The globally averaged temperature for 2013 tied as the 4th warmest year since record keeping began in 1880, according to NOAA (National Oceanic And Atmospheric Administration) scientists. The year also marked the 37th consecutive year with a global temperature above the 20th century average. 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. The three warmest years on record are 2010, 2005 and 1998.
The global temperature average for combined land and ocean for 2013 was 1.12 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th century average of 57 degrees.
Notice the white (near normal temperature) area in the equatorial waters of the Pacific ocean on the above map. The temperature graphic illustrates the neutral ocean pattern of last year. Cooler than average temperatures would have been called La Nina, while warmer than average temps would have highlighted an El Nino pattern.
Meteorologist Rod Hill, follow me @