The hottest month of September 2020 on record

Records of this kind are repeated, and at an increasingly sustained rate. The European Copernicus service on climate change revealed this Wednesday that September 2020 was the hottest on the planet. Temperatures were overall 0.63 ° C above the average for September of the reference period (1981-2010), but also 0.05 ° C above the previous record … held by September 2019 .

Across Europe, average temperatures also climbed to an all-time high, around 0.2 ° C higher than over the same period of 2018, which was the region’s previous record. The south-eastern part of the continent has been particularly affected.

The last month of September marks a new record. Copernicus

In the Siberian Arctic, the effects of this global warming are particularly visible. After a summer marked by unusual heat in terms of its magnitude and persistence (in June, 38 ° C was recorded in the arctic city of Verkhoyansk, unprecedented), temperatures continue to be well above average and ice levels are at their second lowest level since satellite data records began in 1979.

Pack ice, in other words the ice that forms on water, partly melts in summer before reforming in winter. But with climate change, it liquefies more and more in the summer, reaching its annual minimum in September: this year it was the case on the 15th of last month, with 3.74 million square kilometers of ice recorded according to reports. preliminary data from the National Snow and Ice Data Center, United States.

“The combination of record high temperatures and shallow sea ice in 2020 underscores the importance of improved and more comprehensive monitoring in a region that is warming faster than anywhere else in the world.”, explains Carlo Buontempo, director of the climate change department of Copernicus at the European Center for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), in a statement.

Extreme weather events

After a record decade, which ended with a year 2019 which was the second hottest ever on the planet, the 2020s therefore started on the same trend. May 2020 was already the hottest month of May.

Petteri Taalas, secretary general of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), warned in January: “Unfortunately, we expect to see a lot of extreme weather events in 2020 and decades to come, fueled by record levels of greenhouse gases that trap heat in the atmosphere.”

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