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世界气象组织:全球变暖或将在未来五年内超过1.5度临界点 World on track to breach a critical warming threshold in the next five years

中国日报网 2023-05-19 09:00






The world is now likely to breach a key climate threshold for the first time within the next five years, according to the World Meteorological Organization, due to a combination of heat-trapping pollution and a looming El Niño.



Global temperatures have soared in recent years as the world continues to burn planet-warming fossil fuels like coal, oil and gas. And that trend shows no sign of slowing. In its annual climate update, the WMO said that between 2023 and 2027, there is now a 66% chance that the planet’s temperature will climb above 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming above pre-industrial levels for at least one year.



As temperatures surge, there is also a 98% likelihood that at least one of the next five years – and the five-year period as a whole – will be the warmest on record for the planet, the WMO reported.



Breaching the 1.5-degree threshold may only be temporary, the WMO said, but it would be the clearest signal yet of how quickly climate change is accelerating – hastening sea level rise, more extreme weather and the demise of vital ecosystems.



Countries pledged in the Paris Climate Agreement to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees – and preferably to 1.5 degrees – compared to pre-industrial temperatures. Scientists consider 1.5 degrees of warming as a key tipping point, beyond which the chances of extreme flooding, drought, wildfires and food shortages could increase dramatically.



The temperature increases are fueled by the rise of planet-heating pollution from burning fossil fuels, as well as the predicted arrival of El Niño, a natural climate phenomenon with a global heating effect.



The current hottest year on record is 2016, which followed a very strong El Niño event. El Niño tends to ramp up the temperatures the year after it develops, which could put 2024 on track to be the hottest year on record.



Scientists have long warned that the world needs to stay within 1.5 degrees of warming to avoid catastrophic and potentially irreversible changes.



Warming above this point increases the risk of triggering major tipping points, including the death of coral reefs and the melting of polar ice sheets, which will add to sea level rise, devastating coastal communities.



In the US alone, 13 million people could be forced to relocate because of sea level rise by the end of the century. For many low-lying Pacific Island nations, warming over 1.5 degrees is a threat to their survival.



Temperature rises also increase the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events including droughts, storms, wildfires and heatwaves.





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