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Sadly, this is not just a tabloid heading predicting apocalyptic doom.

Research conducted by Met Office scientists recently discovered that if greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise, with no heavy attempts to lessen them or at least keep them under better control, then global warming will exceed 4 degrees by the end of the century.

What does this mean?

  • Different parts of the globe could warm up by 7 degrees or more; the Arctic is at risk of a 15 degree increase, while Africa could warm up by 10 degrees.
  • At least half of the world will have an inadequate water supply, while other portions will be overly flooded.
  • And, of course, it could have an extremely negative impact on wildlife everywhere.

According to Dr. Richard Betts, Head of Climate Impacts at the Met Office Hadley Centre, “Together these impacts will have very large consequences for food security, water availability and health. However, it is possible to avoid these dangerous levels of temperature rise by cutting greenhouse gas emissions. If global emissions peak within the next decade and then decrease rapidly it may be possible to avoid at least half of the four degrees of warming.”

For more information on this, check out 4 Degrees and Beyond; where slides and audio files will be available from the recent conference discussing this issue.