A cascade of extreme weather exacerbated by climate change, this year has devastated communities around the world, including sweltering heat and drought, wilted crops, wildfires and major rivers shrinking to a trickle.

In Pakistan, recording monsoon more than a third of the country was flooded by rain, killing more than 1,500 people. In India and China, prolonged heat waves and droughts dried out rivers, disrupted power grids and threatened food security for billions of people. Widespread flooding and mudslides triggered by torrential rains also killed hundreds in South Africa, Brazil and Nigeria.

In Europe, heat waves caused record temperatures in Britain and other parts of the continent, with serious consequences droughts, low river flows slowing shipping, and wildfires in many parts of the continent. Much of East Africa is still in the grip of a multi-year drought — the worst in more than 40 years, according to the United Nations — leaving millions vulnerable to food shortages and famine.

An analysis by an international team of climate scientists in October found that human-induced climate change made droughts in the Northern Hemisphere at least 20 times more likely, warning that such extreme dry spells would become more common with global warming.

The planet is currently falling short of a goal of the 2015 Paris climate agreement to limit warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels to avoid the worst effects of climate change.

This year may offer a glimpse into our near future as these extreme climate events become more frequent.



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By wy9m6

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