Belgium’s Royal Meteorological Institute (KMI-IRM) has been monitoring the climate and recording climate data in Belgium since 1833. These data show that temperatures have already increased by more than 2°C in our country over the past 150 years.
Many temperature records have been broken in recent years: 2014 and 2018 were the hottest years on record, with average annual temperatures of 11.9°C.
Evolution of the average temperature at Uccle between 1833 and 2018 (source: IRM)
With regard to precipitation, historical series suggest an upward trend in the quantity of precipitation, though levels vary strongly from year to year. We can therefore say that the annual amount of rain increases with the years (a linear increase of about 5 mm per decade).
However, this increase is not evenly distributed throughout the year: the seasonal character of precipitation increases, with winters becoming wetter and summers drier.
The number of days with heavy rainfall is on the increase.
In addition to these trends, there is also an evolution in extreme weather events: we see ever more days with intense rainfall (>20mm/day), as well as an increase in the frequency, duration and intensity of heat waves.
Finally, sea level trends are also monitored in Belgium. In Ostend, a rise of just over 11 cm has been registered compared to 1950. This upward trend is confirmed in Nieuwpoort and Zeebrugge.
- Royal Meteorological Institute (current observations in Belgium)
- Climate Portal in Flanders
- Chapter 6 (‘Adaptation’) of the 7th National Communication on Climate Change