2020: Climate indicators reveal worsening climate
World Meteorological Organization report reveals the state of the climate in 2020.
The State of the Global Climate 2020 highlights the latest indicators of the climate system, including greenhouse gas concentrations, increasing land and ocean temperatures, sea level rise, melting ice and glacier retreat and extreme weather.
The WMO report, which included contributions from an extensive network of partners including the Met Office, also highlights impacts on socio-economic development, migration and displacement, food security and land and marine ecosystems.
Globally, 2020 was one of the three warmest years on record, despite a cooling La Niña event. The global average temperature was about 1.2° Celsius above the pre-industrial (1850-1900) level. The six years since 2015 have been the warmest on record. 2011-2020 was the warmest decade on record.
WMO Secretary-General, Prof. Petteri Taalas yesterday said:
“It has been 28 years since the World Meteorological Organization issued the first state of the climate report in 1993, due to the concerns raised at that time about projected climate change. While understanding of the climate system and computing power have increased since then, the basic message remains the same and we now have 28 more years of data that show significant temperature increases over land and sea as well as other changes like sea level rise, melting of sea ice and glaciers and changes in precipitation patterns. This underscores the robustness of climate science based on the physical laws governing the behaviour of the climate system.
“The key climate indicators provided in this report highlight relentless, continuing climate change, and the severe losses and damage associated with extreme weather events, affecting people, societies and economies.”
António Guterres the UN Secretary-General added:
“This report shows that we have no time to waste. The climate is changing, and the impacts are already too costly for people and the planet.”
Prof Albert Klein Tank, director, Met Office Hadley Centre, yesterday said:
“With global temperatures continuing to rise taking humanity further into uncharted territory, it is clear that the best available climate science will be needed to help prevent the worst impacts of climate change while helping society adapt to the climate change that we are already committed to.
"Since it was formed in 1990, the Met Office Hadley Centre has created a world-leading capability for developing and applying climate science to address societal needs. The Met Office looks forward to continuing our pioneering role.”
To see the latest climate indicators please the climate dashboard.
Latest News from
Conference tackling world’s greatest climate challenges11/05/2021 13:15:00
An online Met Office climate science conference is set to address two of the biggest challenges facing society: net zero and climate resilience.
April's lowest average minimum temperatures since 192204/05/2021 12:15:00
April 2021 had the lowest average minimum temperatures for April in the UK since 1922, as air frost and clear conditions combined for a frost-laden, chilly month, despite long hours of sunshine.
Frostiest April for at least 60 years in UK28/04/2021 10:15:00
April 2021 has provisionally been the frostiest in at least 60 years for the UK, topping the previous frostiest April in 1970, with records going back to 1960.
More changeable weather likely for bank holiday weekend27/04/2021 10:15:00
Contrary to some media reports, the early May bank holiday weather is likely to be more changeable than recently, with showers and cool temperatures for most of the UK instead of the clear sunny skies of recent days.
Climate Data Challenge – working in partnership for innovation06/04/2021 12:15:00
As Governments, organisations and individuals around the world seek to tackle the challenges of climate change, creativity and innovation are key to finding ways to improve our resilience to weather and climate.
What kind of temperature swings are ‘normal’ in UK spring?01/04/2021 14:15:00
With forecasters predicting a marked shift in temperatures in the coming days, here we take a look at how commonplace temperature fluctuations are during a typical UK spring.
A brief warm spell before Easter29/03/2021 16:38:00
emperatures could reach 24°C in parts of the UK this week before turning colder over the Easter weekend.
A weather assortment ahead of Easter29/03/2021 12:33:00
The pre-Easter period will contain a variety of weather across the UK.