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Scientists say November is sixth straight month to set heat record

EU’s Copernicus Climate Change Service says ‘extraordinary’ global November temperatures mean that 2023 is the warmest year in recorded history

(FILE) A woman walks on a bridge during the fires in Renaico, Araucania region, Chile on February 4, 2023. This year will be the hottest in recorded history after an 'extraordinary' November became the sixth record-breaking month in row, Europe's climate monitor said on December 6, 2023.(AFP)

By Team Lounge

LAST PUBLISHED 06.12.2023  |  01:00 PM IST

2023 is set to be the hottest year on record after the European Union's Copernicus Climate Change Service said on Wednesday that November 2023 was the warmest November on record globally.

This means 2023 has now had six record-breaking months and two record-breaking seasons.

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Last month smashed the previous November heat record, pushing 2023's global average temperature to 1.46 degrees Celsius warmer than pre-industrial levels, the EU's Copernicus Climate Change Service said.

According to an AFP report, there had been warnings this year could take the title of hottest year from 2016 -- particularly after records toppled in September and October -- but this marks the first time it has been confirmed. November also contained two days that were 2C warmer than pre-industrial levels. Not one such day had ever before been recorded, the report said.

The Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S), implemented by the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts on behalf of the European Commission with funding from the EU, routinely publishes monthly climate bulletins reporting on the changes observed in global surface air and sea temperatures, sea ice cover and hydrological variables.

According to the C3S, November 2023 had an average surface air temperature of 14.22°C, 0.85°C above the 1991-2020 average for November and 0.32°C above the temperature of the previous warmest November, in 2020. November 2023 was also about 1.75°C warmer than an estimate of the November average for 1850-1900, the designated pre-industrial reference period.

In a statement, C3S said: “For the calendar year to date, January to November, the global mean temperature for 2023 is the highest on record, 1.46°C above the 1850-1900 pre-industrial average, and 0.13°C higher than the eleven-month average for 2016, currently the warmest calendar year on record...

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The average sea surface temperature for November 2023 over 60°S–60°N was the highest on record for November at 0.25 °C warmer than the second warmest November, in 2015."

Samantha Burgess, deputy director of the Copernicus Climate Change Service said: "The extraordinary global November temperatures, including two days warmer than 2ºC above preindustrial, mean that 2023 is the warmest year in recorded history."

C3S director Carlo Buontempo said as long as greenhouse gas concentrations keep rising the world can’t expect different outcomes from those seen in 2023. “The temperature will keep rising and so will the impacts of heatwaves and droughts. Reaching net zero as soon as possible is an effective way to manage our climate risks," Buontempo said in a press release.

The announcement of the record comes as negotiators from nearly 200 countries at the COP28 talks in Dubai debate the text of a final draft agreement that responds to a damning stocktake of progress on limiting warming, the AFP report added.

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