WINTER warmth and January and November heatwaves increased temperatures in Wagga and across Australia last year, giving the country its second warmest year in a century. The record-breaking temperatures in Wagga gave the city the most anomalous maximum in Australia at 2.33 degrees above the country's average for the year of 22.7 degrees. The sweltering temperatures and lack of rainfall in 2009 brought with it continued debate across the country on the truth behind climate change. Wagga city councillor and member of the Greens, Ray Goodlass, has no doubt that the recent hotter months are evidence of climate change. "Wagga's temperatures in the last year and the weather conditions with storms is an indication of climate change," he said. "We need people to look at the bigger picture and pay serious attention to this."Mr Goodlass said the statistics on increasing weather temperatures and lack of rain is a wake-up call to people who have dismissed climate change claims in the past. John Westman of Wagga is a climate change sceptic and has researched and studied trends in an attempt to prove the phenomenon doesn't exist."Examination of the ice core records in the New Zealand glaciers show that Australia does go through severe drought periods on a cyclic basis and with droughts come warmer temperatures," he said. "While we have politicians making emotive and outrageous claims about deaths in the next decade due to heating in Australia, they don't spare a thought for those who have died, and are dying in the current record cold throughout Europe, Asia and North America."