A new climate change update published on Thursday, led by the Met Office and issued by the World Meteorological Organization, shows the odds of the annual global temperature in at least one of the next five years will temporarily reach 1.5C above pre-industrial levels are around 40 percent and increasing. There is also a 90 percent likelihood of at least one year in the five-year period becoming the warmest on record, dislodging 2016 from the top ranking.
In 2020 – one of the three warmest years on record – the global average temperature was 1.2C above the pre-industrial baseline, according to the WMO’s report on the State of the Global Climate 2020.
The Paris Agreement seeks to keep global temperature rise this century well below 2C above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1.5C.
Professor Adam Scaife, head of seasonal to decadal prediction at the Met Office, said: “Assessing the increase in global temperature in the context of climate change refers to the long-term global average temperature, not to the averages for individual years or months.
“Nevertheless, a temporary exceedance of the 1.5 degree level may already be seen in the next few years.”
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