January 2024 has been deemed the warmest January on record, according to the European Union’s Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S).
This continues an alarming trend of record-breaking temperatures for the eighth consecutive month, underscoring the urgency of addressing the escalating environmental challenges tied to climate change.
The global average air temperature in January 2024 soared to an unanticipated 55.6 degrees Fahrenheit, surpassing the previous January record by 0.22 degrees Fahrenheit. The C3S reported a 12-month period of temperatures more than 1.5°C above the pre-industrial reference period, marking the eighth consecutive month of record warmth.
This surge in temperatures is worrisome for climate scientists and policymakers, as exceeding the 1.5 degrees Celsius benchmark set by the Paris Agreement signifies increasingly harmful climate impacts. Moreover, the sea surface temperatures in January 2024 also reached a record high.
The Human Impact
This continued trend of record-breaking global heat is largely attributed to human activities and the El Niño weather cycle. The global average temperature in January 2024 was 1.7°C above pre-industrial levels, breaching the 1.5°C benchmark for the past 12 months. This has led to devastating wildfires in Chile following extreme heat and drought. Climate scientists warn that rapid reductions in greenhouse gas emissions are necessary to halt global temperatures from rising further.
Addressing the Climate Crisis
The long-term global average temperature is rising in line with climate models’ projections, but the extraordinarily swift warming in the past year or two has far exceeded expectations. There are uncertainties about the factors contributing to this rapid warming and concerns that the level of warming attributable to fossil fuel emissions may be underestimated. The recent escalation in global temperatures underscores the urgency of rapid reductions in greenhouse gas emissions to prevent further global temperature increases. With January 2024 marking the warmest January on record globally, the call for action against climate change becomes even more pressing.Share on Facebook «||» Share on Twitter «||» Share on Reddit «||» Share on LinkedIn