How our climate will change depends on the future level of carbon dioxide and other gas emissions in the atmosphere. Some impacts are also highly unpredictable in a complex climatic system.
The experts believe there is no likelihood of the Gulf Stream closing down within the next two decades, but it is a possibility longer term.
So while we look set for a warmer – and stormier – climate for at least the next 20 to 30 years, very long-term who knows?
On the best projections now available from the International Climate Change Panel and UK Climate Impacts Programme, these are some of the anticipated changes over 75 years:
- Globally temperatures could rise anywhere between 1.5 and 5.8°C by 2080 – between twice and eight times the rise we have already seen since 1900.
- Each degree of warming causes a lengthening of the growing season in the UK by between 1.5 weeks in the north and three weeks in the south.
- In the UK, an average temperature rise of 2-3.5°C is anticipate...
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