• Saturday, Sep 25, 2021
  • Last Update : 10:19 am

Kyoto's earliest cherry blooms in 1,200 years point to climate change

  • Published at 08:00 pm April 1st, 2021
‘Somei Yoshino’ cherry tree blossoms
A ‘Somei Yoshino’ cherry tree blossoms in Kyoto, Japan on March 16, 2021 Reuters

The earlier flowering times of species such as cherry blossoms often pointed to global warming

The famous pink cherry blossoms of Kyoto reached full bloom this year on March 26, the earliest date in the 12 centuries since records began, according to a Japanese university.

The earlier flowering indicates climate change, said Yasuyuki Aono, a professor of environmental science at Osaka Prefectural University, who has compiled a database of records of the full blooms over the centuries.

Global temperatures in 2020 were among the highest on record and rivaled 2016 as the hottest year ever, according to international data compiled by the World Meteorological Organization and released in January this year.

"As the temperatures rise the onset of flowering is earlier," Aono told Reuters in a Zoom interview.

Osaka University records include court documents from Imperial Kyoto, the ancient capital of Japan, as well as medieval diaries.

Cherry blossoms have long historical and cultural roots in Japan, heralding spring and inspiring artists and poets through the centuries.

In modern times, people gather under the cherry blooms every spring for hanami (blossom-viewing) parties that are often well lubricated with sake and can last for days.

With a state of emergency to curb coronavirus infections lifted across all areas of the country many people flocked to popular viewing locations last weekend, although the numbers were lower than in normal years.

Kyoto, no longer the Japanese capital but a beacon of Japanese culture and manners, has long been famous for its temples and blossoms, which been a valuable tool for observing long-term changes in mean temperatures.

Scientists have often pointed to the earlier flowering times of species such as cherry blossoms as indicators of global warming. The Kyoto record is described in one study as "probably the longest annual record" of biological life cycles from anywhere in the world.

80
Facebook 80
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail