This year's August was the warmest for the month in 136 years of modern record-keeping, NASA scientists reported Monday.
In a news release, NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York also reported August 2016 tied with July 2016 for the warmest month ever recorded.
According to the Institute, August 2016 was 0.16 degrees Celsius warmer than the previous warmest – August of 2014 – and 0.98 degrees Celsius warmer than the mean August temperature from 1951-1980.
With both 2014 and 2015 setting heat records, 2016 is now on pace to continue the trend, The New York Times reported.
"Monthly rankings, which vary by only a few hundredths of a degree, are inherently fragile," GISS's director Gavin Schmidt said in a statement. "We stress that the long-term trends are the most important for understanding the ongoing changes that are affecting our planet."
Yet, Schmidt told The Times: "This year really does stand out in comparison with all the other years."
The record warm August continued a streak of 11 consecutive months dating back to October 2015 that have set new monthly high-temperature records, according to GISS – and the first six months of this year beat 2015 for the hottest half-year ever recorded.
The Times has reported some scientists believe an increase in greenhouse gas emissions and El Niño, a weather pattern that warms parts of the Pacific Ocean, as contributors to rising temperatures this years.
"But we've had El Niños before, they haven't given us the record-warm temperatures like this," Schmidt told the Times.
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