Tornadoes are normally associated with the famous Tornado Alley of the US Midwest. But they also occur from time to time in Germany.
Nowadays the drama-seeking media are quick to report on any tornado event that gets recorded, and so often there’s the mistaken perception that their frequency is rising (of course due to man-made weather brewing). Moreover the media have no qualms about their readers and viewers making that erroneous leap in thought.
Earlier this month Germany was hit by some relatively severe tornado activity. In Augsburg earlier this week 150 homes were damaged by a twister. The media naturally put the topic on center-media stage.
Flagship daily Süddeutsche Zeitung [South German News], SZ, even conducted an interview with the DWD German National Weather Service on the subject of tornadoes and what might be their cause. Over the recent years the DWD has become a rather avid activist and promoter of the man-made global warming theory. But in the SZ interview, the DWD was refreshingly fully honest, and resisted blaming German tornado activity on climate change.
First the SZ asked DWD meteorologist Lars Kirchhübel about how tornadoes are formed and why they are so dangerous. Then about halfway through the interview the topic switches to the impacts of climate change on tornadoes: The SZ asks, “Are they becoming more frequent in Germany – and are they a consequence of climate change?”
The SZ gives us the DWD’s reply:
Tornadoes are not forming more frequently than earlier, we are simply made more aware of them says DWD expert Kirchhübel. Between 20 and 60 tornadoes are know each year in Germany. It has been only over the last few years that those involved have recorded them with their mobile devices, and so thus enhance the people’s perception.”
And on whether there is a discernible trend linkíng tornado activity to global warming, Kirchhübel tells the SZ that the dataset is too short and that there has been no discernible trend so far. He adds:
Also a clear relationship with climate change is not verifiable.”
About a week ago NoTricksZone posted another report on German tornado activity here, and it found that the trend is actually downward for the past 15 years, and not “no trend”:
Number of confirmed tornadoes in Germany since 2000. Trend has been significantly downward over the past 10 years. Source: DWD.