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Science

Warming Earth heading for hottest year on record

Earth is on pace to tie or even break the mark for the hottest year on record, federal meteorologists say. That’s because global heat records have been consistently broken in 2014, with September the latest example. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced Monday that last month the globe averaged 15.72 degrees Celsius. That was the hottest September in 135 years of record keeping. It was also the fourth monthly record set this year, along with May, June and August. The first nine months of 2014 have a global average temperature of 14.78 degrees Celsius, tying with 1998 for the warmest first nine months on record, according to NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, N.C. If 2014 breaks the record for hottest year, that also should sound familiar: 1995, 1997, 1998, 2005 and 2010 all broke NOAA records for the hottest years since records started being kept in 1880.

This is one of many indicators that climate change has not stopped and that it continues to be one of the most important issues facing humanity.

University of Illinois climate scientist Donald Wuebbles

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