It shouldn’t come as a surprise that 2016 is predicted to be the hottest year on record. After all 2015 was the hottest year on record, and before that 2014. That’s right, for the third straight year, the world will experience a new, record-breaking global temperature, according to new research from NASA.
No surprise here, planetary warming does not care about the election. Now including October data. pic.twitter.com/SEUbaNRaxT— Gavin Schmidt (@ClimateOfGavin) November 15, 2016
This past October — now officially the second hottest October on record — all but ensured global temperatures will rise for a third straight year. This news comes on the heels of Donald Trump’s historic election in the country responsible for the second highest amount of CO2 emissions in the world after China (the US has, overall, emitted the most emissions of all time).
As candidate and as president-elect, Trump has threatened to end Obama’s Clean Power Plan, withdraw from the historic Paris agreement, and lift coal mining regulations such as the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards. His appointment to the EPA, Myron Ebell, is the director of the Competitive Enterprise Institute think-tank and a prominent climate change skeptic.
Although the scientific consensus on manmade climate change is well-documented, public perception of the phenomenon differs significantly. According to Pew Research Center, more than half of Americans believe that global warming is due exclusively to natural causes or that there is no evidence of climate change whatsoever.
Trump himself has said that, “There has been a little bit of warming ... but it’s been very modest and well within the range for natural variability, and whether it’s caused by human beings or not, it’s nothing to worry about.”
Of course, that statement predated three of the hottest years on record (2010, 2014, and 2015).
Whether Trump doubles down on his campaign promises and his past rhetoric, however, remains to be seen.