Geografie 2008, 113, 372-382

Temperature-related climate extremes in the Potsdam observation record

Zbigniew W. Kundzewicz1,2, Damian Józefczyk2

1Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Telegraphenberg A 31, 14473 Potsdam, Germany
2Research Centre for Agricultural and Forest Environment, Polish Academy of Sciences, Bukowska 19, 60-809 Poznań, Poland

This paper examines temperature-related climate extremes in the unique long-term gapfree record at the Secular Meteorological Station in Potsdam. Increasing tendencies in daily minimum temperature in winter and daily maximum temperature in summer, as well as monthly means of daily minimum temperatures in winter months and of daily maximum temperatures in summer months are illustrated. Also the numbers of hot days and of summer days (with maximum daily temperature exceeding 30 °C and 25 °C, respectively) have been increasing. In agreement with warming of winter minimum temperatures, the numbers of frost days (with minimum daily temperature below 0 °C) and of ice days (with maximum daily temperature below 0 °C) have been decreasing. However, low correlation coefficient and huge scatter illustrate strong natural variability, so that the occurrence of extremes departs from the general underlying tendency.