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2010 could be hottest year ever

india Updated: May 19, 2010 00:56 IST
Chetan Chauhan
Chetan Chauhan
Hindustan Times
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If you think summer has never been this hot, you’re quite right. What you’re experiencing could well be the hottest summer in 100 years.

The first four months of 2010 have been the hottest on record and north India hasn’t been this warm in 100 years, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) — America’s climate agency, which monitor global weather using satellites — said on Tuesday. If this trend continues, 2010 could be the warmest in history.

“March has been recorded as the warmest month in the last 60 years in north India,” said the NOAA report. Average global temperature in January-April was 13.3 degree Celsius, 0.69 degrees above the average recorded since 1880.

Three regions in the world — Canada, North Africa and South Asia — recorded average temperatures higher than the rest of the world.

The Indian Meteorological Department reported the maximum on Sunday touched 47 degrees in some places in Haryana — several degrees above normal for this time of the year.

The NOAA said the heat wave was a visible indication of climate change. Indian weather experts blamed it on EL Nino — the warming of ocean temperatures in the Pacific that disrupts weather around the world — but said climate change had caused a swifter increase in night temperatures.

“Records show that on average, night temperatures in north India have been 1-1.5 degree Celsius higher than previous years,” said Dr Krishna Kumar of the Pune-based Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology.

A hotter earth’s surface also meant Arctic sea ice — the global cooling agent — was melting faster. Satellite data showed snow cover was the fourth lowest on record since 1967, the NOAA said.

“January-April 2010 was the 34th consecutive year with above average temperatures,” the report said. The only exception was China, which recorded its wettest and coldest April since 1974.