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Global Average Temperature Highest in 4,000 Years

Update Date: Mar 09, 2013 12:21 AM EST

According to a recent report, Earth has reached the highest average temperature in 4,000 years. Not only that, but Earth will even get warmer and reach the temperature level that was never seen on Earth since ice age happened.

The study shows that the planet now is warmer than it's been during 70 to 80% of the last 11,300 years.

The study was done by researchers at Oregon State University (OSU) and Harvard University. It was published in the journal Science this week.

Lead author Shaun Marcott addresses that past research on previous global temperature change has mostly focused on the last 2,000 years.

"We already knew that on a global scale, Earth is warmer today than it was over much of the past 2,000 years," Marcott says. "Now we know that it is warmer than most of the past 11,300 years."

The report says that global temperatures increased slowly until approximately 6,000 years ago, when a gradual cooling phase began and lasted for around 5,000 years. However, that stopped around 200 years, when temperatures started to increase and they haven’t stopped since.

According to the research, a one-degree temperature variation that took 11 millennia to happen since the end of the last major ice age has now been replicated in 150 years, since the early days of the Industrial Revolution.

In the same framework, the decade 2000-2009 was one of the warmest since modern record-keeping began, but global mean temperatures didn't break the levels of the early Holocene. Now they are on track to do so. If the scientists' forecasts are correct, the planet will be warmer in 2100 than it has been for 11,300 years.

Scientist and researchers uses a variety of metrics that contain both physical and chemical signatures, such as ice cores, cave formations, and coral reefs to guess the climate in the past.

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