The 2004 year was the fourth warmest since records began in the nineteenth century. James Hansen of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies at NASA, and colleagues compiled data from weather stations on the ground and satellite measurements of ocean surface temperatures.
With 0,48 degree Celsius more compared to the 1951-1980 period, the global average temperature 2004 is second only to those of 1998, 2002 and 2003, confirming a softening trend observed over the last thirty years. For researchers, this increase
not only originate from natural causes such as climate El Nino or volcanic eruptions, could disrupt the climate for a few years (in
Generally, fluctuations from year to year are more important than the long-term variation, but this does not detract from the value of the latter). The trend would come in part not
negligible human activities (especially the burning of fossil fuels generates greenhouse gases).
Obviously, fluctuations exist at regional level. In Alaska and in parts of Europe and the Caspian Sea, average annual temperatures have been particularly high in 2004, in contrast to the United States. According to projections by James Hansen,
2005 could also break records. The calculations for a long time by his team and others suggest in fact that the Earth now absorbs much more solar energy than it reflects, even if the consequences can be masked by natural fluctuations.
NYT 10 / 02 / 05 (2004 Was Warmest Year Ever Fourth-Recorded)