2015 will be hottest year since records began, UEA researchers find

Rebecca Clarke, hostess for jet manufacturer Sukhoi, shields herself from the sun at the Farnborough

Rebecca Clarke, hostess for jet manufacturer Sukhoi, shields herself from the sun at the Farnborough International Airshow. Photo credit should read: Steve Parsons/PA Wire - Credit: PA

Global temperatures in 2015 are set to reach one degree centigrade above pre-industrial levels for the first time, scientists have warned.

Temperatures around the world have averaged 1.02C above the 1850-1900 period between January and September this year, the Met Office said.

With an 'El Nino' climate phenomenon in the Pacific, which pushes up temperatures, developing on top of warming caused by greenhouse gases put into the atmosphere by humans, 2015 as a whole is set to be 1C above pre-industrial levels.

The figures, from a dataset run by the Met Office and the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia, were released ahead of key United Nations talks in Paris aimed at tackling climate change.

The Paris talks aim to agree an international deal which will put the world on a path to limiting global temperature rises to no more than 2C above pre-industrial levels - a threshold beyond which the worst impacts of climate change are expected to be felt.

Dr Peter Stott, head of the climate monitoring and attribution at the Met Office said the latest figures revealing global average temperature rises reaching 1C were another piece of evidence that showed once again the 'unequivocal warming' of the Earth.

'There's been an extra push from El Nino, nevertheless the fact is we have human influence driving our climate into uncharted territory, because we are now above 1C,' he said.

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While not every year from now on was necessarily going to be 1C above pre-industrial levels, because of natural variability in the climate, as the Earth warms, more and more years will be past the 1C marker and it will eventually become the norm, he said.