Northern Hemisphere Records Hottest Summer In 2,000 Years; Temp Hits Record Breaking Numbers

This eclipses the previous high set in the year 246 AD.

by Nikitha Sebastian
Northern Hemisphere Records Hottest Summer In 2,000 Years; Temp Hits Record Breaking Numbers

A recent study published in Nature, a multidisciplinary science journal, has confirmed what many suspected: summer 2023 was a scorcher.  The research, led by scientists from Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, reveals that the Northern Hemisphere endured its hottest summer in at least two millennia. This unprecedented heatwave surpasses not only recent records but also eclipses the previous high set in the year 246 AD by a significant margin – over half a degree Celsius.

Reconstructing 2,000 Years Of Climate Data

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The research team combined modern temperature data, dating back to 1850, with clever climate reconstructions to paint a picture of the last 2,000 years.  For the historical period, they analysed tree rings – nature’s own climate archive – from nine regions across the Northern Hemisphere. This focus on land areas between the 30th parallel north and the North Pole reflects the greater availability of historical weather data in these regions.

The analysis revealed a fascinating dance between past climate events. Cooler periods typically coincided with major volcanic eruptions, while warmer phases corresponded to El Niño events.  El Niño, a cyclical climate phenomenon, is known to influence global temperatures, and scientists believe human-induced climate change is intensifying its effects, leading to more frequent and severe heatwaves.

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Climate Change Intensifies El Niño

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The El Niño that began in June 2023 is expected to dissipate soon, but researchers warn that its combination with rising greenhouse gas emissions creates a dangerous recipe for longer, more intense heatwaves and droughts.

The study’s lead author, Jan Esper, emphasises the urgency of tackling climate change.  The scorching summer of 2023 pushed temperatures well beyond the 1.5°C warming limit established by the 2015 Paris Agreement.  This unprecedented level of warming raises serious concerns. Recent extreme heat events witnessed were in Asia, including a record-breaking 48.2°C recorded in Myanmar.

Also Read: Colombian Glacier Ritacuba Blanco Is Melting Away Due To El Nino & Climate Change

The research suggests that 2024 could see even warmer temperatures, further amplifying the need for immediate action to mitigate climate change and its potentially devastating consequences.

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