Even though we still have more than two months to go before 2016 finally takes a bow, NASA has already predicted that 2016 will be the hottest year in the recorded history.
Throughout 2016, one record after the other was broken as each month continued to be hotter than the previous one. The streak of heated months prompted Gavin Schmidt, the Director of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), to state in May that the chances of 2016 being the hottest year ever were as high as 99 percent.
A new record for global heat weather in the current year as the event of hot water stretching across the equatorial Pacific, also called El Niño, resulted in a sweltering winter season. Although July is typically the hottest month of the year, July 2016 was record-smashingly hot. This year, July was 0.84 degrees centigrade warmer than the baseline record of 1951 to 1980 recorded by NASA.
However, the record was soon broken by the heat wave in August. The recent GISS data for the month of September revealed that this was the hottest September in more than 136 years.
Schmidt commented on the continuing streak of the hottest months saying:
“With emissions continuing at the rate they’re going a little while longer, I see no way to argue that we aren’t handing off plenty of climate impacts to future generations. The bottom line, to me, is unassailable. With emissions continuing at the rate they’re going a little while longer, I see no way to argue that we aren’t handing off plenty of climate impacts to future generations.”
With data now available through September, 2016 annual record (~1.25ºC above late 19th C) seems locked in. pic.twitter.com/Btp3Vutakn
— Gavin Schmidt (@ClimateOfGavin) October 17, 2016
Boston College climate scientist, Jeremy Shakun blamed El Niño for the unprecedently high temperatures and said that:
The climate observatory in Mauna Loa has stated that the carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere are now permanently beyond the 400 ppm threshold. The modern civilisation hit this threshold for the first time in 2013. Scientists believe that carbon attained the same level of concentration in the atmosphere more than three million years ago, during the era of the extinction of the dinosaurs, or even beyond.