It’s not over yet: the wounds are deep. The pain is great. The flood disaster killed over 180 people. Cities and villages were destroyed. But how did that happen?
Some politicians quickly blamed climate change for this. Also this week in the Bundestag. Also from NRW Prime Minister and CDU Chancellor candidate Laschet.
“I cannot leave this statement as it is. It was not climate change that cost people their lives, but the total failure of the authorities. Then as now, people act as if the flood and the misfortune came as a complete surprise and out of the blue. But this is not the case. That is simply wrong, ”says graduate meteorologist Dominik Jung from the weather service Q.met.
Already four to five days before the event, meteorologists had the first indications that unusual, extreme precipitation could occur in Germany. At least 36 to 48 hours before the event, it was clear what would happen to the affected regions.
Weather expert Jung: “As early as Tuesday morning, the highest warning level was displayed in violet, and this is rarely seen at the German Weather Service. The last authority should have seen a light. Nothing happened. That was negligent homicide. The official warning chain failed blatantly at all levels. “
Not even the smallest campsite on the Ahr was evacuated. At around 2 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon, the levels in North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate began to rise particularly quickly. Even then, there were still no evacuations.
“Back then, it really stunned me to see how the levels of the rivers and streams rose and nothing at all happened from the authorities,” explains weather expert Jung.
Immediately after the flood disaster, you heard sentences like: The water came surprisingly quickly during the night. You could hardly react there. Climate change is to blame for this tragedy.
“No, dear politicians. The tide did not come as a surprise. That was a catastrophe with an announcement. Something went terribly wrong in the official warning system. The buzzword climate change seems to be a welcome justification for doing politics on the back of the flood victims ”, says weather expert Jung.
Because: First of all, it is a weather event that cannot and should not be directly associated with climate change.
To explain the meteorological terms: What is currently happening outside is weather. Weather observed over a long period of time – usually at least 30 years – is called climate.
Graduate meteorologist Jung: “To link every single weather event directly with climate change or global warming is complete nonsense from a technical point of view. In relation to the climate change debate, this does not show that we have a particularly high level of knowledge. “