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Earth’s Margin for Error Narrows After Another Year of Record Heat

European scientists concluded 2020 matched 2016 as the world’s hottest on record. 

The European Union’s 

The European Union’s 

Credit: Copernicus

Another year of record-high heat punctuated a decade-long increase in global temperatures that has placed the Earth’s economies dangerously close to climate tipping points. 

Those are the conclusions published Friday by European Union scientists. Despite pandemic-induced lockdowns of the global economy in 2020, greenhouse gas emissions continued to accumulate in the atmosphere, propelling the world closer to crossing the 1.5 degree Celsius warming threshold that climate models predict will lead to more frequent superstorms and higher sea levels.