In records dating back to the 19th century, 2016 was the hottest year before 2015 and 2017, with 2018 in fourth place.
Feb. 7, 2019
The world body’s World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said in November that 2018 was set to be the fourth-warmest year in recorded history, stressing the urgent need for action to rein in runaway global warming.
On Wednesday, it incorporated the final weeks of 2018 into its climate models and concluded that average global surface temperature last year was one degree Celsius above pre-industrial baseline levels.
In WMO records dating back to the 19th century, 2016 was the hottest year – boosted by a strong El Nino that normally tips the mercury northwards – before 2015 and 2017, with 2018 in fourth.
The 20-warmest years in history all occurred within the last 22 years, while the outlook is for more sizzling heat approaching levels that most governments view as dangerous for the Earth, according to the WMO’s report.