Italy and exposed how the river has actually diminished in between June 2020 and June 2022. This is partly due to the lack of precipitation Northern Italy usually gets with extremely high temperatures and the absence of snow in the mountain that typically feeds the river.

It is worth keeping in mind the difference in between air temperature and land-surface temperature level. Land-surface temperature rather is a step of how hot the actual surface area would feel to the touch. Considering Copernicus Sentinel-3 obtained these information in the early morning, the temperature level would have increased through the afternoon. Sentinel 3 is an instrument a radiometer that determines land surface temperature. In the last two weeks of July, it has determined record-breaking land surface area temperature.