New Delhi: With temperature soaring higher each day, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) has warned that 2016 could be the hottest year India has ever seen.

“2015 was the hottest year ever recorded. Our forecast for this summer already talks of above normal temperatures,” said IMD Director General Laxman Singh Rathore.

“If you also look at the summer temperature until now, it looks that 2016 summer will be hottest,” he added.

A reason cited for this is also the El-Nino phenomena, which is likely to become neutral in the coming months.

“The strong El Nino conditions over the Pacific Ocean that started in 2015 are still continuing. However, the latest forecasts indicate that El Nino conditions are likely to weaken further and reach weaker El Nino conditions during the 2016 hot weather season.

“It has been observed that during the hot weather seasons followed by El Nino years (for example: 1973, 1995, 1998, 2003, 2010, etc. followed by the El Nino years of 1972, 1994, 1997, 2002 and 2009), above normal temperatures including moderate to severe heat wave conditions were experienced in most parts of India,” the IMD said.

The IMD has already made a forecast of a summer that will witness “above normal” temperatures, with several parts of the country expected to face heatwave like conditions.

United States’ National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOOA) too has termed March 2016 as the ‘hottest March’ so far. Globally too, the year is expected to be hottest.

“For 2016 year to date (January-March), the average temperature for the globe was 2.07 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th-century average, according to scientists from NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information.

(With PTI inputs)