For the third time this winter, temperatures in the Arctic are forecast to rise to near freezing, due to a massive storm that is brewing in the North Atlantic. The continued dumping of warm, moist air into the Arctic, along with the overall rise of global temperatures and a warm Arctic winter, is hampering the region’s ability to generate new sea ice cover, already at a record low since the season started last September.
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2016 was the hottest year on record for planet Earth, in the 137 years that global temperature records have been kept. This news was released by NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) confirming their results. This event also marks the third year in a row, starting in 2014, that global surface temperature records have been broken, with each successive year topping its predecessor.

“2016 is remarkably the third record year in a row in this series,” exclaims GISS Director Gavin Schmidt. “We don’t expect record years every year, but the ongoing long-term warming trend is clear.”
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New studies have been coming to light that say that the apparent pause in the increase in ocean temperatures between 1998 and 2014 may never have happened to begin with, with the revised data instead showing a steady increase through that period.

According to a NOAA study that was released last year, the discrepancy came about due to the use of ship-based temperature readings, as opposed to temperatures recorded by ocean buoys. Buoys have a tendency to report lower temperatures than their ship-based counterparts, and are more accurate and consistent in their readings. In the 1990s, most readings were taken from ships, but now 85 percent of temperature readings are now provided by buoy-based sensors.
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The National Atmospheric and Oceanic Administration has released its annual Arctic Report Card, assessing the state of the climate above 60º north, and region’s grades are not good: higher temperatures, lower snow and ice cover, and alarming biological activity marred the report’s findings.
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