2017 Takes Second Place for Hottest Year on record

Earth’s surface temperatures in 2017 were the second warmest since 1880, when global estimates first became feasible, NASA scientists found. Global temperatures in 2017 were second only to 2016, which still holds the record for the hottest year. However, 2017 was the warmest year on record that did not start with an El Niño weather pattern, as the previous two years did. In a separate, independent analysis, NOAA scientists found that 2017 was the third-warmest year in their record. The minor difference is due to different methods to analyze global temperatures used by the two agencies, although over the long-term the records remain in strong agreement.

Other supporting visualizations can be downloaded from NASA’s Scientific Visualization Studio.