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Dublin: 6°C Wednesday 1 December 2021

Last month was the hottest January on record across Europe, new figures show

Met Éireann also recorded above-average long-term temperatures for the month.

THE GLOBAL TEMPERATURE recorded for January 2020 was the hottest on record for Europe while Irish forecaster Met Éireann recorded above average temperatures for the month across the country. 

Data from the Copernicus Climate Change Service for Europe revealed last month’s temperatures were on average 0.2 degrees warmer than the previous warmest January in 2007, but significantly warmer – at an average increase of 3.1 degrees – compared to the average for the January period between 1981 and 2010.

Globally, there was a marginal increase on previous records as temperatures were recorded at an average of 0.03 degrees warmer than the same month in 2016.

“Average temperatures were especially high over large parts of northeastern Europe, in some areas more than 6 degrees higher than the 1981 – 2010 January average,” it said.

Meanwhile, Irish forecaster Met Éireann also recorded higher-than-average long-term temperatures for January 2019.

“All mean air temperatures across the country were above their long-term average for the month,” it said. 

“Deviations from mean air temperature for the month ranged from 0.4 degrees at Moore Park, Co Cork to 1.8 degrees at Finner, Co Donegal.”

A pattern of increasing temperatures throughout the 12 months of the year in countries across the world – much of which has been attributed to the effects of climate change.

copernucyus Source: Copernicus data

Last year was a recordbreaker for global average temperatures as parts of Europe experienced prolonged summer heatwaves. 

The same pattern looks set to continue into 2020 with the Copernicus data pointing to the impact higher temperatures last month had on some countries.

“Norway experienced its warmest January day on record early in the month, and the month was the second warmest since 1900 for the country as a whole.

“Skiers and reindeer herders were among those affected by mild conditions in Sweden. Observing stations in central and southern Finland recorded their warmest January in the period since at least 1961.

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“Exceptional above-average temperatures were not confined to Europe, but extended over almost all of Russia.

“Temperatures were also much above average over most of the USA and eastern Canada, over Japan and parts of eastern China and Southeast Asia, over the state of New South Wales in Australia and over parts of Antarctica.”

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