Think it's balmy now? 2016 will be among the warmest years on record, the Met Office suggests

 
Emma Haslett
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Met Office Predicts 25 Percent Chance Of Hottest British Summer Ever
London, December 2016... (Source: Getty)

If you think December's balmy temperatures are unusual, get ready for more of the same - because next year will be the among warmest on record, the Met Office has predicted.

And that's on top of 2015, which is already on track to be unusually toasty, said Professor Chris Folland, a research fellow at the Met Office.

"2015 is on track to be the warmest year on record, and this forecast suggests 2016 is likely to be at least as warm, if not warmer."

The Met Office put the warmer temperatures down to man-made global warming, as well as "a smaller effect from El Niño", the weather phenomenon from unusually warm waters in the tropical Pacific Ocean.

"By the end of 2016 we will have seen three record, or near-record years in a row for global temperatures," said Professor Adan Scaife, head of long-range prediction at the Met office.

But the organisation added it doesn't expect this to continue indefinitely.

"The current situation shows how global warming can combine with smaller, natural flucturations to push our climate to levels of warmth which are unprecedented in the data records."

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