A CLIMATE change expert has said Scotland can likely expect even more intense storms than Babet due to global warming.

Storm Babet has wreaked havoc on the north east of Scotland. Parts of Angus are accessible only by boat after heavy flooding on Thursday night, including the entire town of Brechin – with First Minister Humza Yousaf saying he “cannot stress how dangerous” conditions are for residents.

Angus Council said the flooding was a “very serious emergency” and “completely unprecedented”.

Heavy rain and strong winds are also causing major transport disruption across Scotland and northern England on Friday.

Simon Tett, a professor at the University of Edinburgh, told The National that he’s sorry for those impacted by this extreme weather.

He warned, however, that not only is the likelihood of extreme weather events like Storm Babet higher, they already have and will also likely become more intense.

The National:

“This is the price of climate change,” Tett said.

He added: “The atmosphere and oceans are now roughly 1 to 1.5-degree warmer.

“A warmer atmosphere is an atmosphere that can hold more water. Extreme rains occur when all the water in the atmosphere falls out, and I would say we have about 10% more rain than we would otherwise have if it were not for climate change – with the intensity increasing at roughly 7% per degree of further warming.”

Tett also took aim at the argument that it is too expensive to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

READ MORE: Storm Babet: Body found as woman swept into river in Angus

He said: “Not doing anything incurs costs, in particular if we get more heatwaves and intense rainfall.”

Estimates for the damage caused by Storm Babet in Scotland aren’t yet available.

But in Ireland, widespread damage across Cork in the aftermath of Babet is expected to cost millions of euro to repair, prompting the establishment of an emergency government fund that could surpass its initial €10 million budget.

“Frankly, we need to spend a lot more money to prepare for the changing climate,” Tett said.

“In Scotland, these storms will likely become more intense and people therefore need to be prepared.

“If you're near a river, you need to think about flood risk.”

He added: “Preparing for a more extreme rainfall climate is necessary. If we don’t mitigate climate change, it'll just keep getting wetter with more extreme rainfall.”

Scottish Green MSP Maggie Chapman, meanwhile, said the frequency and severity of storms hitting Scotland shows the need to redouble efforts to climate-proof communities.

Chapman said: “Extreme weather events are becoming increasingly common and are putting homes, vital infrastructure and even lives at risk.

“Our environment is changing around us, whether it is the record temperatures of the summer or the storms we are seeing now. We cannot allow the climate chaos we are seeing today to become even more common.

“We need to redouble our efforts to climate-proof our country and to ensure that we are taking the action that is so necessary if we are to avoid even more extreme events in the future.”