World Headed For Warmest Year on Record
LONDON - The first six months of the year have been the
second warmest ever and average global temperatures in
2002 could be the highest ever recorded, British weather
experts said yesterday.
"Globally 2002 is likely to be warmer than 2001, and may
even break the record set in 1998," said Briony Horton,
the Meteorological Office's climate research scientist.
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the body that
advises governments on long-term climatic variations,
blames global warming, caused by rising emissions of greenhouse
gases which trap heat in the atmosphere, for the rise
in temperatures, a Met Office spokesman said.
agree with them," he told Reuters. "Since 1970 there has
been a marked trend in the rise of global temperatures.
actual rise prior to 1970 was partly man-made and partly
due to natural effects. But since 1970 scientists are
in fairly general agreement that warming can be attributed
to man's polluting activities."
Met Office said global temperatures were 0.57 degrees
Celsius (1.03 Fahrenheit) higher than the long term average
of about 15 degrees (59F) in the period from January to
the nearly 150 years since recording began, only in 1998
has the difference been higher, 0.6 degrees (1.08F), and
that was caused by the influence of the El Nino weather
figures also showed that the northern hemisphere had enjoyed
its warmest ever half year, with temperatures 0.73 degrees
(1.31F) above the long term average.
Met Office spokesman said scientists predicted that, depending
on the level of pollution, global temperatures would rise
between 1.4 (2.52F) and as much as 5.9 degrees (10.62F)
in the next 100 years.
the worst case scenario and it would cause major problems
of melting icecaps and tremendous flooding," he said.
Met Office compiles its figures from data collected from
observatories round the world, as well as from ships at