“Climate scientists have been warning about this since at least the 1980s. And it’s been bloody obvious since the 2000s. So where’s the surprise?”
Scientists have finished compiling global climate data from April and the result is familiarly grim.
Continuing a disturbing trend of seven consecutive months, last month marked the hottest April in recorded history, according to data released Saturday by NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies.
Additionally, the results smashed the previous record for April by the largest margin ever recorded, marking three consecutive months that the monthly record has been broken by these alarming latitudes.
The figures released over the weekend show the global temperature of land and sea was approximately 1.11C warmer in April than the average temperature for April during the period between 1951-1980, all but ensuring at this rate that 2016 will be the hottest year on record.
With Apr update, 2016 still > 99% likely to be a new record (assuming historical ytd/ann patterns valid). pic.twitter.com/GTN9sPL2D7
— Gavin Schmidt (@ClimateOfGavin) May 14, 2016
— Stefan Rahmstorf (@rahmstorf) May 15, 2016
“The interesting thing is the scale at which we’re breaking records,” said Andy Pittman, director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science at the University of New South Wales in Australia, “It’s clearly all heading in the wrong direction.”
“Climate scientists have been warning about this since at least the 1980s. And it’s been bloody obvious since the 2000s. So where’s the surprise,” he added.
The April results come on the heels of greater findings on the actual damages climate change is beginning to cause, wreaking havoc with ecosystems around the world. In Australia, a recent study found that 93% of the reefs have been affected by bleaching along the 2,300km Great Barrier Reef.
In the northern parts of the reef, scientists have concluded that a majority of the coral is dead.
The analysis of the Great Barrier Reef showed that these findings were 175 times more likely to have been caused because of rising temperatures, and, additionally, that the conditions responsible for it would be average in fewer than 20 years.
“The thing that’s causing that warming, is going up and up and up,” said Pittman, “So the cool ocean we will get with a La Nina are warmer than we’d ever seen more than a few decades ago.”
He added further, “This is a full scale punching of the reef system on an ongoing basis with some occasionally really nasty kicks and it isn’t going to recover.”
— Ed Hawkins (@ed_hawkins) May 9, 2016