July 2019 was recorded as the warmest month globally and has re-written climate history, with dozens of new temperature records at local, national and global level
Every month in 2019 has been among the four warmest such month on record, according to a report from the Copernicus Climate Change Programme. In fact, this year will be among the five warmest years.
June was recorded as the warmest, July 2019 was around 1.2°C warmer than the pre-industrial era, according to the latest data from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the Copernicus Climate Change Programme.
Human-induced climate change has spiked the frequency and intensity of daily temperature extremes since the mid-20th century.
From January record-breaking extreme temperatures were seen across the globe.
With mean temperatures exceeding 30 degrees Celsius for the first time in Australia, January was recorded as the hottest for the continent. Similarly, New Zealand recorded temperature of 18.8°C — 1.7°C above the 1981-2010 average and the third-highest for January.
The month was also recorded as the third-warmest in Hong Kong, with mean temperature of 18.1°C — 1.8°C above the normal.
January was the coldest in the recorded history of the United States of America. While Argentina recorded the wettest January, Brazil had the driest January in 84 years.
In February, the United Kingdom recorded its second-highest mean temperature in 110 years, while the maximum temperature in February broke 118 years’ record in the Netherlands.
Spain had the fourth-driest February in 63 years only after 1997, 2000 and 1990.
March 2019 was Denmark's wettest since national records began in 1874, with a nationally average precipitation total of 106 mm. Austria had its second-driest March after 2012. Germany had its eighth-hottest March in its 138-year record-keeping.
Temperatures also soared in Vietnam and Malaysia in March.
April 2019 was the the fourth-wettest for Spain, while Germany recorded temperatures above 40°C,
Bahrain had the fifth-highest rainfall in April in 117 years.
“WMO expects that 2019 will be in the five top warmest years on record, and that 2015-2019 will be the warmest of any equivalent five-year period on record. Time is running out to reign in dangerous temperature increases with multiple impacts on our planet,” said WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas.
June was also the warmest ever recorded. In June heatwave trumped a century-old record in the south-east US. Temperatures soared in parts of France, Switzerland, Germany, Spain and Belgium and gripped continental Europe in a deadly heatwave. In France, temperatures in many places touched 45°C.
India too had the second-longest spell of high temperatures in 31 years. An unusually long heatwave swept through 23 states between March 7 and June 21, and killed more than 300 people. Many places in the country, like the capital Delhi (48°C), experienced record-breaking temperatures.
“This year alone, we have seen temperature records shattered from New Delhi to Anchorage, from Paris to Santiago, from Adelaide and to the Arctic Circle,” said UN Secretary-General António Guterres, announcing the data in New York, early this week.
“All of this means that we are on track for the period from 2015 to 2019 to be the five hottest years on record," Guterres added.
The WMO data also recorded July 2019 as the warmest month globally since record-keeping began more than a century ago.
“July has re-written climate history, with dozens of new temperature records at local, national and global level,” Taalas said.
“The extraordinary heat was accompanied by dramatic ice melt in Greenland, in the Arctic and on European glaciers. Unprecedented wildfires raged in the Arctic for the second consecutive month, devastating once pristine forests which used to absorb carbon dioxide and instead turning them into fiery sources of greenhouse gases,” Taalas said.
“If we do not take action on climate change now, these extreme weather events are just the tip of the iceberg. And, indeed, the iceberg is also rapidly melting. Preventing irreversible climate disruption is the race of our lives, and for our lives. It is a race that we can and must win,” Guterres warned.
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