With 2020 nearly behind us, it is time to start looking towards the next year. And according to the Met Office, 2021 is likely to be cooler than 2020, but it will still become one of the warmest years in history.
According to the researchers, the cooling effects of the La Niña weather phenomenon will ensure temperatures decrease. But the continual increase of heat-trapping gases will ensure temperatures remain warm.
And 2021 might see a giant boom in emissions as companies play catchup after Covid-19 lockdowns.
The prediction places 2021 between 0.91 °C and 1.15 °C above the average for the pre-industrial period (1850-1900). Thus making it the seventh year to be above 1.0 °C pre-industrial levels.
How Reliable Is This Prediction?
For many, it can be easy to dismiss a temperature prediction for the next year. After all, the weather forecast is typically full of mistakes, but this one is quite reliable.
For instance, the Met Office predicted that 2020 would be in the range of 0.99°C to 1.23°C above pre-industrial levels. And sure enough, the office has found that 2020 is currently 1.17°C with data up to October.
And with November becoming the warmest in history, it’s safe to say that average will only increase.
Thus, this report is extremely accurate and you can go back even further as proof.
Greenhouse Gases Are Causing the Warmest Years
Despite the cooling properties of La Niña, greenhouse gases are growing in our atmosphere. As a result, they are trapping more heat, which is why the temperature continues to increase.
Even though emissions were certainly lower this year as a result of the Covid-19 lockdowns, it didn’t remove existing emissions.
Thus the total number of emissions still grew, just at a slower rate. It’s like if you were filling a tub that already had water in it. The water level will still rise even if you reduce the flow. One thing is clear, the world needs to cut emissions and utilize carbon removal technology.