The last three months will go down as Earth’s hottest summer on record, according to a report from the World Meteorological Organization. It was the hottest August on record by a wide margin, and the second hottest month ever, second only to July 2023.
August was around 1.5 degrees Celsius warmer than the pre-industrial average for 1850-1900. So far, 2023 is the second warmest year on record behind 2016, which was also an El Niño year.
Not only were air temperatures record-breaking, but the WMO and European climate service Copernicus report that global sea surface temperatures were highest on record across all months.
Antarctic sea ice extent is also at a record low for this time of the year, at 12% below average. Satellites began observing Antarctic sea ice in the late 1970s.
Arctic sea ice is 10% below average, but not as low as it was in Aug. 2012.
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