IT’S supposedly the height of summer but it feels like we’re enduring four seasons every day. Yesterday, much of Scotland was on flood alert as heavy rain lashed the country, causing chaos on the transport network.

Earlier this week, the flagship ScotRail route between Edinburgh and Glasgow was disrupted by flooding in the Winchburgh Tunnel.

And there is no immediate end in sight – the Met Office has issued a yellow warning for the rest of the weekend.

Yet just a few weeks ago we were basking in sunshine, while the UK's highest-ever temperature was officially recorded in Cambridge.

There is no doubt that climate change is playing a role in this.

The climate emergency is not a problem for the future: it is here today.

What were once extreme weather events are on the rise, becoming the new normal – and that brings major challenges for our existing infrastructure.

Our Victorian-era railways and drains simply aren’t designed to cope with the extreme weather provoked by climate change.

When our rail tracks buckle in the heat or trains can’t run because of the snow, we often look abroad and wonder how other countries keep people moving. Now we must not just look, but also learn.

It will, inevitably, cost money.

Bob Ward, of the Grantham Institute on Climate Change, says "no-one has any idea how much this will cost but the bill will be huge".

We must start the conversation about the scale of this challenge, and urgently examine what needs to be spent.

The wider debate about tackling climate change can be held in earnest in Glasgow next year, if the UK’s bid to host a major UN summit at the SEC is successful.

It would be the largest summit the UK has ever held, with up to 200 world leaders expected to attend, showcasing Scotland to the world.

In years to come, we will hopefully be able to look back at a Glasgow Agreement that truly tackles the climate emergency across the world.

But if we want to be at the centre of global attention, we must demonstrate further action here at home. The Scottish Government has a bold Climate Change Plan to move towards a low carbon economy by 2032.

It’s a laudable aim, but concerns remain about whether we are investing enough in skills for renewables, and next year’s ban on landfill waste looks impossible to achieve without urgent action to avoid exporting more waste.

And Government action alone will not be enough. As individuals, we all have a duty to help fight climate change.

This week, a major report warned that the West's high consumption of meat and dairy produce is fuelling global warming.

The report stated that more people could be fed using less land if people cut down on eating meat.

And we’re all wasting too much food. Greenhouse emissions associated with food loss and waste reaches up to 10 per cent of all global emissions.

Nobody is demanding that everyone gives up meat completely, but German politicians are looking at one possible way to reduce consumption: raising the sales tax on meat from 7 per cent to 19 per cent.

There is no silver bullet when it comes to addressing climate change.

It will require action from global leaders working collectively, as well as national governments and every individual person.

Scottish Labour must do better

For a party in third place in Holyrood and fifth place in the last European elections, Scottish Labour has a knack for dominating the news coverage.

Unfortunately for its supporters, it’s for all the wrong reasons – defying the old adage that there is no such thing as bad publicity.

This week saw Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell humiliate Scottish leader Richard Leonard, bitter rows within the MSP group, and yesterday the departure of long-serving General Secretary Brian Roy.

Amid the Tories’ Brexit chaos and questions for the Scottish Government about the country’s new hospitals, Labour’s opponents can’t believe their luck.

Scottish Labour is a party in chaos, and its supporters are being let down by incompetence and in-fighting.