WWF response to WMO statement on warming in Antarctic
Posted on 10 February 2020
According to a statement from the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO), the Argentine research base, Esperanza, on the northern tip of the Antarctic peninsula, set a new record temperature of 18.3°C on 6 February.
Chris Johnson, senior manager of WWF’s Antarctic Programme said: “Antarctica is under increasing pressure from climate change. Iconic wildlife are at a critical crossroads but we have still have an opportunity to take action. Protecting nature is part of the solution to fight back. As governments around the world are making commitments to fight the climate crisis at home, we must deliver on commitments to establish networks of marine protected areas around Antarctica – creating a safety net for wildlife. We can provide space for nature to adapt to current and projected changes, safeguarding Earth’s biodiversity for future generations.”
Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, leader of WWF’s global climate and energy practice said: “News that the Antarctic has just recorded its hottest day on record -- just days after scientists said Europe had experienced its hottest month on record and barely a month after scientists said 2019 was the second hottest year on record – is yet another signal that we must accelerate and scale up our efforts to reduce man-made greenhouse gas emissions. To avoid the worst impacts of climate change, we must end new coal and peak carbon emissions by 2020, cut global emissions in half by 2030, and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. Countries must update their national climate plans this year. These must be ambitious and aligned with science to limiting global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.”
Two gentoo penguin chicks (Pygoscelis papua) in Antarctica