Environment

2018 continued worrying warming trend according to multiple climate reports

2018 continued worrying warmin...
This map shows the differences in average temperatures, with yellow, orange and red indicating the largest increases above the average
This map shows the differences in average temperatures, with yellow, orange and red indicating the largest increases above the average
View 3 Images
This map shows the differences in average temperatures, with yellow, orange and red indicating the largest increases above the average
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This map shows the differences in average temperatures, with yellow, orange and red indicating the largest increases above the average
Although the different reports may have slight variations in any given year, the overall peaks and valleys line up closely, as does the clear upwards trend in the last few decades
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Although the different reports may have slight variations in any given year, the overall peaks and valleys line up closely, as does the clear upwards trend in the last few decades
The average global temperatures in 2018, compared to the 20th century average
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The average global temperatures in 2018, compared to the 20th century average

In more news that's both concerning and unsurprising, several climate reports released today have concluded that 2018 was among the hottest years on record. In independent analyses, NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) have all found that the past year continued a long-term upward trend.

In all three reports, 2018 was found to be the fourth warmest year on record, with 2016 still topping the list thanks to a strong El Nino effect, followed closely by 2017 and then 2015. Collectively the past five years are the hottest in the modern record, which began in 1880, while the 20 hottest have all been within the last 22 years.

Those figures are calculated by analyzing data gathered by 6,300 weather stations around the world, along with temperature readings from research stations in Antarctica and surface temperatures collected by ships and buoys. The raw data is then analyzed in different ways by the different organizations.

NASA says the average global temperature has risen by about 1° C (2° F) since records began in 1880. In 2018, that average was 0.83° C (1.5° F) warmer than the 1951 to 1980 mean. That 30-year period, according to NASA's data, was when temperature averages generally held flat, fluctuating fairly consistently around a central point. Since then, there's been a clear and sharp upward trend – in fact, NOAA says that every year since 1977 has had an above-average temperature.

NOAA processes the data differently, taking an average of each year in the 20th century. According to those calculations, the average global temperature in 2018 was 0.79° C (1.42° F) warmer than the 20th century average.

The WMO report, meanwhile, uses a different period again – a long-term average of the 30 years between 1981 and 2010. The global average temperature in 2018 was about 0.38° C (0.68° F) above that baseline, which is estimated to be 14.3° C (57.7° F).

Although the different reports may have slight variations in any given year, the overall peaks and valleys line up closely, as does the clear upwards trend in the last few decades
Although the different reports may have slight variations in any given year, the overall peaks and valleys line up closely, as does the clear upwards trend in the last few decades

While it may seem odd and potentially contradictory that different reports are returning different figures, it's important to understand that in the big picture, they're all largely in agreement. As the graph above shows, while there may be slight variations in any given year, the overall peaks and valleys line up closely, as does the clear upwards trend in the last few decades.

The results of the NASA study are detailed in the video below.

Sources: NASA, NOAA, WMO

2018 Was the Fourth Hottest Year on Record

13 comments
Brian M
Yet we continue with increasing populations and industrial growth. Its beyond belief that some governments/leaders are still in denial (mentioning no names!) of the evidence. Even if global warming is not directly related to greenhouse gases (there are some other possible but unlikely causes), then reducing greenhouse gases would help mitigate whatever the other cause might be.
Nobody
There are various methods to measure temperature and they have changed over the years. Next time you go to a store that sells any type of thermometer, take a look at the readings on each one. You will always see a variation of at least 2 degrees Fahrenheit across several different ones. For years even scientific instruments were not guaranteed to be accurate to more than plus or minus 2% in a given range. Even the most accurate have a + or - range.
piperTom
From the article: "2018 was found to be the fourth warmest year on record, with 2016 still topping the list...". In other words, Cooling Trend Continues!
Douglas E Knapp
I am beyond sick of all these anti-global warming fools. I know the people that decided to launch a propaganda campaign to make people question global warming and thus shift the blame away from big energy companies. They don't want to pay! So they pay for internet trolls to attack every scientist or scientific publication and try and bring doubt into peoples minds. They also pay for fake science. People are all about fake news but have yet to wake up to oil firms fake science. You would think they would have learned after all the smoking is good for you BS of the past. The world is warming up on average. It is clearly tied to CO2 and you can tell where the CO2 came from! It is also a fact that all the ice is melting and melting FAST. It is also a fact that all the corals are dying or dead! Corals are where most fish begin life. Without it the food chain that we eat from is in big trouble! The oceans are higher, this is a fact. WAKE UP! Learn to ignore the propaganda trolls!
Douglas Bennett Rogers
95% of the greenhouse effect on the Earth is due to water vapor. The remaining 5% is split between CO2 and methane. The non condensibles leverage the water vapor. Desert irrigation and evaporative cooling has a larger effect. The Sahara desert being highly reflective, near the equator, hotter than the rest of the Earth, and having high infrared emisivity, is a major route of return of energy to space. A small increase in path length water will have a large effect on this.
EZ
Anything NASA says I take with a salt shaker. They are notorious for their censorship. Also, their involvement in the Geo engineering chem trails make me wonder who is really running this country. I think there ought to be an external investigation of NASA so that we, the lilliputians, can know the hidden agendas that "agency" has in their play book.
Robert in Vancouver
If the world is getting so warm why aren't glaciers and polar ice sheets melting more than normal? If they were melting more than normal, we would see a drop in sea levels, not a rise. Water volume expands 9% when it freezes and drops 9% when it melts. That's why a glass jar filled with water breaks when it freezes.
Johannes
Okay, so there's a bit of ignorance evident here. Nobody - you can be fairly sure that NASA, NOAA and other scientific organisations don't buy their temperature measuring equipment at a store, so they don't have to worry about the differences between various thermometers. robo - the glaciers and ice sheets are melting more than normal. Ice that floats leaves about 10% of its volume above sea level, so when it melts there's no change in sea level. Melting ice sheets (such as those on Greenland, Antarctica) and glaciers (such as in the Himalayas) are mostly above sea level and so when they melt, sea level rises.
Nobody
Johannes, I have spend years buying and developing scientific measuring instruments and I assure you that the +or- of 2% certification has been true for many years. You can buy more accurate instruments but no matter how much you pay there will always be a +or- variation. Even the location of the weather stations makes a difference. My local NOAA station was in the country until a few years ago and now it is surrounded by a subdivision. So now instead of being surrounded by fields and woods, it is surrounded by buildings and pavement. Will the temperatures be the same? I don't think so. Statistical data is the most deceptive of all.
Catweazle
Concerning sea surface temperatures. Note that in the decades before the advent of the significant coverage of the oceans by the buoy networks, the ocean temperature data was acquired in the main by ship's engine room water inlet temperature data or by measuring the temperature in buckets thrown over the side on a rope. Ship's engine cooling water inlet temperature data is acquired from the engine room cooling inlet temperature gauges by the engineers at their convenience, there is no protocol for the recording of the temperatures. There is no standard for either the location of the inlets with regard especially to depth below the surface, the position in the pipework of the measuring instruments or the time of day the reading is taken and the position of the temperature sensor may be anywhere between the hull of the ship and the engine cylinder head itself. The instruments themselves are of industrial quality, their limit of error in °C per DIN EN 13190 is ±2 deg C. for a class 2 instrument or sometimes even ±4 deg. C, as can be seen in the tables here: DS_IN0007_GB_1334.pdf . After installation it is exceptionally unlikely that they are ever checked for calibration. It is not clear how such readings can be compared with the readings from buoy instruments specified (optimistically IMO) to a limit of error of tenths or even hundreds of a degree C. or why they are considered to have any value whatsoever for the purposes to which they are put, which is to produce historic trends apparently precise to 0.001 deg. C upon which spending of literally trillions of £/$/whatever are decided. But hey, this is climate "science" we're discussing so why would a little thing like that matter? http://www.nature.com/climate/2008/0809/full/453601a.html