Following the UN COP15 summit on biodiversity which took place in Montreal in December, there has been a focus on the natural world and how it is being affected by climate change.
One of the main outcomes of COP15 was a new biodiversity framework for the next decade, which aims to protect 30% of Earth’s lands, oceans, coastal areas and inland waters, reduce annual harmful government subsidies by $500 billion and cut food waste in half by 2030.
This month, we have been exploring the topic of biodiversity through social media activity and a series of blog posts.
Changing climate: Changing wildlife
Glossy Ibis photographed in Devon - Photo credit: Grahame Madge, Met Office
Met Office Senior Press Officer, Grahame Madge, wrote this blog post on the changes we are seeing among native wildlife in the UK, many of which have moved as a result of the changing climate. He said: “These shifts can be seen wherever you look. Even in the grounds of the Met Office we are continuing to record new species; species which formerly wouldn’t even have been recorded in the UK a few decades before.”
This blog included comments from Peter Burgess, Director of Nature Recovery at Devon Wildlife Trust, as well as Dr Debbie Hemming and Neil Kaye from the Met Office. They discussed the habitat resilience mapping tool they developed to help make appropriate decisions to manage the environment, such as implementing measures for species conservation or planning land use and green infrastructure activities.
2023 set to be tenth consecutive year at 1°C or above
Following a record breaking 2022, 2023 is set to be another one of the Earth’s hottest on record, according to the Met Office annual global temperature forecast. The average global temperature for 2023 is forecast to be between 1.08°C and 1.32°C (with a central estimate of 1.20°C) above the average for the pre-industrial period (1850-1900): the tenth year in succession that temperatures will have reached at least 1°C above pre-industrial levels.
Following the release of our provisional end of year statistics at the end of 2022, we have since published confirmation that 2022 was the UK’s hottest year on record, with an average temperature of over 10°C recorded for the first time.
In addition to these figures, an attribution study conducted by Met Office scientists confirmed that human induced climate change made the UK’s record-breaking annual temperature around 160 times more likely.
The Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society (BAMS), has this week published its report - 'Explaining Extreme Events from a Climate Perspective'. This is the eleventh edition of the report, which looks back at 2021 and 2022 to explore how human induced climate change may have influenced the likelihood and severity of extreme weather events.
The report comprises peer-reviewed analyses of extreme weather and climate events across the world over the past two years and includes input from Met Office scientists, who contributed to the chapter on the extremely wet May of 2021 in the UK. You can read the report by visiting the link below.
We are expecting 2022 to be one of the hottest years for global temperature. We will publish results on our website tomorrow, alongside NASA and NOAA.
2023 CO₂ forecast
Next week we will publish our annual carbon-dioxide forecast for 2023for the concentration of CO₂ in the atmosphere: by how much will it rise?
Impacts of weather and climate extremes on the UK food chain
Changing weather and climate extremes such as drought, flooding, heatwaves and storm surges will have significant impacts across UK food systems.
In January 2023, the Met Office is holding a series of two interdisciplinary, online workshops to scope the adaptation and policy responses needed.
Open to anyone with an interest in the area, the workshops will bring together a broad community across academia, industry, policy, government and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) that will work collaboratively to deliver a summary paper that informs future funding priorities and supports decision making in policy and industry.
You can find more information on the event, and how to sign up below