For the Record: World Meteorological Organization Says Past Decade Warmest


Coinciding with the opening of the Copenhagen climate change conference, the World Meteorological Organization issued a press release that declares:

The year 2009 is likely to rank in the top 10 warmest on record since the beginning of instrumental climate records in 1850, according to data sources compiled by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). The global combined sea surface and land surface air temperature for 2009 (January–October) is currently estimated at 0.44°C ± 0.11°C (0.79°F ± 0.20°F) above the 1961–1990 annual average of 14.00°C/57.2°F. The current nominal ranking of 2009, which does not account for uncertainties in the annual averages, places it as the fifth-warmest year. The decade of the 2000s (2000–2009) was warmer than the decade spanning the 1990s (1990–1999), which in turn was warmer than the 1980s (1980–1989). More complete data for the remainder of the year 2009 will be analysed at the beginning of 2010 to update the current assessment.

The last decade may well be the warmest in the modern record, but what about the leaked October 12, 2009 Climategate email from National Climatic Data Center head Kevin Trenberth where he wrote: 

The fact is that we can't account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can't.

It appears that the planet has been stuck for about ten years at a temperature that is about 0.8 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than the 1961-1998 average. See global temperature anomaly chart comparing data from the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC), the Climate Research Unit (CRU), the University of Alabama Huntsville (UAH) and Remote Sensing Services (RSS)  below:

Temp Anomalies

Read the whole WMO statement here.