Climate change set four records in 2021, U.S. says – NBC News

by | May 18, 2022 | Climate Change

Four key measures of climate change hit record highs last year, the United Nations said Wednesday. Greenhouse gas concentrations, sea level rise, ocean temperatures and ocean acidification all hit their highest recorded levels in 2021, leading to “harmful and long-lasting ramifications” for humans and nature, according to the World Meteorological Organization.It said extreme weather supercharged by climate change last year had led to billions of dollars in economic losses and triggered shocks to global food and water supplies that were reverberating into 2022. The WMO State of the Global Climate report found that the past seven years were the seven hottest on record and that temperatures in 2021 were 1.11 Celsius (2 Farenheit) above pre-industrial baseline levels. U.N. Secretary General António Guterres said the assessment showed “the dismal litany of humanity’s failure to tackle climate disruption” and called for governments to accelerate their transition away from planet-warming fossil fuels. Guterres said countries needed to make genuine progress towards decarbonizing their economies this century in order to stave off the worst impacts of climate change and limit heating to 1.5C. That is the most ambitious temperature goal of the 2015 Paris Agreement. Despite a record drop in greenhouse gas emissions in 2020 due to lockdowns and other restrictions linked to Covid, the WMO said that concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide all hit record levels.Atmospheric CO2 levels reached 413.2 parts per million (ppm) globally, or 149 percent of pre-industrial levels. It said it expected concentrations to continue upward, with th …

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