State of Global Climate Report 2023

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The new annual State of the Global Climate report, published recently by the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO), found that 2023 was the hottest year on record.

About State of Global Climate Report 2023

  • It is an annual report published by the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO).
  • Dozens of experts and partners contribute to the report, including UN organizations, National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (NMHSs), and Global Data and Analysis Centers, as well as Regional Climate Centres, the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP), the Global Atmosphere Watch (GAW), the Global Cryosphere Watch, and the Copernicus Climate Change Service operated by ECMWF.

Highlights of the 2023 Report:

  • 2023 was the hottest year on record, with the global average near-surface temperature at 1.45 °Celsius (with a margin of uncertainty of ± 0.12 °C) above the pre-industrial baseline.
  •  It was the warmest ten-year period on record.
  • Numerous records for indicatorsof the climate system, including greenhouse gas levels (GHGs), surface temperatures, ocean heat, sea level rise, Antarctic Sea ice cover, glacier retreat, etc., were broken.
  • On an average day in 2023, nearly one third of the global ocean was gripped by a marine heatwave, harming vital ecosystems and food systems. 
  • Towards the end of 2023,over 90% of the ocean had experienced heatwave conditions at some point during the year.
  • The global set of reference glacierssuffered the largest loss of ice on record (since 1950), driven by extreme melt in both western North America and Europe, according to preliminary data.
  • In 2023, renewable capacity additions increased by almost 50% from 2022, for a total of 510 gigawatts (GW), the highest rate observed in the past two decades.

Key Facts about World Meteorological Organisation (WMO)

  • It is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN).
  • It is the UN system's authoritative voice on the state and behavior of the Earth's atmosphere, its interaction with the oceans, the climate it produces, and the resulting distribution of water resources.
  • It originated from the International Meteorological Organization (IMO), which was founded in 1873
  • Established in 1950, WMO became thespecialized agency of the UN for meteorology (weather and climate), operational hydrology, and related geophysical sciences.
  • Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland.
  • Currently, it has a membership of 191 countries.

Governance Structure:

  • Its supreme body is the World Meteorological Congress, which consists of representatives of all members. It meets at least every four years to set general policy and adopt regulations.
  • A 36-member Executive Councilmeets annually and implements policy.
  • The Secretariat, headed by a secretary-general appointed by the congress for a four-year term, serves as the administrative centre of the organization.

Q1: What is a heatwave?

A Heat Wave is a period of abnormally high temperatures, more than the normal maximum temperature. Qualitatively, heatwave is a condition of air temperature which becomes fatal to the human body when exposed. Quantitatively, it is defined based on the temperature thresholds over a region in terms of actual temperature or its departure from normal.

Source:WMO report out: 6 charts that tell you everything about the health of our planet