The EU’s climate conservatory has said the new record for the hottest month ever recorded on Earth is significantly higher than the previous record set in July 2019.
July was the hottest month ever recorded on Earth, the EU’s climate observatory confirmed on Tuesday.
Marked by heat waves and wildfires around the world, the global average temperature in July was a third of a degree Celsius (six-tenths of a degree Fahrenheit) higher than the record set in July 2019, according to the EU’s Copernicus Climate Change Service.
How was July 2023 the warmest month on record?
Copernicus reported that the monthly average temperature for July was 16.95 C (62.5 F), well above the previous record of July 2019, which was 16.63 C.
July 6 was the hottest day, as the global average temperature reached 17.08 C. The values recorded on July 5 and July 7 were within 0.01 C of this, the report added.
The 29 days from July 3 to 31 were the hottest recorded in the Copernicus records, which date back to 1940.
This year also saw another first: Average temperatures in July temporarily exceeded the 1.5 C threshold above the preindustrial level, which is the limit set in the Paris Agreement. This was recorded during the first and third weeks of July.
Where was July the hottest?
The burning of fossil fuels has contributed to longer and more frequent heat waves as well as more intense storms and floods.
The EU’s climate agency pointed out how heat waves were “experienced in multiple regions of the Northern Hemisphere, including South Europe.”
Several parts of South America and much of Antarctica also experienced well-above average temperatures.
The temperature of oceans of the world also set new records, causing concern regarding the effects it would have on marine life and coastal communities.
What does this mean?
Samantha Burgess, deputy director of Copernicus, said that 2023 “is currently the third warmest year to date.”
Burgess warned that the data indicates that the world will face “dire consequences.”
“Even if this is only temporary, it shows the urgency for ambitious efforts to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions, which are the main driver behind these records,” she added.
UN chief Antonio Guterres issued an SOS call recently, warning that the “terrifying” rise of temperature “is just the beginning.”
Urging immediate and strong action to reduce emissions, Guterres said: “The era of global warming has ended; the era of global boiling has arrived.