2014 was climate change gone wild. Indeed, last year was the hottest on the globe since the beginning of temperature records in 1880, says Friday the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency (NOAA).
December also saw an unprecedented average surface temperature on land and on the surface ocean during the last 134 years for this time of the year, NOAA also says. The agency also notes that measurements performed independently by NASA arrive at the same conclusions.
Above the average
Temperatures in December were 1.39 degrees Fahrenheit above the average of the twentieth century, also said NOAA. For the full year, the average temperature on the ground and on the oceans was 1.34 °F C above that of the twentieth century, surpassing the previous record of 2005 and 2010 of 0.04 degrees.
Global warming gone wild
The record heat was observed all over the world, even in the far eastern part of Russia, western Alaska, in South America, in most of the European continent, North Africa as well as in the coastal regions of eastern and Western Australia, says NOAA. The agency also cites the equatorial zone of the Pacific Ocean, vast expanses of the west and south of the Atlantic, the Norwegian Sea and parts of central and southern Indian Ocean.
In 2014, the global average surface temperature on land stood at 1.80 °F above the average of the twentieth century, which is the fourth highest since 1880. The temperature of the oceans was 1.03 °F above the average of the last 134 years, making it the highest of all the years between 1880 and 2014, beating the previous record of 1998 and 2003 of 0.09°F. The average temperature of the lower stratosphere (between 10 and 13 miles above the surface) decreased while those in the troposphere, the lowest layers of the atmosphere increased, which is an indication of a warming caused by greenhouse gases, says NOAA.
The average ice extent in the Arctic Ocean was 10.99 million square miles in 2014, the sixth smallest annual area measured in 36 years. However the ice surface in the Antarctic was measured at a record 13.08 million square miles in 2014 for the second consecutive year with.
Without the help of El Niño
These record temperatures have occurred in the absence of the warm Pacific current El Niño, which usually occurs every five to seven years on average and has a strong influence on global climate. NOAA estimated at the end of 2014 there was nearly a 60% chance that El Niño would re-appearance in the course during winter in the northern hemisphere.
IPCC is worried
In its latest report published in April, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) estimates that in the absence of a major and rapid change in global energy production, highly dependent on coal and oil, the increase in the average World temperature will be 3.7 to 4.8 ° C by 2100.
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