Weather chaos: Prepare for ‘EXTREME weather phenomena’ this summer, warns expert

Weather chaos: Prepare for ‘EXTREME weather phenomena’ this summer, warns expert

Whether experts gathered for the annual conference of Italian chemists and physicists in Rome said the world needs to brace itself for , droughts and other phenomena. However, they also stressed the importance of listening to experts and being wary of sensationalist headlines. Antonello Pasini, a researcher with the country’s National Research Council (CNR) as well as being a professor of Climate Physics at the Roma Tre University, said: “Making seasonal predictions is difficult, so alarms like ‘this will be the ugliest summer ever’, should be taken with caution.


“But it’s a fact that there is an increasing risk of extreme phenomena.

“The increasingly high sea temperature increases evaporation, more steam means heavy clouds, which cause more intense rainfall.

“Moreover the overheating of the sea means more energy introduced into the atmosphere, which is discharged into the territory with the disasters that we all see”.

However, Raffaele Salerno, director of the Expert Weather Centre and vice president of the Italian Association of Atmospheric Sciences and Meteorology (Aisam), warned people against websites which “use headlines to create panic with the aim of increasing clicks and advertising”.


Sergio Pisani, of the Italian Air Force colonel, historical face of the RAI weather forecasts and secretary of the Italian Association of Atmospheric Sciences and Meteorology (Aisam), added: “The problem is the non-recognition, in Italy, of our profession.

“Anyone can call himself a meteorologist”.

This year Italy has been swept by extreme weather, from floods in the east, high winds in the south and freezing temperatures in the north.

The disturbances follow an unusually warm winter.


Parts of , in the south of the country, were turned white by an unseasonal hail storm, leading to surreal scenes as people in shorts and T-shirts were left digging out cars from up to 15 cm of ice.

Roads were flooded or covered by several centimetres of hail which fell over a 48-hour period.

The greatest damage was recorded in the towns of Monteroni, Galatina, Sternatia, Poggiardo, Surano, Ruffano, Parabita and Matino, in the province of Lecce, and in Torricella, Maruggio and Palagiano, in the Taranto area.

Snowploughs were needed to clear roads, while in other areas heavy downpours swept away cars and flooded houses.

The storms also damaged crops in Puglia, which grows many of Italy’s olives, grapes and other fruits.

Raffaele Carrabba, regional president of Puglia farmers association Cia Agricoltori Italiani della Puglia, said: “It looks like a damned season for farmers.

“Our hearts are crying and we are very worried: a whole cycle of crops and crops is going down the drain.”

Italy’s Civil Protection Department has warned of ongoing and heavy rains in the far south and north, as well as over the mountains running up the centre of the peninsula.

(Additional reporting by Maria Ortega.)

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