NASA, NOAA to Release Update on Earth's Climate 2018 Global Temperatures Today

2014- 2018 global temperatures GIF

Once again, the world was unusually hot in 2018.

According to NOAA, 2018 was Arizona's second warmest year ever recorded, one of a dozen states with similarly high temperature averages.

If a warming planet were an Olympic sport, fourth wouldn't make the podium.

"But these are warm years that have persisted over a five-year period, and they sit on top of a longstanding, increasing trend over the last one-and-a-half centuries", said Waleed Abdalati, director of the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder who was not involved in the federal reports. 2016 now ranks as the hottest year on record, with 2017 coming in second and 2015 third. "There's no question." And the cause is clear too, he adds: "It's because of the increases in the greenhouse gases that we put into the atmosphere over the last 100 years".

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An independent analysis by NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration have found that earth's global surface temperatures in 2018 were the fourth warmest since 1880. We can thank the Midwest for that; it was cooler than average, while other regions were warmer.

Trump has vowed to pull out of the 2015 Paris agreement forged by almost 200 countries, including the U.S. The pact sets a goal of keeping global warming "well below" 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit over pre-industrial levels, a threshold meant to avert the most devastating and irreversible effects of climate change. Such cold weather has made it really hard for many to believe that global warming is real. That would be warmer than the last four years.

It was also an expensive year for natural disasters.

In 2015, nearly 200 governments adopted the Paris climate agreement to phase out the use of fossil fuels and limit the rise in temperatures between 1.5C to 2C, to avert "dangerous" man-made climate change. Previous year was well above average, with 14 catastrophes in the USA that reached or surpassed the billion-dollar mark. Scientists have linked climate change to more destructive hurricanes like Michael and Florence past year, and have found links to such phenomena as the polar vortex, which last week delivered bone-chilling blasts to the American Midwest and Northeast. The WMO said heightened temperatures also contributed to a number of extreme weather events such as hurricanes, droughts and flash flooding. But it was short-lived, and the rest of the country has been unusually warm, which has kept the national average well above normal for January. The release of the NASA/NOAA report was delayed by the USA government shutdown.

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