While reliable instrument records only go back 119 years, some argue that 1998 witnessed the warmest temperatures in 1,200 years. What is certain is that for the twentieth consecutive year, the annual global mean surface temperature exceeded the long-term average, this time by 1.2 degrees fahrenheit. The source and long-term implications of this steady rise in temperature are, of course, hotly debated. The facts are allowed to speak for themselves at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) National Climatic Data Center, which has recently released its Climate of 1998 Annual Review. At the site, users will find an overview of the year's climate and illustrated reports on topics such as Global Temperatures, Global Precipitation, Annual US National Perspective, Annual US Regional Perspective, and Extreme Events. Additional resources include archived 1998 Monthly and Special Reports from the NCDC.
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