November 30, 2011
Global Temperatures On The Rise
The UN´s World Meteorological Organization (WMO) has issued a new report, the annual World Meteorological Organization Statement on the Status of the Global Climate. The report was released Nov. 29 in Durban, South Africa at an international climate conference.
The report states that 2011 was the tenth warmest year on record and the surface temperatures were higher than any previous year with a La Nina event, which has a cooling effect. The report also notes that the incidence of Arctic Sea Ice was the second lowest on record with the lowest volume of ice.
WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud said, “Our role is to provide the scientific knowledge to inform action by decision makers. Our science is sold and it proves unequivocally that the world is warming and that this warming is due to human activities.”
The provisional report estimates the global combined land and water surface temperatures for 2011 (January-October) to be 0.74 deg F +/- 0.20 deg F, above the 1961-1990 annual average of 57.2 deg F. This places 2011 as the tenth warmest year since 1850, when records were started.
According to the report, La Nina years are typically cooler than the previous year. 2011 followed this pattern but was warmer than the most recent La Nina years, 2008, 200, and 1989.
September 9 indicated the minimum for the seasonal Arctic sea ice at 4.33 million square kilometers. This was 35% lower than the 1979-2000 average and only slightly more than the record low in 2007. Arctic sea ice volume was estimated at 4200 cubic kilometers, which is below average and a new record low. It surpassed the previous low in 2010 of 4580 cubic kilometers.
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