Meteorologist, physicist and former EMY director Nikos Kanderes expresses his assessment that the summer of 2023 will not be the hottest in Greece, adding that there is no need to worry .
“My assessment is that this summer won’t be the hottest we’ve had. It will be something we’ve been through before, so there’s no need to be scared and worried, and I wouldn’t say no terrorism either,” says Canderes.
With many years of experience, Mr. Canderes maintains a rich archive where he has recorded temperatures and hot days from 1980 to the present day. As he explains to the APE-MPE, the worst heat wave observed on Greek territory in the last 50 years took place in July 1987, a month in which hot invasions usually arrive. In July 1987, as Mr. Canderes mentioned, for 12 days the temperature was above 37 and 38 degrees and for 8 days from 40 and above, while in the winter of the same year there was many snowfalls. At the same time, as he points out, “the smallest heat wave took place in July 2018, which lasted 3 days, however, it was accompanied by the fire of the century in an urban area, in Mati, Attica with 104 victims”. Explaining that hot days are characterized by temperatures reaching 37 degrees Celsius and above, Kanderes noted that great importance should be given to the intensity of the heat and its duration.
“The heats which are observed 2-3 times a year, of the order of 5 and 6 days are treated, but those which last 8, 9 and 10 days, make the situation difficult”, he points out. ‘APE-MPE.
Reviewing his record and his observations over the years, for the months of June, July, August and the days when temperatures were recorded during those months above 37 degrees Celsius, Mr. Kanderes comes to the following conclusions:
During the decade 1980-1989 in the Attica basin, 125 days were recorded with temperatures of 37 degrees Celsius and above, especially in 1987 and 1988, which were 12 consecutive days.
· In the decade 2000-2009, the total number of days was 158, while in the decade 2010-2019, it reached 221 days.
Especially in the above decade, the hottest year was observed to be 2012, as a total of 44 days were recorded during the summer months with temperatures above 37 degrees Celsius. In 2014, it was 30 days. In 2016, 28 days were recorded, while in 2017, 27 days.
“We notice that there is a significant increase in days. With reference to the period 2020-2022, we see that in 2021 we had 28 days with temperatures above 37 degrees Celsius, which is also related to fires , while in 2022 there were 19 days when temperatures exceeded 37 degrees Celsius. looks like it won’t be the hottest summer we’ve had. I don’t think it can be repeated this summer to have 30 and 40 days of such temperatures. I don’t think there is any particular concern”, underlines Mr. Canderes at the APE-BPE.
Regarding the fight against forest fires, Mr. Canderes underlines that there is a great need to focus on prevention.
“The focus should be on prevention and then on immediate intervention. Now it is possible because compared to other years, local self-government has also developed to a large extent. Volunteers have also increased This requires preparation on everyone’s part. If they directly intervene as soon as possible, things will be much better. You have to work harder because there is no room for more green to get lost in our country,” notes Kanderes and adds that from his experience as a front-line meteorologist, he believes there must be an appropriate distribution of air force watch. “It also takes experience and l effort because the weather always gives the signal, provided that someone knows how to interpret it and that the State intervenes immediately, because again this year a lot of money is available from the Civil Protection, but at the end of the day the coefficient will be seen performance. But the most important thing is prevention,” he said.
Regarding the El Niño phenomenon, Mr Canderes said that it causes fluctuations in the southern hemisphere and that it is monitored by scientists with satellites because it has direct economic consequences in South America and Australia, and in Central Africa and Indonesia. “Events that may be accompanied by floods, strong events that have passed in the northern hemisphere may affect Central America and North America. From there, however, for them to reach Greece is, in my opinion opinion, impossible. In any case, such powerful phenomena must be monitored. It is necessary to observe the previous years, such as 1999, 2015 and 2016 when this phenomenon was rife. Greece was not affected at all at all. If at the future we see that this phenomenon is also linked to Greece, so we can support it. It is no longer time to repeat that it affects Greece. We are monitoring it, but we have other events to watch that affect Greece “, underlines Mr. Kanderes.
Regarding the recent drought in Western Europe, Canderes notes that as long as Western Europe is busy with warm incursions from Morocco, there is no cause for concern here.
“Drought phenomena exist and have an impact on many crops, such as olive growing. This year has been a mild winter. The rainy days were well below normal values. The rains observed if we exclude Western Greece and parts of northern and central Greece, in other regions the heights were lower. Fortunately, the month of May came to somewhat fill these gaps of the previous months, not to mention February. December and January of this year have been quite mild, we haven’t had a lot of rain and that’s a reason why we have to worry a lot more about fires this summer,” concludes Canderes.