Even the International Panel on Climate Change accepted the notion of a "global warming hiatus".
The confusion should have been cleared up in 2015, when the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) found that a shift from ship-based measurements to ocean buoys could explain the low values.
Climate change skeptics attacked the NOAA researchers and a House of Representatives committee subpoenaed the scientists' emails.
The new worldwide study looked at satellite data, readings from buoys and other marine floats for ocean temperatures.
For the second time in two years, new research has disproved the idea of a so-called global warming hiatus, an apparent 14-year slowdown in the pace of global temperature rise.
"Our results mean that essentially NOAA got it right, that they were not cooking the books", said lead author Zeke Hausfather, a graduate student in UC Berkeley's Energy and Resources Group.
The US government agency agreed to transmit data and respond to scientific questions but refused to hand over the emails of the study's authors, a decision supported by scientists anxious about political interference. Buoys and satellite data don't have such artificial warming, Hausfather said.
"This paper further allays any qualms that there may have been scientific errors or any non-scientific agendas", Trenberth said in an email.
A reported pause in global warming between 1998 and 2014 was false, according to US-British research published Wednesday that confirmed the findings of a controversial US study on ocean warming.
"We were initially sceptical of the Noaa result, because it showed faster warming than a previous updated record from the UK Met Office".
When studied separately each data set matched the original NOAA findings that ocean temperatures have warmed without pause by a steady 0.12 degrees per decade since the middle of the 20th century. Measurements traditionally come from ships and buoys in the sea.
"Our approach was to create three separate ocean temperature records from the three different instruments, and it turns out that all three agree really well with the new Noaa record", he said.
In the same publication a year ago, NOAA scientists also accounted for changing shipping routes and measurement techniques. Its analysis published in Science showed the warming had been concealed by the various ways it was measured, including ocean buoys and ship on-board systems. The Hadley data still underestimate sea surface temperature changes.
The new study is unlikely to quieten sceptics but the authors say their new work shows that the rate of warming in the last two decades is no different from the rate of warming since 1970 or from 1950. But in June previous year, a study in Scienceclaimed that the hiatus was just an artefact which vanishes when biases in temperature data are corrected. The new study, he said, argues that the Hadley center should introduce another correction to its data.
Hausfather and colleagues chose to put together three independent data sets from satellites, buoys and robotic floats to find the true scale of ocean warming, so there was no mixing or matching of data.
Other co-authors of the paper are David C. Clarke, an independent researcher from Montreal, Canada, Peter Jacobs of George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, and Robert Rohde of Berkeley Earth.
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