UN: 'Climate Breakdown' Has Begun

    UN: 'Climate Breakdown' Has Begun
    Last updated Sep 07, 2023
    Image credit: Unsplash


    • On Wednesday, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres stated that the "Climate breakdown has begun" after the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) reported that the Northern Hemisphere experienced the hottest summer on record this year.
    • The average temperature from June to August 2023 was 16.77°C (62.19°F), or 0.66°F above average since records began in 1940. The average temperature of 16.82°C (62.47°F) for August was 0.71°C warmer than the 1991 to 2020 average for the month and 0.31°C warmer than the previous hottest August in 2016.
    • Excluding the polar regions, global average sea surface temperatures exceeded the previous March 2016 record every day from July 31 to Aug. 31. Oceans have reportedly absorbed 90% of the excess heat produced by human activity since the dawn of the industrial age.
    • In September, temperatures are higher than what has been recorded before. Besides fossil fuel combustion, scientists blame the record temperatures on the El Nino climate pattern, which temporarily warms parts of the Pacific Ocean and influences weather patterns worldwide.
    • Based on the 2022 data, the Organization found heatwaves also produced a dangerous drop in air quality. WMO Secretary-General Prof. Petteri Taalas added that heat affects "human health, ecosystems, agriculture and indeed our daily lives."


    Narrative A

    Scientists have used every reliable tool in their arsenal to measure whether the Earth is heating, and the evidence clearly shows that we are reaching records not seen in hundreds of thousands of years. It's time for governments to accept that we won't be able to stop +1.5 or +2°C of warming, but if they act now, we can prevent the catastrophic +3°C warming that would stress civilization to the limit.

    Narrative B

    While climate change is an urgent issue, journalists and activists must separate the facts from fiction and describe environmental problems honestly and accurately. The catastrophic framing of climate change does far more harm than good, not only by impacting the youth's mental health but by alienating and polarizing large portions of the population and distracting them from other vital issues. Climate alarmism must be taken with a grain of salt.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 20% chance that there will be a 5-year period with an average global temperature >3.6˚C warmer than the 1861-1880 baseline before 2100, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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