Reacting to the European Union’s Copernicus Global Climate report showing that 2022 was the fifth hottest year recorded globally, the second hottest ever in Europe, and that levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere are at all-time highs, Chiara Liguori, Amnesty International’s Climate Policy Advisor, said:
“This lays bare the deepening severity of the climate crisis which is already resulting in human suffering on a vast and alarming scale. Millions of people were affected by extreme weather events in 2022, made more likely and intensified by climate change, including catastrophic flooding in Pakistan, southern and West Africa, severe drought in East Africa, heatwaves in China and India, record summer temperatures across Europe, and the devastation wrought by Hurricane Ian in Cuba and Florida.
“It is shocking that despite the significant and unequivocal body of evidence that climate change is accelerating, most states and companies continue to expand fossil fuel production and are not putting in place decarbonisation strategies and just transition measures fast enough. The unwillingness of states at COP27 to commit to rapidly phasing out all fossil fuels was a collective failure to safeguard human rights and the universal entitlement to a clean, healthy and safe environment.
“We cannot afford to let another year to go by without changing course. 2023 must be the point at which emissions finally peak, and states make a strong international commitment to phase out fossil fuels. All states, but particularly the highest carbon emitters, both currently and historically, must urgently implement measures to help break the global addiction to fossil fuels that it is devastating our world.”
The Copernicus Global Climate report, released today, concluded that the annual average temperature globally in 2022 was 0.3°C above its 1991-2020 reference period, and approximately 1.2°C higher than the period 1850-1900, a proxy for the pre-industrial era. The average annual concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide was 417 parts per million in 2022, and 1894 parts per billion for methane. Copernicus Climate Change Service is part of European Union’s Earth Observation Programme.
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