Last year was the hottest year on record globally, beating even 2015’s exceptionally high temperatures, the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) has said.
The global average temperature in 2016 was 1.1C higher than pre-industrial levels and about 0.07C higher than the previous record set in 2015.
Worldwide temperatures received a boost from a strong El Nino event, but experts say 2016 would have been record-breaking even without the Pacific warm water phenomenon.
The analysis is based on data from the UK’s Met Office Hadley Centre, the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and Nasa’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies.
WMO secretary general Petteri Taalas said: “2016 was an extreme year for the global climate and stands out as the hottest year on record, but temperatures only tell part of the story.
“Long-term indicators of human-caused climate change reached new heights in 2016.
“Carbon dioxide and methane concentrations surged to new records. “Both contribute to climate change.”
WWF UK said warming temperatures were causing the bleaching of coral reefs “at an alarming rate” and causing glaciers to melt.
“There are more and more danger signs that we are breaching the environmental limits of our planet,” said Tanya Steele, the organisation’s chief executive.”