Rapidly rising temperatures in SA pose more risk of wildfires - CSIR

The latest scientific data from the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research shows that temperatures in Southern Africa are rising much faster than the global rate.

According to Professor Francois Engelbrecht, this phenomenon has made the region more vulnerable to extreme events such as wildfires.

He explains the science behind the phenomenon.

In winter time we get these very high pressure systems that form over the Southern African region and as a result of climate change those high pressure systems are becoming stronger. They have two main effects, they are gradually shifting the cold fronts toward the pole, which means that we can expect our winter rainfall region will likely become drier.

Professor Francois Engelbrecht, Principal Researcher at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research

Over the last 50 years we have seen systematic increase in temperature across the entire Southern African region. Over the interior parts of the region this increase has been taking place in the order of 2 degrees Celsius per century.

Professor Francois Engelbrecht, Principal Researcher at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research

It means in general there are more days that are posing a significant risk for the outbreak of wildfires.

Professor Francois Engelbrecht, Principal Researcher at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research

The general increase in temperature is most certainly directly attributable to global warming which in turn is caused by us as humans because we are emitting so much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, he says.

Although these specific fires cannot be directly attributed to climate change we are moving into a new climate system where we are becoming prone to the outbreak of fires.

Professor Francois Engelbrecht, Principal Researcher at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research

Click on the link below to listen to the interview:

702 welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the 702 community a safe and welcoming space for all.

702 reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

702 is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
Africa Report: Zim's Mawarire arrested on subversion charges, pleads not guilty

Africa Report: Zim's Mawarire arrested on subversion charges, pleads not guilty

Africa correspondent Crystal Orderson says Pastor Evan Mawarire was arrested this past Sunday upon stepping down from the pulpit.

Mantashe weekend tweets a move for Ramaphosa as next ANC president

Mantashe weekend tweets a move for Ramaphosa as next ANC president

Karima Brown unpacks Gwede Mantashe's tweets from the weekend and discusses the prospects of the COSATU and SACP march.

Through the eyes of an African chef

Through the eyes of an African chef

Nompumelelo Mqwebu talks to Ray White about her new book.

Not enough precautions to prevent wildfires, says ecologist

Not enough precautions to prevent wildfires, says ecologist

Prof Eugene Moll says authorities haven't taken enough measures to ensure that wildfire are easily contained when they break out.

2016 is hottest year on record

2016 is hottest year on record

SA Weather Services Dr. Andries Kruger says if global warming continues, could cause irreversible changes to climate change.

Climate change skeptics hard to find among citizenry, says expert

Climate change skeptics hard to find among citizenry, says expert

Denial or indifference towards global warming is not as popular in South Africa as some may think, according to systems ecologist Bob Scholes.

Popular articles
Soulful Sundays Playlist: Sunday 11 June 2017

Soulful Sundays Playlist: Sunday 11 June 2017

Favourites to feed your soul on Sunday.

Opinion:  Bishop Lekganyane is right

Opinion: Bishop Lekganyane is right

Stephen Grootes weighs in on comments made by the Zion Christian Church Bishop at the weekend.

So what exactly is radical economic transformation?

So what exactly is radical economic transformation?

Wits associate professor of economics Christopher Malikane speaks to Azania Mosaka about the term that is being bandied about.

Getting to know MP, Dr Makhosi Khoza

Getting to know MP, Dr Makhosi Khoza

Dr Khoza is admired by South Africans for her role in the SABC inquiry as a ANC member of parliament.

How to make your first million

How to make your first million

Warren Ingram discusses his new book in which he shares practical ways for ordinary people to achieve financial freedom.

3 easy questions could bag you R2000!

3 easy questions could bag you R2000!

WIN R2000! But only if you can prove you're a whiz of the MTN Biz Quiz by answering the following three questions...

Blesserfinder: Matching you with a sugar daddy near you

Blesserfinder: Matching you with a sugar daddy near you

Is social trend Blesserfinder, where girls are allegedly matching up with rich 'benefactors' in exchange for sex, a real thing?

The world’s richest doctor (worth R150bn) was born and raised in South Africa

The world’s richest doctor (worth R150bn) was born and raised in South Africa

Patrick Soon-Shiong, son of Chinese immigrants to SA, is the world’s richest doctor and the wealthiest resident of Los Angeles.