Sept. 17, 2019 (AccuWeather) — The Northern Hemisphere, which holds 90 percent of the world’s population, just experienced its hottest meteorological summer on record, tied with 2016, scientists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced Monday.
For the year-to-date, 2019 is the third-warmest year on record after 2016 and 2017.
According to NOAA, nine of the 10 highest June-through-August global land and ocean surface temperatures have occurred since 2009.
It was the second-hottest summer at a global level, according to NOAA, along with the second-hottest August on record for the planet.
There have been around 40 child hot-car deaths this summer, but that number is still behind last year for the summer. There were roughly 31 from June to August in 2018 and around 29 from June to August in 2019.
South America, Africa, Europe, the Gulf of Mexico and the Hawaiian region had a temperature departure from average for the summer months that ranked among the three warmest such periods on record. Africa, for example, had its warmest June-through-August period on record, according to NOAA’s report.
Europe was baked by multiple scorching heat waves throughout the summer that spread record high temperatures across the continent, making Paris surpass its hottest temperature ever recorded. Germany and France had their third-warmest summers on record, while Austria had its second-warmest summer.
In July, France, Belgium, Germany, Netherlands and Britain all set new all-time high temperature records.
“Paris had at least 14 days this summer with temperatures above the 90s. Their highest ‘normal’ high all summer was 77 degrees,” AccuWeather Meteorologist John Gresiak said.
An annotated map of the world showing notable climate events that occurred around the world in August 2019. (NOAA)
Alaska is one area that has suffered the most from the heat. Eight of Alaska’s top 13 warmest days on record were in 2019.
“The Anchorage airport reached 90 degrees for the first time in that weather station’s history on July 4. Anchorage also topped 80 degrees eight times this year, the most ever since record keeping of the weather began there in 1917,” AccuWeather Meteorologist Jake Sojda said.
According to Sojda, Anchorage also had a problem with smoke this summer from huge wildfires that burned near the area. Alaska’s fire season typically ends by Aug. 1, but the Swan Lake Fire has not been contained yet.
“Over 2.5 million acres have burned in Alaska this year. While that’s still nowhere near the record of over 6.5 million acres from 2004, it’s still considered a ‘major fire year’ which is a year when over a million acres is burned,” Sojda said.
“The last major fire year was 2013 when 1.3 million acres burned. You have to go back to 2009 to find more acres burned than this year, when 2.9 million acres were burned,” Sojda said.