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Climate change: ‘Fifty-fifty chance’ of breaching 1.5C warming limit
Matt McGrath via BBC
The likelihood of crossing a key global warming threshold has risen significantly, according to a new analysis.
UK Met Office researchers say that there’s now around a fifty-fifty chance that the world will warm by more than 1.5C over the next five years.
Such a rise would be temporary, but researchers are concerned about the overall direction of temperatures.
It’s almost certain that 2022-2026 will see a record warmest year, they say.
The Met Office is the UK’s national meteorological service.
As levels of warming gases in the atmosphere have accrued rapidly over the past three decades, global temperatures have responded by rising in step.
In 2015, the world’s average temperature first went 1C above the pre-industrial levels, which are generally thought of as the temperatures recorded in the middle of the 19th century.
That was also the year that political leaders signed the Paris climate agreement, which committed the world to keeping the rise in global temperatures well below 2C while pursuing efforts keep them under 1.5C.
At COP26 in Glasgow last November, governments re-iterated their commitment to keeping “1.5C alive.”
For the past seven years, global temperatures have stayed at or around that 1C mark, with 2016 and 2020 essentially tied as the warmest years on record.