Feel like the hot is hotter than before, and the wet is wetter? You’re not wrong.

You might have guessed it’s climate change, but what exactly is going on?


Basically, warm air holds more moisture as water vapour (think steamy bathroom post-shower) and cold air is drier (think chapped lips in winter).

As the planet warms from CO2 and greenhouse gases (global warming) more water is evaporating from the sea and land, into the air.

Wetter air, so what?

More moisture in the air causes heavier rains and fiercer storms - in July last year more rain fell in one hour in parts of London than normally falls in one month.

Evaporation from the land also dries out the soil. When water falls on hard, dry ground, it runs off it instead of absorbing into the soil. This increases the risk of drought and flooding. Recent studies have found the Mediterranean is getting drier, while the rest of Europe is becoming wetter.

There's more... The extra water vapour in the air also makes the existing warming from greenhouse gases even worse, as the water absorbs heat from the earth and prevents it from escaping. Aka, not a very good cycle!

And across the world, particularly in the global south, the countries that have contributed the least to emissions could see the largest and most dramatic changes in their weather patterns and suffer the greatest damages.

Just how weird will the weather get?

We don’t really know, because the planet has never experienced this before! A city in a heat wave one day can suddenly snow and have sub-zero temperatures the next day (Denver, Colorado in September 2020). As global emissions rise, the frequency, extremity and timings of extreme weather patterns will become even more unpredictable – so reducing emissions is key to slowing down the impacts.

Want to take action on climate change? There are lots of things you can do. Get started with these 10 most impactful actions - that will also save you money!

10 ACTIONS TO HELP THE PLANET