Europe has been warming at a faster rate than the global average. Climate change is happening now and will get more serious in the future, even if global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions prove effective.

However, the impacts will be much less severe if efforts to reduce emissions are successful in keeping the global temperature increase well below 2°C (as required by the Paris Agreement). Any emissions scenario exceeding this limit would lead to considerably greater climate change and its associated impacts.

Extreme weather and climate-related hazards such as heat waves, floods and droughts will become more frequent and intense in many regions. This will lead to adverse impacts on ecosystems, economic sectors, and human health and well-being. Therefore, minimising the risks from global climate change requires targeted actions to adapt to the impacts of climate change, in addition to actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Adaptation must be tailored to the specific circumstances in different regions and cities of Europe.

Please consult our topic page on Extreme weather and our specific portal on Extreme summer weather. You may also be interested to consult our web report on Europe’s changing climate hazards or our climate change story maps.