Annual average ocean surface temperatures have been diverging from the average observed during the 20th century (1900-1999) significantly since the 1980s. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the global ocean surface temperatures in 2020 were 0.76 degrees Celsius higher than the 20th century’s average.

As some years are hotter and some colder, the annual divergence fluctuates. However, an upward trend is visible in the data. The year 2016 witnessed the biggest divergence on record, with ocean surface temperatures measuring 0.79 degrees Celsius higher than the stated average.

Buoys, ships, and satellite measurements of the oceans help determine the global data for near-surface temperatures. Fluctuations are normal, but an increase in the number of years that are warmer on average is likely to be because of climate change. The phenomenon of climate change causes an increased global average, ocean temperatures, and mean land. As per scientific findings, the continuing global warming will cause changes in the spatial extent, frequency, duration, and strength of extreme weather events. 

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