The frequency and impacts of heatwaves in sub-Saharan Africa have gone nearly unreported for decades, according to new research. The Oxford study, published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change, reviewed the Emergency Events Database (EM-DAT), the world’s biggest database of extreme weather events, and found just two reports of sub-Saharan heatwaves since 1900, compared to 83 reported European heatwaves in the past 40 years alone. “Both real-world observations and climate modelling show sub-Saharan Africa as a hotspot for heatwave activity … But these heatwaves are not being recorded,” said Luke Harrington, a senior researcher at Oxford’s Environmental Change Institute and one of the study’s authors. The lack of data means the experiences of people living on the world’s hottest continent are being excluded from the global climate change debate. “People in Africa are certainly aware of the growing number of heatwaves,” said Mohamed Adow, director of Nairobi-based climate think-tank Power Shift Africa. “But if they are not recorded by scientists it will be harder for African voices to be heard.” (Thomson Reuters Foundation, InsideClimate News)