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Q&A

Are heat waves a symptom of 'rebound effect' after climate change deceleration during COVID-19 lockdowns?

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During the summer of 2022 Europe has had several heat waves. As described in 2022 European heat waves:

Climatologists linked the extreme heat to the impact of climate change, and experts predict that changes in the jet stream as a result of climate change will cause heatwaves with increasing frequency in Europe. Furthermore, due to the jet stream, the increase in heatwaves for European countries is three-to-four times higher than other countries in northern mid-latitudes, such as the United States.

The temperatures skyrocketed and various heat records were beaten. This comes just two years after the COVID-19 lockdowns that reduced emissions, and where -if I get the data right- no dramatic heatwaves were recorded. As seen in How did COVID-19 lockdowns affect the climate?:

How these emissions affect the content of the atmosphere varies for each different gas or aerosol. We know that aerosols only stay in the air for a few days and so the amounts of them can change very quickly. Many places in the world saw big improvements in air quality and visibility due to the reduction in aerosols.

So the idea would be that the lockdowns had some impact on reducing the climate change. However, now, just two years later, I wonder if we are seeing a 'rebound effect', or it is just the climate change going back to its normal increasing path?

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Non sequitur? (3 comments)

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