50:50 chance of global temperature reaching 1.5°C threshold

Geneva, May 10 (EFE).- There is a 50:50 chance of the annual average global temperature temporarily reaching 1.5 degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial level for at least one of the next five years, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).

The warming threshold is considered an important indicator of the point at which climate impacts will become increasingly harmful to people and the entire planet.

It would cause more extreme weather events, increase food insecurity, and cause more pressure on water resources.

The Annual to Decadal Climate Update says there was a 93 percent likelihood of at least one year between 2022 and 2026 becoming the warmest on record.

Earlier, 2016 was the warmest year on record.

In 2021, the global average temperature is considered to be 1.1 degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial baseline.

“The chance of (global temperature) temporarily exceeding 1.5°C has risen steadily since 2015, when it was close to zero. For the years between 2017 and 2021, there was a 10 percent chance of exceedance. That probability has increased to nearly 50 percent for the 2022-2026 period,” said the report.

The objective of the update is to provide political leaders with science-based data so that they can make necessary decisions that prevent global warming from reaching a point of no return.

“This study shows – with a high level of scientific skill – that we are getting measurably closer to temporarily reaching the lower target of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change,” said WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas.

“The 1.5°C figure is not some random statistic. It is rather an indicator of the point at which climate impacts will become increasingly harmful for people and indeed the entire planet,” said Taalas.

He stressed temperatures would rise as long as greenhouse gas emissions continue.

“Our oceans will continue to become warmer and more acidic. Sea ice and glaciers will continue to melt. Sea level will continue to rise and our weather will become more extreme. Arctic warming is disproportionately high and what happens in the Arctic affects all of us,” said Taalas.

The Arctic temperature anomaly, compared to the 1991-2020 average, is predicted to be more than three times as large as the global mean anomaly when averaged over the next five northern hemisphere extended winters.

The Paris Agreement sets long-term goals to guide all nations to substantially reduce global greenhouse gas emissions to limit the global temperature increase to 2 degrees Celsius this century.

It stresses pursuing efforts to limit the increase further to 1.5 degrees Celsius. EFE


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