Climate Change: 2015 to be Warmest Year on Record

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As world leaders gather in France to talk about climate change, the impact it is having on our planet, and what can be done about it, we received sobering news a few days back when it was reported that 2015 is on track to be the warmest year on record.

According to the World Meteorological Organization data collected through the end of October shows that the Earth is on course for the warmest 12 month period since researchers first began keeping records more than 135 years ago. Worse yet, studies also say that the period from 2011-2015 is the warmest ever recorded as well, which shows that this is an ongoing trend.

When compared to historical records that date back to 1880, it appears that on a global level we are now averaging temperatures that are approximately 1ºC warmer than they were back then. That might not seem like a lot, but it is enough to begin shifting global weather patterns, melting ice caps, and causing ocean levels to rise.

The increasing temperatures for 2015 are blamed on the continued emission of “greenhouse gases” such as carbon dioxide, and a strong El Niño, which is still ramping up in the Pacific. The so called Godzilla El Niño is expected to impact weather patterns world wide, causing ocean temperatures to rise, and creating major storms in North America. Meanwhile, just about every corner of the globe has recorded its warmest year ever, with the trend of increased temperatures looking to continue.

All of this does not bode well for our planet, nor the outdoor spaces that we all love so much. If the trend continues, those snowcapped peaks that we enjoy climbing could become a thing of the past, and we already know that most of the world’s glaciers are in a full retreat. So, while the world’s leaders look for solutions to this problem, we should be doing the same. Think about the things you can do in your life, or around your house, that could make a difference. Every little bit counts, and climate change is something that is going to have an impact on all of us, sooner or later.

Kraig Becker