The weather in Denmark will get warmer, wetter and wilder
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The weather in Denmark will get warmer, wetter and wilder

The future climate in Denmark will be characterised by higher temperatures, more rainfall and more extreme weather events in general.


We are already seeing the effects of global warming. In Denmark, the temperature rises more or less follow those of the global average temperature. This is revealed by observations made since the 1870s. Over the period of more than 150 years since observations began, the average temperature in Denmark has risen by about 1.5˚C, and since the mid twentieth century the temperature has followed the trend expected by climate models up to the year 2100.

Global warming is primarily due to emissions of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. This means that the temperature rise in Denmark depends on the amount of greenhouse gases released globally. If the current level of emissions continues, we will experience the so-called high emissions scenario.


Temperature and emissions go hand in hand
In the high emissions scenario, the temperature increases by around 3.4˚C up to the year 2100 relative to the period 1981-2010. If, on the other hand, the world follows a lower scenario, in which emissions of greenhouse gases are halted, then the temperature will increase by around 2˚C. The Climate Atlas presents the temperature trend for both the lower (RCP4.5) and the high scenario (RCP8.5).


With higher temperatures come more frequent and longer heatwaves, more warm summer nights with temperatures above 20˚C, and fewer frosty days with temperatures below freezing.

The higher temperatures will also change the precipitation patterns we know today. Measurements show that annual precipitation in Denmark has increased by around 100mm over the past 100 years. This trend will continue. Throughout Denmark, there will be more rainfall in spring, autumn and, in particular, in winter. Furthermore, cloudbursts and heavy rainfall events will be even more intense and will occur more frequently up to the year 2100.

The Climate Atlas contains figures, graphs and maps that show the development in temperature, precipitation and selected climate indicators such as cloudbursts, droughts and storm surges in Denmark. All climate variables are shown for the medium and the high emissions scenarios, and for several periods during the 21st century.


Main points about the Danish climate in 2100*:


  • The annual average temperature increases by around 3.4˚C throughout Denmark. There will be no major regional variation.
  • Precipitation in winter increases by almost 25%. With temperatures increasing too, relatively much of this precipitation will fall as rain.
  • Summers will see around the same precipitation volume as today, but more often in the form of heavy showers. This means there will be more dry days and longer dry spells without precipitation.
  • The mean sea level increases, and at an accelerating pace. The increase is lowest in northern Jutland and highest in south-west Jutland. This difference is due to isostatic rebound after the last Ice Age.
  • Storm surges hit harder. As the mean sea level rises, storm surges can cause much more serious damage, because the water is pushed further inland.
  • A storm surge statistically likely to occur every 20 years today, will be an event likely to occur every year or every other year in 2100.

*All figures are “best guesses” at the high emmissions scenario.




Senest redigeret: 06-07-2023