There is a one in two chance of exceeding the +1.5°C threshold in the next five years, says the United Nations

The United Nations announced Tuesday, May 10, that there is a one in two chance that the average annual global temperature will temporarily be 1.5°C above pre-industrial values ​​for at least one of the next five years.

However, a temporary crossing of this threshold over a year is not synonymous with a permanent breach of said threshold, in the sense of the Paris Climate Agreement. This agreement aims to keep the increase in average global temperature well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, and if possible to 1.5°C.

According to a new climate bulletin published by the United Nations World Meteorological Organization (WMO) on Tuesday, the probability of a temporary breach of the 1.5°C threshold has increased steadily since 2015, the year that risk approached zero.

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Climate impacts will be more and more harmful

For the years between 2017 and 2021, the probability of being overrun was 10%. she has passed “About 50% for the period 2022-2026”, says the World Meteorological Organization. But there is a small probability (10%) that the five-year average will exceed the threshold of + 1.5 ° C.

WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas explained:

“This study shows, with great scientific credibility, that we are getting very close to the moment when we will tentatively reach the Paris Agreement minimum. The 1.5°C figure is not a randomly chosen statistic. It indicates the point at which climate impacts will be increasingly harmful to the population and the planet. Whole.. »

As long as we continue to emit greenhouse gases, temperatures will continue to rise. Meanwhile, our oceans will continue to warm and acidify, sea ice and glaciers will continue to melt, sea levels will continue to rise, and extreme weather will continue to increase.”, careful. He pointed out that the warming of the Arctic is “Especially special”Even if the prevailing conditions in this region have repercussions on the whole planet.

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‘Global temperature rise will continue’

According to this publication of annual to decadal forecasts of the global climate, produced by the UK Met Office, which is the main WMO center for this type of forecast, it is very likely (93%) that at least one will occur between 2022. And 2026 became the hottest ever.

This peak is currently taking place by 2016, which was marked by a strong El Niño, a natural ocean phenomenon that causes warming.

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There is also a 93% chance that the average temperature for the period 2022-2026 will be higher than the average temperatures of the past five years (2017-2021).

Dr. Leon Hermanson of the Met Office, who edited the bulletin, believes these forecasts show that Global warming will continue. But he notes: “One year passing the 1.5°C threshold does not mean that we will have crossed the symbolic threshold of the Paris Agreement. However, it is a sign that we are approaching a scenario where the 1.5°C threshold could be exceeded for an extended period.”

In 2021, the planet’s average temperature will be 1.11 degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial norm, according to a recent report by the World Meteorological Organization on the state of the global climate. The final version of the document will be published on May 18.

According to the World Meteorological Organization, successive La Niña episodes in early and late 2021 lowered global temperatures, “But this is only temporary and does not reflect the long-term trend of global warming.”. The emergence of the El Niño phenomenon would immediately contribute to the increase in temperatures.

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The world with AFP

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