WASHINGTON, June 17 — Earth's record monthly heat streak has extended to an unprecedented 13 months, the US government's climate agency said Thursday.
Global average temperature in May was the highest for the month in modern times, at 0.87 degrees Celsius above the 20th century average of 14.8 degrees Celsius, beating the previous record set in 2015 by 0.02 degrees Celsius, according to new data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
"May 2016 marks the 13th consecutive month a monthly global temperature record has been broken," the NOAA said in a statement. "(It's) the longest such streak since global temperature records began in 1880."
Areas with record warmth included much of Southeast Asia and parts of northern South America, Central America, the Caribbean, the Middle East, and northern and eastern Australia.
The more than yearlong heat streak can be partly attributed to the ocean warming phenomenon called El Niño, which has finally come to an end in May, said the NOAA.
While El Niño vanished, the La Nina ocean cooling phenomenon is coming. The NOAA predicted that La Niña will develop this summer and the chance for the development will increase to nearly 75 percent during the fall and winter. (PNA/Xinhua)