The average global temperature hit a new peak on Monday, 3 July, surpassing 17 degrees Celsius for the first time.
A team of US researchers announced that this newly established record is the highest within any instrumental records, which extend back to the late 19th century.
The scientific community believes that a combination of a natural weather event termed “El Niño” and the continuing carbon dioxide emissions from mankind are fuelling this heat increase.
The past month was also validated as the hottest June ever recorded worldwide.
Specialists from the US National Centers for Environmental Prediction reported that the average global temperature hit 17.01C on July 3rd, toppling the earlier record of 16.92C, set in August 2016.
From the onset of the current year, researchers have expressed concerns about rising temperatures, both terrestrial and maritime.
Unprecedented spring warmth in Spain and multiple Asian nations has been followed by oceanic heatwaves in regions typically unacquainted with them, including the North Sea.
This week, China remains in the grip of a prolonged heatwave, with temperatures exceeding 35C in some areas, while the southern US has also been enduring intense heat.
The high on Monday is the highest since the commencement of satellite monitoring in 1979. Experts also consider it to be the highest since the initiation of widespread instrumental records towards the close of the 19th century.
Researchers theorize that the new global peak is a confluence of the naturally occurring “El Niño” event and the persistent emissions of carbon dioxide.
The El Niño Southern Oscillation, referred to as ENSO, possesses three different phases: Hot, cold, or neutral. It stands as the most potent fluctuation within the Earth’s climate system.
“The average global surface air temperature reaching 17C for the first time since we have reliable records available is a significant symbolic milestone in our warming world,” stated climate researcher Leon Simons.
“With the onset of El Niño’s warmer phase, we should anticipate a surge in daily, monthly, and annual record-breaking over the subsequent 1.5 years.”
The record temperature from Monday coincides with the month of June, which was ratified as the hottest June on the global record. The average worldwide temperatures were 1.46C above the average during the period spanning 1850 to 1900.
While the UK experienced its hottest June, the repercussions of high temperatures are also palpable at the world’s extremities. In Antarctica, the July temperature record was surpassed with a reading of 8.7C at Ukraine’s Vernadsky Research base.
Scientists anticipate that further records will topple as summer progresses and “El Niño” intensifies.
“The likelihood is that July will set a new record as the warmest ever, hence marking the hottest month ever: ‘ever’ implying since the Eemian around 120,000 years ago,” commented Karsten Haustein, a scholar from the University of Leipzig.
“While the temperatures in the Southern Hemisphere will experience a slight dip in the upcoming days, it is highly probable that July and August will witness even hotter days given that El Niño is essentially in full effect.”