(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) The rise in the annual average temperature recorded in the wilayat of Sur was three times than the rise in global average temperatures from 1980 to 2008, a Public Authority for Civil Aviation (PACA) weather forecasting specialist has said in his study on climate change in GCC countries. This means that there could be further rise in temperature, leading to a spike in energy and water consumption and health related issues in the wilayat, according to Said AlSarmi, who is also pursuing a PhD from Oxford.
''My study observed that Sur's annual average temperature has risen by 1C every decade since 1980. It's an average rise of 1.03C per decade which is more than twice the GCC average increase (0.4C) and more than three times higher than the global average rise (0.27C).''
To have an updated picture on recent climate change in the region, there was a need to tabulate data after 2008, he said.
The average annual temperature was calculated on the basis of data collected from 23 stations across GCC. The stations from Oman included Seeb, Khasab, Saiq, Sohar, Nizwa, Sur, Masirah and Salalah.
''After Sur, the next city is Dubai with a 0.81C rise. Other cities that reported high rates of warming are Doha (0.65C), Khamis Mushait in Saudi Arabia (0.60C), Kuwait (0.57C) and Riyadh (0.56C),'' AlSarmi said.
''This means warmer days and nights in most areas in Oman, especially Sur. It will lead to rise in electricity consumption, particularly due to use of air-conditioners. Water consumption will also rise and there is a possibility of an increase in health problems due to rising temperatures.''
AlSarmi said that Sur's average temperature rose from 26.4C in 1980 to 28.7C in 2008.''Before 1990, the number of days per year with the temperature above 40C in Sur were about 30 to 50. After 2000, this number is 50-70 days per year.''
Explaining the difference between the weather and climate of a place, Dr Sultan Salim al Yahyai, chief of PACA's numerical weather prediction section said, ''When we talk about weather, it's something taking place over a few days, may be up to ten days. ''It's a medium weather forecast.
''When we talk about mean climate, we are talking about a minimum of ten years or longer (the World Meteorological Organisation prefers a mean of 30 years). And when we talk about climate change, it is a persisted change in climate variables which could be measured with a statistical method for longer time records of decades.''
The average temperature is based on the temperature recorded every hour of a day while the minimum is based on temperature recorded between 4am and 6am. The maximum is based on the temperature recorded between 1pm and 5