In a report released on Wednesday, January 26, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration found that 2010 tied with 2005 as the warmest year on record. Land and surface water temperatures in both years were 0.62 degrees Celsius higher than the 20th century average, making this the 34th consecutive year that the Earth's average temperatures were increased in this way.
In the Atlantic Ocean, 12 hurricanes and 19 named storms marked the second highest number of hurricanes and third highest occurrences of storms. Unusually strong jet streams from June to August 2010 led to a devastating heat wave in Russia and massive floods in Pakistan. Record severe weather events have continued into 2011 with flood tragedies elsewhere on the globe, such as in Australia. Meteorology Professor David Karoly (PhD) of the University of Melbourne explained how climate change is behind this established global pattern of such traumatic incidents.
Prof. David Karoly (M): The rainfall we've seen is in fact record high rainfall, not only in Queensland but also in Victoria and New South Wales. We've seen already that these increases in extreme flooding and other extreme weather events not only in Australia but also in Brazil, in Pakistan, in Sri Lanka at present.
They're all indications that the higher moisture levels in the atmosphere, the increases in global average temperatures are already causing increases in extreme weather events around the world. So we're already seeing significant loss of life from these flooding events, but we've seen also loss of life associated with the record heat waves in Moscow in 2010 and in southeastern Australia in 2009. That indicates that action on climate change is urgent.
Supreme Master TV(F): What are the solutions to lessen these types of flooding events and the drier weather and just climate change in general?
Prof. David Karoly (M): So if we want to slow down the increases in extreme weather events and slow down the rate of climate change, we know exactly what we have to do. We know that we can change from using fossil fuels for driving industry to renewable energy sources. We also know that we can reduce agricultural emissions and reduce deforestation by changing to a low-emission agricultural practices, like moving from animal agriculture to moving to crops and vegetarian diets.
VOICE: While such findings are disturbing, we are thankful to Professor Karoly and the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for charting the intensifying course of climate change. May humanity awaken to this reality and halt further tragedies by adopting sustainable lifestyles that are more in harmony with nature.
During a May 2008 videoconference in South Korea, Supreme Master Ching Hai expressed her concern for worsening global warming-related disasters as she spoke of steps that could effectively mitigate them.