20 Jan 2012:
NASA Graphic Depicts
Significant Spike in Temperatures in 2011
A new NASA graphic shows that temperatures in several global regions were appreciably higher in 2011
than at mid-century, with large swaths of Siberia and the Arctic experiencing temperatures as much as 4 degrees C (7 degrees F) above the 1950 to 1981 average. The planet’s average temperature in 2011 was nearly 1 degree F warmer than the mid-20th century baseline
, according to the annual global analysis by NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS). Nine of the top 10 warmest years on record — including last year — have occurred since 2000. Much of Europe, North America, and Central Africa were up to 2 degrees C (3.6 degrees F) warmer in 2011 than during the 1950-1981 base period. One area that experienced lower temperatures in 2011 was the Pacific Ocean, which was under the influence of a La Niña cycle. GISS director James Hansen noted that global temperatures continued to rise significantly last year despite the influence of the La Niña and low solar activity.
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