Government Lists 2013's Most Extreme Weather Events: Six Takeaways

By Thomas M. Kostigen for National Geographic
1/31/2014 1:26:50 PM

The following is an excerpt from National Geographic:

"From record hot and cold temperatures to floods and droughts, 2013 was a wacky year for weather. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) weighed in Wednesday with its list of the year's most significant climate anomalies and events.

Wildfires in California are among the six most extreme weather events around the globe. PHOTOGRAPH BY DAN STEINBERG, AP

The report puts specific weather events into historical context, with the general effect of suggesting that global temperature rise is driving heightened weather extremes. For instance, NOAA reports that 2013 ranks as the fourth warmest year on record since 1880.

"It also marked the 37th consecutive year with a global temperature above the 20th century average," the agency said in its report. "The last below-average annual temperature was 1976. Including 2013, all 13 years of the 21st century (2001-2013) rank among the 15 warmest in the 134-year period of record."

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