How Storm Monica that flooded the South was accentuated by global warming

Until recently, no climatologist dared to establish a link between the intensity of storms and global warming. But research has progressed and discourse has evolved. The Mediterranean spring episodes are now more intense, but also earlier than 30 or 40 years ago.

Storm Monica devastated France, Spain and Italy on March 9, generating more than 200 mm of rain in 24 hours in the Ardèche. The intensity of the rains is notable, but so is the time: most of the episodes in the Cévennes occur in autumn, but that of March 9 is the third that occurs at the end of winter, early spring of 2024.

the organism Climameter studies possible links between phenomena weather reportweather report Extremes and global warming. Climameter Therefore he analyzed the differences between events similar to the stormstorm Monica occurred between 1979 and 2001, and those occurred between 2001 and 2023. The study showed that depressions of this type had pressures lower than 5 hPa in recent years, compared to those in the 1980s and 1990s. In the same type of climatic situation and in the same region, temperatures are 2 to 3 °C higher, the windswinds They are also slightly stronger (5 to 10 km/h more) and the precipitationprecipitation more intense (6 to 13 mm more on average).

Mediterranean storms are more intense and earlier during this period

The Cévennes episodes that occurred in spring in the past have also shifted slightly in time: while those in years before 2000 occurred in March and April, those in recent years occurred in February and March, with a month less.

Therefore, climate change has certainly played a role according to Climameterwith a medium confidence index, like natural variability.

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