World just endured its hottest summer on record. UN chief says ‘climate breakdown has begun’

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The month of August was found to be the hottest on record and the second hottest after July

The UN’s World Meteorological Organization and European climate service Copernicus on Wednesday announced that the June to August season of 2023 was the warmest such period in records that began in 1940.

The average temperature for those three months was 16.77 degrees Celsius (62.19 degrees Fahrenheit), which was 0.66 degrees Celsius above average for the period.

The month of August was found to be the hottest on record by a large margin and the second hottest month after July 2023.

The global average surface air temperature of 16.82 degrees Celsius for August was 0.71 degrees Celsius warmer than the 1991 to 2020 average for the month, and 0.31 degrees Celsius warmer than the previous hottest August, logged in 2016.

It comes after a series of extreme weather events across the Northern Hemisphere, with repeated heatwaves fueling devastating wildfires.

“Climate breakdown has begun,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in a statement.

“Scientists have long warned what our fossil fuel addiction will unleash,” Guterres said, adding that “surging temperatures demand a surge in action. The UN chief stated that the latest global heat records must coincide with urgent climate solutions. The effects of El Nino are usually at their peak in December. However, the impacts can take The 1.5 degree Celsius limit is set by the landmark 2015 Paris Agreement. This is because of the la Beyond this level it is more likely to experience so-called tipping points — thresholds at which small changes can lead to dramatic shifts in Earth’s entire life-support system.

“Eight months into 2023, so far we are experiencing the second warmest year to date, only fractionally cooler than 2016, and August was estimated to be around 1.5degC warmer than pre-industrial levels,” said Carlo Buontempo, director of the Copernicus Climate Change Service, ECMWF.

“What we are observing, not only new extremes but the persistence of these record-breaking conditions, and the impacts these have on both people and planet, are a clear consequence of the warming of the climate system,” Buontempo added.

The climate crisis is making extreme weather more frequent and more intense.