In the past three months, the planet has been the scene of a series of extreme weather events such as heat waves, fires And Floods Which is becoming more frequent and severe because Global Warming.
At the global level, July and August 2023 were the hottest months ever recorded, according to the European Copernicus Observatory (EMS), which this year has a great chance of being the hottest year in history.
Heat waves in the northern hemisphere
The northern summer of 2023 marked temperature records. India had its hottest and driest August since records began more than a century ago. Japan experienced the warmest average temperatures ever recorded in the archipelago between June and August.
The heat wave also affected the Mediterranean region and North America, where temperatures exceeded 40 degrees Celsius.
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Winter heat in the south
In Opposites, the southern winter was exceptionally mild. The Australian winter was the hottest on record, with an average temperature of 16.75°C between June and August.
Latin America experienced winter heat waves. The thermometer exceeded 30 degrees Celsius in São Paulo (Brazil), and reached 25 degrees Celsius in Santiago, Chile, which are very unusual temperatures for this season. In Argentina, residents of Buenos Aires witnessed the hottest August 1 since the beginning of the statistics (30 degrees Celsius).
According to scientists, these high temperatures are a result of climate change, which has been exacerbated this year by the recent resurgence of the El Niño phenomenon, which is characterized by an increase in the temperature of Pacific Ocean waters and causes extreme weather events.
In August, the oceans broke a record. According to the Copernicus ERA5 database, the surface temperature reached 21°C after months of historic warming, which is still continuing. The North Atlantic and Mediterranean Sea also reached record numbers.
This global warming has dire consequences for biodiversity, while reducing the ability of the oceans to absorb carbon dioxide, thus reinforcing the vicious cycle of global warming.
Although it is not average, the water temperature was measured at 38.3°C on July 24 off the coast of Florida, USA, which would constitute a potential world record if the accuracy of the measurement is confirmed.
Hawaii, Canada and Greece are on fire
In August, the American archipelago of Hawaii witnessed the worst fires in the United States in a century, killing at least 115 people and leaving hundreds missing on the island of Maui.
In Canada, the fires caused no casualties, but were exceptionally devastating in the context of severe drought. Since the beginning of the year, according to the Canadian Forest Fire Center (CIFFC), 16.44 million hectares have burned, equivalent to the area of Tunisia.
The previous record was 7.11 million hectares in 1995. At the end of June, Montreal was briefly the most polluted city in the world, trapped under a layer of smoke due to forest fires, according to the specialist company Ecare.
To a lesser extent, Europe has also been affected by fire, as in Greece, where a fire near the Turkish border destroyed more than 80,000 hectares. Other outbreaks hit the islands of Corfu and Rhodes during the summer.
Since the beginning of the year, 535,000 hectares have burned in Europe, according to Copernicus (as of September 2). Although this figure is above average (447 thousand hectares), it is still well below the record of 1.21 million hectares recorded in the same period in 2017.
Deadly floods in Asia
The monsoon season killed at least 175 people in Pakistan, 155 in India, and 41 in South Korea, while in northern China, at least 62 people died due to heavy rains.
But despite the human balance, rainfall was not exceptional in India, as in August it was at its lowest levels ever recorded, contributing to temperatures rising to record levels in the country.
Source: Agence France-Presse
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