To the surprise of almost no one, both NASA and NOAA confirmed today that 2016 was the hottest year on record globally, and the second-hottest year in the U.S. This is the third consecutive year that a new global record has been set, and 16 of the hottest 17 years on record have all occurred since 2001.
Here in Atlanta, the average annual temperature was 3.28 degrees above average.
Natural phenomena such as El Niño contributed to the global average temperature over the first third of 2016, and January through September (with the exception of June) set the record for those months, but the bulk of the global temperature rise was due to man-made increases in carbon dioxide levels.
The President-elect has called global warming a hoax and a Chinese plot, has vowed to roll back Obama's efforts to cut emissions of greenhouse gases, and is filling his administration with climate-change deniers, from proposed EPA chief Scott Pruitt to former ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State.
In a May 2016 op-ed in the National Review, Pruitt wrote. "Healthy debate is the lifeblood of American democracy, and global warming has inspired one of the major policy debates of our time. That debate is far from settled. Scientists continue to disagree about the degree and extent of global warming and its connection to the actions of mankind." While there may be an on-going policy debate over what to do about climate change, there is no virtually no scientific debate about its existence or cause, with the vast majority of climate scientists demonstrating time and time again that global warming is real and human-induced.
Tillerson recently admitted that climate change does exist (duh, have you been outside for the past 15 years?), but claims that the ability to predict the effects of greenhouse gas emissions is “very limited." Climate scientists would take exception at that qualification.
The house is on fire, almost literally, and Trainwreck is denying the existence of flames, saying claims of arson are unfounded, and refuses to call the Fire Department. This isn't going to end well for anyone.