Meteorologists have warned that the global warming that has gripped the globe for decades is coming at a “crisis point” that could see unprecedented amounts of extreme weather events and sea level rise, with the planet already experiencing a “global calamity”.
“This is the most urgent crisis we face.
It’s not just about global warming,” said Chris Horne, meteorologist at Weather Underground.
“It’s about climate change and sea-level rise.
It could be the biggest crisis in the history of the planet.”
The crisis began in the 1970s, when a combination of rising temperatures and more frequent droughts triggered a worldwide cooling of the oceans and a sudden drop in sea levels.
Now, more than 50 years on, the trend is back on track, with rising temperatures bringing more rainfall to regions of the world that have traditionally been drier and less able to withstand extreme weather.
“Climate change is already having its worst effects, particularly in places where there are drought and floods,” Horne told the BBC.
“We’re starting to see it play out more in these very extreme parts of the earth.”
What you need to know about the weather in the UK 1:10 Climate change is causing extreme weather The UK has experienced a severe weather event for the first time since records began in 1910.
What’s more, in the past two weeks, temperatures have dropped below zero in the south east, as well as the north east and parts of north Wales, the BBC reports.
“There’s no sign of a return of normal in any of these areas.
The average temperature is down to 0C [0F] and the drought is in full swing, and it’s also got the potential to hit other parts of England,” Horine said.
He warned that as global temperatures continue to rise, sea levels could rise up to two metres in some places and be more than 20 metres high.
“The next two decades are going to be very bad,” he added.
This is not the first sign of global climate change.
In June, the United Nations Office for Disaster Prevention and Emergency Management warned that “climate change will have significant effects on human lives in the 21st century”.
In March, a major study published in Nature found that global temperatures have risen by about 0.8 degrees Celsius [1.4 degrees Fahrenheit] since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution.
In February, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported that sea levels were rising more quickly than expected, with scientists forecasting that sea level will rise by between 2.6 metres [10 feet] and 3.9 metres [14 feet] by the end of the century.
The study also found that the number of deaths due to global warming doubled between 2007 and 2020, with about 3.3 million people dying from natural causes such as heat waves and storms.
Read more: UK’s hottest summer ever recorded: What we know about heatwaves and other extreme weather in Britain