January set new record for heat: EU scientists

January became the the eighth month in a row to set record-high temperatures, according to a new report from European Union scientists.

The EU’s Copernicus Climate Change Service announced that last month was the warmest January on record. This comes in the wake of 2023 being the hottest year, with an average of 14.98 degrees Celsius — or just under 60 degrees Fahrenheit — which is 0.6 degrees warmer than the last 30 years, according to the report.

Copernicus said the surface air temperature average in January was about 13.14 degrees Celsius — or roughly 55.65 degrees Fahrenheit. This was about .70 degrees Celsius (33.26 degrees Fahrenheit) above the 1991-2020 average for January and about .12 degrees Celsius (32 degrees Fahrenheit) above the previous hottest January on record in 2020.

While the global temperature average was lower than the previous six months, it was still higher than the months before July 2023 last year, Copernicus noted. The service said European temperatures varied last month, ranging from “much below the 1991-2020 average over the Nordic countries to much above average over the south of the continent.”

“Outside Europe, temperatures were well above average over eastern Canada, north-western Africa, the Middle East and central Asia, and below average over western Canada, the central USA and most of eastern Siberia,” the service found.

Scientists also said last month’s global sea surface temperature averages were above average for this time of the year.

The average was about .26 degrees Celsius (32.4 degrees Fahrenheit) warmer than the previous warmest January, which was in in 2016, per Copernicus’s report.

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