Last year saw several new high temperature records as climate change makes ‘an increasing impact’
- Met Office review shows that 2019 saw series of new temperature records
- Its shows last year was on average 1.1C hotter than long-term 1961-1990 levels
- Showed country’s recent decade has been 0.9C warmer than 1961-1990 average
Last year saw a series of new high temperature records as climate change exerts ‘an increasing impact’ on the UK, the Met Office warned.
The latest State Of The UK Climate review by the weather experts shows that 2019 was on average 1.1C hotter than long-term 1961-1990 levels.
And the country’s most recent decade has been 0.9C warmer than the 1961-1990 average, the report said.
Last year was the most notable for breaking records, with the UK recording its hottest ever temperature at 38.7C (101.7F) on July 25.
The latest State Of The UK Climate review by the Met Office had shown new high temperature records. Pictured: People enjoy the warm weather on Weymouth beach, Dorset, on July 29
And 2019 had the hottest winter day as temperatures reached 21.2C (70.2F) on February 26 in London – the first time 20C (68F) has been reached in the UK in a winter month.
The changing climate is also bringing other extremes such as flooding which has become more common.
Met Office lead author Mike Kendon said: ‘Our report shows climate change is exerting an increasing impact on the UK’s climate.
‘This year was warmer than any other year in the UK between 1884 and 1990, and since 2002 we have seen the warmest 10 years in the series.
‘By contrast, to find a year in the coldest 10 we have to go back to 1963 – over 50 years ago.’
Dr Mark McCarthy, head of the Met Office’s National Climate Information Centre, said: ‘The climate statistics over time reveal an undeniable warming trend for the UK.
‘We are also reporting on changes in other aspects of our weather and environment, such as rainfall, snow, sunshine, sea level and even tree leafing dates.
‘The observed changes are to varying degrees a consequence of both global climate change and natural variability in our climate.’
The report includes data on the changing seasons in the natural world, gathered by the Woodland Trust’s Nature’s Calendar citizen science scheme.
People enjoy the sizzling sun in Wandsworth Park in London on July 30 as temperatures continue to rise
A group of people jog through a sunny Wimbledon Common on July 29 as sunshine returns
It showed the dates for when a range of common shrubs and trees were particularly early in putting out their first leaves – on average 9.7 days earlier than the 1999-2018 baseline, as a result of relatively warm conditions in winter and early spring.
The point at which trees were bare of leaves again in autumn was also slightly later than average.
Darren Moorcroft, chief executive of the Woodland Trust, said: ‘In response to the warm winter and mild spring temperatures, the first leaves appeared on trees nearly 10 days earlier in 2019, compared to our baseline period.
‘Whilst this may not sound like much, research using these citizen science records has shown this can have dire impacts further down the food chain.
‘Our trees, and all the wildlife they support, are on the front line of climate change and ultimately some species will be able to adapt better than others.
‘This is a stark reminder of the need to take immediate action on climate change.’