Experts have warned that earth is entering a “climate emergency” as NASA announced that the month of February was the hottest on record in decades.
A female villager walks after collecting water from the base of a dried-up reservoir, due to the long dry season, at Kedung Sumber village, Indonesia. | Photo: Reuters
The world is entering a “climate emergency” as global surface temperatures across land and sea were 1.35 C warmer in February than the average temperature for this time of year month, making it the hottest in a century, NASA said Sunday.
The previous record was set in January, which was 1.14°C warmer than the baseline average for that month, NASA said.
“We are in a kind of climate emergency now,” Stefan Rahmstorf, from Germany’s Potsdam Institute of Climate Impact Research, told the Sydney Morning Herald Monday. “Governments have promised to act [to curb greenhouse gas emissions] and they need to do better than what they promised in Paris” at the global climate summit last December, he said.
Analysing the results for Weather Underground, weather experts Jeff Masters and Bob Henson wrote, “we are now hurtling at a frightening pace toward the globally agreed maximum of 2.0°C warming over pre-industrial levels.”
They added that the result was “another reminder of the incessant long-term rise in global temperature resulting from human-produced greenhouse gases.”
Experts say that the El Nino phenomenon is considered to have contributed to the current record of global temperatures. It causes an increase in the area of warm surface water across the Pacific, allowing global oceans to transfer heat more readily into the atmosphere.
However, compared with the El Nino record of 1997-98, global temperatures are around 0.5 degrees hotter, meaning that other factors such as greenhouse gases are contributing to the increase in global warming.