CLIMATE CHANGE: Refining the Impacts for Ireland

Report from EPA-funded project 2001-CD-C3-M1

Summary: STRIVE Report 12 - Sweeney J et al.

Published: 2009

ISBN: 978-1-84095-297-1

Pages: 163

Filesize: 2,806KB

Price: Free to download / €25 for a printed version

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Abstract

Significant changes are projected to occur in Ireland’s climate over this century. This report suggests that Ireland needs to plan for these changes, which are already occurring, but which will be clearly evident within 40 years.

The projections are in line with earlier reports provided by the National University of Ireland, Maynooth (NUIM) and Met Eireann, but are based on outputs from a wide range of global climate models, thereby increasing confidence in the projections.
The projections show that:

  • Average temperatures will rise by 1.4oC to 1.8oC by 2050, and be in excess of 2oC relative to the 1961-1990 baseline by the end of the century. 
  • Summer and autumn are projected to warm faster than winter and spring, with the midlands and east warming more than coastal areas.  
  • Winter rainfall is projected to increase by 10 per cent, while reductions in summer rainfall of 12 to 17 per cent are projected by 2050.
  • The largest winter rainfall increases are expected to occur in the midlands.
  • By 2050, reductions in summer rainfall of between 20 and 28 per cent are projected for the southern and eastern coasts, increasing to between 30 and 40 per cent by 2080.
  • Changes in the frequency of extreme events will accompany these climate changes. Longer heat waves and drought may occur, which will be especially important for eastern and southern parts of Ireland.