TIME climate change

April 2014 Ties for Hottest on Record

An Indian woman carries a bucket filled with drinking water as she walks on dry mud against blowing sand, along the Brahmaputra river on the eve of World Water Day in Gauhati, India, March 21, 2014.
An Indian woman carries a bucket filled with drinking water as she walks on dry mud against blowing sand, along the Brahmaputra river in Gauhati, India, March 21, 2014. Anupam Nath—AP

The average temperature over land and ocean in April equalled a record set in 2010 with global temperatures 1.39°F above the 20th-century average

April 2014 tied the global record for hottest ever, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced this week.

The average temperature over land and ocean tied with 2010 as the hottest ever on record for April, at 1.39°F above the 20th century average. The January-April period is the sixth warmest period on record, tying with 2005, with land surface temperatures 1.89°F above the 20th century average.

Many areas all over the globe were much warmer than usual and the biggest differences were recorded in Siberia where temperatures were more than 9°F above the 1981–2010 average. Parts of eastern Australia and scattered regions in every major ocean basin reached record levels of heat, and no land areas saw record cold levels.

Those record highs and lows tie with recent studies warning of the consequences of climate change.

Precipitation-wise, records were also established. South America, northern Africa and Southeast Asia were historically dry, while regions of southeastern U.S., southern Argentina, and the southeastern tip of South Africa experienced the wettest April ever.

The last time April had below-average temperatures was in 1976 and the last time any month had below-average temperatures was February 1985. The global sea ice extent was the third largest on record for April and 4.5 percent above the 1981–2010 average.

 

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