Some years ago German “climate experts” were all forecasting hot, dry summers for Germany. But now, after a series of wet summers, they are telling us we have to expect wet summers in the future.
Nobody knows what to believe anymore. One day they say prepare for this, and the next day they say prepare for that.
Spiegel science journalist Axel Bojanowski here reports on the German DWD Weather Service’s summer review, which highlights the heavy rainfalls and severe thunderstorms that hit Germany. Also the DWD hints at what Germans should expect in the future. Suddenly, earlier warnings and prognoses of hot and dry 2003-like summers have given way to forecasts of wetter summers.
Spiegel’s Bojanowski writes (my emphasis):
Precipitation, like that in July, will increase in frequency as a result of the expected climate change, prophesizes the DWD. Simulations [computer models] had shown that a warmer planet at the end of the century could see 10 to 17 days per year more rainy low pressure systems, reported Vice President of the DWD, Paul Becker, on Monday in Berlin.”
Becker loves the media limelight. Here the DWD has made a 180° turn and is now claiming we should expect rainier and wetter summers – so forget all the earlier forecasts of hot, dry summers.
Earlier computer summer climate forecasts
Just a few years ago all the talk was about hot. dry summers and crop damage.
For example FOCUS magazine here warned in 2009 for the eastern part of Germany, citing the DWD itself:
Summers will become hotter, and less rain will fall. Already the changes are visible as people in Brandenburg experienced last summer an acute danger of forest fires. That this is no exception, rather it is a part of the trend and is shown by other datasets of the German Weather Service (DWD), which confirm that the temperature has risen over the last 30 years – the DWD has reliable data for this time period.”
Moreover in 2007 FOCUS cited Daniela Jacob of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg: “For example in the eastern part of the country summer will be like at the Mediterranean“. She also claimed major rivers in Germany could sink to extremely low levels during the summers. FOCUS added: “While summers will tend to be more dry, winters will be considerably wetter, according to analyses by the meteorologist.”
The German website www.energie-umwelt quoted daily Ostsee Zeitung, which wrote:
According to the model in summer there will be on average 30% less precipitation, whereby foremost the northeast and southwest of Germany will be hit.”
Germany’s flagship daily the FAZ here l presented a commentary by former Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) scientists Friedrich-Wilhelm Gerstengarbe and Peter Werner, who proclaimed:
Over the summer rainfalls in almost all of Germany have decreased. Our winters are becoming wetter. The new Germany is characterized by dry-hot summers and warm wet winters.”
Also Spiegel featured forecasts of warmer and drier summers, writing in 2009: “Computer simulations have yielded that the Mediterranean climate will spread further and further north due to climate change. […] The uninterrupted sequence of warm summer days and extremely hot days will make ‘everything quite uncomfortable’. Never mind the damage for farmers whose fields will dry up.”
The reality: 10 of the last 11 summers have been wetter than normal, or normal
So how accurate were all these German climate forecasts? 10 of the last 11 summers have been either wetter than normal, or normal. In short, the computer simulations got it all wrong.
Now the DWD wants us to believe that future summers in Germany will become wetter and wetter. They’ve forgotten what weather cycles are! That’s how bad the science of meteorology seems to have gotten at the DWD.
Bojanowski summarizes in his recent article:
Simulations from the Austrian ZAMG Weather Service on the other hand have not shown any increase in so-called Vb weather systems from the southeast for the future – that shows how uncertain the prognoses are.”
In a nutshell: you’re better off consulting a tarot-card fortune-teller for your climate forecasts.