Global temperatures hit an unprecedented high in 2015, with temps shattering the previous record set in 2014 and reaching 1 degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels for the first time in recorded history.
That’s according to new research released Wednesday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and NASA.
“Weather and temperature data are facts. They’re not opinions. And what the data is showing is that climate change is occurring,” Howard Learner, president and executive director of the Chicago-based Environmental Law and Policy Center, said in response to the new figures. “And 2015 being the warmest year on record is a strong indicator that here in Chicago and the United States and globally, we need to step up and act smartly and accelerate climate change solutions.”
Last year, the planet’s average surface temperature was 58.62 degrees Fahrenheit (14.79 Celsius) — an increase of 0.29 degrees Fahrenheit (0.16 degrees Celsius) compared to the previous record set in 2014, according to NOAA.