The study goes on to say that if global warming continues its current trajectory, average annual temperature surpass historical norms is just over a few decades away, bringing huge threats to global biodiversity.
Climate departure occurs when the average temperature of a location’s coolest year from that point forward is projected to be warmer than the average temperature of its hottest year between 1960 and 2005.
After 2047, Washington DC’s predicted climate departure date, even D.C.’s chilliest year will be hotter than any year from before 2005. Each year after 2047 will be hotter than the city’s hottest year on record between 1860 and 2005. ‘Normal’ temperatures are all relative.
Lagos, Africa’s population of 21 million people is going to be incredible susceptible to flooding and other side effects from hitting the climate departure date in 16 years. Kingston, Jamaica reaches its climate departure date in 2023. The gargantuan cities of India, China, Japan, and the Middle East will all be seeing their dates soon enough as well.
Drought and food insecurity are just two of the predicted grave side effects. The bona fide effects of climate change will make themselves known all too soon, and they are going to be pretty scary.
It’s way too late to stop or even slow down climate change, but some of the effects can be mitigated.
If real, tangible action were taken, it is possible that the Earth won’t hit climate departure before 2069 and DC before 2071. Those are huge differences compared to the current trajectory.
Regardless, experts agree that extinctions are likely to result because some ecosystems may be able to adapt, but others, like coral reefs, probably won’t survive. Sadly, the experts have also discovered that oceans already passed their historical extremes in acidification in 2008.