Australia had the warmest winter on record this year. This is the latest record in a series of records being broken worldwide as climate change bites.
Simon Grainger, a senior climatologist at the country’s meteorology department, says the average winter temperature across Australia was 16.75 °C from June to August.
“This is higher than the previous record of 16.68 °C set in 1996.
Granger says Australian weather records date back to 1910.
La Niña conditions have caused warm winters and cooler and wetter summer conditions over much of Australia in recent years.
According to meteorological data, the winter – which came to an end on Thursday – had the second highest maximum temperatures on record and also the highest minimum temperatures.
Australian researchers have repeatedly warned that climate change increases the risk of natural disasters such as bushfires, floods and cyclones.
After several wet years, experts expect the coming summer to bring the most intense bushfire season since 2019-2020. This so-called “black summer” caused bushfires across Australia’s eastern coast, destroying large areas of forests, killing millions of animals and blanketing cities in noxious smoke.
Earlier this year, Australia also had the strongest winds the country has ever recorded, when a tropical cyclone hit the country’s northwest.
Wind speeds of 289 km per hour were recorded.
Global temperature records have been broken in recent years as climate change makes weather conditions more erratic.
According to the European Union’s climate observatory, Copernicus, July 2023 – characterized by heat waves and fires all over the world – was registered as the hottest month on earth.