“There is no question climate change is happening; the only arguable point is what part humans are playing in it.”
~ Sir David Attenborough,
English naturalist and broadcaster
It’s now official. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) declare the earth’s temperatures last year were record breaking: “The globally averaged temperature over land and ocean surfaces for 2014 was the highest among all years since record keeping began in 1880.” A few weeks ago, they announced California had its warmest recorded annual temperature. First California, now the earth!
Views on climate change may be based on party affiliation and conservative or liberal thinking. Or perhaps, like myself, I just “plain old” read a lot! However, the “major league” scientists have now taken center stage on the subject. NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center has just released its annual State of the Climate summary information. It is compiled from both global and national summaries released each month. The following are highlights from this 2014 report:
In 2014, the combined land and water surface temperature was 1.24ºF above the previous 135 years of recorded temperatures.
The record warmth was spread around the world.
The globally averaged land surface temperature was 1.80ºF higher. This was the fourth highest among recorded temperatures.
The globally averaged sea surface temperature was 1.03ºF above the previous 135 years of recorded temperatures.
According to data from NOAA, analyzed by the Rutgers Global Snow Lab, the average annual northern hemisphere snow cover extent during 2014 was 24.95 million square miles, and near the middle of the historic record. The beginning of 2014 snow cover was generally below average, with above average coverage later in the year.
Polar/Arctic Sea Ice
Data from the National Now and Ice Data Center, gathered from NOAA satellites, indicates the Arctic sea ice extent was below average during each month of 2014. It was the sixth smallest on record.
Globally (Antarctic included), the sea ice extent was above average in 2014.
Per decade overall, the Arctic ice is decreasing and the Antarctica ice is increasing slightly.
Now for the weather of our infinitesimal and non-political place in the world… Remember, weather over politics, is always the safer subject of conversation.
Continuing through the weekend, offshore winds and temperatures around 80 are expected. Monday evening plans? Include an umbrella and jacket, for the weathervane changes its direction once again.
Sue Kilpatrick is a
Crescenta Valley resident and
Official Skywarn Spotter for the
National Weather Service. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.