Here’s a news item that is like many other recent news items: September 2020 was the hottest September since 1880, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The warm September is a part of a year that so far is poised to be at least the second hottest year in the 141-year climate record.
The ten warmest Septembers on record have all occurred since 2005, and the seven warmest Septembers have occurred in the past seven years.
So far, the year-to-date average global temperature has been the second warmest on record, being just 0.07 degrees Fahrenheit lower than the record year-to-date temperature set in 2016. Expectations are that 2020 will end up somewhere among the three warmest years on record for the globe.
September was warm in many places around the world. California and Oregon had their warmest September ever. Europe had its warmest September on record, Asia had its second warmest September on record as did Australia and South America.
So far, it has been the hottest year-to-date on record in Europe, Asia, and the Gulf of Mexico. No land or ocean areas anywhere had record-cold year-to-date temperatures.
Global temperatures represent an average over the entire surface of the planet. The fact that the global temperature is now nearly one Celsius degree above the 20th century average means that a vast amount of heat has been added in order to warm all the oceans, atmosphere, and land by that much. So, every uptick in global temperature is a big deal.
Meanwhile, the average Arctic sea ice coverage for September was the second smallest on record. The 14 smallest minimum annual sea ice extents have all occurred in the past 14 years.
Photo, posted September 2, 2020, courtesy of Tim Vrtiska via Flickr.