LONDON (Reuters) - Global temperatures in 2016 are likely to be as warm or even warmer than in 2015, which will be the warmest on record, Britain’s Met Office said on Thursday.
The weather forecasters said global mean temperatures in 2016 are expected between 0.72 and 0.96 degrees Celsius above the long term (1961-1990) average of 14 degrees Celsius.
“This forecast suggests that by the end of 2016 we will have seen three record, or near-record years in a row for global temperatures,” Adam Scaife, head of long-range prediction at the Met Office, said in a statement.
The Met Office said manmade global warming combined with an impact from the El Nino weather phenomenon was driving the high temperatures.
“The forecast is based on the key drivers of global climate, but it doesn’t include random events, such as large volcanic eruptions, which can cause a temporary cooling effect,” the Met Office said.
The forecasts put global warming around half way towards the 2-degree rise scientists say temperatures must be kept below to stave off the worst effects of climate change such as floods, droughts and rising sea levels.
Last week negotiators from more than 190 countries signed a landmark deal in Paris with an aim to keep the rise in temperatures to “well below” 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
Reporting By Susanna Twidale; Editing by Hugh Lawson