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21 June, 2024
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BBC: Climate change linked to turbulence

The BBC cited research indicating that climate change might increase severe turbulence, and may have been the cause of Singapore airline's 7,000 feet plunge


Severe turbulence caused a Singapore Airlines flight to plunge 7,000 feet, leading to one death and injuring 79 passengers, according to a report by the BBC.  The report also suggested that climate change could make such turbulence more common in the future.

The Boeing 777, carrying 211 passengers and 18 crew, hit turbulence while flying through tropical thunderstorms after departing from London Heathrow. Geoff Kitchen, 73, from Gloucestershire, suffered a fatal heart attack during the turbulence. The plane made an emergency landing shortly after.

The BBC cited research indicating that climate change might increase severe turbulence. A study from Reading University suggests that global warming is causing more clear-air turbulence, which is invisible and particularly dangerous. Co-author Mark Prosser noted that clear-air turbulence could double or triple by 2080 compared to preindustrial times due to rising greenhouse gas emissions.

Critics, including Toby Young of the Free Speech Union, challenged the BBC's claims, accusing them of alarmism. Young argued that the research cited by the BBC lacks transparency and specificity.

Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, confirmed that the Singapore flight likely encountered clear-air turbulence and emphasized the growing risks linked to climate change.

The incident highlights the need for more research and preparedness to handle the increasing turbulence potentially caused by a warming planet.

[Informaton sourced from BBC and GBNews]


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