Invisible Dust

London | Tuesday 16 July
Pollution level: Moderate

2014 hottest year on record


At the beginning of December the United Nations World Meteorological Organization (WMO) announced preliminary estimates that 2014 was on track to become the hottest year ever recorded. The results are in, it is.

Data from the major climate-tracking groups, including the WMO, United States’ National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the United Kingdom’s Met office all agree: the combined land and ocean surface temperatures hit new highs this year. In a press release the WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud stated “The provisional information for 2014 means that fourteen of the fifteen warmest years on record have all occurred in the 21st century,” saying “There is no standstill in global warming.”

The UK has definitely had its fair share of extreme weather changes. A separate temperature data set released earlier this year showed England was experiencing one of its hottest in over three centuries. As temperatures increase, so do the levels of evaporation which in turn leads to more rainfall, exemplified by the flooding that hit the UK at the beginning of 2014. The wettest winter in over 250 years.

In his continued statement Jarraud said, “What we saw in 2014 is consistent with what we expect from a changing climate. Record-breaking heat combined with torrential rainfall and floods destroyed livelihoods and ruined lives.”

With the record warm temperatures becoming a regular occurrence there is ever more evidence we need to act urgently to prevent climate change. According to the climate scientist Michal Mann, the summit scheduled for Paris at the end of this year is “perhaps our last real opportunity to stave off truly dangerous and irreversible world-wide changes in our climate.”

Read the full WMO the press release here.


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