Updated 06:29 PM EST, Wed, Feb 19, 2020

2013 Sixth Warmest Year on Record Due to Climate Change

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2014 has been bitterly cold so far, but last year couldn't have been more different. A new report finds that 2013 was one of the warmest years on record due to climate change.

The World Meteorological Organization announced Monday that 2013 was the sixth warmest year on record, tied with 2007, according to Climate Central. The finding was released in their annual report on the world's climate and weather.

The World Meteorological Organization uses data from NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the UK Met Office to figure out the ranking of the warmest years. Every year except one of the 10 warmest years to date have occurred in the 21st century.

The report chronicles the extreme weather around the globe in 2013, including drought in South America and Australia, to Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines last November. The report says that sea level rise exacerbated the flooding during the typhoon, and that the heat in Australia was aided by human-induced warming.

"There is no standstill in global warming," WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud said in a statement.

According the WMO's rankings, 2013 was 0.9 degrees Fahrenheit above the average global temperature from 1961-1990, tying it with 2007. The ranking is especially significant because neither La Niña nor an El Niño occurred in 2013.

The unusual warmth of 2013 adds to the number of warm years seen in the 21st century, and to the string of decades that have each been warmer than the last. 2013 was 0.05 degrees warmer than the 2001-2010 average.

The warmth is likely to continue in 2014 and in 2015, especially due to the possibility of an El Niño this fall.

2013 was especially warm in the Southern Hemisphere. Australia had its hottest year on record, and Argentina had its second hottest. Europe also experienced is sixth warmest year on record.

The WMO report includes a study released last summer that analyzes the human-induced climate change that caused Australia's sizzling summer.

"These types of extreme Australian summers become even more frequent in simulations of the future under global warming," wrote the authors of that study, Sophie Lewis and David Karoly of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science at the University of Melbourne.

The report also includes the surpassing of the 400 parts per million of atmosphere carbon dioxide in May 2013.

Global average sea level also reached a new height in March of last year. Sea levels rose more than 0.1 inches each year from 2001-2010, which is mainly attributed to the expansion of ocean waters as they absorbed 93 percent of the excess heat on the Earth since 1971. And since 2000, more of the excess heat has been absorbed at deeper levels in the ocean.

Weather extremes have continued into this year. North America experienced an especially frigid and snowy winter, and Australia continues to experience major heat waves.

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