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WEATHER

Next week’s forecast: Snow and sub-zero temperatures expected in almost all of Sweden

Next week will likely be both white and cold in almost all of Sweden.

Stockholm
In a number of places in Sweden, temperatures are expected to be just around ten degrees below zero. Photo by Jon Flobrant / Unsplash

“We can expect sub-zero temperatures across most of the country,” Therese Fougman at the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI) stated.

After a period of milder weather, a white winter seems to be on its way. According to the SMHI, residents in most parts of the country can expect both snowfall and freezing temperatures during the next week.

Snowfall

Generally speaking, snowfall is expected during the middle of the week.

“It will probably be a few centimetres (of snow). It probably won’t snow everywhere, but large parts of Norrland look set to get some of it, as well as Svealand and Götaland. It may actually snow all the way down towards Skåne and southern Halland,” Fougman said.

“The forecast I have now extends until the Monday before Lucia. According to it, it looks like the snow will be here to stay. But what will actually happen remains to be seen,” she added.

Sub-zero temperatures

In a number of places in Sweden, such as Dalarna, temperatures are expected to be just around ten degrees below zero.

“It looks like there could be a bit of a weather change now, with temperatures below normal next week,” Fougman warned.

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CLIMATE CRISIS

Record-breaking winter temperatures warm Europe

Europe has seen "extreme" warm winter weather in recent days, experts have said, with 2023 already posting record temperatures for January across the region.

Record-breaking winter temperatures warm Europe

As temperatures rise globally because of human-caused climate change, scientists say heatwaves and spells of warmer-than-average weather are becoming more common throughout the year.

After experiencing searing summer heat and a drought unprecedented in centuries, a wave of warm weather across Europe this winter has melted the snow from ski slopes in the Alps and Pyrenees, and seen temperatures above 20 degrees Celsius (68 degrees Fahrenheit) even in normally-freezing central
regions.   

Several European countries saw record-breaking heat on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, according to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).

Hundreds of weather stations across Europe have recorded all-time highest daily temperatures for the months of December or January, it said this week.

Freja Vamborg, Senior Scientist at Europe’s Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S), said the current winter heatwave is an “extreme” heat event in Europe in terms of how far temperatures have deviated from what is expected at this time of year.   

Here Vamborg answers some key questions about the heatwave:

What caused these high temperatures?

“On the 1st of January there was a strong flow of air from the southwest across the affected area, which would have brought warmer air further north and penetrated unusually far east, reaching even to Belarus. Minimal snow cover was very probably another relevant factor.”

“The circulation of any given weather situation and climate change are not two independent things. Climate change itself also has an impact on the circulation, and will also impact how warm those moving air masses are. This is what makes it so complex to disentangle just simply a weather event, from
the level to which climate change influenced such an event.”

How is climate change involved?

“With increasing global temperatures, heatwaves and warm spells are becoming more frequent and intense — this is not restricted to the summer months.”

“While the warming trend in Europe is on average stronger in the warmer seasons, winters are also becoming warmer as a result of global temperatures.”

“Northern Europe has warmed more strongly in winter than in summer, while in the south the warming trend is more apparent in summer.”

What is the impact of these high winter temperatures?

“A couple of things can be mentioned for warm temperatures during the winter months. While it means less need for heating of housing and other infrastructures, low snow cover affects the winter tourism industry.”

“Possible impacts on natural ecosystems, include early return from hibernation, which may have negative impacts if followed by much less mild/freezing conditions.”

“The overall impact will be different depending on the longevity and intensity of the event.”

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