We may be dealing with a health crisis, but the climate change crisis has not gone away, nor become any less urgent. In fact, the opposite. A few conservative commentators have suggested Covid-19 shows what a real crisis looks like compared with, in their opinion, the hyperventilating over climate change. Nasa estimates that last month was the hottest April on record and the first four months of this year are the second hottest start to a year. The past seven months have all been 1C or higher than the 1951-1980 average (roughly around 1.3C above the pre-industrial average) – tied with the longest streak set from October 2015 to April 2016. But unlike in 2015 and 2016 the Bureau of Meteorology records we are currently not in El Niño. That very much suggests the pace of warming is speeding up. The linear trend of temperatures over the past 60 years suggests we will hit 2C above pre-industrial levels in 50 years; the trend of the past 20 years has it happening in around 30 years, but the trend of the past decade would see us hit that level in 2038 –just 18 years’ time.
Guardian 24th May 2020 read more »