UN agency: Arctic ice loss ‘disturbing’ sign of climate change

The WMO’s report notes that 2012 was the ninth warmest year since records began in 1850 “despite the cooling influence of a La Niña episode early in the year,” a reference to cooler-than-normal portions of the Pacific Ocean.

“Although the rate of warming varies from year to year due to natural variability caused by the El Niño cycle, volcanic eruptions and other phenomena, the sustained warming of the lower atmosphere is a worrisome sign,” said Jarraud, whose agency noted that the years 2001–2012 were all among the top 13 warmest on record.