Next year likely to surpass 2023 as the hottest ever

Source(s): Yale Environment 360
A traffic officer drinks water during a hot day in Kolkata, India
Arindam Banerjee/Shutterstock

With climate change and an incipient El Niño driving up temperatures, 2024 is likely to eclipse 2023 as the hottest year ever, meteorologists project.

According to the World Meteorological Organization, the first 10 months of this year measured 1.40 degrees C warmer than the preindustrial baseline, a product of both human-caused warming and, to a lesser extent, the onset of El Niño, when warm waters pool in the eastern Pacific Ocean. The previous hottest year, in 2016, also coincided with an El Niño.

Next year is likely to surpass 2023 as the hottest ever, according to the U.K. Met Office, which projects that 2024 will likely measure 1.46 degrees C warmer than preindustrial times, but could conclude up to 1.58 degrees C warmer. The Paris Agreement aims to keep long-term warming below 1.5 degrees C.

“It’s important to recognize that a temporary exceedance of 1.5 degrees C won’t mean a breach of the Paris Agreement,” said Adam Scaife, a climate scientist with the Met Office. “But the first year above 1.5 degrees C would certainly be a milestone in climate history.”

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