Science

NASA Has Declared 2017 To Be The Second Warmest Year On Record

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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

The global average temperature for 2017 was 1.62 degrees Fahrenheit higher than the average temperature from 1951 through 1980, according to the group of scientists led by Gavin Schmidt at NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies.

Either way, scientists say it showed a clear signal of man-made global warming because it was the hottest year they've seen without an El Niño boosting temperatures naturally.

NASA uploaded its 2017 data set here, if you're curious.

As we noted last year, 2016 was - and remains - the hottest year on record.

Average surface temperatures in 2017 were 1.1 degree Celsius above pre- industrial times, creeping towards a 1.5C ceiling set as the most ambitious limit for global warming by nearly 200 nations under the 2015 Paris climate agreement.

Both agencies agree greenhouse gas emissions are driving the trend, which is apparent even without the warming and cooling effects of El Nino and La Nina.

The 2015 Paris agreement, which seeks to shift the world economy from fossil fuels this century, aims to limit temperatures to "well below" a rise of 2C above pre-industrial times while pursuing efforts to limit it to 1.5C.

Globally averaged temperatures past year were 1.62 degrees warmed than the average from 1951 to 1980.

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

"This year governments are due to start the process of assessing the size of the gap between their collective ambitions for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and the goals of the Paris Agreement", said Bob Ward, policy and communications director at the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics and Political Science, in a statement.

"The long-term temperature trend is far more important than the ranking of individual years, and that trend is an upward one", Petteri Taalas, Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said.

The planet went through one of its warmest years on record in 2017, according to analyses from NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) on Thursday.

Every state in the contiguous US and Alaska had above-average annual temperatures in 2017, NOAA said.

2017 is the hottest year that was not influenced by the periodic El Ni?o phenomenon.

"The Arctic has warmed 2 and a half degrees C since the middle of the century", he said.

NOAA, NASA, and Berkeley Earth track temperatures at the surface of the Earth, over both land and oceans.

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