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“The combined average temperature over global land and ocean surfaces for November 2013 was record highest for the 134-year period of record, at 0.78°C (1.40°F) above the 20 century average of 12.9°C (55.2°F),” the NOAA said in its monthly State of the Climate analysis report.
It surpasses the previous record set in 2004 by 0.03 degrees Celsius.
The report attributed warmer-than-average temperatures across most of the world’s ocean surfaces in November for the “anomalous warmth”.
“Most of the world’s land areas experienced warmer-than-average monthly temperatures, including much of Eurasia, coastal Africa, Central America, and central South America. Much of southern Russia, north west Kazakhstan, south India, and southern Madagascar were record warm,” the report went on to say.
But some regions of the world, including northern Australia, parts of North America, south west Greenland, and parts of the Southern Ocean near South America, registered cooler-than-normal temperatures.
The United Nations has warned that global temperatures will rise by at least 2C this century, and is pushing industrialised nations, emerging economies and developing countries to move toward a global climate change agreement that sufficiently reduces carbon emissions to offset any increase.
But time may be running out.
Two recent climate reports appear to signal that the best efforts will not be able to limit global warming to 2C by the end of this century.
The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) said in a report in November that carbon emissions will reach 59 billion tonnes by 2020 – 25 billion tonnes above the threshold for a 2C global rise in temperature.