Technology 2019 was most likely Earth's 2nd most popular year...

2019 was most likely Earth’s 2nd most popular year on record


Next stop: we have not developed stops–.

Little bump from El Niño this year, however international temperature levels climb up once again.

Scott K. Johnson

Temperature above or below the 1950-1981 average, in kelvins (equivalent to degrees C).

Enlarge / Temperature Level above or below the 1950-1981 average, in kelvins (comparable to degrees C).



It’s mid-January, which implies the jokes about New Year’s resolutions are ideally fading out along with your seasonal anxiety. Oh, and NOAA’s and NASA’s last 2019 worldwide temperature level analyses have actually dropped. (No need to get the celebration hats and noisemakers back out.)

Let’s start with the numbers. In 2015 is available in as the 2nd warmest on record in almost every dataset. The UK Met Office dataset has it in 3rd location, as does one satellite dataset (though it is a bit out of step with other satellite records). Satellite datasets procedure temperature levels greater in the atmosphere instead of surface temperature levels, so small differences are not unusual. Surface area temperature datasets typically return to the late 1800 s, while satellite datasets start in 1979.


The biggest piece of context you require to understand these yearly updates is the El Niño Southern Oscillation– a see-saw of Pacific Ocean temperatures that pushes the worldwide average a little above or below the long-term trend each year. Years in which El Niño controls tend to have a higher global average surface temperature, while La Niña years are a little cooler.

This pattern was actually quite neutral in 2019, starting somewhat to the La Niña side of neutral and ending on the El Niño side, however without ever being strong enough to be classified as either. That suggests 2019 got just a little upward increase. And still, it ranks as the 2nd warmest year on record, behind only 2016, which saw a strong El Niño.

This comes as no surprise to environment researchers. As we noted last year, the UK Met Workplace, the Berkeley Earth group, and NASA’s Gavin Schmidt all predicted that 2019 would probably end up 2 nd based on the outlook for a neutral El Niño Southern Oscillation.

One can contrast that with those who reject the science of human-caused climate change and have declared for years now that the warming pattern would stop and reverse. In 2015 offers yet another data point that stops working to match their hypothesis.

For the United States, 2019 was only the 34 th hottest year on record. While parts of the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic had a very warm year, the Northern Plains were rather cool. Alaska had its hottest year on record, though, at a remarkable 6.2 ° F above the 1925-2000 average.


On the precipitation side, it was the 2nd wettest year on record for the US. That included a general enhancement in dry spell conditions, although the Four Corners area and southernmost Alaska were rather dry.

The US knowledgeable 14 weather-related disasters going beyond a billion dollars in damage (adjusted for inflation), for a total of $45 billion in direct losses. That ranks 4th because 1980 and ties 2018.


The outlook for the El Niño Southern Oscillation calls for neutral conditions to continue through the very first half of2020 The UK Met Workplace prediction, on the other hand, would have 2020 in a virtual tie with 2016 for the warmest year.

Disallowing a significant volcanic eruption, next year will yet once again be one of the very warmest on record.

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