The desertification of Malta amidst rising air temperatures

Since 1952, the air temperature in Malta has risen by 1.54°C.

Malta is an archipelago with numerous gorgeous landscapes, architectural marvels, and enticing beaches, making it a popular tourist destination.

However, there is a danger on the horizon. Malta is experiencing a water shortage dilemma as a result of a lack of groundwater and rising global temperatures.

Parts of the islands are becoming desert, unable to maintain the same level of food production and endangering Maltese daily life.

A switch from semi-aridity to hyper-aridity will see far less naturally occurring freshwater, impacting vegetation, agriculture and domestic needs.
(Photo: Desiree Attard/Shutterstock.com)

In addition, air temperatures in Malta have been continuously rising since 1952, with the mean maximum air temperature expected to rise by 1.54°C by 2020, according to a climate report published by the National Statistics Office (NSO), titled “The State of the Climate 2022”, to mark World Environment Day. According to the report, data analysis indicates that the environment is growing progressively warmer, drier, and more prone to weather extremes.

The mean lowest air temperature climbed by 1.37°C between 1952 and 2020, while the mean highest maximum air temperature grew by 1.20°C. The mean lowest minimum air temperature climbed by 1.67°C throughout the same time period.

Temperature rises can vary dramatically over short periods of time due to predictable, cyclical phenomena as well as difficult-to-predict wind and precipitation patterns.

The global temperature, on the other hand, is mostly determined by the amount of energy the planet gets from the Sun and how much it radiates back into space. According to studies, the quantity of energy emitted by the Sun varies little year to year, however the amount of energy emitted by Earth is directly linked to the chemical composition of the atmosphere, notably the amount of heat-trapping greenhouse gases.

A one-degree shift in global temperature is important since it takes a lot of heat to warm all of the seas, atmosphere, and land masses by that much.

In fact, according to the NSO climate report, the average water temperature in Malta climbed by 1.89°C between 1978 and 2020, with the maximum mean sea temperature increasing by 2.20°C. According to the NSO report, total rainfall in Malta declined by 71.27mm between 1952 and 2020. Furthermore, the average 24-hour rainfall (rainfall intensity) declined by 1.90mm.

The overall number of days with thunderstorms rose by 8.65 days, while the mean atmospheric pressure increased by 0.34hPa. The average duration of bright sunlight per day in Malta grew by 0.08 hours between 1961 and 2020, but the average relative humidity fell by 4.72 percentage points. During the same time period, the average wind speed fell by 0.82 knots, with the north-west wind direction dominating for 57.22% of all months.

Read more:

https://timesofmalta.com/articles/view/desertification-of-malta-david-marinelli.740079

https://timesofmalta.com/articles/view/life-in-2100-when-malta-has-become-a-desert.893521

https://timesofmalta.com/articles/view/life-will-be-tough-in-malta-unless-we-make-changes-climate-action.892435

About ivanmconsiglio

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