'Very Likely' 2016 Will Be Warmest Year Yet

World Meteorological Organization says temps were 1.58 degrees hotter than baseline average
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 14, 2016 8:31 AM CST
'Very Likely' 2016 Will Be Warmest Year Yet
This image released by NASA from data collected by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), shows the land surface temperature in Thailand and surrounding countries between April 15 to April 23, 2016. Yellow shows the warmest temps.   (Reto Stockli/NASA Earth Observatory Team/MODIS Land Science Team via AP)

Scientists have only the first nine months on the books, but that data is enough to indicate that 2016 may be the world's warmest year yet, the BBC reports. A World Meteorological Organization statement published Monday relayed that from January through September of this year, global temps were 1.58 degrees Fahrenheit higher than the average culled from the years 1961 to 1990 (the WMO's baseline gauge), and about 0.2 degrees above 2015's, notes ABC Australia. Because some of the largest mercury surges took place early on due to El Nino, the WMO predicts global temperatures for 2016 will be 2.16 degrees Fahrenheit higher than pre-industrial levels. "Another year. Another record. The high temperatures we saw in 2015 are set to be beaten in 2016," WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas says.

This development would mean 16 of the 17 hottest years on record took place this century (No. 17 wasn't far behind, taking place in 1998). Areas in the highest reaches of the Northern Hemisphere—including Alaska and the Russian Arctic—saw significant heat spikes, and the Earth's oceans also took a hard hit, with ocean heat playing a part in coral reef bleaching. Greenhouse gas levels also continued to climb, and Arctic sea ice extent was "well below normal." The WMO released its annual statement early this year so that negotiators in Morocco planning for the Paris climate-change agreement could get a jump. Meanwhile, the Independent notes that President-elect Donald Trump is "looking for a fast way" to get out of the Paris accord, per a source on his transition team. (Meanwhile, another global deal to cut greenhouse gas.)

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