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NOAA Reveals January to October 2014 Had the Highest Global Average Temperatures on Record

First Posted: Dec 01, 2014 06:59 AM EST

It looks like things are heating up. The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced that the global average temperature over land and ocean surfaces for January to October 2014 was the highest on record. Not only that, but October was the hottest month since records began in 1880.

As temperatures warm, it's important to keep track. The average temperatures can give scientists a sense of how climate is changing and may allow them to follow and track trends with the use of computer models.

In this case, the NOAA found that the combined global land and ocean average surface temperature for the October-January period was 1.22 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th century average of 57.4 degrees. October was actually 1.33 degrees above the 20th century average of 57.1 degrees.

So what exactly caused these high temperatures? It was driven by warmth across the globe over both the land and ocean surfaces and was fairly evenly distributed between the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. The Southern Hemisphere, in particular, had its hottest October on record and the Northern Hemisphere had its third warmest.

In fact, this makes October the third consecutive month and fifth of the past six with record high global temperatures. This, in particular, marks 2014 as one of the warmest years on record.

The findings are important for better understanding temperature trends. This could help researchers better track how our climate is changing over time.

For more information, visit NOAA's website.

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