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You are here: Home / Data and maps / Datasets / External datasets catalogue / Global Surface Temperature Anomalies and Annual Global (land and ocean combined) Anomalies (degrees C)

Global Surface Temperature Anomalies and Annual Global (land and ocean combined) Anomalies (degrees C)

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National Climatic Data Center (NCDC.NOAA.GOV): Global Surface Temperature Anomalies and Annual Global (land and ocean combined) Anomalies (degrees C)

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Indicators using this data

Global and European temperature Global and European temperature This indicator shows absolute changes and rates of change in average near-surface temperature for the globe and for a region covering Europe. Near-surface air temperature gives one of the clearest and most consistent signals of global and regional climate change, especially in recent decades. It has been measured for many decades or even centuries at some locations and a dense network of stations across the globe, and especially in Europe, provide regular monitoring of temperature, using standardised measurements, quality control and homogeneity procedures. This indicator provides guidance for the following policy-relevant questions:  Will the global average temperature increase stay within the UNFCCC policy target of 2.0°C above pre-industrial levels?  Will the rate of global average temperature increase stay below the indicative proposed target of 0.2°C increase per decade? Global average annual temperature deviations, ‘anomalies’, are discussed relative to a ‘pre-industrial’ period between 1850 and 1899 (beginning of instrumental temperature records).  During this time, anthropogenic greenhouse gases from the industrial revolution (between 1750 and 1850) are considered to have a relatively small influence on climate compared to natural influences. However it should be noted that owing to earlier changes in the climate due to internal and forced natural variability there was not one single pre-industrial climate and it is not clear that there is a rigorous scientific definition of the term ‘pre-industrial climate’. Temperature changes also influence other aspects of the climate system which can impact on human activities, including sea level, intensity and frequency of floods and droughts, biota and food productivity and infectious diseases. In addition to the global average target, seasonal variations and spatial distributions of temperature change are important, for example to understand the risks that current climate poses to human and natural systems and to assess how these may be impacted by future climate change.

Produced figures

Change in global average temperature from three sources (1850–2011) Change in global average temperature from three sources (1850–2011) Left figure: Global average air temperature anomalies (1850 to 2011) in degrees Celsius (°C) relative to a pre-industrial baseline period for 3 analyses of observations: 1) Black line - HadCRUT3 from the UK Met Office Hadley Centre and University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit, baseline period 1850-1899 (Brohan et al., 2006) with the grey area representing the 95% confidence range, 2) Red line – MLOST from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Climatic Data Centre, baseline period 1880-1899 (Smith et al., 2008), and 3) Blue line - GISSTemp from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Goddard Institute for Space Studies, baseline period 1880-1899 (Hansen et al., 2010). Upper graph shows annual anomalies and lower graph shows decadal average anomalies for the same datasets. Right figure: Rates of change of global average temperature (1850 to 2011) in ºC per decade, based on 10-year running average of the 3 datasets: 1) Black line - HadCRUT3 from the UK Met Office Hadley Centre and University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit, baseline period 1850-1899 (Brohan et al., 2006), 2) Red line – MLOST from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Climatic Data Centre, baseline period 1880-1899 (Smith et al., 2008), and 3) Blue line - GISSTemp from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Goddard Institute for Space Studies, baseline period 1880-1899 (Hansen et al., 2010).

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