Potential future climatic conditions on tourists: A case study focusing on Malta and Venice

Authors: C. Galdies

Corresponding: C. Galdies (charles.galdies@um.edu.mt)

Keywords: Climate change, climate trends, thermal bioclimate indices, Climate projections, adaptation measures, Mediterranean

Doi: http://dx.medra.org/10.7423/XJENZA.2015.2.01

Issue: Xjenza Online Vol. 3 Iss. 2 - December 2015

The main purpose of this study is to quantify important climatic shifts that took place over Malta and Venice that could be considered as a determining factor on their choice as two prime tourist destinations. Rather than making use of traditional tourist climate indices, this study identi es long-term trends in weather variables and their derived bioclimatic indices. These climate derivatives are based on a set of high temporal observations (some of which are collected every 30 minutes) and are thus able to capture valuable information that traditional monthly distribution cannot provide. The derivatives obtained from the elementary meteorological observations showed that the level of comfort experienced by visiting tourists over the long term is deteriorating due to increased heat stress. Nonetheless, the increased occurrence of optimal wind speed conditions, as well as a reduced occurrence of gale storms and wind chill events is making these destinations more attractive. A careful study of the output of IPCC climate model projections sheds light on a critical future bioclimate condition during current peak visiting months (July and August) at both destinations. This may imply a required shift, as a form of adaptation, of the visiting periods at these two destinations. This study should allow tourist planners to determine which weather element is a likely future obstacle to the overall bioclimatic suitability of outdoor tourism activities.

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