Global Temperature Anomalies, Year 2009

The global map, shown above, the graph found below, as well as the narrative included below are from

the National Climatic Data Center.


Global Highlights

  • Global land and ocean annual surface temperatures through December tied with 2006 as the fifth warmest on record, at 0.56°C (1.01°F) above the 20th century average.
  • The 2000-2009 decade is the warmest on record, with an average global surface temperature of 0.54°C (0.96°F) above the 20th century average. This shattered the 1990s value of 0.36°C (0.65°F).
  • Ocean surface temperatures (through December) tied with 2002 and 2004 as the fourth warmest on record, at 0.48°C (0.86°F) above the 20th century average.
  • Land surface temperatures through December tied with 2003 as the seventh warmest on record, at 0.77°C (1.39°F) above the 20th century average.

Warmer-than-average temperatures occurred during the year (January-December) for most of the world's surface. The warmest above-average temperatures occurred throughout high latitude regions of the Northern Hemisphere including much of Europe and Asia, also across Mexico, Africa, and Australia. Cooler-than-average conditions occurred across the southern oceans, parts of the northeastern Pacific Ocean, central Russia, and a region spanning southern Canada and the north central contiguous United States.

Notable temperature extremes in 2009 include southern Australia's record-breaking heat wave during their summer months of January-February. January's heat wave brought numerous new temperature records across the region. Southern South Australia and most of Victoria experienced their highest maximum temperatures since 1939. However, unlike the southern states, Queensland and Northern Territory had their coolest January since 1984. A second heat wave impacted the area during early February.

The following graph is for the 1880-2009 time period.  The year 2008 in the title of the graph refers to a publication:
Smith, T. M., et al. (2008), Improvements to NOAA's Historical Merged Land-Ocean Surface Temperature Analysis (1880-2006),
J. Climate
, 21, 2283-2293.

Applied Climate Science 
School of Natural Resources