Watching the unfolding scenes in Pretoria and elsewhere (See my SA Weather Twitter List for videos and other updates) is a stark reminder of what is going to become the new normal as the planet continues to heat up. In the case of this area in South Africa, extreme temperatures (heatwaves) and extreme precipitation events like we are seeing now.
In this paper published in May entitled Global and Regional Increase of Precipitation Extremes Under Global Warming the scientists show why this is happening.
Using what is known as the Clausius-Clapeyron equation as a guide we can expect that with each 1°C of global warming the earth’s atmosphere will hold 7% more water.
We are definitely going to experience more of these extreme rainfall events!