Summer 2014: Warmest on Record for Planet Earth

Looking back at the summer of 2014, temperatures across most of the eastern United States were relatively moderate. Globally, however, it was a record warm season.

According to a recent report from NOAA, the meteorological summer of 2014 (June, July and August) was the warmest summer ever recorded on this planet. Earth’s combined average temperature for the season – over both land and sea surfaces – was 62.78°F. That is 1.28°F above the 20th century average.  The previous record was set in 1998.

Rising ocean temperatures, according to NOAA, helped fuel the season’s record warmth. Between June and August, the global ocean surface temperature was the highest ever recorded for the three month period at 1.13°F above average.

While the Earth’s atmosphere and oceans are warming overall, this summer’s temperature anomalies (both above and below average) highlight the fact that climate change is a complex global phenomenon that involves much more than what is happening in our own backyards.

Year to date, according to the report, 2014 is currently the Earth’s third warmest year on record. Global temperature records date back to 1880.

Credit: NOAA/NCDC

Credit: NOAA/NCDC

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