September 2020 was the warmest September on record globally, according to scientists at the European Union’s Earth observation program Copernicus. The agency also revealed that the Arctic sea ice is at its second lowest extent since satellite records began in 1979.
September temperatures were well above average in many regions across the globe, including off the coast of northern Siberia, in the middle East, in parts of South America and Australia, with the exception of eastern tropical Pacific. The month was 0.05 C warmer than September 2019, the previous warmest September on record.
Earth’s surface was warmer last month than during any September on record, with temperatures since January tracking those of the hottest ever calendar year in 2016, the European Union’s Earth Observation Programme said Wednesday.
This year has now seen three months of record warmth — January, May and September — with June and April virtually tied for first, the Copernicus Climate Change Service reported.
“There is currently little difference between 2020 and 2016 for the year-to-date,” Copernicus senior scientist Freja Vambourg told AFP.
For the 12-month period through September, the planet was nearly 1.3 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
That is alarmingly close to the 1.5C threshold for severe impacts detailed in a major 2018 report by the UN’s climate science advisory panel, the IPCC.
The Paris Agreement has enjoined nations to cap global warming at “well below” 2C, and 1.5C if feasible.