NASA: The Hottest Decade

January 15, 2020

Washington Post:

The past decade was the hottest ever recorded on the planet, driven by an acceleration of temperature increases in the past five years, according to data released Wednesday.

The findings, released jointly by NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, detail a troubling trajectory: 2019 was the second-hottest year on record, trailing only 2016. The past five years each rank among the five hottest since record-keeping began. And 19 of the hottest 20 years have occurred during the past two decades.

The warming trend also bears the unmistakable sign of human activity, which emits tens of billions of tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere each year, scientists say.

“No individual hot year — or hot day or hot season, for that matter — is by itself evidence for climate change. But this hot year is just one of many hot years in this decade,” said Kate Marvel, a research scientist at NASA and Columbia University. “The planet is statistically, detectably warmer than before the Industrial Revolution. We know why. We know what it means. And we can do something about it.”

According to NOAA, global warming has sped up over the past 40 years compared to earlier in the 20th century. The annual global average surface temperature is now increasing at an average rate of about 0.18 degrees Celsius (0.32 Fahrenheit) per decade.

That trend has shown few signs of changing. “Every decade since the 1960s has been warmer than the decade previously — and not by a small amount,” Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, which keeps the temperature data, told reporters Wednesday.

Leaders from nations around the world have vowed to try to limit the Earth’s warming to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) above preindustrial levels, in an effort to head off catastrophic sea level rise, ever-deadlier extreme weather events and other climate-related disasters. But hitting that ambitious target would require a rapid, transformational shift away from fossil fuels that has yet to materialize.

Instead, global greenhouse gas emissions hit a record high in 2019, even as they fell slightly in the United States, and the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere now sits at the highest level in human history — a level probably not seen on the planet for 3 million years.

The 2019 figures from NASA and NOAA match similar data released by Berkeley Earth, an independent group that analyzes temperature data. The U.K. Met Office also rated 2019 among the top three warmest years. The findings also are in line with data released last week by the Copernicus Climate Change Service, a science initiative of the European Union. The World Meteorological Organization confirmed the analyses.

Berkeley Earth researchers said no place on Earth experienced a record cold annual average during 2019. But 36 countries — from Belize to Botswana, from Slovakia to South Africa — experienced their hottest year since instrumental records began. Those same researchers estimated that more warming lies ahead, with a 95 percent chance that 2020 will become one of the five hottest years.

20 Responses to “NASA: The Hottest Decade”

  1. Brent Jensen-Schmidt Says:

    Once more unto the breach dear friends!

  2. redskylite Says:

    If this fact of the warmest decade coupled with the violent bushfires in Australia does not make governments take immediate action then perhaps they should listen to the latest scientific findings on CO2.

    New climate models suggest Paris goals may be out of reach:

    • redskylite Says:

      “You have 12 or 13 models showing sensitivity which is no longer 3C, but rather 5C or 6C with a doubling of CO2,” he told AFP. “What is particularly worrying is that these are not the outliers.”

      • dumboldguy Says:

        Here’s Sir Clucky, again posting the generic graphs without comment.

        Here’s Clucky, posting the same graphs without any comment or evidence that he understands them. In case you were wondering why he does this so often, it’s an attempt to show what a “concerned environmentalist” he is and restore some credibility after his last whipping when his Russian troll job got out of hand and he embarrassed himself.

        Watch for the pattern—-he has repeated it at least three times now:
        1) Clucky overdoes the anti-Americanism and Russian troll business, and
        2) Gets taken to task for that
        3) Responds with vicious personal attacks—-name-calling and childishness
        4) Gets himself torn a new “arsehole”
        5) After either sobering up or being told by his Russian trollmasters to knock it off,
        6) Clucky goes silent for a while in hopes that we will forget
        7) Clucky then comes back with an avalanche of “good” stuff to drown out the trolling and show what a wonderful asset he is to Crock

        He thinks we will forget what a waste he is and accept him back into the fold here—he would be better off spending his time trolling some other site, although I guess it IS food that we who get his “game” keep him occupied here rather than have him working on dumber people.

    • Sir Charles Says:

      Anyway, this decade is decisive.

  3. You can’t denied it(some people will try!) Earth is getting warmer. The hottest year, 5 year, 10 year. I did some research myself. It is the hottest climateperiode of 30 years! One should always accept facts. You can have your own opion but you can’t have you own facts. And that is a fact and not an opinion.

    • grindupbaker Says:

      “Raymond Horstman” “Earth is getting warmer”. Yes but planet Earth’s ecosphere (top 6 metres of crust & all above it to top of stratosphere for energy) isn’t what you think it is.

  4. renewableguy Says:

    I am reading all the articles saying how little time is left, but I never saw how much we have to cut per year. It is surprisingly truly out of reach for how the world is moving. We will be lucky to just start decreasing co2 emissions by 2030. In order to stay under 1.5*C, the world has to decrease emissions by 15% a year. I have only read a few articles that say that out of the tens that don’t.

  5. renewableguy Says:

    Looking at the graph provided in the article shows about -.3*C for 40 years and then it moves up to 1.0*C. We have actually warmed 1.3*C since about 1880.

    • grindupbaker Says:

      A best-fit trend must be used for correct science because Earth has oceans (made from a fluid, in large quantity, with high thermal capacity). I just measured 0.2035 degrees / decade since ~1975 off that combo-plot. Looks like 2020 AD is +0.92–0.30 = 1.22 degrees above the 1880-1900 base line on that plot. Uncertainty at 1880-1900 is +/- 0.1 degrees.

  6. Sir Charles Says:

    I’m still waiting for the GISS temp for December.

  7. Sir Charles Says:

    In 25 years, the oceans have absorbed heat equivalent to the energy of 3.6 billion Hiroshima-size atom bomb explosions

    That’s an accumulation of heat equivalent to 5 Hiroshima bombs per second in average.

    => Ocean Warming Is Speeding Up, with Devastating Consequences, Study Shows

    • grindupbaker Says:

      4.56 +/- 0.18 Hiroshima-sized atomic bomb explosions worth of trinitrotoluene per second. The Japanese must be non-stop jittery since this Global Warmage got very underway in 1995 AD. Of note is that, of course, the U.S. of Americans crammed many atomic bomb explosions back into the bomb casings and cooled Earth at a few atomic bomb un-explosions worth of trinitrotoluene per second for ~18 months during the 2 huge El Ninos 1997/8 & 2015/16, the latter encompassing the junk science drivel marker “dustrial Average +1.5C” that I see on a colourful pictorial somewhere above here. A marker for a month during a period when Earth was strongly cooling.
      Signed Mister You’re not science too, grindupbaker.

  8. ecoquant Says:

    Well, these targets are not out of reach, but as Dr Glen Peters recently observed, because we are so damn late doing anything, now economic growth is completely opposed to climate change mitigation. Unless we accept overshoot scenarios which are later fixed, there’s no way to hit these targets without decreases in economic activity, let alone economic growth.

    The overshoot scenarios mean increasing beyond the target, and belatedly achieving zero emissions, then deploying incredibly expensive clear air capture engineering to extract CO2 from atmosphere and sequester it. This engineering is known, but we do not know yet how to scale it, let alone do it at anything like a reasonable price.

    Moreover, overshooting and correcting is fine on paper, but there are physical consequences to overshooting, because some changes as a result are effectively irreversible. (“Effectively” means reversing will take thousands and thousands of years.)

    And afforestation doesn’t have enough capacity to do the clear air capture at sufficient quantities.

    Yes, there once were many more trees on the planet. But no recent source has produced as much in the way of greenhouse gas emissions in so short a time as has humanity.

  9. grindupbaker Says:

    “The annual global average surface temperature is now increasing at an average rate of about 0.18 degrees Celsius” in posting.
    The GMST trends have been:
    +0.13 degrees / decade: UAH lower troposphere 1979-2017
    +0.17 degrees / decade: RSS lower troposphere 1979-2017
    +0.165 degrees / decade: Surface La Nina & ENSO-neutral years 1970-2014 (me from GISTEMP)
    +0.20 degrees / decade: Surface El Nino years 1966-1995 (me from GISTEMP)
    +0.23 degrees / decade: Surface El Nino years 1995-2014 (me from GISTEMP, high uncertainty, sparse & varied data points)
    +0.18 degrees / decade: Surface average 1966-2014 (GISTEMP)
    +0.11 degrees / decade: Ocean surface 1966-2014 (GISTEMP)
    +0.047 degrees / decade: Ocean 0-300M depth 1966-2010 89 / 432 = 0.206 (me from various, Hadley, ORAS4, talk plots etc.)
    +0.030 degrees / decade: Ocean 300-700M depth 1966-2010 76 / 576 = 0.132 (me from various, Hadley, ORAS4, talk plots etc.)
    +0.026 degrees / decade: Ocean 700-1,000M depth 1966-2010 (me from various, Hadley, ORAS4, talk plots etc.)
    +0.15 degrees total increase: Ocean 0-1,000M depth (me from various, Hadley, ORAS4, Matthew England talk plots etc.)
    +0.09 degrees / decade: Ocean 0-1,000M depth ~1995-2018 (me from various, Hadley, OHC, talk plots etc.)
    +0.009 degrees / decade: Ocean 700-2000M depth 1966-2010 77 / 1872 = 0.0411 (me from various, Hadley, ORAS4, talk plots etc.)
    Note the +0.23 degrees / decade for El Nino years since 1995 and only +0.165 degrees / decade for La Nina & ENSO-neutral years. A big difference.

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