Autumn returns after record October
October 2022 was warmer than average in many central European countries. This had a strong impact on energy demand. Next week, a significant change in weather is imminent, which will also increase the demand for energy again.
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October 2022 was warmer than average in many central European countries (in some countries it was the warmest October on record). The anomaly was so strong that many people noticed it directly. In the context of the energy crisis, warmer-than-average temperatures are of course welcome, as they can save a lot of heating energy. Now, however, a significant change in weather is imminent, which will also significantly increase the demand for energy again.
October breaks temperature records
Looking at the temperature values for October, especially from October 10 onwards, we can see that the values in central Europe were well above average. On many days the temperatures were even above 20 degrees, at night the temperatures rarely dropped below 10 degrees. This warm period lasted almost 4 weeks, which is very unusual for this time of year. This has led to individual close records for the daily maximum temperature: For example, in the Jura capital of Delémont (Switzerland - northern side of the Alps), where a temperature of over 25 degrees was recorded on October 23. October 2022 was the warmest October since measurements began.
Climate change as amplifying factor
The zero degree limit is also exceptionally high: until the end of the month, it remains at 3500 to 3800 meters above sea level. That is about 1000 meters above the long-term average. The reasons for these high temperatures are warming due to climate change, plus a long-lasting high-pressure weather situation. Whether the frequency and duration of such weather patterns are also changing because of climate change is a matter of debate, but the evidence for a connection is growing stronger.
Energy demand and temperature - soon "back to normal
The following graphs show the temperature from October 10 exemplarily for Berlin and for Zurich. Additionally, we compare the temperature with last year's values as well as with the average of the last 30 years. This shows that the temperatures were 5 degrees above average for a longer period of time - with a small exception between October 19 and 23 in Berlin, when there was a short cold spell in northern Germany. At night, too, temperatures hardly ever went below 10 degrees, sometimes even lingering between 12 and 14 degrees. This had a very strong impact on the demand for heating energy, as typically the heating season really starts from October. However, in the context of the energy crisis, this temperature anomaly was just very welcome for many people. With the very high energy prices, this allowed many households to save energy and thus costs. It also meant that national energy reserves, which are under increasing scrutiny, could still be conserved.
Weather change expected from the first weekend in November
The upcoming weekend will once again bring strongly above-average temperatures. However, this will soon change, as a clear weather change towards autumnal average temperatures is predicted for central Europe from November 4. Temperatures are expected to drop an average of 7-10 degrees, bringing them closer to the norm for the time of year. For energy demand, this means that the demand for heating energy will increase significantly again. Energy companies as well as grid operators should prepare accordingly for this significant temperature change and the associated increase in demand.
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