The global average temperature is very likely to climb more than 1.5 degrees above the pre-industrial level for the first time in one of the next five years. This was announced by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) today in Geneva. According to the WMO, 2023 to 2027 will likely be the warmest five years since measurements began.
“There is a 98 percent probability that at least one of the next five years, as well as the entire five-year period, will be the warmest since records began,” the WMO said in its latest forecast. It blamed this on the “El Nino” weather and global warming.
At the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris in 2015, the goal was agreed to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees compared to the end of the 19th century, if possible, to limit global climate damage. The WMO does not expect global warming to permanently climb above that mark in the next few years alone. “However, the WMO is sounding the alarm because we will break through the 1.5 degree level more and more frequently temporarily,” WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas said.
Last year, the WMO had put the probability of that forecast occurring at just under 50 percent. Now it is projecting 66 percent.
“We need to prepare.“
The UN expects the mean annual temperature to reach a record high at least once by 2027. It said this is due to a combination of artificial climate change and the naturally occurring “El Nino” climate phenomenon. “This will have far-reaching impacts on health, food security, water management and the environment,” Taalas said. “We need to prepare.”
“El Nino” and its counterpart “La Nina” favor extreme weather in many regions of the world. “El Nino” drives up average global temperatures, while “La Nina” has a cooling effect. They appear alternately every few years.
Warming is extreme in the Arctic
In the Arctic, warming over the next few years will be three times greater than the global average, according to the forecast. Melting permafrost in the North Pole region will threaten settlements, transportation routes, and pipelines, Taalas said.
The WMO expects more rain in the summer months through 2027 in Siberia, northern Europe, and the Sahel region of Africa. On the other hand, the Amazon region faces low rainfall, he said. Taalas spoke of the risk of drought in the vast South American rainforest zone, which would lead to rising emissions of the greenhouse gas CO2.