Records Toppled as NOAA Releases Latest Surface Temperature Data

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The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released data today (15 June 2010) confirming what NASA separately reported last week: global surface temperatures this Spring rose to record levels.  NOAA data also indicate that other temperature records are toppling -- all consistent with long-term trends driven largely by rising greenhouse gas emissions.

Mar-May Land & Ocean Mean Temp Anomalies, 1880-2010

NOAA reports (emphasis added):

  • "The combined global land and ocean average surface temperature for May 2010 was 0.69°C (1.24°F) above the 20th century average of 14.8°C (58.6°F). This is the warmest such value on record since 1880.
  • For March–May 2010, the combined global land and ocean surface temperature was 14.4°C (58.0°F) — the warmest March-May on record. This value is 0.73°C (1.31°F) above the 20th century average.
  • The combined global land and ocean average surface temperature for January–May 2010 was the warmest on record. The year-to-date period was 0.68°C (1.22°F) warmer than the 20th century average.
  • The worldwide ocean surface temperature for May 2010 was the second warmest May on record, behind 1998, 0.55°C (0.99°F) above the 20th century average of 16.3°C (61.3°F).
  • The seasonal (March–May 2010) worldwide ocean surface temperature was the second warmest such period on record, 0.55°C (0.99°F) above the 20th century average of 16.1°C (61.0°F).
  • The global land surface temperatures for May and the March–May period were the warmest on record, at 1.04°C (1.87°F) and 1.22°C (2.20°F) above the 20th century average, respectively.
  • In the Northern Hemisphere, both the May 2010 average temperature for land areas, and the hemisphere as a whole (land and ocean surface combined), represented the warmest May on record. The Northern Hemisphere ocean temperature was the second warmest May on record. The average combined land and ocean surface temperature for the Northern Hemisphere was also record warmest for the March–May period. "

Online Resources:

NOAA: May Global Temperature is Warmest on Record.  Press release (15 June 2010) from NOAA.

NOAA National Climatic Data Center, Global Surface Temperature Anomalies:

State of the Climate > Global Analysis > May 2010.  Report from the National Climatic Data Center.

WWF Climate Change Blog

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