Global temperature records "smashed" in April

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World Meteorological Organization’s Clare Nullis said that the predicted La Nina weather phenomenon is unlikely to provide much of a cooling effect. Photo: UN/Jean-Marc Ferré

Global temperature records have been broken for the 12th consecutive month, with April 1.1 degrees Centigrade above the 20th century average.

Announcing the findings, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said that last month's data was the highest for April since global records began more than 130 years ago.

The main driver of this heat rise is human activity, the UN agency says.

Here's Daniel Johnson in Geneva:

Average global land and sea temperatures for April 2016 were a full 1.1 degrees Centigrade above the 20th century average of 13.7 degrees Centigrade.

According to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), this is the highest reading for the month since records began in 1880.

Here's WMO's Clare Nullis:

"What's particularly concerning is the margin by which these records are being broken; they're not being broken, they're being smashed, and on a fairly regular basis."

WMO insists that the global warming is man-made, and to a lesser extent caused by the now-fading El Nino phenomenon.

It's likely to give way to the La Nina weather system, but any cooling effect it might provide will be "temporary" and not enough to rein in global warming from greenhouse gases, WMO says.

Just as worrying is the finding that for the first time, carbon dioxide levels have passed a significant threshold in the southern hemisphere.

They're now at more than 400 parts per million and WMO warns that this rate is not likely to come down for decades.

In the northern hemisphere that level was breached in 2014.

Daniel Johnson, United Nations, Geneva

Duration: 1'06"

 

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