New Data Says 2017 Among Warmest Years on Record

A color-coded map of the globe showing areas of percentiles of cool and warmth- ranging from record warm to record cool- for the calendar year 2017

NASA Declares 2017 The Second-Hottest Year On Record

Meanwhile, NOAA researchers' assessment placed 2017 as the third warmest year, reporting global average temperatures as 1.51 degrees F (0.84 degrees C) above average. "What we're seeing is an increasing string of years of temperatures more than 1 degree above the pre-industrial era", Schmidt told the New York Times, "and we're not going to go back".

Dr Colin Morice, of the Met Office Hadley Centre, said: 'The global temperature figures for 2017 are in agreement with other centres around the world that 2017 is one of the three warmest years and the warmest year since 1850 without the influence of El Nino.

It's official: 2017 was one of the hottest years ever recorded on Earth.

El NiƱo, an annual ocean current that runs through the central Pacific that can cause temperature shifts in atmospheric circulation, was not behind the warm temperature in 2017, scientists said. NASA noted that the slight difference between NOAA's analysis and their own is a result of slightly different methods used between the two agencies to interpret the temperature data.

According to NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information, 2017 attained a temperature of 1.51 degrees Fahrenheit (0.84 degrees Celsius), higher than the mediocre temperature witnessed in the 1900s. But NASA said if the patterns were statistically removed from the data, 2017 would have been the warmest year on record.

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"Basically, all of the warming in the last 60 years is attributable to human activities", said Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies in NY.

Another year, another dubious climate achievement.

The WMO said 17 of the warmest 18 years since records began in the 19th century have now happened since 2000, confirming a warming trend driven by man-made greenhouse gases.

Rising temperatures are only part of climate change, the United Nations notes, noting that the heat of 2017 has been accompanied by extreme weather conditions around the world. But 2017 finished with a La Nina, the cousin of El Nino that lowers temperatures.

The trend is seen most dramatically in the Arctic, NASA said, as sea ice continues to melt.

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Last year's temperatures were beaten only by the record heat of 2016, and in some of the analyses by 2015.

The five hottest years on record have all occurred since 2010.

Although a almost unwavering addiction to fossil fuels means we can take responsibility for 2016's title-holding place in this grim menagerie, it did have a little help from El Nino-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), a periodic climate phenomenon that has a planet-wide impact on atmospheric and oceanic systems.

"We need increased levels of ambition to reduce greenhouse gas emissions combined with concrete actions to reduce disaster risk especially in least developed countries which contribute little to climate change", he underscored.

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