Belgian highs could rise 3.5° in only 30 years

New climate models presented at a study day at the Belgian royal met office in Brussels reveal that if greenhouse gas emissions are not halted the Belgian climate will undergo significant change this century.

Depending on the model the temperature in Belgium will rise by between 2.6°C and 3.5°C between 2070 and 2100. The increase is far greater than the 1.5 degrees seen as "safe". Plants and animals should be able to adapt under a smaller change that would not trigger extreme weather phenomena.

Climate change could lead to a 19% increase in rainfall during the winter. Incidents of "extreme rainfall" could be up by between 10% and 18% and lead to flooding. The number of severe storms too could rise triggering misery for the coast. An ordinary north-westerly storm combined with a springtide could cause sea levels to rise by 3.5 metres. Fortunately this should normally only occur every 20 years.

All these changes could be our children's lot if greenhouse gas emissions are not cut drastically across the globe. Worryingly, it will not be sufficient for the Belgian authorities to act, all the world will have to take account of the danger.

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