2020 tied for the warmest year recorded, EU says
The year 2020 was tied for the hottest year ever recorded, according to a European Union (EU) climate organization.
Global temperatures last year were on par with 2016, which had been the warmest year previously recorded, the Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) said Friday.
“The extraordinary climate events of 2020 and the data from the Copernicus Climate Change Service show us that we have no time to lose. We must come together as a global community, to ensure a just transition to a net zero future,” said Matthias Petschke, the director for Space in the EU’s executive branch.
C3S found that globally, 2020 was 0.6 degrees Celsius warmer than the 1981-2010 reference period and about 1.25 degrees Celsius warmer than the pre-industrial period of 1850-1900.
Many scientists and politicians have urged the world to try to limit the planet’s warming to less than 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels to mitigate the impacts of the changing climate.
A recent NASA report, for example, projects that 1.5 degrees of warming would result in climate-related risks to human health, food security, and water supply.
And the Paris Agreement, which President Trump pulled the U.S. out of, aims to limit warming to below 2 degrees Celsius, preferring to limit the warming to 1.5 degrees. President-elect Joe Biden has pledged to rejoin the accord.
Meanwhile, a recent report from the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration found that weather and climate disasters reached an all-time high last year, with 22 events that cost more than $1 billion in damage each.