EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Even though this week has been one of the coldest the Borderland has seen in quite a while, 2020 is expected to go down as the hottest year on record.
There’s a 55 percent chance that 2020 will end up as the warmest on record, according to the National Oceanic Atmospheric Association (NOAA), reported by the Associated Press.
“We’re still dealing with above-normal temperatures, and that has been the case for 99 percent of our summer,” said Jason Laney of the National Weather Service (NWS).
NOAA calculations show that the first 11 months of 2020 were .02 degrees cooler than the record-hot year of 2016.
If December ends up being as much above normal as November was, then 2020 will tie with 2016 as the warmest on record.
“We’re still seeing this trend,” Laney said. “We have seen it at least every year for the last five to six years of our average temperatures getting higher and higher and higher. Some would call that the urban heat island effect but this is something we’re starting to see in our rural communities, as well.
“Because of the increased concrete, steel, inside our larger cities, like our home of El Paso, that we tend to absorb more heat,” Laney continued. “So the question on everyone’s mind: Are we the cause of climate change? Well, what I can tell you is we do contribute to it.”
According to NASA, the earth’s temperature in November was 56.95 degrees Fahrenheit, which was 1.75 degrees above the 20th-century average.
This year, so far, is the warmest on record and it’s likely to stay that way.