NY TIMES February 10, 2005 2004 Was Fourth-Warmest Year Ever Recorded By ANDREW C. REVKIN ast year was the fourth warmest since systematic temperature measurements began around the world in the 19th century, NASA scientists said yesterday. Particularly high temperatures were measured over Alaska, the Caspian Sea region of Europe and the Antarctic Peninsula, while the United States was unusually cool. But the global average continued a 30-year rise that is "due primarily to increasing greenhouse gases in the atmosphere," said Dr. James E. Hansen, director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, in Manhattan. The main source of such gases is smokestack and tailpipe emissions from burning coal and oil. The highest global average was measured in 1998, when temperatures were raised by a strong cycle of El Niño in the Pacific Ocean; 2002 and 2003 were second and third warmest. Dr. Hansen said a weak Niño pattern was likely to make 2005 at least the second warmest year and could push it beyond 1998 and set a record. The unusual nature of the recent warming was corroborated separately yesterday by a new analysis of 2,000 years of indirect temperature records in tree rings, stalagmites, seabed layers, and other evidence from around the Northern Hemisphere. That study, published in the journal Nature, found that previous peaks of warming, particularly during medieval times about 1,000 years ago, were as warm as the 20th-century average but that no spikes in the last 2,000 years matched the warming since 1990. "... "... "..." _________________________ Peter Anderson, President RECYCLEWORLDS CONSULTING 4513 Vernon Blvd. Suite 15 Madison, WI 53705-4964 Ph: (608) 231-1100 Fax: (608) 233-0011 Cell: (608) 698-1314 eMail: email@example.com web: www.recycleworlds.net CONFIDENTIAL This message, and all attachments thereto, is covered by the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, 18 U.S.C., Sections 2510-2521. This message is CONFIDENTIAL. If you are not the intended recipient of this message, then any retention, dissemination, distribution or copying of this communication is strictly prohibited. Please notify me if you received this message in error at firstname.lastname@example.org and then delete it.