Last 8 Years Were the Warmest Ever on This Earth:
According to a UN climate report published by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), the world’s glaciers melted at an alarming rate last year, with global sea levels rising at double the pace observed two decades ago. The report, released ahead of Earth Day, noted that the years between 2015-2022 were the warmest on record. The WMO also stated that saving glaciers was now practically impossible and that sea levels were increasing at an annual average of 4.62 millimeters over the past decade.
The report revealed that some European glaciers lost up to 1.3 meters of average thickness between October 2021 and October 2022, with the melting rate of certain glaciers exceeding previous measurements. The warming trend was due to an increase in greenhouse gas levels, which reached record highs in 2021. The concentration of carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide were all significantly higher than pre-industrial levels.
The oceans were also at record-high temperatures, with 58% of ocean surfaces experiencing a marine heatwave, the WMO added. Greenhouse gases’ effect on the climate system leads to approximately 90% of the trapped energy going into the ocean, posing a significant risk to marine ecosystems.
WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas warned that, due to the damage already done, the extreme weather patterns expected to continue into the 2060s, even with successful mitigation measures. Taalas stated that with enough effort, the negative trend could be phase out, and the 1.5 degrees Celsius limit could even be achieve.
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