Check out that graphic of NOAA data from ClimateCentral.org. 1998 beat 2006 by just a hundredth of a degree and 5th-place 1921 by only half a degree. But 2012 beat 1998 by nearly a full degree. Amazing.
And our climate inaction comes with a huge pricetag. Thanks in large part to Superstorm Sandy, Evan Lehmann of E&E News reports most of the global economic burden of the climate crisis fell on America:
Nearly all the world's economic damage from storms, drought, fire and earthquakes was centered in the United States as it experienced the highest temperatures ever recorded, according to Munich Re, a global reinsurance company. More than 90 percent of insured losses worldwide occurred in the United States, well above the 30-year average of 65 percent.ClimateCrocks.com says 2012 was the year climate change got real for Americans:
So far in 2013, Australia has been ground zero for the climate crisis. The heat wave there has been so unprecedented, forecasters have had to invent new colors for the temperature map.