2010s set to be the hottest decade in history

The World Meterological Organisation (WMO) said global temperatures so far this year were 1.1 deg C above the pre-industrial average, putting this year on course to be in the top three warmest years ever recorded. Man-made emissions from burning fossil fuels, building infrastructure, growing crops and transporting goods mean this year is set to break the record for atmospheric carbon concentrations, locking in further warming, the WMO said.

Oceans, which absorb 90 percent of the excess heat produced by greenhouse gases, are now at their highest recorded temperatures. The world’s seas are now a quarter more acidic than 150 years ago, threatening vital marine ecosystems upon which billions of people rely for food and jobs.

The World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) said global temperatures so far this year were 1.1 degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial average between 1850-1900. That puts 2019 on course to be in the top three warmest years ever recorded, and possibly the hottest non-El Nino year yet.

In October, the global mean sea level reached its highest on record, fuelled by the 329 billion tonnes of ice lost from the Greenland ice sheet in 12 months.

Each of the last four decades has been hotter than the last. And far from climate change being a phenomenon for future generations to confront, the effects of humanity’s insatiable, growth-at-any cost consumption means millions are already counting the damage.

The report said more than 10 million people were internally displaced in the first half of 2019, seven million directly due to extreme weather events such as storms, flooding and drought. By the end of the year, the WMO said new displacements due to weather extremes could reach 22 million.