Heat’s On: UK’s Sizzling 2023
Hottest Year on Record. According to the Met Office’s early data, 2023 was a scorching year in the UK, landing as the second hottest on record. The blame? Yep, the ever-escalating climate crisis strikes again, ramping up those temperatures.
Scientists warn that without human-induced global heating, such a toasty year would’ve been a 1 in 500-year occurrence. Peak heat hit in June and September, both smashing records dating back to 1884. And get this: the UK’s top 10 warmest years have all happened since 2003.
Globally Toasty: The Hottest Planet’s Year
Beyond UK borders, 2023 is set to claim the title of the planet’s hottest year ever. Why? Blame it on sky-high carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere, not seen for at least 2 million years, and the comeback of the El Niño effect in the Pacific Ocean.
Mike Kendon from the Met Office made it clear: “Climate change is shaking up the UK’s temperature norms. 2023’s etching its name as another seriously warm year.”
Rain, Rain, Go Away: More Than a Toasty Affair
2023 wasn’t just about the heat; it rained buckets too. Storms like Babet and Ciarán made their mark, drenching the place. The projections? Brace for hotter, drier summers and warmer, wetter winters. Warmer air means more moisture, so our future’s looking wetter too—observation signs are already there.
The average temperature for 2023 clocked in at 9.97 degrees Celsius, slightly cooler than 2022’s 10.03 degrees Celsius. But here’s the kicker—the Met Office expects such warm years to roll in every three years now, thanks to our hot-as-a-frying-pan climate.
Impact: Lives, Coasts, and More
Bob Ward from the Grantham Research Institute pointed out the ripple effects: rising sea levels, intense rainfall, and killer heatwaves. All this jazz spells trouble for lives and jobs in the UK. And guess what? Unless we hit that net zero emissions goal, these issues are only going to amplify.
Finger Pointing and Calls for Change
The finger’s wagging at UK’s Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, for giving the green light to new oil and gas licenses and backing a fresh coalmine. Greenpeace UK’s Doug Parr isn’t mincing words, saying Sunak’s ignoring climate warnings. Voters are all for climate action, and Sunak needs to step up.
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2023 was quite the wild ride globally, not just in the UK. With new elections looming, hope for change burns bright. Rallying the troops, asking for a helping hand to keep the truth flowing. They’re eyeing support to keep their journalism accessible and free for everyone.
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