« Sarah Burke Dead at 29 after Half-Pipe Skiing Accident | Main | After $350M, Success of Law Enforcement Wireless Network Still ‘Doubtful’ »

NASA: 2011 the Ninth-Warmest Year Since 1880

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) – Last year was the ninth-warmest year on Earth since 1880, continuing a trend “in which nine of the 10 warmest years in the modern meteorological record have occurred since the year 2000,” NASA scientists said Thursday.

"We know the planet is absorbing more energy than it is emitting," said James E. Hansen, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies. "So we are continuing to see a trend toward higher temperatures. Even with the cooling effects of a strong La Nina influence and low solar activity for the past several years, 2011 was one of the 10 warmest years on record."


NASA says 2011 was 0.22 degrees Fahrenheit hotter than 2010, the warmest year on GISS' record.

“Higher temperatures today are largely sustained by increased atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, especially carbon dioxide,” NASA said in a news release. “These gases absorb infrared radiation emitted by Earth and release that energy into the atmosphere rather than allowing it to escape to space. As their atmospheric concentration has increased, the amount of energy ‘trapped’ by these gases has led to higher temperatures.”

Scientists and politicians alike have long debated whether or not global warming actually exists, and the degree to which increasing temperatures could affect human life.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>

ABC News Radio