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Graphic shows annual global-average temperature increase above pre-industrial level, from 1970 to 2021.


Last seven years the hottest on record

By Jordi Bou

January 10, 2022 - The past seven years have been the hottest on record, according to new data from the European climate agency Copernicus.

Global levels of CO2 and methane, the main greenhouse gases, continued to climb, and both hit record highs in 2021.

Levels of CO2 in the atmosphere reached 414.3 parts per million in 2021, up by around 2.4ppm from 2020.

Scientists remarked that methane levels in the atmosphere increased to reach an unprecedented approximately 1,876 parts per billion.

Europe experienced its hottest summer on record in 2021, after a warm March and unusually cold April had decimated fruit crops in countries including France and Hungary.

In July and August, a Mediterranean heatwave stoked intense wildfires in countries including Turkey and Greece. Sicily set a new European temperature high of 48.8C.

Governments are committed to limiting global temperature rise to 1.5C to curb climate change. But scientists warn that time is fast running out.

PUBLISHED: 10/01/2022; STORY: Graphic News; PICTURES: Getty Images