2014 likely to be record warmest year

Updated: 2014-12-04 09:13


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GENEVA -- The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) on Wednesday said in a report that the year 2014 will likely be the hottest on record, mainly due to record high global sea surface temperatures driven by the increasing greenhouse gas concentration.

Based on the provisional report on the Status of Global Climate in 2014, WMO indicated that the global average air temperature over land and sea surface for January to October was about 0.57 Celsius degrees above the average for the 1961-1990 reference period, and 0.09 degrees above the average for the past decade.

The high January to October temperatures occurred in the absence of a full El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO), which will be surfaced when warmer than average sea-surface temperatures in the eastern tropical Pacific combine, in a self-reinforcing loop, with atmospheric pressure systems, thus affecting weather patterns globally.

During the year, sea surface temperatures increased nearly to El Nino thresholds but this was not coupled with an atmospheric response. However, many weather and climate patterns normally associated with ENSO were observed in many parts of the world.

WMO said if November and December maintain the same tendency, then 2014 will likely be the hottest on record, ahead of 2010, 2005 and 1998.

"We have some preliminary analysis of November, which shows November going to be one of the three hottest Novembers since we have record," WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud told a press conference.

"What do we expect to happen before the end of the year," Jarraud said, "it's even more likely that 2014 will end up being the warmest year."

In addition, WMO noted High sea temperatures, together with other factors, contributed to exceptionally heavy rainfall and floods in many countries and extreme drought in others.