Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Earth's hottest month on record was July 2016: NASA

I noticed that this is a case where media sites report on an important issue, but do not show a link on their main page, so you only see it if you search for it. So they can have it both ways, satisfy their corporate owners and ad buyers who are invested in fossil fuels by not putting it where people will see it, while still making a good report that they can point to to claim they are doing their job as a news agency.


Andrew Freedman • August 15, 2016

Earth just had its hottest month yet, and the record-shattering warmth shows no signs of stopping.

According to NASA, global average surface temperatures during July were 0.84 degrees Celsius, or 1.51 degrees Fahrenheit, above average. This beats all previous Julys, with July 2011 coming in second at 0.74 degrees Celsius above average.

The large anomaly seen during July 2016 means that the month was the hottest on Earth since instrumental records began in 1880.

July is typically the planet's hottest month of the year due to the fact that the Northern Hemisphere has more land area than the Southern Hemisphere, making Northern Hemisphere summer the warmest month.

July is now the tenth month in a row to be the warmest such month on record in NASA's database.


NASA is not the only agency that tracks global temperatures, and its methods differ slightly from the others.

If the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) also finds that July was the hottest such month on record and hottest month overall, it would mean that the past 15 months have each set records — an unprecedented feat in its database.


Climate projections show that the odds favor a weak La Niña to develop in the tropical Pacific Ocean. If this occurs, it would be expected to hold down global temperature anomalies, and possibly interrupt the constant string of record warm months, at least for a while.


However, even La Niña years have been warming as a result of long-term global warming, and it's possible the developing La Niña could set a record for the mildest La Niña year.

For climate scientists, what matters is the long-term trend over decades to centuries, making monthly records much less significant compared to the steady increase in temperatures throughout the 20th and 21st centuries.

The long-term record shows an unmistakable upward trend in global temperatures, with warming accelerating in the oceans and atmosphere in recent decades.




NASA's five hottest months on record are July 2016, July 2011, July 2015, July 2009 and August 2014. Only July 2015 was during an El Nino. Records go back to 1880.


"The scary thing is that we are moving into an era where it will be a surprise when each new month or year isn't one of the hottest on record," said Chris Field, a climate scientist at the Carnegie Institution and Stanford University.

This new record and all the records that have been broken recently years tell one cohesive story, said Schmidt, director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies: "The planet is getting warmer. It's important for what it tells us about the future."


tags: extreme weather

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