Earth’s global average surface temperature in 2021 tied with 2018 as the sixth warmest on record, according to independent analyses done by NASA and NOAA.
This striking visualization presents monthly global temperature anomalies between the years 1880-2021.
These temperatures are based on the GISS Surface Temperature Analysis (GISTEMP v4), an estimate of global surface temperature change. Anomalies are defined relative to a base period of 1951-1980.
It takes about a minute to run, but it’s worth it as the final few seconds then show very dramatically just how much the temperature has risen.
Continuing the planet’s long-term warming trend, global temperatures in 2021 were 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit (or 0.85 degrees Celsius) above the average for NASA’s baseline period, according to scientists at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) in New York.
Collectively, the past eight years are the top eight warmest years since modern record keeping began in 1880. This annual temperature data makes up the global temperature record – and it’s how scientists know that the planet is warming.