Newsletter Issue 34 (August 2023)

The Weather of July 2023 – A dry and an exceptionally hot July

With a stronger than usual subtropical ridge dominating over southern China for most of the time in the month, July 2023 was exceptionally hot in Hong Kong. The monthly mean maximum temperature, monthly mean temperature and monthly mean minimum temperature were respectively 1.4 degrees, 1.2 degrees and 1.1 degrees above their normals. The month was also much drier than usual with only 175.2 millimetres of rainfall, about 45 percent of the normal of 385.8 millimetres.

Copernicus confirms July 2023 was the hottest month ever recorded

Earth just had its hottest July on record. Sea ice was the lowest on record. For the fourth consecutive month, the global ocean surface temperature hit a record high. WMO uses the datasets in its State of the Global Climate reports and to inform decision-makers around the world. The year to date has been the third warmest on record. Based on the information, UN Secretary-General António Guterres warned that “the era of global warming has ended” and “the era of global boiling has arrived.”

July 2023 sees multiple global temperature records broken

Following the hottest June on record and a series of extreme weather events, including heatwaves in Europe, North America and Asia, and wildfires in Canada and Greece, ERA5 data from the Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S*) show that July 2023 was the hottest month on record globally and broke several records within the month. Carlo Buontempo, Director of C3S, added, “July’s record is unlikely to remain isolated this year, C3S’ seasonal forecasts indicate that over land areas temperatures are likely to be well above average.”

Global sea surface temperature (SST) reaches a record high

Over the last four months, the globe as a whole has seen a long period of unusually high SSTs. Global average SSTs remained at record high levels for the time of year throughout April, May and June 2023, a situation that has continued into July 2023, with the largest SST anomaly for any July on record. The unprecedented SSTs have been associated with marine heatwaves; periods of unusually high ocean temperatures. These can have significant and sometimes devastating impacts on ocean ecosystems and biodiversity, and can lead to socio-economic impacts.

2024 will probably be hotter than this year because of El Niño

As millions bake under a relentless heat wave in the South and Southwest US – and as temperatures soar around the Northern Hemisphere – NASA scientists warned Thursday that we haven’t even seen the worst of El Niño and next year will likely be even warmer for the planet. “It’s really only just emerged, and so what we’re seeing is not really due to that El Niño,” Gavin Schmidt, a climatologist and director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, told reporters. “What we’re seeing is the overall warmth pretty much everywhere – particularly in the oceans.”

FENGYUN-3F (FY-3F) meteorological satellite successfully lifted off

At 11:47 a.m. on August 3, FY-3F was lifted off in Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre. As the new member of “morning satellite” family among FY meteorological satellites, FY-3F will undertake the in-orbit operation of FY-3C, and reinforce atmospheric component quantitative sounding and climate change monitoring and serving weather forecasting, atmospheric chemistry and climate change monitoring operation and research on the basis of ensuring near-earth orbit global imaging observation and vertical atmospheric sounding operation. (Reports in Chinese: CMA1 ,CMA2)

Latest trends in atmospheric greenhouse gases by NOAA

The Carbon Cycle Greenhouse Gases (CCGG) research area operates the Global Greenhouse Gas Reference Network, measuring the atmospheric distribution and trends of the three main long-term drivers of climate change, carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O), as well as carbon monoxide (CO) which is an important indicator of air pollution.

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