The United Nations weather body responsible for monitoring world temperatures has revealed that 2015 is likely to become the hottest year ever to be recorded based on recent data.
The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said on Wednesday, Nov. 25, that figures collected until the end of October suggest that the average global temperatures for this year are significantly higher compared to other temperatures previously recorded.
Agency scientists said the period between 2011 and 2015 was the hottest five-year span on record as well.
This trend is believed to be a result of human-induced global warming, combining with the effects of a particularly devastating El Nino.
The initial estimate by the WMO shows that the average surface temperature in the world for 2015 was 0.73 degrees Celsius (1.31 degrees Fahrenheit) above the average recorded between 1961 and 1990. This figure was based on statistics collected from January to October.
The findings of the study also indicated that global temperatures were around 1 degree Celsius (1.8 degrees Fahrenheit) higher compared to temperatures recorded from 1880 to 1899.
Warmest Five-Year Period
The average temperature detected between 2011 and 2015 was 0.57 degrees Celsius (1.03 degrees Fahrenheit) higher than the average recorded from 1961 to 1990.
The atmosphere also experienced new highs in terms of greenhouse gas levels, according to the WMO.
The three-month average CO2 concentration in the world reached the 400 parts per million (ppm) threshold for the first time during this year's spring.
Michel Jarraud, secretary-general of the WMO, pointed out that the state of the world's climate in 2015 will be historical for various reasons.
The significant increase in ocean surface temperatures is likely to make 2015 the warmest year ever to be recorded. The 1 degree Celsius threshold will likely be crossed as well.
"This is all bad news for the planet," Jarraud said.
Other climate scientists agree with the latest findings of the WMO. They believe the study supports their view that carbon emissions produced through human activity continue to warm the Earth far beyond what the planet can handle naturally.
University of Reading scientist Dr. Ed Hawkins said evidence that the planet is warming is starting to become more and more visible in different parts of the world.
"2015 is not a one-off, as indicated by the last five years' average also being the warmest on record," Hawkins said.
"In the UK, our variable weather means that 2015 will not set any records for warmth, but the longer view shows UK temperatures have risen about 20 percent faster than the global average. We can expect this faster rate to continue in future."
Photo: Dawn Ellner | Flickr