Extreme Weather


Extreme Weather Event Map: Click on any icon on the map above to see details on the extent of an extreme weather event between 1990 and 2012.


Extreme Weather Events Map

The events shown above are examples of four types of extreme weather that scientists say are becoming more frequent and intense because of climate change: extreme heat, drought, wildfires, and heavy precipitation. Individual events cannot be blamed on any single cause.  However, the long-term trends in these types of events demonstrate that extreme weather risk is rising as a result of climate change. Each new event is an opportunity to better understand our vulnerabilities and ways to cope with these rising risks. Examined together, these events also can help us evaluate the benefits of actions and policies aimed at reducing the emissions of heat-trapping gases that are warming the planet and “juicing up the weather”.

Here are two C2ES papers taking a closer look at the trends shown in the map and how we can respond:


Scientific American Series on Extreme Weather, Climate Change, and the Risks We Face

Published in three parts in June 2011, this series in Scientific American provides firsthand accounts of record-breaking weather events, insights into their links to climate change, and what can be done to manage the growing risks.  The articles were written by science journalist John Carey with support from C2ES.


Additional C2ES Resources

Find answers to some of the most frequently asked climate science questions and learn about the realities and misconceptions of climate change science.

Learn how Hurricane Sandy is a stark reminder of the rising risks of climate change.

See the latest on drought and climate change.

Learn more about extreme heat and climate change.

Keep up to date on current extreme weather events, climate change, and risk management.