Climate Matters

NOAA: Hottest August on Record Globally — August 2016

Greetings Meteorologists!

NOAA released its monthly global temperature analysis for August 2016 this morning. In addition to being the hottest August on record, this is the 16th consecutive month in which the globe was record warm, the longest such streak since NOAA record keeping began in 1880.

Some additional statistics:

• The August 2016 combined average temperature over global land and ocean surfaces was 1.66°F (0.92°C) above the 20th century average.

• 14 of the 15 highest monthly land and ocean temperature departures on record have occurred since February 2015.

• The June-August (meteorological summer in the Northern Hemisphere) combined average temperature over global land and ocean surfaces was the hottest on record, at 1.60°F (0.89°C) above the 20th century average. This surpasses the previous record from 2015.

Global year-to-date temperatures through August:

• The temperature across global land and ocean surfaces was the hottest on record, at 1.82°F (1.01°C) above the 20th century average of 57.3°F (14.0°C).

• The average global sea surface temperature was the hottest on record, at 1.42°F (0.79°C) above average, surpassing the previous record set in 2015.

The NOAA analysis reaches the same conclusion NASA, indicating that this past August was the hottest August on record globally. NASA’s records go back to 1880 and indicate that August tied with this past July as globally the hottest month on record.

As a reminder, the NOAA anomalies are calculated from a baseline of a 20th century average. To better represent how much the temperature has changed since the early industrial area, we have combined the NOAA and NASA global temperature data and adjusted them to a baseline of 1881-1910. This is reflected in the first enclosed graphic.

Our second graphic illustrates the average global temperature for all years in the NASA record. Each line represents the yearly temperature anomaly, broken down by each month of the year, and measured against as 1980-2015 baseline. August 2016 is at the peak of the top curve on the graphic.

Our third graphic is the year-to-date global map showing NOAA temperature anomalies (using their 20th century baseline), highlighting heat over Alaska, the western Atlantic Ocean, and Central Asia.

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Some suggested tweets to accompany the enclosed graphics:

• It’s been the hottest first 9 months of any year on record globally #2hot2ignore #climatematters

• From NASA: August 2016 tied with July 2016 as the hottest month on record globally #2hot2ignore #climatematters

For digital media... visit WXshift.com's global temperature page, which includes video, graphics, and stories on global temperatures..

As always, please let Bernadette or me know if there are any questions, or if we can help you with a story.

Sean

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