Extreme heat made last month the 4th-hottest August on record

BRUSSELS (BLOOMBERG) – August 2020 will go down as the fourth-warmest August on record worldwide, with above average summertime heat in the United States and Mexico tempered slightly by below-average temperatures in parts of the Southern Hemisphere.

Global temperatures for the month spiked around 0.9 deg C above the historical average, according to a new report by Europe’s Copernicus Climate Change Service.

That reading came in lower than the summers of 2018 and 2019, the agency said in a statement.

Still, high temperatures recorded over the past few months have put 2020 on track to become the second-hottest or possibly the hottest year on record.

Record-breaking highs have been registered around the world, including an Aug 17 reading of 54.4 deg C in Death Valley, California, which could be the highest temperature recorded.

Heatwaves brought higher-than-average temperatures to western and central Europe in August, while the number of days with heat stress falling in the “very strong” category was similar to last summer.

North-western Siberia and much of the Arctic Ocean also experienced above-average heat.

Extreme heat has fuelled the worst wildfire season in the Arctic, and that makes 2020 the second consecutive year to set a new record.

California is seeing widespread wildfire activity, with the second and third worst fires in the state’s history recorded this year.

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