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July Was Hottest Month On Record; 2015 Might Be Hottest Year

CHICAGO (CBS) -- The weather in Chicago might have been about average last month, but July saw the highest average global temperatures of any month on record, and 2015 is on pace to be the warmest year on record as well.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said the average temperature across the globe in July was 61.86 degrees Fahrenheit, which was nearly 1.5 degrees above the 20th century average. It beat the previous highest monthly temperature record set in 1998 by 0.14 degrees.

NOAA records date back to 1880.

The average global temperature for the first seven months of the year was also the highest on record.

"Most of the world's land areas were much warmer than average, falling within the top 10 percent of their historical temperature range for the January–July period," NOAA said in its global analysis for July 2015.

In all, five months this year have set record highs for global temperatures, including the past three. January was the second warmest January on record, and April was the third warmest.

NOAA climate scientist Jake Crouch said he's "fairly certain" this year will end up as the hottest on record. NOAA assistant research climatologist Nina Oakley put the chances at 99 percent.

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