Well, it's finally official. 2015 was the warmest year on record, globally. And by a big margin (see graph below). We're now 1 degree C above pre-industrial temperatures. In Paris the world community agreed to keep temperatures "well below" 2 degrees and ideally 1.5 degrees, but it looks like 1.5 degrees is already locked in, whatever we do. Meanwhile, parts of Australia are being ravaged by bushfires and heatwaves are being followed by floods in many places.
Happy New Year everyone! Herewith the first bulletin for 2016.
Last year was fifth warmest ever for Australia and it is 99.9% certain that, globally, 2015 will have been the hottest on record, surpassing even 2014, the previous hottest. And sea-surface temperatures broke all records for heat.
It was fantastic to get an agreement out of the Paris climate talks, and well done to the French for their diplomacy and organisation, particularly Laurent Fabius, French Foreign Minister who chaired the main proceedings. I attended a post-Paris meeting at ANU on Wednesday, co-hosted by the EU and the Climate Change Institute. The five speakers who had been in Paris all highly commended the French and Fabius, and there was a general air of optimism despite the task ahead.
As I write, the last day of the Paris climate talks is extending into the weekend so we are still anxiously waiting a final resolution. Much good has come from the conference, if only because 'Paris marks the end of the fossil fuel age, and the acceleration of the renewable future which is already well advanced' as Prue Pickering of the Climate Institute remarked.
It was a great People's Climate March in Canberra last Sunday with 6000 people there, probably more. Thanks to those of you who made it. Around the world, three-quarters of a million people marched over the weekend.
Two days to go! Please join us on Sunday at the People's Climate March on the lawns below Parliament House in Canberra at midday. Look for our banner. If you'd like to be there but have no means of transport, contact me by return email and I'll try and help.
Please join us on Sunday at the People's Climate March on the lawns below Parliament House in Canberra at midday. Look for our banner. Sorry I had to cancel the bus - hope you can get there by other means. If you'd like to be there but have no means of transport, contact me by return email and I'll try and help.
The Climate Change talks (COP21) will go ahead in Paris though their marches have been cancelled. That makes it all the more important that our marches go ahead.