Reports reveal worsening global climate

7th August 2014


Related Topics

Related tags

  • Reporting

Author

Lisle Erskine-Naylor

Global climate indicators in 2013 continued to reflect trends of a warmer planet, according to a new report from the American Meteorological Society (AMS).

Atmospheric CO2 concentrations increased by 2.8 parts per million (ppm) in 2013, reaching a global average of 395.3 ppm for the year, says the State of the climate in 2013 report. It notes that on 9 May last year the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii recorded the daily concentration of CO2 exceeding 400 ppm for the first time since measurements began at the site in 1958.

Last year also provided further evidence that surface temperatures are continuing to increase. The AMS reports that four major datasets show 2013 was among the warmest ever recorded, with temperatures in Australia the highest on record. Data indicates that the globally averaged sea surface temperature for 2013 was among the 10 warmest on record, while the Arctic observed its seventh warmest year since records began in the early 20th century.

The global mean sea level continued to rise last year, increasing at the same pace (about 3.2mm a year) as that recorded anually over the past two decades.

Separate research, meanwhile, shows that weather, climate and water-related disasters are increasing. A study by the World Meteorological Organisation and the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium shows that between 1970 and 2012 there were 8,835 disasters, 1.94 million deaths and economic losses totaling $2.4 trillion reported globally as a result of hazards, such as droughts, extreme temperatures, floods, tropical cyclones and related health epidemics. Storms and floods accounted for 79% of the total number of disasters due to weather, climate and water extremes, and caused 55% of lives lost and 86% of economic losses over the 42-year period.

New findings from European commission scientists indicate that climate damage in the EU could amount to at least €190 billion a year if global temperature increased by 3.5°C. Heat-related deaths could reach about 200,000, the cost of river flood damages could exceed €10 billion, and 8,000km2 of forest could burn in southern Europe, says the commission’s joint research centre.


Transform articles

IEMA reacts to UK government's Net Zero Strategy

IEMA has raised concerns around a lack of funding for proposals outlined in the UK government's Net Zero Strategy, which was published earlier this week.

21st October 2021

Read more

Demand for fossil fuels will peak by 2025 if all national net-zero pledges are implemented in full and on time, the International Energy Agency (IEA) has forecast.

15th October 2021

Read more

Climate change remains one of the top issues most concerning the UK public, despite the economic turmoil experienced over the last 18 months, a poll commissioned by IEMA has found.

15th October 2021

Read more

Almost one-third of Europe's largest companies have now set net-zero emissions targets, but far less are set to deliver on their ambitions.

7th October 2021

Read more

A group of world-leading climate scientists has today warned that carbon pricing is currently too low to deliver a just transition to a net-zero economy, and that "urgent reforms" are needed.

30th September 2021

Read more

The Royal Botanic Gardens (RBG) in Kew has today unveiled a new strategy to tackle biodiversity loss and develop sustainable nature-based solutions to some of humanity’s biggest global challenges.

28th September 2021

Read more

How to Save Our Planet is call to action that aims to equip everyone with the knowledge needed to make change. We need to deal with climate change, environmental destruction and global poverty, and ensure everyone’s security.

23rd September 2021

Read more

Hannah Lesbirel and Beccy Wilson speak to IEMA members about climate anxiety

23rd September 2021

Read more

Seven of the UK's 17 key industry sectors are still increasing their emissions year-on-year, and most will miss their 2050 net-zero targets without significant government action, new research suggests.

23rd September 2021

Read more

Media enquires

Looking for an expert to speak at an event or comment on an item in the news?

Find an expert