An increasingly warm planet, by Editorial

An increasingly warm planet, by Editorial

The past eight years have been the warmest on Earth for planetary-scale records. Last year, the global average temperature exceeded pre-industrial levels of the second half of the 19th century by 1.5ºC.

The causes of this increase in temperature are the constant increase in the concentrations of greenhouse gases and the accumulation of heat, which might seem surprising since the girl is generating an episode of global cooling, as opposed to the warming it causes the child and that extends to the entire planet. It is thanks to this cold effect that the past 2022 has not been the warmest year in history but only the fifth.

Global warming is the biggest environmental challenge facing the Earth

Forecasts indicate that this cooling will only last for the first quarter of this year, so 2023 will end up being warmer than its predecessor. Forecasts that call into question the feasibility of the Paris Agreements of 2015, since it is almost impossible for the planet to be capable of limiting global warming to 1.5ºC. This would require a radical reduction in greenhouse gases. The CO2 produced by fossil fuels will continue to raise the temperature, which will result, as has already happened in 2022, in meteorological disasters such as long heat waves, droughts and floods that will affect millions of people around the planet with very serious consequences. economic, health and food.

The derivatives of this gradual increase in temperature are endless and pose a serious danger to the planet and its inhabitants. Sea and ocean levels could rise by as much as one meter by 2100, and new weather patterns increase the frequency and duration of typhoons, hurricanes, torrential rains, and droughts. The number of climate refugees is growing around the world, and changes in the natural habitat affect millions of animal species, which will decrease biodiversity. Climate change is not homogeneous, as the poles are warming twice as fast as the rest of the planet.

The last conference on climate change, COP27 held in Sharm el Sheikh, did not bring progress to curb this situation by failing to meet the commitment of the world’s main emitting countries to gradually reduce fossil fuels or close new agreements on climate mitigation. The creation of an unspecified “loss and damage” fund to repair the worst effects of the climate in the most vulnerable countries was a historic victory, but insufficient given the lack of ambition of many states, including the most polluting ones, to reduce the use of fossil fuels causing global warming.

In the interview with Antonio Vercher, the Spanish Environment Prosecutor, which we are publishing today, the lawyer addresses a fundamental aspect to help mitigate the ecological and climate crisis, such as the need to apply the full weight of the law against individuals and companies, but also the Administration, that offend against the environment. In his opinion, penal solutions are necessary for serious environmental problems.

2022 has been defined by the European Union’s Copernicus Climate Change Service as “a year of climate extremes”, with an increase in the atmospheric concentration of CO2 and methane, greenhouse gases that trap heat in the atmosphere and warm the planet. planet. And all the forecasts of the meteorological centers and agencies agree that this 2023 will be even warmer. This is the greatest environmental challenge facing humanity, and yet, globally, we continue to be unable to implement measures not only to reverse this planetary disaster, but to at least try to stop it.

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