Last 4 years ‘warmest on record’ – world weather report

The years 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 have been confirmed as the four warmest years on record, according to data gathered by the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO).

An analysis of five international datasets by the WMO showed that the global average surface temperature in 2018 was approximately 1° above the pre-industrial starting point.

According to the WMO, 2018 ranks as the fourth warmest year on record.

A statement released by the meteorological organisation said that this is a result of “continuing long-term climate change associated with record atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases”.

Commenting on the figures announced, WMO secretary general Petteri Taalas said: “The long-term temperature trend is far more important than the ranking of individual years, and that trend is an upward one.

The 20 warmest years on record have been in the past 22 years. The degree of warming during the past four years has been exceptional, both on land and in the ocean.

Continuing, Taalas said: “Temperatures are only part of the story. Extreme and high impact weather affected many countries and millions of people, with devastating repercussions for economies and ecosystems in 2018.”

The secretary general added that many of the extreme weather events are “consistent with what we expect from a changing climate”.

This is a reality we need to face up to. Greenhouse gas emission reduction and climate adaptation measures should be a top global priority.

WMO will issue its full statement on the state of the climate next month.