Unmistakable signs of a warming world

Scientific evidence
that our world is warming is unmistakable has been released today
in the ‘2009 State of the Climate’ report, issued by US National
Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

The report draws on data from 10 key climate indicators that all
point to that same finding - the world is warming.

The 10 indicators of temperature have been compiled by the Met
Office Hadley Centre, drawing on the work of more than 100
scientists from more than 20 institutions. They provide, in a one
place, a snapshot of our world and spell out a single conclusion
that the climate is unequivocally warming.

Relying on data from multiple sources, each indicator proved
consistent with a warming world. Seven indicators are rising
and three are declining.

Rising indicators

  1. Air temperature over land

  2. Sea-surface temperature

  3. Marine air temperature

  4. Sea-level

  5. Ocean heat

  6. Humidity

  7. Tropospheric temperature in the ‘active-weather’ layer of the
    atmosphere closest to the Earth’s surface

Declining indicators

  1. Arctic sea-ice

  2. Glaciers

  3. Spring snow cover in the northern hemisphere

Dr Peter Stott, Met Office Head of Climate Monitoring and
Attribution and contributor to the report says: “Despite the
variability caused by short-term changes, the analysis conducted
for this report illustrates why we are so confident the world is

“When we look at air temperature and other indicators of
climate, we see highs and lows in the data from year-to-year
because of natural variability. Understanding climate change
requires looking at the longer-term record. When we follow
decade-to-decade trends using different data sets and independent
analyses from around the world, we see clear and unmistakable signs
of a warming world.”

Dr Jane Lubchenco, Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and
Atmosphere and US NOAA Administrator, says: “The temperature
increase of 0.56 °C (1 °F) over the past 50 years may
seem small, but it has already altered our planet.

“Glaciers and sea-ice are melting; heavy rainfall is
intensifying, and heat waves are more common. And, as the new
report tells us, there is now evidence that over 90 percent of
warming over the past 50 years has gone into our oceans.”

The report points out that people have spent thousands of years
building society for one climate, and now a new one is being
created - one that is warmer and more extreme.

While year-to-year changes in temperature often reflect natural
climatic variations such as El Niño/La Niña events, changes in
average temperature from decade-to-decade reveal long-term trends
such as global warming.

Each of the last three decades has been much warmer than the
decade before. At the time, the 1980s was the hottest decade on
record. In the 1990s, every year was warmer than the average of the
previous decade. The 2000s were warmer still.

“For the first time, and in a single compelling comparison, the
analysis brings together multiple observational records from the
top of the atmosphere to the depths of the ocean,” states Deke
Arndt, co-editor of the report and chief of the Climate Monitoring
Branch of NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center.

“The records come from many institutions worldwide. They use
data collected from diverse sources, including satellites, weather
balloons, weather stations, ships, buoys, and field surveys. These
independently produced lines of evidence all point to the same
conclusion: our planet is warming.”

You can read the electronic version of the full report on the href=”http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/bams-state-of-the-climate/”
target=”_blank”>NOAA website.

Source: www.metoffice.gov.uk

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