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NASA says July was hottest month ever on record

(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

NEW YORK (WISH)- July 2023 was the hottest month on record since temperature record-keeping started 174 years ago, according to data from NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The global monthly temperature was unusually higher than average.

The surface temperature on Earth in July was 2.02 degrees Fahrenheit greater than the 20th century’s average temperature.

Certain parts of the globe felt the record heat more than other parts.

Portions of South America, North Africa, North America, and the Arctic Peninsula experienced especially blistering weather.

Researchers at NASA say the phenomena are consequences of human-caused climate change.

“Climate change is impacting people and ecosystems around the world, and we expect many of these impacts to escalate with continued warming,” said Katherine Calvin, chief scientist and senior climate advisor at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “Our agency observes climate change, its impacts, and its drivers, like greenhouse gases, and we are committed to providing this information to help people plan for the future.”

According to NASA data, the five hottest Julys since 1880 have all happened in the past five years.

Parts of South America, North Africa, North America, and the Antarctic Peninsula were especially hot.

Those areas experienced temperature increases around 7.2 F above average. 

NASA says overall, extreme heat this summer put tens of millions of people under heat warnings.

Hundreds of heat-related illnesses and deaths were due to the heat.

According to NASA, the temperatures were recorded from surface air temperature data from tens of thousands of metrological stations.

They also use sea surface temperature data acquired by ship- and buoy-based instruments.

“This July was not just warmer than any previous July – it was the warmest month in our record, which goes back to 1880,” said GISS Director Gavin Schmidt. “The science is clear this isn’t normal. Alarming warming around the world is driven primarily by human-caused greenhouse gas emissions. And that rise in average temperatures is fueling dangerous extreme heat that people are experiencing here at home and worldwide.”

NASA says high sea surface temperatures contributed to July’s record warmth.

NASA’s analysis shows especially warm ocean temperatures in the eastern tropical Pacific.

It’s evidence of the El Niño that began developing in May.