WhatsApp Logo Subscribe
For News Alert

News

World sweltered as April smashed global heat records

By AFP

May 8, 2024 11:45 AM


Representational image

Twitter Share Facebook Share WhatsApp Share

April marked another "remarkable" month of record-breaking global air and sea surface temperature averages, according to a new report by the EU's climate monitor published on Wednesday.

The abnormally warm conditions came despite the continued weakening of the El Nino weather phenomenon that contributes to increased heat, said the EU's Copernicus Climate Change Service, pointing to human-caused climate change for exacerbating the extremes.

- Record heat -

Since June last year, every month has been the warmest such period on record, according to Copernicus.

April 2024 was no exception, clocking in at 1.58 degrees Celsius above the 1850-1900 pre-industrial average.

"While unusual, a similar streak of monthly global temperature records happened previously in 2015/16," Copernicus said.

The average temperature over the last 12 months was also recorded at 1.6C above pre-industrial levels, surpassing the 1.5C target set by the 2015 Paris Agreement to limit global warming.

The anomaly does not mean the Paris target has been missed, which is calculated over a period of decades.

But it does signal "how remarkable the global temperature conditions we are currently experience are", Copernicus climatologist Julien Nicolas told AFP.

Last month was the second warmest April ever recorded in Europe, as was March and the entire winter period.

- Diverging extremes -

Swathes of Asia from India to Vietnam have been struck by scorching heat waves in recent weeks, while southern Brazil has suffered deadly flooding.

"Each additional degree of global warming is accompanied by extreme weather events, which are both more intense and more likely," Nicolas said.

Diverging extremes in the form of floods and droughts peppered the planet in April.

Much of Europe saw a wetter April than usual, although southern Spain, Italy and the western Balkans were drier than average, Copernicus reported.

Heavy rain resulted in flooding over parts of North America, Central Asia and the Persian Gulf.

While eastern Australia was hit with heavy rains, the bulk of the country experienced drier than normal conditions, as did northern Mexico and around the Caspian Sea.

- Warmer oceans -

The natural El Nino pattern, which warms the Pacific Ocean and leads to a rise in global temperatures, peaked earlier this year and was headed towards "neutral condition" in April, Copernicus said.

Still, the average sea surface temperatures broke records in April for the 13th consecutive month.

Warming oceans threaten marine life, contribute to more humidity in the atmosphere and puts at risk its crucial role in absorbing planet-heating greenhouse gas emissions.

Climate forecasts suggest the second half of the year could even see a transition to La Nina, which lowers global temperatures, Nicolas said, "but conditions are still rather uncertain".

The end of El Nino does not mean an end to high temperatures.

- More records -

"The extra energy trapped into the ocean and the atmosphere by increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases will keep pushing the global temperature towards new records," Copernicus director Carlo Buontempo said in a statement.

The UN already in March warned that there was a "high probability" that 2024 would see record temperatures, while 2023 capped off a decade of record heat, pushing the planet "to the brink".

It was "still a little early" to predict whether new records would continue to be broken, Nicolas said, given that 2023 was exceptional.

Indonesia April temperatures hottest in four decades

Indonesia experienced its hottest April for more than four decades, two senior weather agency officials said Wednesday, as the region endures a suffocating heatwave and global temperatures continue to break records.

Extreme heat has blasted Asia from India to the Philippines in recent weeks, triggering heatstroke deaths, school closures and desperate prayers for cooling rain.

"The average air temperature in April 2024 was the highest compared to April from 1981-2023," Achmad Fachri Radjab, head of the meteorology, climatology and geophysics agency's (BMKG) climate change information centre, told AFP.

Ardhasena Sopaheluwakan, BMKG's deputy of climatology, also confirmed the agency's findings to AFP.

Indonesia recorded an average air temperature in April of 27.7 degrees Celsius, the highest for the month since 1981 and beating the last highest average April temperature set in 2016 by 0.1 degrees, according to BMKG data.

It also represented an increase of nearly one degree Celsius in April this year compared to the month's average temperature of 26.85 degrees Celsius for the period 1991 to 2020, the agency said.

"This year, it was 0.89 degrees higher than the average (for that period)," said Radjab.

"When it comes to causes, there are a lot of factors, not only climate factors but also environment factors must have an influence."

Residents of South Asia and Southeast Asia from Myanmar to the Philippines were punished last month as they sweltered in record temperatures.

More than 100 temperature records fell across Vietnam in April while Bangladesh and Myanmar also saw heat records for the month broken.


AFP


Most Read

  1. Several PIA flights cancelled, delayed at Karachi Airport Several PIA flights cancelled, delayed at Karachi Airport
  2. Female salon owner injured in ‘targeted attack’ in Lahore Female salon owner injured in ‘targeted attack’ in Lahore
  3. Iqrar ul Hassan issues video statement after attacked by Peer Haq Khateeb's followers in Gujranwala Iqrar ul Hassan issues video statement after attacked by Peer Haq Khateeb's followers in Gujranwala
  4. Water tariff doubled for Lahore consumers Water tariff doubled for Lahore consumers
  5. Rakul Preet and Jackky Bhagnani celebrate 3 months of marital bliss Rakul Preet and Jackky Bhagnani celebrate 3 months of marital bliss
  6. US and Sindh govt launch $9 million initiative  to combat tuberculosis in Pakistan  US and Sindh govt launch $9 million initiative  to combat tuberculosis in Pakistan 

Opinion

  1. Hats off to Fatah-II
    Hats off to Fatah-II

    By Naveed Aman Khan

  2. New twist in PTI founder’s strategy towards Military Establishment
    New twist in PTI founder’s strategy towards Military Establishment

    By Salim Bokhari

  3. Revoke the heat stroke
    Revoke the heat stroke

    By Dr Asif Channer

  4. Defiance, sacrifice & national resilience
    Defiance, sacrifice & national resilience

    By Naveed Aman Khan

  5. Maryam Nawaz Sharif's Police Uniform: Breaking Gender Stereotypes, Not Minds
    Maryam Nawaz Sharif's Police Uniform: Breaking Gender Stereotypes, Not Minds

    By Alysha Khan

  6. Pak-Saudi-Iran economic proximity
    Pak-Saudi-Iran economic proximity

    By News Desk