Polar Circle, Japan, United States, Africa … The exceptional heatwave that has stifled the northern hemisphere for several weeks has caused the mercury to soar, which has set records in places like Norway, Algeria and Russia.
“2018 promises to be one of the hottest years ever, with record temperatures in many countries. This is not a surprise,” said Deputy Secretary General of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Elena Manaenkova.
These heat waves are “consistent with the expected effects of climate change caused by greenhouse gas emissions. This is not a future scenario. It’s happening now, “she insisted.
The situation is particularly exceptional in Northern Europe, where the thermometer has exceeded 30 ° C in the Arctic Circle.
Absolute temperature records were thus broken in Norway with 33.7°C on July 18 at Drag or 33°C on July 19 in Lakselv, more than 15 ° C above normal, according to the Meteorological Institute. Norwegian.
Another record, this time at night, in Makkaur, on the shores of the Barents Sea, where on July 18 the mercury did not drop below 25.2°C, according to the WMO.
Record also beat near the Arctic Circle in Kvikkjokk in Sweden with 32.5 ° C on July 17 or in Finnish Lapland with 33.4 ° C in Utsjoki Kevo on July 18, according to Météo-France.
37.2°C … in Siberia
In Siberia, mercury also peaked with 37.2°C in Tompo on July 9 or 35.5°C in Vanavara on June 26, according to the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency (NOAA).
Other parts of Europe, Ireland, Great Britain and France, are also facing heat waves, which do not necessarily lead to records at this stage.
Further south, Spain, Italy, Greece or Turkey are experiencing below-normal temperatures, according to the WMO.
In Japan, where the heat wave caused dozens of deaths, the national heat record was broken on July 23 in Kamagaya, with 41.1°C, according to official data. The same day, the 40 ° C was for the first time exceeded in a locality of the metropolitan area of Tokyo.
Algeria recorded 51.3°C on July 5 in Ouargla, in the Sahara, probably the “highest temperature ever recorded in Algeria by reliable instruments,” says WMO.
According to Météo-France, this is actually the record “for the whole continent (…) since we have reliable records.” But if WMO recognizes that the reliability of surveys in Africa during the colonial period “has been questioned”, it still considers the 55°C recorded in 1931 in Kebili, Tunisia, as the African record.
Morocco also recorded a national maximum on July 3 in Bouarfa, with 43.4°C, according to the WMO.
On the other hand, in the Middle East, on the coast of the Sultanate of Oman, in Quriyat, mercury did not drop below 42.6 ° C on June 28, including at night, which could be the highest minimum temperature ever recorded, according to the WMO.
Parts of the United States have also experienced a significant heat wave, particularly in California.
According to WMO, records were broken on July 6 in Chino (48.9 ° C) and Burbank (45.6°C), or July 7 in Van Nuys (47.2°C).
On July 8, the Furnace Creek Station in Death Valley measured 52 ° C. A temperature below 56.7°C July 10, 1913, officially the world’s historic record, but is disputed by some experts.
Christina Johnson is a proud born and raised Torontonian. Christina has worked as a journalist for nearly a decade having contributed to several large publications including the Yahoo News and the Financial Post. As a journalist for White Pine Tribune, Christina covers national and international developments.