After going through the hottest July in history, Planet Earth had another record broken and experienced the quarter of June, July and August, when summer in the Northern Hemisphere is the hottest on record. August was around 1.5°C warmer than the average for the month and the average sea surface temperature was 20.98°C on every day of the month, surping the previous record, which was set in March 2016.
The information comes from the World Meteorological Organization, linked to the UN, and the Copernicus Climate Change Service. In a report released on Wednesday, the 6th, the institutions point to the worsening of the intensity of climate change and the frequency of heat waves. In a statement, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said that the “climate collapse” has begun.
When talking about an increase in temperature, the reference is the average temperature of the planet up to the period scientists call pre-industrial (between 1850 and 1900). Since then, the emission of polluting gases has increased due to the use of fossil fuels in industry, transport and other human activities.
With the concentration of these gases in the atmosphere, the greenhouse effect intensifies, which is planet Earth’s natural process to retain the heat necessary for living conditions. This causes the atmosphere and oceans to heat up. Added to this, the higher average temperature impacts climate change, which in turn causes extreme situations in climate phenomena, such as heat waves, droughts and floods. In addition to being more intense, these cases are becoming increasingly frequent.
Since the 1980s, each decade has been hotter than the last, and this is expected to continue, reports the UN. In fact, every year between 2015 and 2022 reached the mark of being the hottest ever recorded in the history of the planet. Last year the average temperature was 1.15ºC above what was recorded before the industrial era – too early to come so close to the goal of keeping warming at a maximum of 1.5ºC until the end of the century, a measure considered necessary to guarantee living conditions like those we know on the planet.