Global average surface temperature, with 2017 Jan-June average and 2017 predicted annual temperature. Data: NOAA. Graphic: Zeke Hausfather

21 July 2017 (Climate Feedback) – ThinkProgress published a brief but influential article commenting on record warm global temperature over the first half of 2017 [2017 is so unexpectedly warm it is freaking out climate scientists]. The scientists who have reviewed the article confirm it accurately reports that 2017 is on track to being one of the warmest years on record. Reviewers note this wasn’t as unexpected as the article states, but the fact that 2017 global surface temperatures are that high is a clear reminder that global warming has not stopped or slowed down.


These comments are the overall opinion of scientists on the article, they are substantiated by their knowledge in the field and by the content of the analysis in the annotations on the article.

Zeke Hausfather, Research Scientist, Berkeley Earth: While generally accurate, the article may overstate how unusual 2017 is shaping up to be. It is very unlikely to set a new temperature record in any of the different global surface temperature datasets (NOAA, NASA, Hadley, Berkeley Earth), and is likely to either be the second or third warmest on record. If 2017 temperatures end up comparable to or slightly below 2015, a year where the El Niño contribution was not that large, 2017 temperatures will be quite warm but “extremely remarkable” might be overstating the case a bit.

However, even if temperatures end up being below 2015, the year 2017 will likely be a bit warmer than we’d naively expect simply based on the past warming trend. […]

“’Extremely remarkable’ 2017 heads toward record for hottest year without an El Niño episode.”

Victor Venema, Scientist, University of Bonn, Germany: At the moment, it is more likely than not that 2017 will become the second warmest year of the instrumental period. The warmest was 2016 with El Niño. So this claim is correct. [more

2017 is on track to be among the hottest year recorded, scientists are not as surprised as ThinkProgress article suggests



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