The climate observatory of the European Union declared Tuesday that July was the hottest month ever recorded on Earth and warned of grave consequences.
The previous month, which was 0.33 degrees Celsius warmer than the record set in July 2019 when the average temperature was 16.63C (32 Fahrenheit), was characterized by heatwaves and fires all around the world, it said.
According to observational data and paleoclimate records, Samantha Burgess, Deputy Director of the EU’s Copernicus Climate Change Service, “it has not been this warm for the last 120,000 years.”
“The global average temperature for July 2023 is confirmed to be the highest on record for any month — the month is estimated to have been around 1.5 degrees warmer than the average for 1850 to 1900,” stated Burgess.
According to the agency, this July was 0.72C warmer than the typical July between 1991 and 2020.
The use of fossil fuels has contributed to an increase in global temperature of about 1.2 degrees Celsius since the late 1800s, which has increased heatwave length, intensity, and frequency.
Southern Europe was among the areas of the Northern Hemisphere to endure heatwaves. According to the observatory, “far above average temperatures prevailed over numerous South American countries and around much of Antarctica.
“At 0.43C relative to 1991-2020, the worldwide mean for 2023 is the third-highest on record, trailing only 0.49C for 2016 and 0.48C for 2020. The difference between 2023 and 2016 is anticipated to close in the following months because the final quarter of 2016 was comparatively chilly while the rest of 2023 is anticipated to be warm as the current El Nino event intensifies.
A new record may have been set in July, according to scientists.
Concerns regarding potential repercussions on the climate of the planet, marine life, and coastal towns have been raised as a result of the world’s oceans breaking a record for temperature.
According to data from the European Union’s climate observatory, the temperature of the ocean’s surface increased to 20.96 degrees Celsius (69.7 degrees Fahrenheit) on July 30.
According to a Copernicus Climate Change Service official who talked to AFP earlier, the previous record was 20.95C in March 2016.
Polar regions were not included in the test samples.
“In July, we just saw new all-time records set for both the global air temperature and the worldwide ocean surface temperature. Those exposed to increasingly frequent and severe extreme events would suffer greatly as a result of these records, according to Burgess.
The average global temperature in July of 2023 was 1.5C over pre-industrial levels, making it the third warmest year on record with a 0.43C increase over the recent average.
Even if this is merely a short-term phenomenon, she continued, it highlights the need for strong efforts to lower global greenhouse gas emissions, which are primarily responsible for these records.
While southern Europe, sections of North Africa, the southern United States, and some areas of China have been suffering from a brutal heatwave, forest fires have scorched large portions of Greece and burned 30 million acres (12 million hectares) in Canada.
The recent deadly downpours in Beijing, the capital of China, were the strongest since records have been kept, which dates back 140 years.
Copernicus Director Carlo Buontempo had previously called the temperatures during that time “remarkable.”
In addition to these official records, he claimed that proxy data for the climate dating further back, such as tree rings or ice cores, indicates that the temperatures recorded during the period may have been “unprecedented in our history in the last few thousand years.”
“On the order of 100,000 years” was his estimate for the potential length of time.
“This extreme heat shouldn’t come as a surprise,” said Chris Hewitt, Director of Climate Services for the World Meteorological Organization.
Hewitt asserted that “(it) really is consistent with what scientists have been predicting for years” and that there was little chance of relief in the upcoming year.
Antonio Guterres, the head of the UN, recently issued an SOS.
The climate is changing. It is terrible. And that is just the beginning,” Guterres added, calling for quick, decisive action to reduce emissions that contribute to global warming.
Global boiling has begun; the period of global warming has come to an end.