According to new data from the US government, temperatures in March were the second hottest ever recorded in the world.
Record records in Alaska and Australia pushed last month to record highs. The hottest March is recorded in 2016, according to data released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) on Thursday.
The regions that experienced the warmest temperature differences last month are Australia, Southwest and Central Asia, Alaska and Northwestern Canada. Alaska and Australia experienced their hottest temperatures in March since records were kept in 1925 and 1910, respectively.
Springtime did not bode well for the polar ice caps either. The amount of sea ice in the Arctic was 5.7% below its 1981-2010 average. The Antarctic ice sheet was down 21.6% from the same average – the second smallest in March after 2017.
Overall, the first quarter of 2019 was the third warmest recorded on the planet, NOAA scientists said. And last month continued to add to the upward trend in temperatures: according to NOAA, March was the 411 in a row with above-average global temperatures.
The data add to an alarming trend of global warming. NASA scientists announced that 2018 was the fourth hottest year ever recorded. Another study from a group of international scientists published in January revealed that 2018 was the hottest year ever recorded for ocean temperatures.