2012 was among the 10 warmest years on record, rising above the long-term average for the 36th year in a row, according to data released on Tuesday.
Temperature records compiled separately by Nasa and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) found global surface temperatures rose 1.03F above the long-term average last year, but did not match America's record-breaking heat. The average global temperature has risen about 1.4F since 1880.
By Nasa's records, that makes 2012 the ninth hottest year on record globally. NOAA's data set put it at the 10th hottest year. The agencies use different methods to analyse data.
In both cases, scientists said the 2012 global temperature records further consolidate a pattern of global warming. Each year of the 21st century has ranked among the 14 hottest since record keeping began in 1880.