The year 2016 was the warmest year since records were first kept in the 1880s, marking the third straight year world temperatures had reached an all-time high. Once again, climate change was blamed as the primary cause for this continuing trend, with the El Nino phenomenon also driving temperatures upwards.
In a joint press conference held on Wednesday, NOAA and NASA announced that 2016 was the third consecutive year global temperatures reached record highs. NOAA added even more disturbing statistics, noting that 16 of the hottest years since the start of record-keeping over a century ago had taken place in the 21st century. And, as CNN added, the last time Earth had a coldest-ever year was more than 100 years ago – in 1911.
The World Meteorological Organization's data shows that 2016 became the warmest year, as temperatures across the globe were 1.1 degrees Celsius, or 1.98 degrees Fahrenheit higher than pre-industrial averages. That's very close to the 1.5-degree threshold set at 2015's Paris Climate Agreement, and a cause of major concern for experts, who have blamed greenhouse gas pollution for the continued global warming trend. Greenhouse gases are created by the destruction of rainforests and the burning of fossil fuels.