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https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-2024-149
https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-2024-149
08 May 2024
 | 08 May 2024
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal ESSD.

Indicators of Global Climate Change 2023: annual update of key indicators of the state of the climate system and human influence

Piers M. Forster, Chris Smith, Tristram Walsh, William Lamb, Robin Lamboll, Bradley Hall, Mathias Hauser, Aurélien Ribes, Debbie Rosen, Nathan Gillett, Matthew D. Palmer, Joeri Rogelj, Karina von Schuckmann, Blair Trewin, Myles Allen, Robbie Andrew, Richard Betts, Tim Boyer, Carlo Buontempo, Samantha Burgess, Chiara Cagnazzo, Lijing Cheng, Pierre Friedlingstein, Andrew Gettelman, Johannes Gütschow, Masayoshi Ishii, Stuart Jenkins, Xin Lan, Colin Morice, Jens Mühle, Christopher Kadow, John Kennedy, Rachel Killick, Paul B. Krummel, Jan C. Minx, Gunnar Myhre, Vaishali Naik, Glen P. Peters, Anna Pirani, Julia Pongratz, Carl-Friedrich Schleussner, Sonia I. Seneviratne, Sophie Szopa, Peter Thorne, Mahesh V. M. Kovilakam, Elisa Majamäki, Jukka-Pekka Jalkanen, Margreet van Marle, Rachel M. Hoesly, Robert Rohde, Dominik Schumacher, Guido van der Werf, Russell Vose, Kirsten Zickfeld, Xuebin Zhang, Valérie Masson-Delmotte, and Panmao Zhai

Abstract. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) assessments are the trusted source of scientific evidence for climate negotiations taking place under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Evidence-based decision-making needs to be informed by up-to-date and timely information on key indicators of the state of the climate system and of the human influence on the global climate system. However, successive IPCC reports are published at intervals of 5–10 years, creating potential for an information gap between report cycles.

We follow methods as close as possible to those used in the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report (AR6) Working Group One (WGI) report. We compile monitoring datasets to produce estimates for key climate indicators related to forcing of the climate system: emissions of greenhouse gases and short-lived climate forcers, greenhouse gas concentrations, radiative forcing, the Earth's energy imbalance, surface temperature changes, warming attributed to human activities, the remaining carbon budget, and estimates of global temperature extremes. The purpose of this effort, grounded in an open data, open science approach, is to make annually updated reliable global climate indicators available in the public domain (https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.11064126, Smith et al., 2024a). As they are traceable to IPCC report methods, they can be trusted by all parties involved in UNFCCC negotiations and help convey wider understanding of the latest knowledge of the climate system and its direction of travel.

The indicators show that, for the 2014–2023 decade average, observed warming was 1.19 [1.06 to 1.30] °C, of which 1.19 [1.0 to 1.4] °C was human-induced. For the single year average, human-induced warming reached 1.31 [1.1 to 1.7] °C in 2023 relative to 1850–1900. This is below the 2023 observed record of 1.43 [1.32 to 1.53] °C, indicating a substantial contribution of internal variability in the 2023 record. Human-induced warming has been increasing at rate that is unprecedented in the instrumental record, reaching 0.26 [0.2–0.4] °C per decade over 2014–2023. This high rate of warming is caused by a combination of greenhouse gas emissions being at an all-time high of 54 ± 5.4 GtCO2e per year over the last decade, as well as reductions in the strength of aerosol cooling. Despite this, there is evidence that the rate of increase in CO2 emissions over the last decade has slowed compared to the 2000s, and depending on societal choices, a continued series of these annual updates over the critical 2020s decade could track a change of direction for some of the indicators presented here.

Publisher's note: Copernicus Publications remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims made in the text, published maps, institutional affiliations, or any other geographical representation in this preprint. The responsibility to include appropriate place names lies with the authors.
Piers M. Forster, Chris Smith, Tristram Walsh, William Lamb, Robin Lamboll, Bradley Hall, Mathias Hauser, Aurélien Ribes, Debbie Rosen, Nathan Gillett, Matthew D. Palmer, Joeri Rogelj, Karina von Schuckmann, Blair Trewin, Myles Allen, Robbie Andrew, Richard Betts, Tim Boyer, Carlo Buontempo, Samantha Burgess, Chiara Cagnazzo, Lijing Cheng, Pierre Friedlingstein, Andrew Gettelman, Johannes Gütschow, Masayoshi Ishii, Stuart Jenkins, Xin Lan, Colin Morice, Jens Mühle, Christopher Kadow, John Kennedy, Rachel Killick, Paul B. Krummel, Jan C. Minx, Gunnar Myhre, Vaishali Naik, Glen P. Peters, Anna Pirani, Julia Pongratz, Carl-Friedrich Schleussner, Sonia I. Seneviratne, Sophie Szopa, Peter Thorne, Mahesh V. M. Kovilakam, Elisa Majamäki, Jukka-Pekka Jalkanen, Margreet van Marle, Rachel M. Hoesly, Robert Rohde, Dominik Schumacher, Guido van der Werf, Russell Vose, Kirsten Zickfeld, Xuebin Zhang, Valérie Masson-Delmotte, and Panmao Zhai

Status: open (until 14 Jun 2024)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • CC1: 'Comment on essd-2024-149', Ken Mankoff, 08 May 2024 reply
  • CC2: 'Comment on essd-2024-149', Rasmus Benestad, 13 May 2024 reply
  • CC3: 'Comment on essd-2024-149', Rasmus Benestad, 13 May 2024 reply
  • RC1: 'Comment on essd-2024-149', Matthew Jones, 19 May 2024 reply
  • CC4: 'Comment on essd-2024-149', Gareth S. Jones, 20 May 2024 reply
  • RC2: 'Comment on essd-2024-149', David Huard, 22 May 2024 reply
Piers M. Forster, Chris Smith, Tristram Walsh, William Lamb, Robin Lamboll, Bradley Hall, Mathias Hauser, Aurélien Ribes, Debbie Rosen, Nathan Gillett, Matthew D. Palmer, Joeri Rogelj, Karina von Schuckmann, Blair Trewin, Myles Allen, Robbie Andrew, Richard Betts, Tim Boyer, Carlo Buontempo, Samantha Burgess, Chiara Cagnazzo, Lijing Cheng, Pierre Friedlingstein, Andrew Gettelman, Johannes Gütschow, Masayoshi Ishii, Stuart Jenkins, Xin Lan, Colin Morice, Jens Mühle, Christopher Kadow, John Kennedy, Rachel Killick, Paul B. Krummel, Jan C. Minx, Gunnar Myhre, Vaishali Naik, Glen P. Peters, Anna Pirani, Julia Pongratz, Carl-Friedrich Schleussner, Sonia I. Seneviratne, Sophie Szopa, Peter Thorne, Mahesh V. M. Kovilakam, Elisa Majamäki, Jukka-Pekka Jalkanen, Margreet van Marle, Rachel M. Hoesly, Robert Rohde, Dominik Schumacher, Guido van der Werf, Russell Vose, Kirsten Zickfeld, Xuebin Zhang, Valérie Masson-Delmotte, and Panmao Zhai

Data sets

Indicators of Global Climate Change 2023 (v2024.04.25) Chris Smith et al. https://doi.org/10.5281/ZENODO.11064126

Piers M. Forster, Chris Smith, Tristram Walsh, William Lamb, Robin Lamboll, Bradley Hall, Mathias Hauser, Aurélien Ribes, Debbie Rosen, Nathan Gillett, Matthew D. Palmer, Joeri Rogelj, Karina von Schuckmann, Blair Trewin, Myles Allen, Robbie Andrew, Richard Betts, Tim Boyer, Carlo Buontempo, Samantha Burgess, Chiara Cagnazzo, Lijing Cheng, Pierre Friedlingstein, Andrew Gettelman, Johannes Gütschow, Masayoshi Ishii, Stuart Jenkins, Xin Lan, Colin Morice, Jens Mühle, Christopher Kadow, John Kennedy, Rachel Killick, Paul B. Krummel, Jan C. Minx, Gunnar Myhre, Vaishali Naik, Glen P. Peters, Anna Pirani, Julia Pongratz, Carl-Friedrich Schleussner, Sonia I. Seneviratne, Sophie Szopa, Peter Thorne, Mahesh V. M. Kovilakam, Elisa Majamäki, Jukka-Pekka Jalkanen, Margreet van Marle, Rachel M. Hoesly, Robert Rohde, Dominik Schumacher, Guido van der Werf, Russell Vose, Kirsten Zickfeld, Xuebin Zhang, Valérie Masson-Delmotte, and Panmao Zhai

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Short summary
This paper tracks some key indicators of global warming through time, from 1850 through to the end of 2023. It is designed to give an authoritative estimate of global warming to-date and its causes. We find that in 2023, global warming reached 1.3 °C and increasing at over 0.2 °C per decade. This is caused by all time high greenhouse gas emissions.
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