Global temperature in 2001 second warmest on record - UN meteorological agency

Global temperature in 2001 second warmest on record - UN meteorological agency

The global average surface temperature in 2001 is expected to be the second warmest on record, nearly half a degree above the average for the past 40 years, the United Nations World Meteorological Organization (WMO) has said.

A statement released yesterday by the Geneva-based agency says that the Earth's mean surface temperature this year is 0.42°C degrees above the 1961-90 average. The warmest year in the 1860-to-present record occurred in 1998, according to the data maintained by WMO Members, while nine of the 10 warmest years have occurred since 1990, including 1999 and 2000.

According to WMO, these conditions are part of a continuing trend to warmer global temperatures that have resulted in a rise of more than 0.6°C during the past 100 years. But the rise in temperature has not been continuous: since 1976, the global average has risen at a rate approximately three times faster than the century-scale trend. 2001 will be the 23rd consecutive year with the global mean surface temperature above the 1961-90 average.