News / Science & Technology

UN Report: Record Heat in 2012

Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, speaks at the opening session of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Doha, Qatar, November 26, 2012.Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, speaks at the opening session of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Doha, Qatar, November 26, 2012.
x
Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, speaks at the opening session of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Doha, Qatar, November 26, 2012.
Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, speaks at the opening session of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Doha, Qatar, November 26, 2012.
Selah Hennessy
2012 is on its way to being one of the hottest years on record, according to the United Nations. The World Meteorological Organization says climate change is taking place "before our eyes" with worldwide extreme weather conditions.

The U.N. weather agency says that despite the cooling effect of La Nina in the Pacific Ocean in early 2012, the period from January to October was the ninth warmest since records began in 1850. And every year from 2001 through to 2011 has been among the warmest on record, the agency said.

World Meteorological Organization Secretary-General Michel Jarraud said one of the agency's major concerns is the melting of Arctic sea ice.

"The melting of the ice was much bigger than in previous years, it is the record melting of the Arctic ice," said Jarraud.

A WMO report says nearly 12 million square kilometers of Arctic ice melted between March and September 2012. It said satellite images from September showed the Arctic sea ice covering 18 percent less than the previous record low five years ago.

"So definitely the message here is that the trend is not only continuing, but accelerating with respect to the melting of the Arctic ice and this is linked to the change in the global temperature," said Jarraud.

Tuesday, the German environment group Germanwatch published its Global Climate Risk Index, analyzing how countries are affected by extreme weather events like storms, heat waves and drought.

It said that in 2011, Thailand, Cambodia, Pakistan, El Salvador and the Philippines suffered the most from the impact of extreme weather conditions.
 
An Index author, Sven Harmeling, said it is clear that developing countries are hit the hardest, but the impacts are global.

"If you look at the overall figures for the last 20 years, we have had more than 500,000 people that died, we have had, including events also in the developed countries, over $2.5 trillion of damages as a summary from extreme weather events," said Harmeling.

The reports have been published as a U.N. Conference on Climate Change takes place in Doha, Qatar. The meeting, which lasts about two weeks, is aimed at forming an international agreement on curbing industrial emissions. It would replace the Kyoto Protocol, which is soon to expire. Delegates from nearly 200 countries are taking part.

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

Secret Service Chief Under Fire for White House Security Breach

Julia Pierson faces tough questions from lawmakers after recent intrusion at White House, says: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Kitagawa Keikoh from: JPN
December 01, 2012 7:10 PM
We should consider the climate change as more long time issue. Comparison of temperature only for 100 or 200 years is too short. The concerns scientists said is same as day traders of stock exchange. There is no meaning to consider tiny up and down temperature.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihadi
X
Mahi Ramakrishnan
September 30, 2014 2:16 PM
Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid