Saturday, August 12, 2017

Hot, Dry and Worrisome: 2016 Was a Record-Breaking Year for Climate

Global scientists relied on the typical superlatives to describe the state of the climate in 2016, but they might have come up with a few neologisms as well. It was not only the hottest year on record, but one of the droughtiest, high-tidiest and altogether worryingest.

Drought was a frequent problem around the world in 2016, the annual
State of the Climate report shows. This summer, Montana has
been dealing with more crop-damaging drought. 
Driven by the inexorable warming brought on by record concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, and vaulted even higher into the record books by the effects of a powerful El NiƱo, the signals of climate change were unmistakeable and remarkably diverse, the authoritative annual review, State of the Climate in 2016, shows.

  • Concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, the main blanket of gases warming the planet, increased by the largest year-to-year jump in the six decades of measurement and surpassed 400 parts per million for the first time as an annual average.

• Sea level rise has been accelerating over time and hit another record in 2016, according to the report. The global oceans have been going up an average of .13 inches a year for two decades and were, on average, 3.25 inches higher last year than in 1993. Sea surface temperatures also hit a record high in 2016.

Read Georgina Gustin’s story on Inside Climate News - “Hot, Dry and Worrisome: 2016 Was a Record-Breaking Year for Climate.”

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