United States, Washington: On Wednesday, two United States (US) government agencies said,Last year’s (2015) global average temperature was the warmest ever by the widest margin on record, adding to pressure for deep greenhouse gas emissions cuts scientists say are needed to arrest warming that is disrupting the global climate. Data from the United States space agency NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration showed that in 2015 the average temperature across global land and ocean surfaces was 1.62 degrees Fahrenheit (0.90 Celsius) above the 20th century average, surpassing 2014’s previous record by 0.29 F (0.16 C).
On Wednesday, scientists at the United Kingdom’s Met Office and East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit also published data confirming the United States agencies findings. This was the fourth time a global temperature record has been set this century, the agencies said in a summary of their annual report.
Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies said, “2015 was remarkable even in the context of the larger, long-term warming trend”. The sharp increase in 2015 was driven in part by El Niño, a natural weather cycle in the Pacific that warms the ocean surface every two to seven years. But scientists say human activities – notably burning fossil fuels – were the main driver behind the rise.