The last eight years could be the warmest on record. “Paper”
The World Meteorological Organization (a UN entity) in its preliminary report on global climate in 2022 reported about the “surge of the effects of climate change”. This surge is indicated by the fact that the last eight years could be the warmest on record. “Paper” briefly retells the main theses of the report and recalls what is known about climate change in St. Petersburg.
Temperature. The global average temperature in 2022 is estimated to be about 1.15 degrees above the 1850-1900 average. Meteorologists expect 2015-2022 to be the eight warmest years on record.
2022 itself is likely to be the fifth or sixth warmest year on record. The long-term warming trend gives rise to fears that the onset of another warmest year on record is only “a matter of time.”
The upper layers of the ocean are also warming up to record levels. “Heating is expected to continue in the future, a change that is irreversible on a time scale of centuries to millennia,” the report says.
Greenhouse gases. Atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide reached record levels in 2021, with the highest annual increase in methane concentrations on record. In 2022, the content of these gases in the atmosphere continues to grow.
Melting glaciers. Records of melting glaciers in 2022 were recorded in the Alps: they lost an average of 3-4 meters in thickness. Over the past year, 6% of the volume of glaciers has been lost in Switzerland. For the first time in history, even at the highest measurement points, the snow did not survive the summer. Since 2001, the amount of glacial ice in Switzerland has decreased by more than a third. Sea level rise is accelerating due to ice melt.
Cataclysms. The WMO recalled examples of “extreme weather” when climate change led to cataclysms. As examples, the organization cited a drought in East Africa, record rains in Pakistan, where floods this summer killed at least 1,700 people and affected about 33 million, heat waves in India, devastating floods in Madagascar, a hurricane in Cuba and southwest Florida, heat wave in the UK.
Petersburg. Temperature records in both winter and summer have become commonplace in St. Petersburg. For two summers in a row, abnormal heat has been recorded in the city. Among the risks that bear climate change, we can highlight the possible rise in water levels in the Baltic Sea and the Neva, increased precipitation, cooler summers, and flooding.
“Paper” also toldhow climate change is associated with the washing out of the coastal areas of St. Petersburg and death 160-year-old oak tree in the Peter the Great Botanical Garden.
The authorities are also paying attention to the problem of the consequences of climate change: St. Petersburg has a renewable climate strategyin November in Smolny should approve plan for adapting St. Petersburg to climate change.
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