Major climate indicators set "alarming" records in 2021, the U.N. says, "bringing us ever closer to climate catastrophe"
The ocean is more acidic than it's been in 26,000 years and hotter than ever as greenhouse gases continue to flood the atmosphere. Here's what it could mean for the climate crisis.cbsnews.com
World’s longest lightning flash ever recorded stretched 477 miles across 3 states
The world record lightning bolt sprawled 477 miles from near Houston eastward across Louisiana all the way to Mississippi in 2020, the World Meteorological Organization announced this month. The Geostationary Lightning Mapper on the GOES-R series of satellites recorded the eight-second flash that occurred in April 2020, allowing the WMO to recognize its world-record status, the Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies shared via Facebook. This event is considered a “megaflash” and it generated millions of Joules of energy. It occurred behind a long line of thunderstorms in the residual trailing clouds where pockets of electric charge often develop. Click here for a computer-generated 3D view of the megaflash.mlive.com
Newly-confirmed Arctic record 100 degree heat in Siberia setting off climate change "alarm bells," U.N. says
The sweltering heat, on June 20, 2020 in the Russian town of Verkhoyansk, was the highest temperature ever recorded above the Arctic Circle, the World Meteorological Organization said.cbsnews.com
2020 Hurricane Season sparks new rules for naming big storms
The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Hurricane Committee met last week, and came out with two actions. First, the committee decided to retire four hurricane names from hurricanes that occurred in 2019 and 2020. The big news is the Greek alphabet won’t be used anymore if all of the English alphabet letters get used up. Another reason cited for not using Greek letters as hurricane names anymore is the similar sound of several letters, such as Zeta and Eta. So the Hurricane Committee decided to make a second English alphabet list to be used in a very active hurricane season.mlive.com
Metro Detroit weather: Warm Tuesday ends with rain
The week aheadScattered showers will end Wednesday morning, and then it will become partly cloudy and windy. It will be partly cloudy Wednesday night, with lows in the upper 40s. AdRain reigns Thursday night -- this will be the good soaking rain that we desperately need, with an inch of water possible. Weekend forecastIt’ll be partly cloudy to start on Saturday, then becomes mostly cloudy. Remember to download the FREE Local4Casters weather app -- it’s easily one of the best in the nation.
Bye Alpha, Eta: Greek alphabet ditched for hurricane names
(NOAA via AP)With named storms coming earlier and more often in warmer waters, the Atlantic hurricane season is going through some changes with meteorologists ditching the Greek alphabet during busy years. The Greek alphabet had only been used twice in 2005 and nine times last year in a record-shattering hurricane season. AdMeanwhile, the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration is recalculating just what constitutes an average hurricane season. STARTING EARLIERMIT hurricane researcher Kerry Emanuel said “this whole idea of hurricane season should be revisited." So a warming world means the new normal is busy hurricane seasons just like the last 30 years.
Report: 2020 was one of three warmest years on record
The differences in average global temperatures among the three warmest years – 2016, 2019 and 2020 – are indistinguishably small. The average global temperature in 2020 was about 14.9°C, 1.2 (± 0.1) °C above the pre-industrial (1850-1900) level. For instance, the United States reported a record 22 billion-dollar disasters in 2020, which was the nation’s fifth warmest year on record. NASA and Copernicus Climate Change Service estimate that 2020 is jointly the warmest year on record together with 2016. NOAA and the United Kingdom’s HadCRUT dataset both ranked 2020 as the second warmest behind 2016, with JRA ranking 2020 as the third warmest.
UN calls on humanity to end 'war on nature,' go carbon-free
“There is at least a one-in-five chance of it temporarily exceeding 1.5 degrees Celsius by 2024,” WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas said. The Paris climate accord set a goal of not exceeding 1.5-degree (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) warming since pre-industrial times. --Death Valley, California, hit 129.9 degrees (54.4 degrees Celsius), the hottest the world has seen in 80 years. --Record wildfires struck California and Colorado in the western United States, following a major fire season and record heat in Australia. --The Arctic had record wildfires and a prolonged heat wave culminating in a 100-degree mark (38 degrees Celsius) in Siberia in June.
2020 on track to be one of three warmest years on record
Geneva, 2 December 2020 (WMO) - Climate change continued its relentless march in 2020, which is on track to be one of the three warmest years on record. 2011-2020 will be the warmest decade on record, with the warmest six years all being since 2015, according to the World Meteorological Organization. “The average global temperature in 2020 is set to be about 1.2 °C above the pre-industrial (1850-1900) level. Despite the current La Niña conditions, this year has already shown near record heat comparable to the previous record of 2016,” said Prof. Taalas. Arctic sea ice for July and October 2020 was the lowest on record.
Dramatic increase expected in fierce storms and wildfires, U.N. agencies say
The "2020 State of Climate Services" said those numbers represent a five-fold increase in the number of recorded disasters. Environment program this week published a paper that cautioned: "Don't ignore economic lessons of the Great Recession." "Early warning systems (EWS) constitute a prerequisite for effective disaster risk reduction," WMO secretary-general Petteri Taalas said. Dealing with the global triple hit of COVID-19, climate change and a severe global recession is now the focus of several multinational financial institutions. The International Monetary Fund said this week that the pandemic-related recession will shrink the global economy by 4.4% for 2020 — the worst downturn since the Great Depression.cbsnews.com
Climate scientists uncover new record-low temperature in Greenland
For comparison, all three of those extreme lows sneak past the average temperature on Mars, which is roughly minus 81 F (minus 63 C), according to NASA . Greenland's new record low was discovered by a team of so-called "climate detectives" working at the WMO's Archive of Weather and Climate Extremes in Geneva. The temperature was recorded by the Klinck automatic weather station, which was active from 1990 to 1992 near the highest peak of the Greenland ice sheet, according to AP News . The WMO detectives confirmed these results with the original Klinck researchers before making their announcement on Wednesday. Formed in 2007, the WMO Archive has uncovered a slew of similar meteorological records over the years.space.com
UN agency laments summer's 'deep wound' to Earth's ice cover
GENEVA The United Nations weather agency says this summer will go down for leaving a deep wound in the cryosphere -- the planets frozen parts -- amid a heat wave in the Arctic, shrinking sea ice and the collapse of a leading Canadian ice shelf. The weather agency said in a statement that many new temperature records have been set in recent months, including in the Russian town of Verkhoyansk. The town, located in Siberia above the Arctic Circle line, reached 38 degrees Celsius (100 F) on June 20. She noted a heat wave across the Arctic, r ecord-breaking wildfires in Siberia, nearly record-low sea ice extent, and the collapse of one of the last fully intact Canadian ice shelves. The WMO is preparing to release on Sept. 9 a report on the impact of climate change on the cryosphere.
New study predicts consistent annual increases in global temperature
There is a ~70% chance that one or more months during the next five years will be at least 2.7F warmer than preindustrial levels. It is extremely unlikely (~3%) that the entire five-year mean temperature for 2020-2024 will be 2.7F warmer than preindustrial levels. The development of near-term prediction capability was driven by the WMO co-sponsored World Climate Research Programme. With the UKs Meteorology Office acting as lead center, climate prediction groups from Spain, Germany, Canada, China, the U.S., Japan, Australia, Sweden and Denmark contributed new predictions this year. Combining forecasts from climate prediction centers worldwide enables a higher quality product than what can be obtained from any single source.
Megaflashes -- 2 new lightning world records approved
A World Meteorological Organization (WMO) committee of experts has established two new world records for the longest reported distance and the longest reported duration for a single lightning flash in, respectively, Brazil and Argentina. The greatest duration for a single lightning flash is 16.73 seconds from a flash that developed continuously over northern Argentina on March 4, 2019. (WMO)These are extraordinary records from single lightning flash events. These new instruments include the Geostationary Lightning Mappers (GLMs) on the R-series Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES-16 and 17) that recorded the new lightning records, and their orbiting counterparts from Europe (the Meteosat Third Generation (MTG) Lightning Imager) and China (FY-4 Lightning Mapping Imager). Other previously accepted WMO lightning extremes are:
UN evaluates reports of record Arctic heat in Siberia
In this handout photo provided by Olga Burtseva, children play in the Krugloe lake outside Verkhoyansk, the Sakha Republic, about 4660 kilometers (2900 miles) northeast of Moscow, Russia, Sunday, June 21, 2020. A Siberian town that endures the world's widest temperature range has recorded a new high amid a hear wave that is contributing to severe forest fires. Russia's meteorological service said the thermometer hit 38 Celsius (100.4 F) on Saturday in Verkhoyansk, in the Sakha Republic about 4660 kilometers (2900 miles) northeast of Moscow. (Olga Burtseva via AP)GENEVA The U.N. weather agency is investigating media reports suggesting a new record high temperature of over 38 degrees Celsius (100.4 degrees Fahrenheit) in the Arctic Circle amid a heatwave and prolonged wildfires in eastern Siberia. The World Meteorological Organization said Tuesday that its looking to verify the temperature reading on Saturday in the Russian town of Verkoyansk with Roshydromet, the Russian federal service for hydro-meteorological and environmental monitoring.
Antarctica registers hottest temperature ever at nearly 65 degrees Fahrenheit
A frozen section of the Ross Sea at the Scott Base in Antarctica on November 12, 2016. Antarctica just set its hottest temperature ever recorded at 64.9 degrees Fahrenheit as climate change continues to accelerate, according to measurements from an Argentinian research station thermometer. It beats the continent's previous record of 63.5 degrees tallied in March 2015, and comes shortly after the Earth saw its hottest January on record and hottest decade on record in the 2010s. Antarctica's record-breaking temperature has not yet been verified by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), which will have a committee confirm the new Esperanza record. Research shows that Antarctica's glaciers are rapidly melting as the planet warms, releasing enough water to significantly raise global sea levels.cnbc.com
World Meteorological Organization releases new global warming report
DETROIT - At 10 a.m. Sunday, the World Meteorological Organization, a specialized agency of the United Nations, released to the world a new update about earths warming climate. In fact, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres wrote in his forward to the report that climate change is the defining challenge of our time.You can read key messages from the report below. The global climate in 2015-2019Average global temperature for 2015-2019 is on track to be the warmest of any equivalent period on record. There are clear benefits to keeping warming to 1.5 C compared to 2 C or higher. Limiting warming to 1.5 C can go hand in hand with reaching other world goals, such as achieving sustainable development and eradicating poverty.
World leaders feel the heat in upcoming climate summit
Brazil's, Poland's and Saudi Arabia's proposals for dealing with climate change fell short, so they're not on Monday's summit schedule. There is a sense of urgency, Guterres said, because "climate change is the defining issue of our time." World leaders agreed in 2009 to try to keep warming to just 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) since pre-industrial times. So that means the goals are to limit further warming to 0.9 degrees Celsius (1.6 degrees Fahrenheit) from now or even 0.4 degrees Celsius (0.72 degrees Fahrenheit) from now. A larger, more international report looking at climate change and oceans and ice will be released by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change on Wednesday.chicagotribune.com