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Siberia 10C hotter in warmest May on record: EU

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Temperatures soared 10 degrees Celsius above average last month in Siberia, home to much of Earth’s permafrost, as the world experienced its hottest May on record, the European Union’s climate monitoring network said Friday.

The Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) said May 2020 was 0.68C warmer than the average May from 1981 to 2010, with above average temperatures across parts of Alaska, Europe, North America, South America, swathes of Africa and Antarctica.

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Globally, “the average temperature for the twelve months to May 2020 is close to 1.3C above the (pre-industrial) level”, Copernicus said referring to the benchmark by which global warming is often measured.

Under the 2015 Paris Agreement, nearly 200 countries have pledged to cap the rise in Earth average surface temperature to “well below” 2C, and to 1.5C if possible.

The heatwave across parts of Siberia and Alaska will cause particular alarm in regions that were engulfed by huge forest fires last year fuelled by record heat, and where Copernicus has warned that “zombie” blazes smouldering underground may be reigniting.

The monitoring network said that there were “highly anomalous” temperatures over Siberia throughout the March to May period.

– Carbon in the permafrost –

These reached close to 10C above the 1981 to 2010 average over parts of the Ob and Yenisei rivers, where “record-early break-up of river ice has been reported”.

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Copernicus recorded above average temperatures around much of the Arctic between March to May, although the spring was colder in northern Canada.

Parts of Europe — from the Balkans to Scandinavia — also saw cooler than average temperatures in May, as did Australia, southern Asia and eastern United States.

The 12 months to May were 0.7C hotter than the 1981 to 2010 average, matching the warmest equivalent period on record, between October 2015 and September 2016.

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Overall, global temperatures have risen more than one degree Celsius since mid-19th century levels, driven mostly by the burning fossil fuels.

There has been a sustained period of above-average temperatures since 2002, while the last five years have been the hottest on record, as was the last decade.

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In the Arctic region average temperatures have risen by two degrees Celsius since the mid-19th century, almost twice the global average.

This has accelerated melting of Greenland’s kilometers-thick ice sheet, resulting in a net loss of 600 billion tonnes of ice mass for the year — accounting for about 40 percent of total sea level rise in 2019.

The permafrost in Russian and Canadian forests contains as much as 1.5 trillion tonnes of carbon dioxide — around 40 times current annual emissions.

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The United Nations said last year that manmade greenhouse gas emissions needed to tumble 7.6 percent annually over the next decade to cap global warming at 1.5C.

Current pledges to cut emissions put Earth on a path of several degrees warming by the end of the century.


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China vows to retaliate for Trump’s Rose Garden press conference — and could impose new sanctions on America

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US President Donald Trump said Tuesday he was ending preferential trade treatment for Hong Kong and had signed into law an act that authorises sanctions on banks over China's clampdown in the international finance hub.

In a discursive news conference dominated by attacks on his domestic rivals, Trump declared himself to be the toughest president ever on China, a country he is increasingly positioning as his nemesis ahead of November elections.

Trump announced that he had issued an executive order on Hong Kong as he predicted decline for the restless city, on which Beijing recently imposed a tough new security law.

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2020 Election

Trump’s former White House doctor Ronny Jackson wins GOP runoff for Congress in Texas

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Ronny Jackson, the former White House physician and President Donald Trump's onetime nominee for secretary of veterans affairs, has won his bid for the Republican nomination for a solidly red congressional seat in the Texas Panhandle.

With 100% of polling locations reporting, though some mail-in ballots will still need to be counted, Jackson held a lead of 11 percentage points over Josh Winegarner, a veteran agriculture expert and lobbyist. Jackson and Winegarner were competing for a seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry, R-Clarendon, who is retiring and held the seat since 1995.

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Ivanka Trump’s tweet raises eyebrows: ‘Why is a senior White House official endorsing a food product?’

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As her big brother was dragging their 14-year-old half brother into the 2020 campaign, senior White House advisor Ivanka Trump was endorsing a line of canned food products.

If it’s Goya, it has to be good. Si es Goya, tiene que ser bueno. pic.twitter.com/9tjVrfmo9z

— Ivanka Trump (@IvankaTrump) July 15, 2020

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