Globally, November 2013 was the warmest on record, according to the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC), National Geographic has reported. What’s more, although not quite over yet, 2013 is on track to becoming one of the hottest years on record.
For those of you in the United States who might be finding it difficult to relate to this finding because of recent cold weather, it should be noted that the November temperature in the U.S. was actually 0.15°C (0.27°F) cooler than the average. Nevertheless, it goes without saying that the United States is only a small part of the whole globe.
The worldwide average temperature was 0.78°C (1.40°F) above the 20th century global average temperature of 12.9°C (55.2°F). Furthermore, November was the sixth warmest of any single month since records began in 1880.
Deke Arndt, the chief of the climate-monitoring department at NCDC noted that this is the first time they’ve seen “a big spike like this in the global surface temperature in several years”, and “This surprised us a bit when we saw the numbers come in”.
In itself, the November spike in global temperature is consistent with the overall global trend in rising temperatures over the past 3 decades; “It’s a single piece of evidence that tends to support what we’ve seen over the last 30 years, that the average surface temperature of the planet is getting warmer”, Arndt said.
Image credit: NASA