Document / Publication
World Meteorological Organization (WMO)
This article calls for communicating more effectively what the most up-to-date science says about event attribution, and to include appropriate information on linkages when reporting extreme weather and climate events in the media. Being able to rapidly analyse the attribution of extreme weather and climate events while an event is still in the media has the potential to reduce future vulnerability to extremes. Such an assessment of risk requires a scientific basis, rather than an opinion based on personal perceptions, media reporting, or in response to political discourse. The under-attribution or over-attribution of linkages could lead to poor adaptive decision-making, with the potential to jeopardise infrastructure and human health.
This article reviews advancements in event attribution science and offers suggestions for improvement in communication.