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WASHINGTON - Last year tied with 2005 as the warmest year on record for global surface temperature, US

Global warming contributed to the devastating floods in Pakistan

Earth in 2010 experienced temperatures higher than 20th century average for 34th year in a row.

 

 

 government scientists said in a report on Wednesday that offered the latest data on climate change.

The Earth in 2010 experienced temperatures higher than the 20th century average for the 34th year in a row, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said.

Overall, 2010 and 2005 were 1.12 degrees Fahrenheit (0.62 Celsius) above the 20th century average when taking a combination of land and water surface temperatures across the world, it said.

Those two years were also the highest in temperature since record-keeping began in 1880.

Last year was the wettest on record, NOAA said citing Global Historical Climatology Network which made the calculation based on global average precipitation, even though regional precipitation patterns varied widely.

When it came to hurricanes and storms, the Pacific Ocean saw the fewest number of hurricanes and named storms, three and seven respectively, since the 1960s.

But the Atlantic Ocean told a different story, with 12 hurricanes and 19 named storms, which include tropical storms and depressions, marking the second highest number of hurricanes on record and third highest for storms.

The analysis also tracked weather changes that contributed to massive floods in Pakistan and a heat wave in Russia, saying an "unusually strong jet stream" from June to August was to blame.

"The jet stream remained locked in place for weeks, bringing an unprecedented two-month heat wave to Russia and contributing to devastating floods in Pakistan at the end of July," it said.

In the United States alone, 2010 marked the 14th year in a row with higher annual average temperatures when compared to the long term average since 1895.

Record snowfalls at the start of the year in the northeast including Washington and Philadelphia were part of a winter pattern driven by El Nino and the Arctic Oscillation, NOAA said.

A separate report by Canada's Environment Ministry said that last year was the warmest in Canada since it began keeping meteorological records 63 years ago.

Canada's second warmest year was 1998, when temperatures were 4.5 degrees Fahrenheit (2.5 degrees Celsius) higher than normal, the ministry said, adding that its records went back to 1948.

International studies published on Sunday warned that global warming could wipe out three-quarters of Europe's alpine glaciers by 2100 and hike sea levels by four meters (13 feet) by the year 3000 through melting the West Antarctic icesheet.

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