After extremely cold winter with -20 ºC average temperatures during 2 months it was logically to assume this year would be out of the warming trend. Like fun it is! Moscow, 26 July 2010 – This day broke all meteorological records having become the hottest day in the city in a 130-year history. Meteorological station in Moscow registered +37,2 ºC in a shadow at 16:00. This was the seventh heat record of July and the ninth of this summer.
Temperature deviations from climatic norm in Moscow (July 25, 2010 comparing with historic records)
25 July: +9.5
The heat wave that hit European part of Russia lasts for a month already. The heat is unbearable even during evening hours since the sun sets only after 22:00. It is more than +35 ºC at 19:00 and already +28 ºC at 08:00. Unbelievable!
But it does not seem like tropical paradise in Moscow these days. It is dusty, smoggy with melting concrete (one should better avoid high heels!) and total lack of air-conditioners (remember, Russia is still considered a cold country, therefore the majority of households and offices either do not have air-cons or use them mostly for heating in winter time ). Climate control systems in public places (underground, shopping malls, cinemas, airports), which had been projected for average Moscow summers with +22 ºC, cannot cope with such high temperatures.
The taxi driver who was driving me from Domodedovo airport tossed a formless transmission gear knob in his hand, which had melted while his car had been parked under the sun. My brains felt the same way after one hour drive home (or I should better say stand-still in a traffic jam).
The full stock of electric fans has been sold out in Moscow. New ones may be purchased at a price three times higher than the original. If one feels an urge to buy an air conditioner, he/she should be patient and wait almost 2 months in a line to install it for oneself…
Such heat waves also bring draughts and forest fires. An empty glass bottle left unattended under the sun rays can cause inflammation. Now peatlands are burning around Moscow bringing smoke and burning odor to city's outskirts.
Hot days sometimes end up in hurricanes. The one that came to Moscow the last evening broke dozens of trees, which broke electric power lines and cars.
City authorities and the Ministry of Emergencies of the Russian Federation are taking special preventive measures. Announcements are maid in public places about how to behave during these hot days. All mass-media have special sections concerning with recommendation what to do and what not to do. Many companies have introduced reduced working hours for their workers. Some of them have even allowed the staff to work from home.
Naturally, this extreme heat has been the leading story for mass-media and a main topic for blogs in Russia. And will probably remain for, God only knows, how long…
Das Klima befindet sich im Wandel. Welche Auswirkungen hat das auf unsere Landschaften und unser tägliches Leben? Wie reagieren die Menschen in den verschiedenen Teilen der Welt? Der Weblog zu goethe.de/klima versammelt persönliche Beobachtungen aus verschiedenen Ländern zu Kultur und Klimawandel.