US sweats through hottest June on record, warning for a tornado or two
June 2023 was the hottest June ever recorded globally, with the West and East Coast of the US experiencing record-breaking temperatures.
The West and East Coast of the US along with the rest of the world experienced the hottest June ever recorded on both land and sea, according to a new report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
The report, released on Thursday, said that the average global surface (land and ocean) temperature in June was 1.89 F above the 20th-century average, breaking the previous record set in June 2020 by 0.23F.
Some of these impacts were already evident on Thursday, as the National Weather Service’s storm prediction center issued severe thunderstorm warnings for parts of eastern New York, western Vermont, Ohio Valley, and southern and central Plains.
Tornado warning for Ottawa, Canada, Oklahoma City, and Chicago.
The report also said that the global ocean surface temperature reached a record high for June, as a weak El Niño event that started in May intensified last month. (El Niño is a natural phenomenon that occurs when the Pacific Ocean warms up and affects weather patterns around the world.)
The report added that June 2023 marked the 47th consecutive June and the 532nd consecutive month with above-average temperatures, indicating the long-term trend of global warming driven by human activities, such as burning fossil fuels.
Another sign of the climate crisis was the record low sea ice coverage in June, according to the NOAA. The report said that the global sea ice extent in June 2023 was 330,000 square miles less than the previous record low from June 2019.
The report came after preliminary data suggested that last week was the hottest week ever reliably measured, following a June that was the hottest ever documented globally.
Climate scientists have warned that the developing El Niño event is likely to contribute to more record-breaking temperatures this year, as well as more extreme weather events, such as heatwaves, droughts, wildfires, and floods.
Michael Mann, a climate scientist at the University of Pennsylvania, said,"We have a major El Niño event on our hands, it will certainly continue to develop, and it will almost certainly contribute to 2023 being the hottest year on record.”
“The combination of human-caused warming and this emerging event is already wreaking havoc across the northern hemisphere this summer in the form of record heat, drought, wildfires, and floods."
The center said that damaging winds, large hail, and possibly tornadoes were expected in these areas. It also said that large hail and damaging winds were the main threats from the storms in the Plains, along with a chance of a tornado or two.