Last month “was the warmest September in 136 years of modern record-keeping,” reports NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS)
This follows a record-setting July and August, which were so hot, they tied each other for the “warmest month ever recorded.”
Whereas GISS director Dr. Gavin Schmidt had been saying there was roughly a 99 percent chance that 2016 would top 2015, he tweeted Monday that “With data now available through September, 2016 annual record (~1.25ºC above late 19th C) seems locked in.”
Indeed, it now appears 2016 will crush the previous record for hottest year, set in 2015, which itself crushed the previous record for hottest year that was set in 2014 — a three-year run never seen before in the 136-year temperature record.
Those who follow climate science know that climatologists have been expecting a “jump” in global temperatures for a while. There is “a vast and growing body of research,” as Climate Central has explained, that “humanity is about to experience a historically unprecedented spike in temperatures.” One 2015 study concluded that we could even see Arctic warming rise an alarming 1 degree Fahrenheit per decade by the 2020s.
And this means the recent bouts of extreme weather “will be routine all too soon, but then even worse records will be set,” as climatologist Kevin Trenberth told me.
There’s only way to stop this chain of ever-more extreme and dangerous records: slash carbon pollution ASAP.