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This Year Was The Hottest Summer Ever In Northern Hemisphere

by : Lucy Connolly on : 15 Sep 2020 14:56
This Year Was The Hottest Summer Ever In Northern HemisphereThis Year Was The Hottest Summer Ever In Northern HemispherePA

The summer just gone was the hottest ever recorded in the northern hemisphere, US scientists have said.

New data collected by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa) shows the summer months of June, July and August were 1.17°C above the 20th-century average, surpassing previous records set in 2016 and 2019.

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The scientific agency also noted that this summer was the globe’s third hottest three-month season on record, while last month was the second hottest August ever recorded worldwide.

hottest ever summerhottest ever summerPA Images

These figures, released as part of NOAA’s monthly global report, suggest 2020 is on track to be one of the five hottest years on record.

Globally, the top 10 warmest Augusts have all occurred since 1998, according to the agency, while the five warmest have all occurred since 2015, illustrating just how much of an impact climate change is having on the planet.

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Some areas – such as northern Russia and the south-western and north-eastern US – saw particularly hot summers this year, demonstrating how pervasive climate change can be in harder-hit regions in comparison to other places.

For example, temperatures were at least 2°C higher than the average in northern Russia and the south-western and north-eastern US, The Guardian reports. Elsewhere, in northern Asia, temperatures reached more than 3°C above average.

Hot summer day in Saint-Petersburg, Russia - 15 Jun 2020Hot summer day in Saint-Petersburg, Russia - 15 Jun 2020PA Images

Not only that, but large swathes of Europe, Asia and the Caribbean also saw their warmest year-to-date yet, with South America seeing its second warmest.

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And while it didn’t see quite as big an increase as its northern counterpart, the southern hemisphere – which experiences winter when the northern hemisphere has its summer – had its third hottest January through August yet.

‘While human-caused climate change is happening in all parts of the globe and at all times, the impacts are particularly dangerous in the Northern Hemisphere during its summer,’ meteorologist Brandon Miller told CNN.

This can be seen most clearly in the US states of California, Oregon and Washington, where wildfires have destroyed more than three million acres of land in what has been the worst year on record for the amount of land burnt.

Gender Reveal Party Blamed For Starting Huge Californian WildfireGender Reveal Party Blamed For Starting Huge Californian WildfirePA Images
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So far, tens of thousands of firefighters have been deployed to tackle the blazes, which are only expected to worsen in the coming days as a result of strong winds and high temperatures.

Miller said it’s no coincidence these states are experiencing such destructive wildfires in the same year northern hemisphere temperatures are at their hottest, adding: ‘Climate change is making heat waves hotter and more frequent, rising temperatures are making droughts and fires more widespread.’

‘The Northern Hemisphere has a large majority of the Earth’s land and population,’ he continued. ‘So the worst impacts tend to occur during the time when the Northern Hemisphere temperatures are the highest.’

The wildfires that continue to burn across the US West Coast have killed at least 35 people, CNN reports, with many more still missing.

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Lucy Connolly

A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).

Topics: News, Climate Change, Environment, Now, Research, Science, Summer, weather

Credits

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and 4 others
  1. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

    Global Time Series

  2. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

    Northern Hemisphere just had its hottest summer on record

  3. The Guardian

    Northern hemisphere breaks record for hottest ever summer

  4. CNN

    Northern Hemisphere endures its hottest summer on record

  5. CNN

    California wildfires have burned an area almost the size of Connecticut