Climate Change

Environment Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 21st April 2008.

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Photo of David Drew David Drew Labour, Stroud

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what his highest projection is of the average annual temperature for the UK in 2050.

Photo of Phil Woolas Phil Woolas Minister of State (Environment), Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's Fourth Assessment Report includes 'high-end' projections for global temperature rise from an ensemble of climate models. These are based on close to business-as-usual Special Report on Emissions Scenarios (SRES) (for example, A2 and A1B).

Using these projections, our current best estimate for a high-end UK-wide average annual temperature increase by 2050 (relative to 1990) is approximately 1.75° C.

In general terms, there is relatively little differentiation in temperature projections at 2050, no matter what emissions scenario is chosen. However, later this century, the gap between high-end and low-end scenarios will widen.

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