News Flash: World Still Getting Hotter

Photo courtesy of the World Meteorological Organization


The World Meteorological Organization yesterday confirmed that the past decade was the warmest on record—the latest evidence that humans are heating up the planet. The report confirms what NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies concluded several months ago.

Temperature measurements from 2000 to 2009 find that the Naughts were the warmest decade since the adoption of modern temperature recording began in the 1850s, confirms the WMO. Last year was ranked as the fifth warmest on record.

“A number of extreme weather and climate events were also recorded in 2009, including in particular heatwaves in China, India and southern Europe, as well as in Australia,” said Michel Jarraud, Secretary-General of WMO. The report also notes that parts of the United States, Canada and Siberia experienced cooler temperatures than average, while other parts of southern South America, Australia and southern Asia experienced extreme high temperatures.

Don’t expect 2010 to be any better. NASA’s earlier report predicts that “a new record 12-month global temperature will be set in 2010.”

It’s also worth noting that it was the WMO’s temperate data that George Will grossly distorted in support of his bizarre theories of global cooling last year, as Mark Goldberg points out. Despite the fact that the WMO called him on his fudging, he’s so far continued to repeat those distortions. I can’t wait to see how he’ll manipulate the latest report.

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  • Kate Sheppard was a staff reporter in Mother Jones' Washington bureau from 2009 to 2013. She is now a senior reporter and the energy and environment editor at The Huffington Post. She can be reached by email at kate (dot) sheppard (at) huffingtonpost (dot) com and you can follow her on Twitter @kate_sheppard.