CM – UN confirms record heat of 18.3 ° C in Antarctica

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July 1, 2021

by Robin Millard

The United Nations on Thursday recognized a new record temperature for the Antarctic continent and confirmed a value of 18.3 degrees Celsius (64.9 degrees Fahrenheit) from last year.

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The record heat was reached on February 6, 2020 at the Argentine research station Esperanza on the Antarctic Peninsula, announced the United Nations World Meteorological Organization.

« The review of this high temperature record is important because it helps us to To create a picture of the weather and climate at one of the last borders of the world, « said WMO General Secretary Petteri Taalas.

 » The Antarctic Peninsula is one of the regions on earth that is warming the fastest – almost 3 ° C in the past 50 years.

The WMO rejected an even higher temperature reading of 20.75 ° C (69.4 ° F), recorded on February 9th last year from a Brazilian automated permafrost monitoring station on the nearby island Seymour off the peninsula, which extends north towards South America.

The previous verified record for the Antarctic continent – the mainland and surrounding islands – was 17.5 ° C (63.5 ° F), recorded on March 24, 2015 in Esperanza.

The record for the wider Antarctic region – anywhere south of the 60th parallel – is 19.8 ° C (67.6 ° F), Taken on January 30, 1982 on Signy Island.

In reviewing the two reported new temperature records, a WMO committee reviewed the weather conditions on the peninsula at the time.

Previous assessments have shown that such conditions are conducive to record temperatures , said the WMO.

However, an improvised radiation shield at the Brazilian station on Seymour Island resulted in a detectable thermal bias error for the air temperature sensor of the permafrost monitor, so that its measurement cannot be recognized as an official WMO weather observation.

The new Esperanza record is added to the WMO archive of weather and climate extremes.

The archive includes the highest and lowest temperatures in the world, precipitation, heaviest hailstones, longest drought n period, maximum gusts of wind, longest lightning strikes and weather-related deaths.

The lowest temperature ever recorded on earth was minus 89.2 ° C (minus 128.6 ° F) on July 21, 1983 at the Vostok station was measured in Antarctica.

The average annual temperature in Antarctica ranges from around minus 10 ° C (14 ° F) on the coast to minus 60 ° C (minus 76 ° F) in the highest parts of the interior. The Earth’s average surface temperature has risen 1 ° C since the 19th century, enough to increase the intensity of droughts, heat waves, and tropical cyclones.

Recent research has shown that a warming of two degrees Celsius could drive the melting of the ice sheets on Greenland and West Antarctica – with enough frozen water to raise the oceans 13 meters (43 feet) – to a point of no return.

« This new record shows once again that climate change requires urgent action, » said WMO’s first vice-president, Celeste Saulo, head of Argentina’s national weather service.

« It is important to monitor, To further strengthen forecast and early warning systems in order to react to the extreme events that are increasingly occurring due to global warming.  »

© 2021 AFP

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