Warming Planet

Recently a lot of folks have commented to me that temperatures here in the Midlands are warmer than normal. The conversation often continues with questions about global warming.

So let’s start with the first observation: the Midlands. Yes temperatures have been warmer than normal here for several years. A look back over the past 5 years in Columbia shows 46 of the 60 months recorded above average temperatures. That’s been even more dramatic in the past two years. The temperatures for all of 2015 were 2.6° above average and the temperatures for 2016 were a full 3° above average. And this year so far is running 8.8° above average. But remember a warmer Columbia does not necessarily mean a warmer planet. After all, we’re just a tiny spec on the huge earth. To see if the rest of the planet is warming, we have to look at the bigger picture. Unfortunately the bigger picture shows that the earth is warming dramatically. Scientists have reliable temperature records going back to the 1880’s. With that in mind, think about the following statement. 17 of the hottest years on record have come in the past 19 years. What’s even more dramatic is that 2016 was the hottest year on record, with the second hottest being 2015, and the 3rd hottest being 2014. So the planet is heating up at a dramatic rate and the projection is for this to continue for the foreseeable future. Check out this NOAA website: https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/global/201613