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The United Kingdom experienced its second-hottest year on record in 2023 due to the ongoing climate crisis.
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The United Kingdom experienced its second-hottest year on record in 2023 due to the ongoing climate crisis.

In 2023, the UK experienced its second-hottest year on record, according to preliminary data from the Met Office. This is attributed to the ongoing climate crisis, which has resulted in consistently high temperatures.

According to scientists, this level of warmth would only happen once every 500 years if it weren’t for human-induced global warming. The highest temperatures were recorded in June and September, which are now considered the hottest months since data collection began in 1884. In the UK, the 10 hottest years have all been since 2003.

2023 is projected to be the warmest year on record globally, influenced by record high levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, which have not been seen in at least 2 million years, and the reappearance of the Pacific Ocean phenomenon, El Niño.

According to Mike Kendon, a representative from the Met Office, the data collected on UK climate is conclusive. The records show that climate change is having a long-term impact on UK temperatures, as evidenced by the consistently high temperatures in 2023.

According to the speaker, the year 2023 experienced above average levels of precipitation, with notable storms such as Babet and Ciarán contributing to the overall statistics. Climate predictions indicate a rise in the occurrence of hotter and drier summers, as well as warmer and wetter winters. As the atmosphere becomes warmer, it can hold more moisture, resulting in wetter conditions. This trend is also observable in current observations.

The mean temperature for the year 2023 was 9.97C, slightly lower than the recorded temperature of 10.03C in 2022. The Met Office stated that in our current heated climate, it is predicted for every three years to have such warm years.

According to Bob Ward, who is the policy director at the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change at the London School of Economics, the increase in global temperatures in 2023 has resulted in rising sea levels, more severe rainfall, and more dangerous heatwaves. These factors are negatively affecting an increasing number of people and their means of making a living in the UK. These impacts will continue to worsen until the world achieves net zero emissions.

The speaker emphasized the importance of the UK taking a proactive role in addressing the root causes of climate change, specifically focusing on reducing reliance on fossil fuels. They also urged the British prime minister, Rishi Sunak, to demonstrate a clear understanding of the urgent need to speed up the transition to achieving net zero emissions, rather than hindering it.

The United Kingdom is granting fresh permits for the extraction of oil and gas and has given the green light to a new coal mine.

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Doug Parr, the policy director at Greenpeace UK, expressed concern over the lack of action being taken on climate change. Despite record-breaking hot years, Chancellor Sunak seems to be ignoring the urgency of the situation. There is widespread public support for addressing the climate crisis, and unless Sunak changes his stance and implements bold policies, his time in office may be remembered as a failure to act on this pressing issue.

A representative from the government stated: “Our goal is to address climate change by achieving our net zero objectives and fulfilling our international obligations, while also considering the impact on families. We have been at the forefront of reducing emissions, outpacing other major economies since 1990. Currently, the UK only contributes to one percent of global emissions each year.”

Source: theguardian.com