The Unforgiving Summer!

Fahed Khitan
Fahed Khitan

اضافة اعلان

Every summer sees more rapid shifts in our countries climate than the summers before. The whole region is suffering such unforgiving weather!

Heatwave after heatwave sweep through the season now; summer is coming later than usual, but it is hotter.

Two days ago, it rained so heavily in Istanbul, in the middle of the summer, that it drenched the streets of the city.

Snowfall in some of Saudi’s regions is becoming more and more recurrent in the winter.

Jordanians resist the idea that their country’s weather is changing.

Many think our nights, midsummer nights in particular, to be something unique.

The refreshing breeze that once was characteristic of our summer here in Jordan, is no more.

 

Perhaps, in comparison to the climate in other Arab and Gulf cities, it sounds fair enough. But the weather in Jordan is slowly becoming more like those cities during the day, even at night sometimes.

Temperatures touch on 40 degrees, the sun, and the air is no longer fresh. Quite the contrary, it can cause illness.

In these last three years, the weather has become unbearable, regardless what we say.

Building facades are crowded with ACs, and one AC per household is not enough.

Even in their gardens, people are turning on fans, and so are restaurants.

A car without air-conditioning isn’t worth much.

Out in the streets, everybody’s windows are rolled up. People can’t bear to roll them down to say hi.

Public buildings are intolerable, and it isn’t so different for public transportation.

Generally speaking, life in the summer here isn’t so different from the other cities in the Gulf.

As for our relatives and friends who come to Jordan for the summer, it remains fairer than it is in Kuwait, for instance, Riyadh, or Doha.

However, for those here, it is entirely different. People long to the cool nights of summers ago!

Climate studies indicate the surface temperature of the earth is rising.

If we do not do something about it, like drive down gas and thermal emissions, earth will sooner than later shed all its seasons and colours.

Before long, it will be an unforgiving, long summer, all year long.

Jordan too has a lot to think about, the future, for instance.

Demand on ACs in the summer is far higher than its opposite for heating in the winner. The winter bills for citizens too are quite a burden, let alone the summer.

There is an increasing dependency on electricity to operate cooling and heating devices at homes and public institutions.

Meanwhile, the market offers very little alternatives, if any, that is!

It is vital to consider the construction techniques, to work out building schemes which minimise the effect of the external environment on the internal temperatures.

Just as much, there is a rising need to explore the worlds of alternative and renewable energy!

Greening the city is no longer an option now, which is why I didn’t mention it.

Municipalities and governments have forfeited the people’s rights to public gardens. Year after year, green scapes receded until we were left with this giant jungle of stones and concrete.

This includes the Greater Amman Municipality.

The public institutions in charge of safeguarding the people’s right to access recreational, natural space, have given the real estate companies the right to organise our cities and neighbourhoods for us.

Why would those not sell our lands or erect more buildings it to make more profit?

This article is an edited translation of the Arabic version, published by AlGhad.