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May is another month with an inglorious record. “When it comes to climate, we are not dinosaurs, we are a meteorite”

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The warmest May globally in recorded history is behind us, scientists working on the EU's Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) program announced on Wednesday. This was the 12th month in a row when the global temperature record was broken.

This year's May was the world's warmest such month in recorded history. The average air temperature was 0.65 degrees Celsius above the average from 1991-2020. Additionally, it was the 12th month in a row that broke global temperature records, researchers from the Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) program, commissioned by the European Commission, announced on Wednesday.

– When it comes to climate, we are not dinosaurs, we are a meteorite. Not only are we in danger, but we ourselves are the danger, said Antonio Guterres, UN Secretary-General, on Wednesday during a speech at the Natural History Museum in New York. He once again called for intensified actions to fight climate change. According to Guterres, the most ambitious goal of the Paris Agreement – limiting global warming in the coming years to 1.5 degrees Celsius compared to the pre-industrial era – “hangs in the balance.”

There is an 80 percent chance that the global average annual temperature will exceed the threshold of 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels in the next five years, according to a report published by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). According to experts, we are unable to achieve the goals set out in the Paris Agreement on climate change.

We are “at a critical moment for the climate”

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According to Guterres, humanity is “at a critical moment for the climate”, which is why it is necessary to “exit the highway to hell”. He recalled that in the next 18 months, world leaders must present new targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Global warmingPAP/Maciej Zieliński

Co2 emissions

“To limit global warming to 1.5 degrees C or 2 degrees C by 2050, CO2 reductions must be quadrupled,” we read in the second part of the report published on Tuesday, authored by a team of scientists under the auspices of the University of Oxford. According to researchers, this means a value of 7 to 9 billion tons of CO2 per year by 2050.

In the first edition of the report, published last year, it was reported that the annual elimination of CO2 is approximately 2 billion tons, mainly through afforestation. At the same time, in 2023, 40 billion tons of CO2 were emitted worldwide. More than 50 scientists, the authors of the report, called for a strategy to eliminate CO2 from the atmosphere in parallel with the rapid reduction of emissions in order to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement.

Climate change and its consequences in the worldAdam Ziemienowicz, Maciej Zieliński/PAP

climate.copernicus.eu, PAP

Main photo source: Shutterstock

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