Global warming likely to be slower than predicted
Global average temperatures will warm about 20% more slowly than expected over the coming decades, scientists have predicted.world Updated: May 20, 2013 15:36 IST
Global average temperatures will warm about 20% more slowly than expected over the coming decades, scientists have predicted.
The recent downturn in the rate of global warming will lead to lower temperature rises in the short-term, scientists said.
They said there has been an unexplained "standstill" in the heating of the Earth's atmosphere since 1998.
Researchers say this will reduce predicted warming in the coming decades, BBC News reported.
However, in long-term, the expected temperature rises will not alter significantly.
This new research gives the clearest picture yet of how any slowdown is likely to affect temperatures in both the short-term and long-term, researchers said.
Researchers looked at how the last decade would impact long-term, equilibrium climate sensitivity and the short term climate response.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reported in 2007 that the short-term temperature rise would most likely be 1-3 degrees Celsius.
However, in this new analysis, by only including the temperatures from the last decade, the projected range would be 0.9-2.0 degrees Celsius, researchers said.
Scientists calculate that over the coming decades, global average temperatures will warm about 20% more slowly than expected, the report said.
And when it comes to the longer term picture, researchers say their work is consistent with previous estimates.
The difference between the lower short-term estimate and the more consistent long-term picture can be explained by the fact that the heat from the last decade has been absorbed into and is being stored by the world's oceans, researchers said.