Is the scorching heat of the sun making itself more prominent? Is the biting cold is diminishing each year? Well, many people believe it is due to climate change, which it is, but there are also other factors that play into this.

The UK is a meeting point for several different types of weather from different directions. Anticyclones, weather systems associated with high pressure, brings cool air to the British Isles. As the cool air sinks, this forms a belt of low pressure in the UK which brings heatwaves to the UK in the summer due to the hot and sunny conditions, contrastingly due to the lack of cloud cover, this causes cooler nights as the heat during the daytime escapes into the atmosphere. During the winter, temperatures are low because of the angle of the Sun and nights are even colder and sometimes frosty.

Depression weather systems form over the Atlantic Ocean and move towards Britain to from the West. This in turn causes warm air to meet cold air so warm air rises over the cool air causing it to cool and condense and form precipitation and a belt of low pressure.

However, due to recent rise in global warming, weather in the UK is becoming more extreme. One main cause is the burning of fossil fuels. Carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, is released into the atmosphere trapping excess heat. When the Earth reflects radiation in the form of infrared radiation, excess greenhouse gases released by humans trap this out-going heat. This leads to a rise in temperature. Since the industrial revolution, the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere has risen by about 50%.

Another reason for the UK experiencing more extreme weather is due to deforestation. Yes, deforestation links to climate change as trees take in C02 during photosynthesis and store it as organic matter. When the trees are removed, the stored-up matter is re-released into the environment. Also as trees get cut down our ground becomes more prone to soil erosion. The roots of trees help hold the soil together and absorb water, ensuring that the soil is kept hydrated. When we remove the trees, the soil is not held together as well, increasing soil erosion which in turn leads to an increased risk of drought.

Finally, the renowned El Nino is the warming of sea surface temperatures that occurs every few years, typically in the central-east equatorial. During El Nino, winters in northern Europe tends to be colder and drier with southern Europe getting more rain because the jet stream, a band of strong eastward winds, shifts course. In contrast, El Nino summers in the UK are usually hotter and drier.

Combatting global warming is not just about cutting down CO2 emissions. Programmes to rewild and reforest is something every country needs to focus on more. Farming, mining , logging and drilling practices need to be reviewed. These are changes that industries can begin to work on independently of climate change conferences.