European State of the Climate report: alarming trends on temperature increase

The Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S), implemented by the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts on behalf of the Commission, releases today its European State of the Climate 2020 (ESOTC 2020). To help address the challenges of climate change, the Copernicus services monitor data on a global scale, including surface air temperature, precipitation, sea ice area and atmospheric greenhouse gases. The 2020 report underlines how temperatures continue a clear warming trajectory. The annual temperature for Europe was the highest on record – at least 0.4 °C warmer than the next five warmest years, which all occurred during the last decade. For the Arctic as a whole, 2020 was the second warmest year on record with an air surface temperature of 2.2 °C above the 1981-2010 average. While the early part of the year was colder than average over large parts of the Arctic, summer and autumn made up for this with both seasons having the highest temperatures on record. The report’s findings come from measurements from satellites and ground stations and from global reanalysis data –computer modelling combined with multiple data sources, as well as from model-derived estimates. The 2020 report includes a short overview of the global context, a more comprehensive overview of conditions in Europe, and a focus on the Arctic. It provides a detailed analysis of the past calendar year, with descriptions of climate conditions and events, and explores the associated variations in key climate variables from across all parts of the Earth system. The ESOTC 2020 also gives updates on the long-term global trends of key climate indicators and is providing an important benchmark for future assessments of the environment. Additional information about the global climate in 2020 can be found in the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) statement on the State of the Global Climate in 2020