Weatherdem's Weblog

Bridging climate science, citizens, and policy

January 2010: 4th Warmest on Record

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NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) has released their January 2010 Global Analysis Report.  Perhaps the biggest piece of news is that globally averaged temperatures in 2010 were the 4th warmest on record.

This very warm January follows the 8th warmest December, the 4th warmest November and the 5th warmest year on record.

A look at conditions around the globe tells us that Canada, Greenland, northern Siberia (all areas that have already experienced the most warming globally), Africa, the Middle East and southeast Asia were all up to 9F warmer than usual.  Places in Europe and western Russia experienced 9F cooler than usual conditions.  The areal extent of the warm anomalies greatly exceeds that of the cool anomalies, resulting in the globally warmer conditions.

This warming occurred during a moderate El Nino event and the longest solar minimum in the past century.

What’s at stake?  If we continue to do next to nothing to address climate change, 8.6F warmer average temperatures; not anomalies, average.  The current set of proposals by countries to do something might reduce that warming to 7F.  The target established by actual scientists is 2.7F.  We have a long way to go.  You can expect to hear about new warmest months and years on record for years to come.

Cross-posted at SquareState.

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