And now, the weather, for 2050.
Extreme weather events will become more frequent and more extreme – and will include mega-droughts, deadly heat waves and a year’s rainfall in a month in some places.
The long-range forecast: coastal cities under water, ocean life destroyed, pests in numbers sufficient to invade, Arctic cruises added to ocean liners’ itineraries.
The World Meteorological Organization asked TV weather men and weather women from around the world what a forecast might look like in 2050, and 14 of these presenters will be featured in videos shown until the UN Climate Summit on 23 September. The videos describe likely local impacts of global climate change if no changes are made.
The scenarios for 2050 describe a future that is warmer, wetter and wilder.
Ahead of @UN Summit #Climate2014: #Weather2050 reports forecast warmer, wilder future weather via @WMOnewsTweet
The year was selected as midway to the end of the century, when average global temperatures could have risen more than 4°C (7.2°F) if greenhouse gas emissions continue to increase at the current rate.
WMO is launching the videos to support UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon’s call for government, finance, business, and civil society leaders to agree to ambitious action on climate change at the UN Climate Summit.
“Climate change is affecting the weather everywhere. It makes it more extreme and disturbs established patterns. That means more disasters more uncertainty,” said Ban.
Cutting greenhouse gas emissions and building low-carbon economies would reduce the risk. But, absent such action, the weather reports are “compatible with the most up-to-date climate science,” said WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud.
“They paint a compelling picture of what life could be like on a warmer planet. Climate change is already leading to more extreme weather such as intense heat and rain. The ‘abnormal’ risks becoming the norm. We need to act now.“
Will that happen? Stay tuned.