Published On: Mon, Sep 18th, 2017

Globe sees 2nd warmest year to date; 3rd warmest August on record

high-temperaturesFLORIDA - The final days of August signaled summer’s end for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere. So, how did this summer compare to others?

For the entire globe, both August and the season (June, July and August) each went down as the third warmest on record. But depending on where you live, the summer you experienced may have felt warmer or cooler than normal.

August 2017 was 1.49 degrees F above the 20th-century average of 60.1 degree F.  This was the third highest in the 1880-2017 record, behind 2016 (highest) and 2015 (second highest). This marks the 41st consecutive August and 392nd consecutive month with global temperatures at least nominally above average, according to scientists from NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information.

The seasonal global temperature for June through August was 1.46 degrees F above the average of 60.1 degrees F — the third highest for this period in the record, trailing 2016 (highest) and 2015 (second highest).

Looking at the year to date, the global temperature was 1.58 degrees F above the average of 57.3 degrees F, the second highest for this period in the record after 2016.

Other notable climate findings and facts around the world last month included:

  • Near-record sea ice at the poles: The average Arctic sea ice extent (coverage) for August was 24.3 percent below the 1981-2010 average, the third smallest for the month since satellite records began in 1979. The average Antarctic sea ice extent was 3.6 percent below average, the second smallest on record for August.
  • Warmer-than-average lands and oceans: The globally averaged land-surface temperature (second warmest for the month of August and the June-through-August period) and the sea-surface temperature (fourth warmest for August and the June-through-August period) ranked second highest on record for record for the year to date.
  • Africa led the continents in warmth rankings: Africa had its second warmest August on record; South America, Asia and Europe had their third; Oceania its fifth; and North America its 22nd.

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