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Europe records hottest summer ever in 2022

September 8, 2022

The EU's climate monitor said the average temperatures from June to August topped the previous record that was set in 2021.

Man with feet in well in Sevilla, he is holding his head in his hands
This year's summer was the hottest recorded in EuropeImage: Daniel G. Acuna/dpa/picture alliance

The summer of 2022 was the hottest in Europe's recorded history, the European Commission's climate monitor said on Thursday. It is the second summer in a row of record-breaking temperatures in Europe

The Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) said temperatures in Europe had been the "highest on record for both the month of August and the summer [June-August] as a whole."

August 2022 hottest month recorded

Data showed August was the hottest month yet recorded by a "substantial margin" of 0.4 degrees Celsius.

"An intense series of heatwaves across Europe, paired with unusually dry conditions, have led to a summer of extremes with records in terms of temperature, drought and fire activity in many parts of Europe, affecting society and nature in various ways," senior C3S scientist Freja Vamborg said.

"Data shows that we've not only had record August temperatures for Europe but also for summer, with the previous summer record only being one year old," she added.

In addition, August 2022 was generally much drier on average in Western Europe and parts of the East. In Southeastern Europe and parts of Scandinavia, there was more rain than usual.

Heatwaves, droughts and wildfires in Europe and elsewhere

Much of the northern hemisphere has been battling droughts and wildfires as a result of rising temperatures.

In late August, the European Commission said that around two thirds of the continent was experiencing drought.

Low water levels on the Rhine Riverin Germany have disrupted supply chains, as some ships were unable to traverse the waterway fully loaded.

On Wednesday, a World Meteorological Organization report said that longer droughts and more frequent heatwaves are fueling wildfires that worsen air quality. The report called the consequences for human health and ecosystems a "climate penalty."

sdi/wmr (AFP, dpa)