2021 was Earth’s fifth hottest year on record

Jan 16, 2022
2021 was the fifth hottest year on record. Source: Getty Images.

If things have felt a little toasty in your neck of the woods lately then you’re not alone as European Union scientists have recently reported 2021 as the fifth hottest year on record, with the average global temperature in 2021 rising 1.1 to 1.2 degrees above levels recorded in 1850-1900.

The Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) released new data showing that globally, the last seven years were the warmest on record by a “clear margin”. C3S also reported a rise in atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations in 2021.

The hottest years on record were 2016 and 2020.

Director of the Copernicus Climate Change Service, Carlo Buontempo said “the last seven years have been the seven warmest on record” while reminding the public changes need to be made to combat climate change.

“2021 was yet another year of extreme temperatures with the hottest summer in Europe, heatwaves in the Mediterranean, not to mention the unprecedented high temperatures in North America. These events are a stark reminder of the need to change our ways, take decisive and effective steps toward a sustainable society and work towards reducing net carbon emissions,” he said.

The data from C3S claimed climate change contributed to the number of extreme weather events around the globe in 2021.

Satellite data also showed that carbo dioxide concentrations continued to rise throughout 2021, with the highest concentration in April. Director of the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service Vincent-Henri Peuch said, “Carbon dioxide and methane concentrations are continuing to increase year on year and without signs of slowing down. These greenhouse gases are the main drivers of climate change”.

The latest data from C3S comes as closer to home the temperature in Onslow, Western Australia reached 50.7C on Thursday, January 13 matching a record set in 1962 in South Australia.

Bureau of Meteorology duty forecaster Luke Huntington told ABC News the lack of thunderstorm activity along the coast had contributed to a build-up of hot air that lead to the scorcher of a day.

“The heat is fairly common especially when you don’t get that thunderstorm activity and the showers bringing the cooler temperatures,” he said.

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