NOAA: October is 6th Consecutive Month of Record-Breaking Heat

Nov 19, 2015

2015 now expected to break the record for warmest year ever recorded.

October was the 6th consecutive month of record-breaking heat.  That's according to a new report from NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information based in Asheville.  The monthly report finds there has never been a hotter October on record.  That marks the 6th consecutive month a monthly global temperature record was broken.  It was also the greatest above-average temperature from the average for any month.  And 2015 is now expected to go down as the warmest year on record, topping 2014, the previous record holder. 

From NOAA's news release:

October 2015

  • The October temperature across global land and ocean surfaces was 1.76°F (0.98°C) above the 20th century average. This was the highest for October in the 1880-2015 record, surpassing the previous record set just last year by 0.36°F (0.20°C), and marking the sixth consecutive month a monthly global temperature record has been broken. This record high departure from average surpassed the previous record set last month by 0.13°F (0.07°C).
  • The October globally-averaged land surface temperature was 2.39°F (1.33°C) above the 20th century average. This was the highest for October in the 1880-2015 record, surpassing the previous record set in October 2011 by 0.31°F (0.17°C).
  • The October globally-averaged sea surface temperature was 1.53°F (0.85°C) above the 20th century average. This was the highest for October in the 1880-2015 record, surpassing the previous record set last year by 0.27°F (0.15°C).  This was also the highest departure from average for any of the 1630 months of recordkeeping, surpassing the previous record set last month by 0.07°F (0.04°C).
  • The average Arctic sea ice extent for October 2015 was 460,000 square miles (13.4 percent) below the 1981-2010 average. This was the sixth smallest October extent since records began in 1979, according to analysis by the National Snow and Ice Data Center using data from NOAA and NASA.
  • Antarctic sea ice extent during October 2015 was 90,000 square miles (1.3 percent) above the 1981-2010 average, the 14th largest in the 37-year period of record. On October 6th, the Antarctic sea ice extent reached its annual maximum extent at 7.24 million square miles, slightly above average and in contrast to the past three years when record large maximum sea ice extents were observed.
  • According to data from NOAA analyzed by the Rutgers Global Snow Lab, the Northern Hemisphere snow cover extent during October was 1.49 million square miles above the 1981-2010 average and the seventh largest in the 48-year period of record. Eurasia had its sixth largest October snow cover extent, while North America had its 11th largest.

Year to date (January-October 2015)

  • The year-to-date temperature across global land and ocean surfaces was 1.55°F (0.86°C) above the 20th century average. This was the highest for January-October in the 1880-2015 record, surpassing the previous record set last year by 0.22°F (0.12°C). Eight of the first ten months in 2015 have been record warm for their respective months.
  • The year-to-date globally-averaged land surface temperature was 2.30°F (1.28°C) above the 20th century average. This was also the highest for January-October in the 1880-2015 record, surpassing the previous record of 2007 by 0.31°F (0.17°C). 
  • The year-to-date globally-averaged sea surface temperature was 1.28°F (0.71°C) above the 20th century average. This was the highest for January-October in the 1880-2015 record, surpassing the previous record of 2014 by 0.14°F (0.08°C).

You can find a link to the full report, and a full interview with one of the authors of the report at the top of the page.