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WeatherBlog 7 2022/23 | Warm, Warmer, New Year

Heatwave at the start of the new year

by Lea Hartl 01/04/2023
The air that currently surrounds us was over the Azores just a few days ago. You can feel connected to distant parts of the world, imagine you can smell the sea and ponder the beauty in the complexity of atmospheric movement as you glide down into the valley on Alpine artificial snow bands. You don't have to, of course, but the WeatherBlog tries to adopt a relaxed attitude in view of the turn of the year and not fret about the weather.

New Year's record follows New Year's Eve record

In southern Germany, temperatures often exceeded 20°C on New Year's Eve. Over 100 stations in Germany broke all-time records for December at the last minute. Subsequently, 313 stations registered a new January record on January 1. In Austria, the warmest January 1st in over 250 years of measurement history was recorded, with Puchberg am Schneeberg leading the way at 19.7°C. MeteoSwiss also reports: Warmest New Year's Eve ever on the north side of the Alps, directly followed by numerous January records on New Year's Day. The night-time minimum, i.e. the coldest temperature of the day, was also quite impressive in places - in Vaduz the temperature only dropped to 16.1°C at night. Ideal for setting off fireworks in a T-shirt or - if you'd rather take it easy - bivouacking with a summer sleeping bag, perhaps next to a romantically rippling snow pond!

2022 as a whole also broke various records, although not everyone has fully evaluated their data yet. In Switzerland, we already know that 2022 was the warmest year since records began in 1864. In Austria, as of 22 December, 2022 was one of the three warmest years since records began. In Germany, as of 30 December, it was not yet possible to say exactly whether it would be enough for a new top ranking, or whether 2022 would still fall just short of the previous leader 2018 - there is probably a tie. In summary, we are living in interesting times.

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The outlook

Will it be winter again at some point? Perhaps! First it will be windy(er). After a weak cold front yesterday (Tuesday), today's Wednesday (4.1.22) will be widely sunny. The strong westerly current will become increasingly northerly and the wind will pick up. In the night to Thursday, precipitation from the NW will set in, with a medium-high snow line and still strong winds. Around 10 cm is expected to fall on the northern slopes of the Alps with quite a storm. The south will also be windy with north föhn but more relaxed. Friday will be mostly sunny again, with clouds lingering in the far east.

There will be some movement in the weather over the weekend. Saturday will remain rather calm and friendly, but the current will increasingly turn to southerly directions. It will be foehn in the north while precipitation will gradually set in in the south. From today's perspective, the current will turn to the NW on Monday and a cold front will bring further cooling and snow (how much is still unclear). There is still room for improvement in terms of winter, but at least we are saying goodbye to the Azores air....

Miscellaneous: ZAMG becomes GeoSphere

Austria's national weather service, founded by Emperor Franz Joseph 1 and more or less always known by the name Zentralanstalt für Meteorologie und Geodynamik (ZAMG), is no longer called ZAMG but "GeoSphere Austria" as of January 1 (January!). The reason for this is a merger with the Federal Geological Institute, the state authority for geology. The excitement in the run-up to the merger was great, but the enthusiasm after the renaming and probably not yet fully completed restructuring is limited. GeoSphere (formerly known as ZAMG) quotes its provisional head as follows: "Even though a lot is changing, some things remain as usual". Sounds great, congratulations!

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This article has been automatically translated by DeepL with subsequent editing. If you notice any spelling or grammatical errors or if the translation has lost its meaning, please write an e-mail to the editors.

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