Global average temperatures are likely to reach record highs between 2020 and 2024, according to computer models at the UK’s Met Office.
Individual years from 2020 to 2024 are predicted to be between 1.06°C and 1.62°C above pre-industrial conditions, and it is likely the current record of 1.16°C, set in 2016, will be beaten.
Average temperatures over the five-year period are expected to be between 1.15°C and 1.46°C above pre-industrial levels.
The five years between 2015-2019 were 1.09°C above pre-industrial levels, the warmest on five-year period on record.
Met Office fellow and expert on decadal prediction Dr Doug Smith said, “The latest five-year forecast suggests continued warming, consistent with sustained high levels of greenhouse gases. Uncertainties exist within the forecast, but most regions are expected to be warmer and forecast patterns suggest enhanced warming over land, especially northern parts of Europe, Asia and North America – extending the ongoing trend.”
Relatively cool conditions in the north Atlantic are also predicted to warm, potentially exacerbating the warming over Europe.