The world’s global temperatures in 2018 were the fourth warmest since 1880, according to NASA and the NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.)
A new study shows that global temperatures last year were 1.5° Fahrenheit (0.83°C) warmer than the 1951 to 1980 mean.
Last year’s warm temperatures ranked behind 2016, 2017, and 2015.
And according to their study, the past five years are, collectively, the warmest years in the modern record.
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“2018 is yet again an extremely warm year on top of a long-term global warming trend,” said NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) director, Gavin Schmidt.
NASA says that since the 1880s, the average global surface temperature has risen about 2°F (1°C).
Schmidt attributes this warming to be largely driven by increased emissions into the atmosphere of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases caused by human activities.
The warming trends were strongest in the Arctic region, which saw continued loss of sea ice in 2018.
Schmidt also said that increasing temperatures can also contribute to longer fire seasons and some extreme weather events.
“The impacts of long-term global warming are already being felt — in coastal flooding, heat waves, intense precipitation and ecosystem change,” said Schmidt.
According to NASA, its temperature analyses incorporates surface temperature measurements from 6,300 weather stations, ship- and buoy-based observations of sea surface temperatures, and temperature measurements from Antarctic research stations.