2024 Will Be The Hottest Year In History. Maybe

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2024 is supposed to be the warmest year on record– at least since the dawn of the industrial age and most likely for over several millennia. As with all such predictions, there is some room left for doubt. That is exactly where groups of skeptics and fossil fuel companies plant their flags just the way they did at  COP28. These people say it is not getting hot as fast as expected, or maybe it won’t get hotter at all. If temperature increases rise slower than expected, these people argue, “Why worry about the effects of global warming in 2050?”

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Axios made the case for record-high temperatures in 2024, leading with…. this November was the warmest November on record. Further, Axios added that NASA came to a similar conclusion. The odds of a record-hot 2024 are now as high as 99.5%. The reason for the missing half a percent has not been explained by NASA. 

The evidence for a record-high temperature year in 2024 is more than powerful, but is it convincing to those who argue that the forecast is not accurate? The answer is “no.” As recently as last month, a winner of the Nobel Prize in Physics, John F. Clauser said, “there is no climate crisis.” Further, he said, according to The Washington Post,  “Much as it may upset many people, my message is the planet is not in peril,” Given his credentials, this was all the community of climate crisis deniers could hope for. 

OPEC leaders are more subtle in their claims that the world is not getting hotter, too fast. The Guardian reported that the president of Cop28, Sultan Al Jaber, said that there is “no science” indicating that a phase-out of fossil fuels is needed to restrict global heating to 1.5C.

Forecasts of a hotter year in 2024 have extraordinary power to rally those communities who are in a desperate race to slow rising temperatures. No matter how convincing these forecasts are, in many powerful circles, they are ignored. For many, even NASA’s 99.5% odds are not a strong enough prediction.

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