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Henry M. Robert

“The weather is playing cat and mouse with us”

Meteorologists have made a climatic forecast for Ukraine till the end of the century
26 November, 2013 - 12:37

For their professional holiday, the Day of Hydrometeorological Service of Ukraine, celebrated on November 19, the scientists of the Ukrainian Hydrometeorological Institute presented their short-term, till 2030, mid-range, till 2050 and long-term, till 2080-2100, forecasts of climate changes in Ukraine. The conclusions are the following: the warm season will be longer, winters will be warmer, though some periods might be extremely cold. September will be colder than usual, December and January will be warmer. Now we should expect frost and snow in March. The summer will come in April or May and will be warm or very warm from the beginning. The specialists expect the number of boiling days with the temperature over 30 degrees to grow. Also in the summer season there will be fewer precipitations and the meteorologists consider it a worrying ten-dency. In return, when there are more precipitations they will be in the form of heavy rainstorms. Also there will be more snow in the winter. Snow showers will be heavy and long-lasting.

The analysis demonstrated that till 2030 the most significant warming is expected in the northern east and southern regions. In 2030-50 the minimum temperatures will grow from October to April, in May and September they will be more or less typical and in the summer the day temperature will grow. In 2080-2100 all temperatures will grow with the maximum in the northern region. The meteorologists expect the fewest changes in the West of Ukraine.

The climatologists say: today the climate is changing very quickly as the changes that used to happen during 1,400 years are now happening during one generation. For example, over the past two decades the temperature of Ukraine has increased by 0.8 degrees compared to the climatic norm. With this the most the temperature increased in January by 2 degrees and in July by 1.4 degrees.

The meteorologists are also observing a significant increase of minimum temperature in the cold season and an increase of maximum temperature in the warm season. It has conditioned the decrease of the length of the cold period in Ukraine by 5-28 days. At the same time the meteorologists are observing a tendency of a longer warm period: in the spring it starts 15 to 20 days earlier and finishes 1 to 6 days later in the autumn. Another observation is that over the past decades the average and maximum wind speed has changed as well. So, there are fewer dangerous snow and dust storms.


Volodymyr OSADCHY, director of the Ukrainian Hydrometeorological Institute, corresponding member of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine:

“Climate change is the top 1 problem in the world: thus the EU spends 20 percent of its budget on the problem of adaptation to this change. Ukraine is not an exception although it is situated in middle latitudes. Our country belongs to the climatic zones where the climate change is not as significant as, say, in the northern latitudes. Speaking about the climate change we, first of all, mean the change of temperatures: global, over a year, over a month. However, the problem is that the whole climatic system is changing: thermic regime, rainfall regime, wind and solar radiation meaning that all the climatic resources and their relations are changing. The significant example is the well-remembered snow storm in March 2013. If such snowfall had happened 30-40 years ago there would have been a terrible flood in Kyiv, just like in 1917, 1930, and 1970. However, it did not happen and the reason for this is that the ground did not freeze at the depth of a meter or one and a half meters like in 1930 but only dozens of centimeters. That is why the enormous amount of water accumulated in winter was absorbed by the ground. That is why there was a paradox: the three-month norm of snow fell in Kyiv and the catastrophe did not happen. This is a specific example of how the climate change is misleading us. The nature is playing cat and mouse with us.”

By Oksana MYKOLIUK, The Day