The year 2014 broke the record for the warmest yearly average temperature in Europe. Attributing how much this was due to anthropogenic climate change and how much it was due to natural variability is a challenging question but one that is important to address. In this study, we compare four event attribution methods. We look at the risk ratio (RR) associated with anthropogenic climate change for this event, over the whole European region, as well as its spatial distribution. Each method shows a very strong anthropogenic influence on the event over Europe. However, the magnitude of the RR strongly depends on the definition of the event and the method used. Across Europe, attribution over larger regions tended to give greater RR values. This highlights a major source of sensitivity in attribution statements and the need to define the event to analyze on a case-by-case basis.
P Uhe, FEL Otto, K Haustein, GJ van Oldenborgh, AD King, DCH Wallom, MR Allen, H Cullen. Comparison of methods: Attributing the 2014 record European temperatures to human influences
published, Geophys. Res. Lett., 2016, 43