UN Issues Warning About Increasing Intensity of Hot Waves
John Nairn, senior advisor to the UN World Meteorological Organization for extreme heat, issued a warning about the world’s need to prepare for more intense waves of hot air, according to Azerbaijan in Focus, reporting Turan. Speaking to reporters in Geneva, Nairn emphasized that these events will continue to escalate in intensity, urging global readiness for stronger heat waves.
Expert Korkmaz Ibrahimli shared his perspective on the matter, stating that such forecasts are not surprising considering previous trends. He highlighted that heat-related deaths, reaching approximately 60,000 people last year, could potentially rise further if not addressed effectively. Ibrahimli urged a focus on mitigating the impact of heat on human health, especially during July and August when people avoid outdoor activities due to concerns about excessive heat exposure.
According to Ibrahimli, human activity is the primary reason for the world’s sharp warming. He attributed the increase in carbon dioxide (CO2) to industrialization, which disrupts the natural regulation of the environment, leading to significant warming events.
The expert provided insight into the calculation of average annual temperatures, involving a long-term assessment spanning hundreds of years. Concerns about rising temperatures have prompted international summits such as the Paris and Kyoto summits, where measures were discussed to limit the increase in temperature to no more than 1.5 degrees. However, some large industrial nations like China, Russia, India, and the United States release substantial amounts of harmful gases, impeding global efforts to combat warming. Natural factors, such as forest fires, lightning, and heat from ozone layer holes, also contribute to the warming phenomenon, leading to rising sea levels and glacier melt.
In Azerbaijan, as in the rest of the world, the average annual temperature has increased over the past century. Glaciers have diminished, and water resources have decreased, impacting trans-border waters. Human activities, including deforestation, improper treatment of nature, and urbanization, exacerbate these issues.
Ibrahimli highlighted the impact of concrete usage in Baku, which raises air temperatures due to increased evaporation. The Absheron Peninsula faces similar challenges, with stones and concrete amplifying heat retention. He emphasized the importance of Europe’s approach, where green spaces are expanded, and water resources are conserved to combat global warming.
The expert stressed that people can play a vital role in solving the problem. Encouraging green spaces, regulating urbanization, creating new jobs, and spreading populations to smaller settlements are potential solutions. Ibrahimli emphasized the need for support from the government in implementing such measures to avert looming threats.