United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres expressed, “July 2023 is expected to surpass all previous records in various aspects, unless there is an unexpected period of extreme cold weather similar to a mini-Ice Age in the upcoming days. It is not necessary for us to wait until the end of the month to be aware of this fact.”
Mr Guterres informed reporters at the United Nations headquarters in New York that “Based on the information unveiled today, July has already experienced the warmest three-week period ever documented; the three most scorching days on record; and the highest-ever ocean temperatures for this particular season.”
Mr. Guterres expressed, “The speed at which the change is occurring is the only unexpected factor. This aligns perfectly with the forecasts and repeated cautions. And from a scientific perspective, there is no doubt – humans are responsible. This is a catastrophe for the entire planet. It is particularly harsh for extensive regions of North America, Asia, Africa, and Europe – making it an unforgiving summer.”
The Complete ERA5 data for July will be published and available in their upcoming monthly bulletin on August 8. According to ERA5 data, July 2019 was the hottest month on record. It is highly likely that July 2023 will be even hotter, following the trend of record-breaking hot months. This is due to exceptionally warm July temperatures, with global average sea surface temperatures well above the observed values for this time of year. The global mean temperature temporarily exceeded the preindustrial level of 1.5 degrees Celsius during the first and third weeks of the month. The first three weeks of July have been the warmest period on record. On August 5th and 7th, the daily average global surface air temperature surpassed the previous record set in August 2016.
The complete data for July will be published and available in the upcoming monthly bulletin by C3S on August 8. According to ERA5 data, July 2019 was the hottest month on record, surpassing the previous hottest month of July. It is highly likely that July 2023 will be even hotter, following the trend of being the hottest month on record.
WMO consolidates data from C3S and five other international datasets for its climate monitoring activities and its State of the Climate reports.
Global daily surface air temperature (°C) from 1 January 1940 to 23 July 2023, plotted as time series for each year. 2023 and 2016 are shown with thick lines shaded in bright red and dark red, respectively. Other years are shown with thin lines and shaded according to the decade, from blue (1940s) to brick red (2020s). The dotted line and grey envelope represent the 1.5°C threshold above preindustrial level (1850-1900) and its uncertainty. Data: ERA5. Credit: C3S/ECMWF.
Technical Information. This does not imply that we will permanently surpass the 1.5°C threshold specified in the Paris Agreement, which pertains to long-term warming over an extended period. WMO forecasts a 98% probability that at least one of the next five years will set a new record for highest temperature, with a 66% chance of temporarily exceeding 1.5°C above the average temperature from 1850-1900 for at least one of those years. “The urgency to reduce greenhouse gas emissions has never been greater. Climate action is not a luxury but a necessity,” stated Prof. Petteri Taalas, Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization. “The extreme weather events that impacted millions of people in July are unfortunately a stark reality of climate change and a glimpse into the future.” He further added, “July’s record-breaking temperatures are unlikely to be an isolated occurrence this year. C3S’ seasonal forecasts indicate that land temperatures will likely remain well above average, surpassing the 80th percentile of climatology for this time of year.” Ultimately, anthropogenic emissions are the primary driver behind these escalating temperatures.” According to Carlo Buontempo, Director of the Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) at ECMWF, record-breaking temperatures are indicative of the ongoing trend of significant increases in global temperatures.
1. The highest recorded daily average temperatures of the Earth’s surface air.
According to the ERA5 dataset, the global average temperature on July 6, 2023, reached its peak for the day at 17.08°C. The temperatures recorded on July 5th and 7th were nearly identical, differing by only 0.01°C from this highest value. As depicted in the provided chart, every day since July 3rd has been hotter than the previous record of 16.80°C set on August 13, 2016.
Ranking of the top 30 warmest days in the ERA5 dataset based on globally averaged surface air temperature. Days in July 2023 are highlighted in bold. Data: ERA5. Credit: C3S/ECMWF.
2. The highest monthly average surface air temperature ever recorded globally.
According to the ERA5 dataset, the average monthly temperature for the first 23 days of July 2023 was 16.95°C, surpassing the recorded temperature of 16.63°C for the entire month of July 2019, making it the warmest month on record and the warmest July to date.
Globally averaged surface air temperature for the first 23 days of July for all months of July from 1940 to 2023. Twenty-three days represent the number of days in July 2023 for which ERA5 data are available as of writing of this document. Data: ERA5. Credit: C3S/ECMWF.
3. Significantly higher than average worldwide sea surface temperatures.
Since April 2023, the recorded data shows that the daily sea surface temperatures (SSTs) averaged over the global extrapolar oceans (60°S-60°N) have remained consistent. However, global SSTs have experienced an unprecedented increase for this time of year, particularly since around mid-May. On the 19th of July, the daily SST value reached 20.94°C, which was only 0.01°C below the highest recorded value on the 29th of March 2016 (20.95°C), as reported by ERA5 data.
Daily global sea surface temperature (°C) averaged over the 60°S-60°N domain plotted as time series for each year from 1 January 1979 to 23 July 2023. The years 2023 and 2016 are shown with thick lines shaded in bright red and dark red, respectively. Other years are shown with thin lines and shaded according to the decade, from blue (1970s) to brick red (2020s). Data: ERA5. Credit: C3S/ECMWF.
4. Latest national temperature records.
According to the provisional State of the Global Climate report by China’s Meteorological Administration, the city of Turpan in China’s Xinjiang province set a new national record temperature of 52.2 °C on July 16. Therefore, the National hydrological and meteorological services are responsible for verifying any new national temperature records and have reported a number of new national temperature records.
Based on preliminary data, the July heatwaves did not surpass the temperature record for continental Europe of 48.8°C (119.8°F) recorded in Sicily on August 11, 2021.
The National Atmospheric and Oceanic Administration’s National Centers for Environmental Information maintains records of the temperature in the United States. On July 30, in the city of Phoenix, Arizona, the maximum daytime temperature reached a scorching 43.3°C (110°F) for 31 consecutive days.
The European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) implemented C3S, which closely monitors recent developments in global sea and air temperatures on behalf of the European Commission.
To acquire additional information about the high temperatures at the start of July, you can examine this article once the constraint is lifted.