The world’s glaciers melted at dramatic speed last year and saving them is effectively a lost cause, the United Nations reported Friday, as climate change indicators once again hit record highs.
The last eight years have been the warmest ever recorded, while concentrations of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide hit new peaks, the UN’s World Meteorological Organization said.
“Antarctic sea ice fell to its lowest extent on record and the melting of some European glaciers was, literally, off the charts,” the WMO said as it launched its annual climate overview.
WMO chief Petteri Taalas told a press conference that extreme weather caused by greenhouse gas emissions “may continue until the 2060s, independent of our success in in climate mitigation”
“We have already emitted so much, especially CO₂ in the atmosphere that this kind of phasing out of the negative trend takes several decades.”