Hottest year (2023) on record: Basics Explained

As per the European Climate Agency, last year (2023) shattered global annual heat records, and Earth recorded 1.48 degrees Celsius (2.66 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial times which is barely below the 1.5 degrees Celsius limit.


ANTHROPOGENIC CLIMATE CHANGE is a change caused by human activity.

CLIMATE CHANGE:  Climate Change refers to any change in climate over time whether due to natural variability or as a result of human activity.     

       Global warming is the long-term heating of Earth’s climate system observed since the
pre-industrial period (between 1850 and 1900) due to human activities, primarily fossil fuel burning, which increases heat-trapping greenhouse gas levels in Earth’s atmosphere. The term is frequently used interchangeably with the term climate change, though the latter refers to both human- and naturally-produced warming and the effects it has on our planet.

 Greenhouse gases
allow sunlight (shortwave radiation) to pass through the atmosphere freely, where it is then partially absorbed by the surface of the Earth. Greenhouse gases can trap heat (longwave radiation) in the atmosphere, keeping the Earth’s surface warmer than it would be if they were not present. These gases are the fundamental cause of the greenhouse effect. Increases in the number of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere enhance the greenhouse effect which is creating global warming and consequently climate change.

            So the more greenhouse gases you have in the atmosphere, the more heat stays on Earth. The principal forcing greenhouse gases are:

Carbon dioxide (CO2); Methane (CH4); Nitrous oxide (N2O); Fluorinated gases

United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change

The UNFCCC entered into force on 21 March 1994. Today, it has near-universal membership. The 197 countries that have ratified the Convention are called Parties to the Convention.

The UNFCCC is a “Rio Convention”, one of three adopted at the “Rio Earth Summit” in 1992. Preventing “dangerous” human interference with the climate system is the ultimate aim of the UNFCCC. The ultimate objective of the Convention is to stabilize greenhouse gas
concentrations “at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic (human-induced) interference with the climate system.”


The Paris Agreement is an agreement within (UNFCCC) dealing with greenhouse gas emissions, mitigation, and adaptation. The Paris Agreement was signed in 2015 by 195 countries. The Paris Agreement entered into force on 4 November 2016. The Paris Agreement mandates all countries to take action to minimize the impact of climate change as per their voluntary commitments and individual capacity.

It sets a global goal of keeping global average temperatures from rising 2°C (compared to temperatures of pre-Industrial Revolution) by the end of the century.



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