Climate change in Germany - Frankfurt 100F on Wed

87 posts in this topic

I thought it would be interesting to start a conversation about

climate change in Germany.  I live in the US and have been

researching a move to Germany.  Here in the US, I have noticed

the summers being hotter by about 5F degrees and the winters

seem milder by 10F degrees over the last 5 years.  This seems

mild compared to the temperature changes in Germany. 

 

Frankfurt typically has very pleasant summers:

Average June high temperature in Frankfurt is 75F (24C)

Average July high temperature in Frankfurt is 79F (26C)

(These are 100 year averages)

 

Last year was a record breaking year for heat in Germany with

the highest June temperature for Frankfurt being 88F (31C). 

This Wednesday Frankfurt is forecasted to be 100F (38C).

That surpasses last year's highest temperature of the year

being 97F (36C) in July.

 

For the people living in Germany 5 to 10 years now, how have

you noticed the climate changing in Germany?   Were the

summers much cooler in the past?  Have the winters become

much warmer also?   How is it affecting the forests and those

lush green trees?   Are your UV indexes going up as well?

What are the local scientists saying about these extreme

temperatures?

 

One note about UV index changes where I live in the US. 

The UV index 2 years ago used to be 10 with maybe five to six

11 UV index days in July.   This year we got our first 11 UV

index day in March and had 11's throughout April and June.

Tomorrow will be a 12 UV index and I don't recall ever seeing

a 12 before.

 

 

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Well in Munich, last summer was hot hot and long 

This year summer started later, later than I can remember before, well at least for 25 years.

 

In winter, there is much less snow around than 10 or 20 years ago - the freeways are mostly clear of snow in the winter and much easier to get to work

 

I do not know nothing about UV index.

 

but maybe you should try a site like this 

https://www.wunderground.com/history/daily/EDDM/date/2010-6-24?req_city=Munich&req_state=OB&req_statename=Germany&reqdb.zip=00000&reqdb.magic=61&reqdb.wmo=10865

 

which shows weather records for many many years on a daily basis

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What a good topic. I have recently returned to Germany from a 20 year hiatus, so what have I noticed?

As a school kid summers were long and dry, there was swimming in the Baggersee and if you were tough as nails you would try to swim across the Danube, even though it was freezing cold and you could be sure that you would come out miles downriver. But you got the boasting rights.

We had lazy evenings under the stars, we had clear skies and we went to sleep listing to the buzz of insects. When the wind was just right you could hear the trains in the valley on their way to Augsburg, they passed in the night with a distinct Doppler effect, and every now and then as a highlight the TEE or the Trans Europe Express would whoosh pass with its haunting whistling sound.

Then at the end of summer, the last weeks of September going into October there would be a wind and it brought the smell of Autumn, from then on it was Apples and conserves in mason jars and we would spend our weekends chopping wood.

Grandma would start to bake Quittenbrod, a kind of edible rubber made from Quince fruit. She made enough to last until us kids were sick of it, roundabout April.

The leaves would start to fall and you would prepare for Winter, Autumn gave you a lot of time to get ready but by the end of November the cold would start to creep in and it would be time for Glühwein and Spectaculus cookies and the eternal Quittenbrod.

Spring would hit you like waving a magic wand and by end of March there would be virgin green all over, the first flowers would bloom and the seasons would repeat.

And you would still be eating the damned Quittenbrod!

 

So many years down the line…

 

There are no insects, bug splattered cars are no more. The smell of spring is no more, it just gets more and more damp, humid and heavy before the weather changes to hot in fury and storm, the last German summer, my first in 20 years was hot and dry, the rivers dried up and in some places hunger stones appeared out of the river beds, placed there centuries ago as a memorial to hunger and drought, to starving children and crying mothers.

Autumn has now shrunk to almost nothing and is replaced by a rainy season. Only it´s just not enough rain to fill the rivers and lakes and reservoirs.

Winter was cold and snowy but just not cold enough to balance the mosquitoes that are now ruining the evenings around the Bavarian lakes.

Things have changed and not in a good way, but like the frog in water that is slowly brought to a boil people do not see what is happening until it is too late.

I wish I could see hope somewhere, however this is not the beginning of hope but the end of the old ways.

Having said that, one little hope that I have is that the Alps can be seen with such a clarity and detail that I was never able to see as a child. The air is better, cleaner and smells of hot pine when you ride through a forrest on a motorbike.

Children growing up now will see this as their great times and know nothing about how it was all those years ago.

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We moved to Germany last year from the Adriatic coast, and one of the biggest surprises was the lack of A/C in almost all buildings, public and private. Neither my workplace nor my husband's has A/C, and while looking for an apartment I could not find a single one that had it installed. 

One thing that I did notice so far is that even when temperatures during the day are high, at least in Berlin, the nights are pleasantly cool, so sleeping is comfortable.

It is going to be 37 degrees tomorrow, and it's only the end of June. We'll see how it goes. 

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9 minutes ago, JJBerlin said:

We moved to Germany last year from the Adriatic coast, and one of the biggest surprises was the lack of A/C in almost all buildings, public and private. Neither my workplace nor my husband's has A/C, and while looking for an apartment I could not find a single one that had it installed. 

 

Just go to your nearest shopping street to find the AC blasting with the front doors wide open. 

 

I've noticed the overall lack of AC here too of course, but really... there are relatively few days in the year where it gets "necessary", although this may be changing. I've learned to live without it OK, and seldom really miss it. When I go back home I'm startled by how ubiquitous it is, sometimes quite unnecessarily. Jokes abound about extreme office AC. One office I once worked at, long sleeves were a must indoors because it was that cold inside. Think of the power demand!

 

 

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58 minutes ago, alderhill said:

there are relatively few days in the year where it gets "necessary", although this may be changing.

 

So why not have it for those few days which are really weeks now? If it is needed so seldom, the power demand won't be too much. Yours is the typical German argument - you almost never need to use it but, at the same time, your power bills will skyrocket. Bullshit.

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1 hour ago, fraufruit said:

 

So why not have it for those few days which are really weeks now? If it is needed so seldom, the power demand won't be too much. Yours is the typical German argument - you almost never need to use it but, at the same time, your power bills will skyrocket. Bullshit.

 

I didn't read it that way - I understood the comment was more about how in the US the AC is set to achieve deep freeze conditions, which does indeed waste a lot of energy.

 

I think the biggest problem for most with getting a klima unit is that the windows here do not easily accommodate the venting required. 

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8 minutes ago, lisa13 said:

I didn't read it that way - I understood the comment was more about how in the US the AC is set to achieve deep freeze conditions, which does indeed waste a lot of energy.

 

Yes, I get this part. When in the U.S. I have to wear a coat/jacket to go shopping or to a restaurant. I was used to it when I lived there. We keep our AC on 27 or 28. Just removing the moisture from the air makes a big difference.

 

I didn't mean to come down hard. I'm a bit sensitive after being judged by people for having AC while they complain about having to get up in the night and take a cold shower in order to cool down.

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We have a portable machine. I haven't used it here in the village, but we sure used it a lot in the middle of Mannheim. Maybe blacktop everywhere isn't a great idea.

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5 hours ago, JJBerlin said:

Neither my workplace nor my husband's has A/C, and while looking for an apartment I could not find a single one that had it installed.

 

Ge-f-ing-nau.  Hospitals don't even have a/c as standard, other than in operating rooms.  I read an article a year or two ago in the Artzteblatt about an experiment in Berlin with air conditioning.  Surprise, patients' recovery time improved.  But apparently, this wasn't normal a/c like mere American hospitals have -- that might blow germs around.  This was special cooling pipes in the wall - sort of a vertical version of Fussbodenheizung. 

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3 hours ago, fraufruit said:

 

So why not have it for those few days which are really weeks now? If it is needed so seldom, the power demand won't be too much. Yours is the typical German argument - you almost never need to use it but, at the same time, your power bills will skyrocket. Bullshit.

Are they really weeks, though? I guess it depends where you live.

 

I see it as an example of induced demand: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Induced_demand

 

My point was getting accustomed to a bit more heat indoors is not the end of the world. I dunno what the threshold is though, a couple degrees C? AC is certainly nice, and if you like it, that's fine. I do too. But I don't miss it that much, in a literal sense that it's one of those things I often remember is common only when I go back home. (Canada, which yes can easily tip the mid-30s C in summer, plus with typical high humidity around the Great Lakes). At home, I'd argue we don't always need so much AC everywhere. I feel the same in Germany. In other words, we don't really need much AC. But if it's there, we'll use it of course. 
 

1 hour ago, AlexTr said:

Maybe blacktop everywhere isn't a great idea.

 

Obviously, Germans don't design buildings for heat, although sweltering heat is not unknown in Germany...

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This onslaught of fuming heat this early in the season is what's said that makes this heat wave potentially more dangerous and even lethal, as later in the summer season our bodies have had more time to acclimate to heat.

 

Like others, I have plans, things to do, and some of it involves being outside, I'm starting to already plan in my head on my journey how I can mitigate some of the intense heat exposure. 

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35 minutes ago, Lavender Rain said:

This onslaught of fuming heat this early in the season is what's said that makes this heat wave potentially more dangerous and even lethal, as later in the summer season our bodies have had more time to acclimate to heat.

 

Like others, I have plans, things to do, and some of it involves being outside, I'm starting to already plan in my head on my journey how I can mitigate some of the intense heat exposure. 

 

This means different things to different people. For some mitigating heat  means being in their car with the air con on.

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2 hours ago, DoubleDTown said:

Hospitals don't even have a/c as standard, other than in operating rooms.

 

what is that about exactly?  I had surgery in January, and as they wheeled me down and around the bowels of the basement, it got colder and colder.  The OR itself was like an icebox.  Why?

 

I had several surgeries in the US but was always knocked out before getting into the OR so I have no idea if this is normal operating procedure (hehe) or not.  

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11 minutes ago, lisa13 said:

 

what is that about exactly?  I had surgery in January, and as they wheeled me down and around the bowels of the basement, it got colder and colder.  The OR itself was like an icebox.  Why?

 

I had several surgeries in the US but was always knocked out before getting into the OR so I have no idea if this is normal operating procedure (hehe) or not.  

Comfort for operating staff! ( I speak from experience!). Same in every country I have worked.

Also,  colder temps may inhibit bacterial growth.

 

 

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1 hour ago, snowingagain said:

 

This means different things to different people. For some mitigating heat  means being in their car with the air con on.

 

My husband said to me just the other day to beat the heat we should sit in the car with air co. I prefer to sit with Air co and some fresh air in my car (a window(s) half way down)  because I don't like straight air co in a car while I'm driving. 

 

I started renting a garage space in March.  I didn't fully appreciate the justification of paying 125 Euros per month for this space, until I got in my car  today, on the lowest level of this building, and my car was cooler than the other side of the pillow.

 

My car wasn't sitting out on the street with the sun beaming down on the roof with bird shit baking and getting in the car feels like a sauna.  

 

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22 hours ago, slammer said:

What a good topic. I have recently returned to Germany from a 20 year hiatus, so what have I noticed?

As a school kid summers were long and dry, there was swimming in the Baggersee and if you were tough as nails you would try to swim across the Danube, even though it was freezing cold and you could be sure that you would come out miles downriver. But you got the boasting rights.

We had lazy evenings under the stars, we had clear skies and we went to sleep listing to the buzz of insects. When the wind was just right you could hear the trains in the valley on their way to Augsburg, they passed in the night with a distinct Doppler effect, and every now and then as a highlight the TEE or the Trans Europe Express would whoosh pass with its haunting whistling sound.

Then at the end of summer, the last weeks of September going into October there would be a wind and it brought the smell of Autumn, from then on it was Apples and conserves in mason jars and we would spend our weekends chopping wood.

Grandma would start to bake Quittenbrod, a kind of edible rubber made from Quince fruit. She made enough to last until us kids were sick of it, roundabout April.

The leaves would start to fall and you would prepare for Winter, Autumn gave you a lot of time to get ready but by the end of November the cold would start to creep in and it would be time for Glühwein and Spectaculus cookies and the eternal Quittenbrod.

Spring would hit you like waving a magic wand and by end of March there would be virgin green all over, the first flowers would bloom and the seasons would repeat.

And you would still be eating the damned Quittenbrod!

 

So many years down the line…

 

There are no insects, bug splattered cars are no more. The smell of spring is no more, it just gets more and more damp, humid and heavy before the weather changes to hot in fury and storm, the last German summer, my first in 20 years was hot and dry, the rivers dried up and in some places hunger stones appeared out of the river beds, placed there centuries ago as a memorial to hunger and drought, to starving children and crying mothers.

Autumn has now shrunk to almost nothing and is replaced by a rainy season. Only it´s just not enough rain to fill the rivers and lakes and reservoirs.

Winter was cold and snowy but just not cold enough to balance the mosquitoes that are now ruining the evenings around the Bavarian lakes.

Things have changed and not in a good way, but like the frog in water that is slowly brought to a boil people do not see what is happening until it is too late.

I wish I could see hope somewhere, however this is not the beginning of hope but the end of the old ways.

Having said that, one little hope that I have is that the Alps can be seen with such a clarity and detail that I was never able to see as a child. The air is better, cleaner and smells of hot pine when you ride through a forrest on a motorbike.

Children growing up now will see this as their great times and know nothing about how it was all those years ago.

That brought tears to my eyes. Oh memory.

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