Temperatures across the globe soared last month. In fact, September 2014 was the warmest September ever recorded for the entire planet.
According to a report released Monday by NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center, Earth’s combined average temperature for the month – over both land and sea surfaces – was 60.3°F. That is 1.3°F above the 20th century average. September 2014 also marked the 355th consecutive month that our global temperature was above its long-term norm.
This record warm September comes on the heels of the planet’s warmest summer and marks the fourth month this year to break a global temperature record. The other three months were May, June, and August. It is also interesting to note that all four of these monthly heat records occurred when El Niño conditions were not present in the Pacific.
Year to date, 2014 is now tied with 1998 for the warmest first nine months of the year on record. NOAA says, “If 2014 maintains this temperature departure from average for the remainder of the year, it will be the warmest year on record.”
The contiguous United States, by comparison, posted its coolest September in three years. This highlights the fact that climate change is a complex global phenomenon that involves much more than what is happening in our own backyards. Global temperature records date back to 1880.