Globe has warmest June on record by far, early data shows
The globe set a record for the warmest June since at least 1940, new and emerging climate data shows, obliterating the previous milestone from 2019. Separately, the globe set new single day records for the hottest day yet measured, on July 3 and 4.
Why it matters: The records are an indication of the influence that an El Niño event is having in the tropical Pacific Ocean, since it is amplifying the pace of human-caused climate change.
- The monthly record's magnitude signals that more temperature reports to come from U.S. and other governments are likely to rank June the same way.
- It comprises another warning sign that climate change may be picking up its pace, at least in the short-term, with record warm ocean temperatures globally for June, especially in the North Atlantic.
- The sea ice that usually wraps around the icebound Antarctic continent is at its lowest level on record. Meanwhile there are unprecedented wildfires burning in Canada and multiple extreme heat events worldwide.
Zoom in: According to Zeke Hausfather, climate research lead at payments company Stripe, global average surface temperatures were about 1.46°C (2.63°F) degrees above the preindustrial (1850 to 1899) average.
- The next-warmest June was in 2019, but it was 0.16°C (0.3°F) cooler than last month.
- Other climate information, including from NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Prediction, also show a June record.
Between the lines: In addition, the NOAA single-day numbers come from a computer modeling system that takes into account surface, satellite and other measurements, rather than purely ground-based instruments.
- They show that July 3 and 4 were the hottest days on record globally since at least 1979, in terms of the globally averaged absolute air temperature.
- These were the first days in that data set to have a global average surface temperature exceed 17°C (62.6°F).
- Since July tends to be the planet's hottest month, it is possible these records will be exceeded in the next few weeks.
Yes, but: A daily global record may sound alarming, but it is more symbolic than scientifically meaningful.
- Researchers monitor human-caused climate change over the course of months to decades in order to decipher signals from the noise of natural climate variability.
- The long-term trend is clear, showing a increasing global average temperatures in tandem with growing amounts of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.
What's next: NOAA, NASA and agencies in the UK, the European Union and Japan will report their official June global temperature data during the next two weeks.