Study: The Tongan Eruption Might Cause a Breach of the 1.5C Global Warming Limit

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From Watts Up With That?

Essay by Eric Worrall

… But we can’t consider it a Paris Agreement breach, because volcanic impacts on climate change are natural, not manmade.

Tonga volcano eruption raises ‘imminent’ risk of temporary 1.5C breach

12 January 2023  16:00

In total, the study finds that the blast projected just 0.42m tonnes of cooling sulphur dioxide aerosols into the stratosphere – a layer of the atmosphere begins around 10km above the surface of the Earth, and extends upwards for around 40km. Meanwhile, it expelled a total of 146m tonnes of water, raising the water vapour content of the stratosphere by 10–15%. 

In 2015, the United Nations delivered the Paris Agreement – an international agreement to limit global warming to 2C above pre-industrial temperatures, while aiming to keep warming below 1.5C. These temperature thresholds have been key benchmarks for progress on tackling climate change ever since.

However, it emphasises that the common interpretation of the Paris Agreement is that its temperature limits refer to the long-term global warming attributable to human influence – and not the added effect of natural climate variability caused by events such as volcanic eruptions. As such, temporarily crossing the 1.5C threshold over 2022-26 due to the Tonga eruption will not dictate the success or failure of the Paris agreement.

…Read more:

The abstract of the study;

Brief Communication

Tonga eruption increases chance of temporary surface temperature anomaly above 1.5 °C

Stuart JenkinsChris SmithMyles Allen & Roy Grainger 


On 15 January 2022, the Hunga Tonga–Hunga Ha’apai (HTHH) eruption injected 146 MtH2O and 0.42 MtSO2 into the stratosphere. This large water vapour perturbation means that HTHH will probably increase the net radiative forcing, unusual for a large volcanic eruption, increasing the chance of the global surface temperature anomaly temporarily exceeding 1.5 °C over the coming decade. Here we estimate the radiative response to the HTHH eruption and derive the increased risk that the global mean surface temperature anomaly shortly exceeds 1.5 °C following the eruption. We show that HTHH has a tangible impact of the chance of imminent 1.5 °C exceedance (increasing the chance of at least one of the next 5 years exceeding 1.5 °C by 7%), but the level of climate policy ambition, particularly the mitigation of short-lived climate pollutants, dominates the 1.5 °C exceedance outlook over decadal timescales.

Read more:

I sincerely hope the 1.5C limit is breached this year, as soon as possible.

This has already been a year of massive embarrassment for climate alarmists, with the recent hilarious attempt to talk up the ongoing global warming coral reef threat in the midst of unprecedented coral cover. If we also breach 1.5C, let’s just say I’m really looking forward to writing that article.