Eco-fact Friday: 2016 is the hottest January on record. | Gallery Drinkware (Formerly Water Gallery)

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Eco-fact Friday

Well, El Nino hasn't come through in terms of rainfall in California this year so far, but it sure has in terms of warming temperatures worldwide. Although it may seem nice to some that in many locales folks have been experiencing milder winters, these record high temps are disastrous when it comes to the environment. Above average temps have kept sea ice levels at record lows and the lowest sea ice level ever recorded may occur as early as this March if the trend continues. Losing the world's ice and glaciers can have profound effects, such as altering the circulation of the jet stream, changing the directions our oceans flow, releasing methane and carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, and contributing to global warming. According to the Japan Meteorological Agency, this has been the hottest January on record since 1891. It seems that we just keep getting hotter and hotter, which is frightening-- the steady rise in average annual temperatures has such a serious effect on our world's ecosystems, flora, and fauna.

El Nino weather pattern

It's easy to blame El Nino solely for our world's environmental woes, but one cannot downplay the manmade climate factors-- put these things together and it's easy to break temperature records. Humankind as a whole is simply too dependent on fossil fuels, too dependent on single-use plastic, and is too wasteful overall. We must all work together to be part of the change we want to see before it's too late.

Remember, reduce, reuse, recycle, and conserve. Small, everyday changes can make a huge difference.

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