- Record-breaking heat globally
This Was The Hottest 3-Month Start Of Any Year On Record
by Joe Romm Posted on April 15, 2015 at 1:39 pm Updated: April 15, 2015 at 4:38 pm
NASA reported Tuesday that this was the hottest three-month start (January to March) of any year on record. This was the third warmest March on record in NASA’s dataset (and the first warmest in the dataset of the Japan Meteorological Agency). The odds are increasing that this will be the hottest year on record. Last week NOAA predicted a 60 percent chance that the El Niño it declared in March will continue all year. El Niños generally lead to global temperature records, as the short-term El Niño warming adds to the underlying long-term global warming trend. And in fact, with March, we have broken the record again for the hottest 12 months on record: April 2014 – March 2015. The previous record was March 2014 – February 2015 set the previous month. And the equally short-lived record before that was February 2014 – January 2015.
This is using a 12-month moving average (see above), so we can “see the march of temperature change over time,” rather than just once every calendar year, as science writer Dr. Greg Laden puts it. The global warming trend that made 2014 the hottest calendar year on record is continuing. Some climate scientists have said it’s likely we’re witnessing the start of the long-awaited jump in global temperatures — a jump that could be as much as as 0.5°F. While March was slightly on the cool side for those living in northeastern U.S., the rest of the country and the globe is quite warm, with large parts of the West and Russia experiencing astonishing warmth. That’s clear in the NASA global map below for March temperatures, whose upper range extends to 7.5°C (13.5°F) above the 1951-1980 average!…
March continued the record-smashing hot start to the year in drought-stricken California. And that means the earliest the drought is likely to ease is late fall or early winter — and that assumes a full-blown El Niño develops in the coming months. It was also quite warm last month in Siberia, where the permafrost is fast becoming the perma-melt. The permafrost contains twice as much carbon as is currently in the entire atmosphere. The faster it turns into a significant source of carbon dioxide and methane emissions, the more humanity will be penalized for delaying climate action. The defrosting may add as much as 1.5°F to total global warming by 2100 — something that is not factored into any current climate models…
Year-to-date (January–March) January–March 2015 Blended Land and Sea Surface — Temperature Anomalies in degrees Celsius
Arctic sea ice extent smallest on record for March
April 17, 2015
According to NOAA scientists, the globally averaged temperature over land and ocean surfaces for March 2015 was the highest for the month since record keeping began in 1880. The year-to-date (January-March) globally averaged temperature was also record high. This monthly summary from NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information* is part of the suite of climate services NOAA provides to government, the business sector, academia and the public to support informed decision-making.
- During March, the average temperature across global land and ocean surfaces was 1.53°F (0.85°C) above the 20th century average. This was the highest for March in the 1880-2015 record, surpassing the previous record of 2010 by 0.09°F (0.05°C).
- During March, the globally-averaged land surface temperature was 2.97°F (1.65°C) above the 20th century average. This tied with 1990 as the second highest for March in the 1880-2015 record.
- During March, the globally-averaged sea surface temperature was 0.99°F (0.55°C) above the 20th century average. This was the third highest for March in the 1880-2015 record.
- The average Arctic sea ice extent for March was 430,000 square miles (7.2 percent) below the 1981-2010 average. This was the smallest March extent since records began in 1979, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center.
- Antarctic sea ice during March was 420,000 square miles (24.3 percent) above the 1981-2010 average. This was the second largest March Antarctic sea ice extent on record. The record largest March Antarctic sea ice extent occurred in 2008 and was 100,000 square miles larger than the March 2015 extent.
- According to data from the Rutgers Global Snow Lab, the Northern Hemisphere snow cover extent during March was 640,000 square miles below the 1981-2010 average. This was the seventh smallest March Northern Hemisphere snow cover extent in the 49-year period of record. Eurasia had its ninth smallest March snow cover extent, while North America had its 10th smallest.
Year-to-date (January – March 2015)
- During January-March, the average temperature across global land and ocean surfaces was 1.48°F (0.82°C) above the 20th century average. This was the highest for January-March in the 1880-2015 record, surpassing the previous record of 2002 by 0.09°F (0.05°C).
- During January-March, the globally-averaged land surface temperature was 2.86°F (1.59°C) above the 20th century average. This was the highest for January-March in the 1880-2015 record, surpassing the previous record of 2002 by 0.09°F (0.05°C).
- During January-March, the globally-averaged sea surface temperature was 0.95°F (0.53°C) above the 20th century average. This was the third highest for January-March in the 1880-2015 record.
A more complete summary of climate conditions and events can be found at: http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/global/2015/3
* Note: NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) is the merger of the National Climatic Data Center, National Geophysical Data Center, and National Oceanographic Data Center as approved in the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2015, Public Law 113-235. From the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun and from million-year-old sediment records to near real-time satellite images, NCEI is the nation’s leading authority for environmental information and data. For more information go to: