The oceans hit record highs in 2021, another sign of a worsening climate crisis

Last year was among the warmest ever recorded on the planet, and ocean temperatures reached a historic high – another sign of the worsening human-caused climate crisis.

In a report published Thursday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, researchers found that 2021 was the sixth warmest year ever. Overall the last eight years have been the hottest years since registration began in 1880, according to a similar analysis released Thursday by NASA.

The earth’s average soil and sea surface temperature was 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th century average.

And the temperatures in the world’s oceans reached record highs. High ocean temperatures could contribute to rising sea levels, NOAA said, causing more severe storms and floods.

“Science leaves no room for doubt: Climate change is the existential threat of our time, ”NASA Administrator Bill Nelson said in a press release. Year after year temperature heights for the planet “[underscore] the need for courageous action to secure the future of our country – and all of humanity, ”he said.

NASA scientists clearly pointed to the cause of the worsening climate crisis: “human activities that have increased emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.”

A storm-damaged house in September after Hurricane Ida hit Louisiana.
A storm-damaged house in September after Hurricane Ida hit Louisiana.

Sean Rayford via Getty Images

Global warming is fueling deadly climate disasters, including intense droughts, extreme heat, worsening forest fires and severe storms and floods.

In 2021, the Earth experienced warmest July ever (again), that to date largest single natural fire in California History (again), and deadly hurricanes and floods along the Gulf of Mexico and on Atlantic coast in USA (again).


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