Comment on 2019 global mean surface temperature

Commenting on the publication today (15 January 2019) by the World Meteorological Organization of the estimated global mean surface temperature in 2019, Bob Ward, policy and communications director of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment and the ESRC Centre for Climate Change Economics and Policy at the London School of Economics and Political Science, said:

“These figures show that the rise in global mean surface temperature has now exceeded 1 Celsius degree. If we look at all the impacts around the world that are now occurring as a result of this warming, it is obvious that we are not succeeding in preventing dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system, which was the main goal of the original 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. We should also recognise that even if we succeed in limiting warming to 1.5 Celsius degrees, this would not be a “safe” level of warming for the world. Therefore we must focus on halting global warming as soon as possible by cutting annual global emissions of greenhouse gases to net zero. We can and must reach net zero in a way that promotes higher living standards and greater well-being around the world. We know that the transition to a net zero economy is the growth story of the 21st century, full of innovation, creativity and opportunity. This is the fundamental task that all countries face ahead of the critical United Nations climate change summit in Glasgow in November.”

NOTES FOR EDITORS

  1. The Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment (http://www.lse.ac.uk/grantham) was launched at the London School of Economics and Political Science in October 2008. It is funded by The Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment (http://www.granthamfoundation.org/).

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