By SETH BORENSTEIN
AP Science Writer
Earth shattered global annual heat records last year and it’s flirting with the warming threshold that nations wanted to stay within to avoid the worst consequences of climate change. That’s according to Copernicus, the European climate agency, which reported Tuesday that 2023 was 1.48 degrees Celsius (2.66 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial times. That’s just a whisker below the 1.5-degree threshold nations agreed to try to stay within at the Paris climate talks in 2015. And Copernicus said this January is on track to be so warm that the world will go past that 1.5-degree threshold for the first time over a 12-month period. Climate scientists say it’s imperative that humans continue trying to hold down warming.