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Droughts and Heat Waves

UK: In 1st, global temps average could be 1 degree C higher

This year is on track to be a record 1 degree Celsius (1.8 degrees Fahrenheit) hotter than the 19th-century average, hitting a symbolic milestone in the temperature rise that scientists blame mostly on human activities, Britain's weather service said Monday.

To measure global warming, scientists compare today's temperature level with that of the latter part of the 19th century, when record keeping began and before humans started burning fossil fuels on a large scale, releasing heat-trapping carbon dioxide into the air.

A rise of 1 degree C is important because it's halfway to the 2 degrees C (3.6 degrees F) that governments have set as a limit to avoid dangerous levels of...