Climate "changing before our eyes"-World Meteorological Organization

DOHA Wed Nov 28, 2012 6:30am EST

DOHA Nov 28 (Reuters) - The fact that Arctic sea ice has melted this year to its lowest recorded level shows, along with other weather extremes, that "climate change is taking place before our eyes", the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said on Wednesday.

The first 10 months of 2012 were the ninth-warmest since records began in the mid-19th century, with early months cooled by a "La Nina" weather event in the Pacific, according to the report, issued at global climate change talks in Doha.

Many regions have faced extremes of droughts, floods and heatwaves. The number of cyclones worldwide was around normal but some, such as Superstorm Sandy, which lashed the Caribbean and the United States, were especially devastating, the WMO said.

"The extent of Arctic sea ice reached a new record low. The alarming rate of its melt this year highlighted the far-reaching changes taking place on Earth's oceans and biosphere," said Michel Jarraud, head of the Geneva-based WMO.

"Climate change is taking place before our eyes and will continue to do so as a result of the concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, which have risen constantly and again reached new records," he added in a statement.

Natural cooling events such as La Nina "do not alter the underlying long-term trend of rising temperatures due to climate change as a result of human activities," he said.

The WMO is an agency of the United Nations and has a membership of 190 member states and territories.


He said climate change will continue "as a result of the concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, which have risen constantly and again reached new records."

The report said that the global land and ocean surface temperature for the first nine months of 2012 was about 0.45 degrees Celsius (0.81 Fahrenheit) above the corresponding 1961-1990 average of 14.2 degrees C.

Worldwide, it said that tropical cyclones was near the 1981-2010 average of 85 storms, with a total of 81. Typhoon Sanba which hit the Philippines, Japan and the Korean peninsula was the strongest.

The Atlantic basin had an above-average hurricane season for a third consecutive year, it said. Most notable was Sandy, which hit island nations in the Caribbean and the United States.

High temperatures affected especially North America, southern Europe, western and central Russia and northwestern Asia, it said. Heatwaves hit much of the United States and Europe from March to May.

About 15,000 daily heat records were broken across the United States. Droughts also affected much of the United States and parts of Russia, Europe and China.

"Many parts of western Africa and the Sahel, including Niger and Chad, suffered serious flooding between July and September because of a very active monsoon," it said.

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Comments (11)
michael86 wrote:
yeah there is climate change going on ,but it isn’t man made.Look at the sahara desert for proof.It was once a salten sea ,then a forested area and today it is the largest desert in the world.All before industrial reveloution.Previously there was a 300 year warming trend in the middle ages as well it is common sense and our knowledge of past climates going back thousands of years.Al Gore and part of the scientific community are trying to scare people ,so that they can make money off climate change,they are liars and dangerous criminals trying to pass this bull of and I am not that highly educated so please tell the truth if you can.

Nov 28, 2012 11:21pm EST  --  Report as abuse
ReduceGHGs wrote:
The michael86 comment above demonstrates how effective the disinformation campaign has been. The vested interests have spent millions spreading doubt where no credible scientific doubt exists. EVERY ONE of the worlds respected scientific institutions concurs that humans are warming the planet and that the consequences are not good. But some people remain in denial or are poorly informed. If we don’t change the way we generate and use energy our future generation will suffer as habitability deteriorates. We can do better. Investing in alternatives is key. Business-as-usual is not an informed or a rational option.

Nov 29, 2012 12:03am EST  --  Report as abuse
cyunvwyatt1 wrote:
Until we stop microwaving the earth with HAARP this is going to keep happening.

Nov 29, 2012 12:23am EST  --  Report as abuse
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