By now, it’s almost a statistical certainty: in January 2016, we will say that 2015 was the warmest year on record; for the moment, we can clearly say that this September was the hottest on record.
According to data from NASA and the Japan Meteorological Agency showed September 2015 beat the previous record by 0.27 degrees Fahrenheit. To make things even more worrying, the runner up for the ‘hottest September award is 2014’. It might not seem like much of a difference, but the difference between the third warmest September and the fourth warmest September in the same data set was 0.18 degrees Fahrenheit.
Furthermore, when you consider the 1981 – 2010 average, the difference is huge – 0.9 degrees Fahrenheit! We’re getting hotter and hotter autumns.
The NOAA too released a worrying report, stating that even though in the continental US this wasn’t the hottest September, it is still significantly higher than previous averages.
“Record and near-record warmth spanned most of the country, with nine states in the Northeast, Midwest, and Southwest record warm,” the report said.
By now, the line isn’t even drawn on ‘is the planet warming’, it’s not even drawn on ‘is the planet warming fast’ – yes, our planet is warming, and it’s doing so fast. If we want to limit the extent of the damage that we’re doing, we have to start taking better, and more robust measures. Hopefully, the Climate Summit in Paris will pave the way for that.
Alexandra is a naturalist who is firmly in love with our planet and the environment. When she's not writing about climate or animal rights, you can usually find her doing field research or reading the latest nutritional studies.