The Meteorological Office (Met Office) has said that the last decade was the second hottest in the UK in the past 100 years.
The Met Office said that the UK broke a series of new records for high temperatures in 2019, contributing to the second hottest decade in the past 100 years.
According to the Met Office, the previous decade set eight new high-temperature records, four of which were set last year alone, including highest winter and summer temperatures ever recorded. Dr. Mark McCarthy from the Met Office in Exeter, said it was “a consequence of our warming climate”.
Among the “cardinal” decades or those spanning years ending 0-9, the 2010s were the second hottest and second wettest in the last 100 years of records in the UK, behind 2000-2009, which currently holds the record.
The Met Office partly attributes this to a cold year in 2010, but pointed out that such years occur much less frequently now than in the past.
In 2019, London recorded a maximum of 21.2C on February 26, the hottest February day ever recorded while on July 25, Cambridge recorded temperatures reaching 38.7C, the UK’s highest-ever recorded temperature.
Dr. McCarthy, the head of the Met Office’s National Climate Information Centre (NCIC), said it was “notable how many of these extreme records have been set in the most recent decade”. He also pointed out “how many more of them are reflecting high rather than low temperature extremes”.
He warned that this trend could continue, saying: “We would expect these sorts of records subsequently to be broken in the future. We are expecting to see an increase in winter rainfall, so wetter winters and drier summers – but we could still experience some dry winters and wet summers.”
A government spokesman assured that climate change was a “national priority” and it was committed to increasing the momentum around environmental action.