WWF response to WMO State of the Climate 2019

Posted on 10 March 2020

March 10, 2020: Today, the World Meteorological Organization Statement on the State of the Global Climate in 2019 report confirmed that last year was the second warmest year in recorded history, and that 2010-2019 was the warmest decade on record.

Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, leader of WWF’s global climate and energy practice said: "The exceptional events of 2019, which are becoming more and more common - from melting sea ice, the warming of our oceans and Poles to devastating fires and floods - are telling us that the current speed of warming is unprecedented in geological time scales. It is affecting every corner of our planet, it is affecting nature and it is affecting people’s lives and livelihoods in devastating ways.

"The evidence for climate change’s dire impacts is clear and the science behind this State of the Climate 2019 report must inform governments´ enhanced climate pledges this year and 1.5˚C aligned targets by all Non-State Actors if we are going to collectively meet the targets set in the Paris Agreement. We are in a critical year for action - the longer we wait, the harder the challenge of addressing the climate crisis is going to get. And if we don’t address this crisis boldly now and in the crucial window of opportunity ahead, the safest option we know - staying below the 1.5˚C guardrail to protect our planet - will slip away."

Vanessa Perez-Cirera, deputy leader of WWF’s global climate and energy practice said: “Nature is a critical ally in the fight against climate change. Yet, wherever we look, nature’s warning signs are flashing red. Rising temperatures are pushing natural systems to their limits, disrupting the delicate web of life on which species and people depend. We already know what must be done – we must rapidly decarbonise our energy, transport and industry; develop climate resilient and net-zero agricultural systems; and invest in ecosystem restoration across the globe."

"The world must now recognise the urgency of the environmental catastrophe we are facing — and our politicians must take decisive action, at home and internationally, and act swiftly to address this."
Saraf, 8, sits on a submerged car outside her family home, flooded by a tidal surge in Chaktai, Chittagong.
© Jashim Salam / WWF-UK