Thursday, January 19, 2006

16/12/2005 -- 2005 Continues the Warming Trend

This year has been one of the hottest on record, scientists in the United States and Britain reported yesterday, a finding that puts eight of the past 10 years at the top of the charts in terms of high temperatures.

Three studies released yesterday differ slightly, but they all indicate the Earth is rapidly warming. NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies has concluded 2005 was the warmest year in recorded history, while the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the U.K. Meteorological Office call it the second hottest, after 1998. All three groups agree that 2005 is the hottest year on record for the Northern Hemisphere, at roughly 1.3 degrees Fahrenheit above the historical average.

Jay Lawrimore, who heads NOAA's Climate Monitoring Branch in its National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, N.C., called the new data "one of the indicators that the climate is changing." He added: "It's certainly something the administration is taking seriously."

The three teams used the same set of ocean and land temperature records, but they analyzed the data and compensated for gaps in the climatic record differently. As a result, NASA scientists estimate that 2005 average global land and sea temperatures were 1.04 degrees Fahrenheit above average, just beating out 1998's 1-degree elevation. NOAA researchers, by contrast, say this year's global average is 1.06 degrees Fahrenheit above average, compared with 1.1 degrees in 1998.

The analyses were based on data through the end of November and projections of December temperatures.

Scientists said yesterday that these differences should not detract from their common conclusion that the world is experiencing serious climate change, driven in part by human activity. Researchers recently found by drilling ice cores that there is a higher concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere than in any time in the last 650,000 years, which reflects that humans are burning an increased amount of fossil fuels to power automobiles and utilities.

Jet Cloud --

Thanks for posting the updates on climate change -- and the research on trees affecting climate more than we thought.

I think the roots of rapid change in energy use, reforestation and other human changes to soften the blows from climate change can be found in the story you posted on UC Berkeley blackout competitions where student dorms compete to cut energy consumption and costs where they live.

The rapid shift we need in political awareness and change here in US will require Superbowl competition attention.

What could make an otherwise bleak end game fun?
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