EU Agency Declares This Year 'Almost Certainly' the Hottest on Record

Nov 14, 2023

This is a wind power facility photographed in the German state of Brandenburg on October 14. Photo by Xinhua News Agency reporter Ren Pengfei

Beijing, November 8 (Xinhua) - The European Union's Copernicus Climate Change Service announced on the 8th that October of this year is the "hottest October on record" on Earth, marking five consecutive months of setting new temperature records. The record-breaking temperatures in October mean that this year is "almost certain" to become the hottest year on record.

According to the EU climate monitoring agency, the global average surface temperature in October was 15.3 degrees Celsius, breaking the previous "hottest October" record set in 2019 by a significant 0.4 degrees Celsius. This surpasses the average level for the same period from 1991 to 2020 by 0.85 degrees Celsius.

Deputy Director Samantha Burgess described the October temperatures this year as "extremely extreme."

Reuters reported that the high temperatures this year are attributed to continuous greenhouse gas emissions from human activities and the occurrence of the El Niño phenomenon, causing warming in the eastern Pacific Ocean.

The Copernicus Climate Change Service stated in a release that the record-breaking temperatures in October indicate that this year is "almost certain" to surpass 2016 as the hottest year on record. The year 2016 also experienced the El Niño phenomenon.

The agency's data only goes back to 1940. Burgess stated that when combined with data from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), "we can say that this year is the hottest in 125,000 years."

This is a houseboat taken on the banks of the Taluman River, a tributary of the Rio Negro in Amazonas, Brazil, on October 10 (drone photo). The Brazilian Amazon region is experiencing severe drought. Published by Xinhua News Agency (Photo by Lucio Tavola)

The IPCC's longer-term data is derived from ancient meteorological records, including ice core samples, tree rings, coral deposits, and other sources.

The average sea surface temperature globally, excluding the polar regions, in October this year was 20.79 degrees Celsius, also breaking the previous record. The global average surface temperature in October this year is 1.7 degrees Celsius higher than the October average from 1850 to 1900, the period defined as the "pre-industrial" era by the Copernicus Climate Change Service.

Burgess mentioned in the statement that as of October, this year's average temperature is 1.43 degrees Celsius higher than the pre-industrial era.

She noted that the record-breaking temperatures in September were "very, very surprising," and after setting new records in October, the surprise factor diminished.

According to Reuters, climate change is bringing increasingly destructive extreme weather events worldwide. This year, hurricanes in Libya triggered floods, causing thousands of deaths, while multiple record-breaking heatwaves affected North America, South America, and Europe, with Canada experiencing its most severe wildfire season.

The United Nations Climate Change Conference is scheduled to take place from November 30 to December 12 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. It will assess countries' progress in achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement for the first time. Burgess urged countries to take ambitious climate action with an unprecedented sense of urgency.


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