In a stark confirmation of climate concerns, Copernicus Climate Change Service has declared 2023 as the hottest year on record, with November registering a disturbing 1.75 degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial average.
The impact is not just atmospheric; oceans between 60ºN and 60ºS experience the highest sea surface temperatures ever recorded, intensifying concerns about global warming.
As the year unfolds, the extreme temperatures persist, with Copernicus revealing that January to November 2023 witnessed global average temperatures soaring to 1.46 degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial average.
Notably, the boreal autumn from September through November is marked as the warmest by a significant margin. The data paints a concerning picture, with six record-breaking months and two record-breaking seasons, making 2023 a historic year for global temperatures.
The heat isn't limited to the air; Copernicus reports that ocean waters between 60ºN and 60ºS have the highest average sea surface temperature on record.
A 0.25-degree Celsius increase from the last record-breaking November in 2015 raises alarms about the broader impact on marine ecosystems and the potential for more severe weather events.
This distressing trend brings the world dangerously close to the 1.5 degrees Celsius global warming threshold, heightening the risk of intensified extreme weather events, including droughts, flooding, hurricanes, and wildfires.
Carlo Buontempo, director of the Copernicus Climate Change Service, said the extreme temperatures seen this year will only continue if drastic changes aren't made quickly.
"As long as greenhouse gas concentrations keep rising we can't expect different outcomes from those seen this year," Buontempo said.
"The temperature will keep rising and so will the impacts of heatwaves and droughts. Reaching net zero as soon as possible is an effective way to manage our climate risks."