Is on Track to Be the 4th Hottest Year on Record

The past four years have been the hottest on record, and we are seeing the effects

Global temperatures set for 3-5 degree rise by 2100, UN World Meteorological Organization says

Global temperatures were nearly 1C above pre-industrial levels in the first 10 months of 2018, which comes in behind 2016, 2015 and 2017 in the ranking of the hottest years ever recorded, figures from five global data sets show.

The past four years have the been the hottest on record, going back to 1850, the report says, with the 20 hottest years on the list all occurring in the past 22 years.

If these trends continue temperatures could rise by as much as 3.5C (6.3F) by 2100, researchers warn.

Other signs of climate change including sea level rises, the oceans warming and becoming more acidic as they absorb carbon emissions, sea ice and glacier melting, and more extreme weather, have all been seen this year.

The past four years have been the hottest on record, and we are seeing the effects
Global temperatures on track for 3-5 degree rise by 2100: U.N.

According to the WMO's Secretary-General, Petteri Taalas, we are "not on track" to hit climate targets and "rein in temperature increases".

With levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, the main driver of climate change, at a record high, "we may see temperature increase of 3-5C by the end of the century", Taalas said.

"It is worth repeating once again that we are the first generation to fully understand climate change and the last generation to be able to do something about it", said Taalas.

The warning comes at a time when the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Special report said in October this year that there is no safe level of global warming and sea levels would continue to rise for centuries even if we cap warming at 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, prescribed in the lower limit of the Paris Agreement. For the past five years, the average rise was 1.04C.

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'These are more than just numbers, ' said WMO Deputy Secretary-General Elena Manaenkova.

"It makes a difference to economic productivity, food security, and to the resilience of our infrastructure and cities", Ms Manaenkova said.

'It makes a difference to the speed of glacier melt and water supplies, and the future of low-lying islands and coastal communities. In the Indian state of Kerala more than five million people were affected by floods.

Large parts of western Japan experienced destructive flooding in late June and early July, killing at least 230 people and destroying thousands of homes.

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Unprecedented heat and dry conditions in Europe, which saw temperatures in the 30s Celsius (90s Fahrenheit) all the way up to Scandinavia and the Arctic Circle, led to heavy crop losses in many countries.

There were major wildfires in the United States with the Camp Fire in November claiming the most lives of any fire in over a century in the US.

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