2014 is turning into a superlative year for global temperature. September was the warmest such month on record, according to the monthly climate report by NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center. This follows the warmest August on record, and the warmest summer on record, as well. And year to date, 2014 ties with 1998 and 2010 — two of the warmest years in recorded history — with a temperature departure of 1.22 degrees above average.
“If 2014 maintains this temperature departure from average for the remainder of the year, it will be the warmest year on record,” says the report.
While we still have three months to see whether the calendar year will set a record, the past 12 months — October 2013 through September 2014 — was the warmest 12-month period on record, at 1.24 degrees above the 20th century average temperature.
September’s average global temperature was 1.3 degrees above the 20th century average, according to NOAA. And global sea surface temperature was an astonishing 1.19 degrees above average — making September 2014 the warmest on record for any month over the oceans.
Related: September climate in D.C.
NASA and the Japan Meteorological Agency agree on the warmth: both organizations also ranked September as the warmest on record.
Average temperature in the U.S. was far from record-breaking in September. Over the lower 48, it was a 26th warmest September on record, and the coolest since 2011, according to NOAA’s national report.
But on the West Coast, California is still on track to see its warmest year on record, with a year to date temperature departure of an incredible 4.1 degrees, fueled by (and fueling) a historic drought.
At the poles, Arctic sea ice bottomed out at the sixth smallest extent on record, while the Antarctic reached its largest extent on record since 1979.