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Storm Agnes hits Cork, September 2023 Alamy Stock Photo
Climate Change

Met Éireann says Ireland on track to have ‘warmest year on record’ -- and maybe the wettest

Data about Ireland’s climate so far in 2023 spells another record-breaking year.

MET ÉIREANN HAS said that Ireland is on track to have its “warmest year on record”, sounding a climate-change alarm bell.

The World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) is due to release a report tomorrow about the state of the world’s climate at COP28, a UN conference taking place in Dubai.

Ahead of the global report, Met Éireann has shared provisional data about Ireland’s climate so far this year, stating that it will likely be the warmest year on record — for the second year in a row.

The national forecaster said there is potential that the annual mean temperature will breach 11 °C for the first time.

It is also seeing one of the wettest years on record, with the annual average rainfall total already in the top 20 wettest years with another month still to go.

“This year, Ireland had its warmest January-November on record so far and is on track to have the warmest year on record for the second year running. Currently, 2022 is the warmest year on record in Ireland, with a record length going back to 1900 (124 years),” Met Éireann said in a statement.

The wettest year was in 2009, out of records going back to 1941 (83 years).

2023 has been Ireland’s second wettest January-October to date.

With slightly over one month remaining in the year, Met Éireann said that ”if the mean temperature for November remains above 8 °C and the December mean temperature finishes above 6 °C, it will likely be the warmest year on record”.

“If the average gridded rainfall for December finishes roughly 40% above its 1981-2010 long-term average (LTA), it may also be the wettest year on record (this analysis is less certain and subject to change when all station rainfall observations are incorporated).”

Met Éireann Head of Climate Services Keith Lambkin said: “Ireland has seen a remarkable year with rainfall and warming at unprecedented levels at times.”

“These record-breaking extremes have knock-on consequences to much of society. This is why Met Éireann are continually developing tailored climate information, with our many partners, to help Ireland better plan and adapt to our changing climate.”

The findings come as leaders prepare to meet in Dubai from tomorrow for COP28, the 28th annual UN summit bringing countries together to make decisions about how to address the climate crisis.

This COP comes alongside the first ‘Global Stocktake’ — an assessment of to what extent countries are working towards meeting climate targets set in 2015 under the Paris Agreement.

Human activities, such as the burning of fossil fuels, are driving global temperatures upwards and are leading to devastating consequences for humans, animals and plants.

These impacts are forecasted to grow increasingly worse unless greenhouse gas emissions are significantly reduced.

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