The U.N. weather agency announced that the last four years have been the warmest ever recorded since reliable measurements began.
The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) also says that the 20 warmest years in history occurred during the past 22 years.
The WMO went on to point out that the unprecedented warming continues this year, with Australia experiencing its hottest January on record.
“The degree of warming during the past four years has been exceptional, both on land and in the ocean,” said WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas.
Oceans to Change Color
The distinctive blue color that Earth presents to the universe may be altered by the end of this century due to effects of a warmer climate.
A team of U.S. and British researchers modeled how phytoplankton absorb and reflect light, and how the ocean’s color will change as global warming alters the composition of those microorganisms living in it.
The scientists predict that blue regions, such as the subtropics, will become more blue, while areas nearer the poles may turn a deeper green as warmer waters stimulate larger and more diverse blooms of phytoplankton.
“There will be a noticeable difference in the color of 50 percent of the ocean by the end of the 21st century,” said lead researcher Stephanie Dutkiewicz of MIT.