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Spring 2021 in Europe: was it really so cold?

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  • Location: Camborne
  • Location: Camborne

The cold spring weather may have felt especially bitter as it came after several years of warmer-than-average springs, and hot on the heels of a short spell of unseasonably warm weather in late March. But data from the Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S*) show that Europe as a whole was actually warmer than the 1981–2010 average for spring, and only 0.5°C below the 1991–2020 average.

Whilst central and northwestern Europe were much colder than average, southeastern and southwestern Europe experienced temperatures close to average. To find a colder spring for Europe as a whole, we only have to go back to 2013, and prior to 2013, we only have to go back a few more years to find similarly cool springs and going further back we find many clearly cooler springs. For central Europe (where the cold was the most pronounced), the picture is the same. Such cold springs – which used to be common – are becoming ever rarer.


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