World, Environment

Trend of record temperatures to continue: expert

Fossil fuel use should be given up, lifestyles should change to make world sustainable living space, says Turkish scientist

Burak Bir   | 20.01.2020
Trend of record temperatures to continue: expert

ANKARA 

It is no surprise that 2019 was the second-hottest year ever recorded, and this trend will continue from now on, according to a Turkish scientist.

"There has been a rising temperature chart for a very long time [...] In this regard, 2019 was no surprise, and every year after that will be hotter than the previous year," Levent Kurnaz, a professor at the Center for Climate Change and Policy Studies at Istanbul-based Bogazici University, told Anadolu Agency.

Kurnaz said 2020 will be warmer than 2019 barring special circumstances or will at least be as hot as 2019.

On Jan. 15, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and World Meteorological Organization confirmed that 2019 was the second-hottest year ever recorded.

Mentioning scientific predictions, Kurnaz stressed that from now on, "cool years" will be defined as an exception rather than "hotter years," which means the warmer trend will continue to worsen.

Touching on possible measures that should be taken to prevent more extreme temperatures and negative impacts of climate change, he suggested that the fossil fuel era should be ended.

"What needs to be done urgently is that we must stop consuming coal, oil and natural gas immediately because as long as we continue to do so, this will lead to an irreversible situation and trigger other results," he said.

He went on to say that if glaciers are melted and methane gas in Siberia is exposed, the world will not be able to solve the subsequent problems as even a halt in coal, oil or natural gas consumption would not work.

As they are 25 times more dangerous than CO2 emissions, methane gas emissions into the atmosphere are seen as more devastating for the climate.

"These gases are all released into the atmosphere depending on our consumption habits. Therefore, first of all, we need to change our lifestyle to make the world a sustainable living space," he added.

According to analyses independently conducted by NASA and NOAA, last year was the second hottest one since modern record keeping began in 1880.

"Globally, 2019 temperatures were second only to those of 2016 and continued the planet's long-term warming trend: the past five years have been the warmest of the last 140 years," NASA said in a statement Wednesday.

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