Posted: Tue 4th Jul 2023

UK records its hottest June on record, confirms Met Office

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Tuesday, Jul 4th, 2023

June 2023 has been confirmed as the hottest on record for the UK. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Temperatures soared last month with parts of the UK recording 30C, while locally temperatures remained in the mid and high 20s for several days. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Across the UK 72 ceremonial counties in the Met Office system recorded their hottest June on record, with many recording mean temperature more than 2.5°C more than average. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Counties that recorded their warmest June on record spanned the UK, including Orkney, Warwickshire, Surrey, Somerset and Cornwall. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

According to provisional Met Office figures, the average mean temperature of 15.8°C for June 2023 in the UK is the highest in a series since 1884, with England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland also reporting their respective warmest June on record. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

This exceeded the previous record by 0.9°C, while the previous top three Junes were separated by just 0.1°C. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

A rapid study by Met Office scientists found the chance of observing a June beating the previous record of 14.9°C, like we have this year, has at least doubled since the period around 1940. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The previous record of 14.9°C was recorded in 1940 and 1976. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Paul Davies, Met Office Climate Extremes Principal Fellow and Chief Meteorologist, said: “We found that the chance of observing a June beating the previous joint 1940/1976 record of 14.9°C has at least doubled since the 1940s. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Alongside natural variability, the background warming of the Earth’s atmosphere due to human induced climate change has driven up the possibility of reaching record high temperatures. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Using our UKCP18 climate projections, we can also see that there is a difference in the frequency of these sort of extremes depending on the emissions scenario we follow in the future. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“By the 2050s the chance of surpassing the previous record of 14.9°C could be as high as around 50%, or every other year. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Beyond the 2050s the likelihood is strongly governed by our emissions of greenhouse gasses, with the chance increasing further in a high emissions scenario but levelling off under mitigation.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The rapid study used the UK’s climate projections, UKCP18, comparing the chance of surpassing 14.9°C during the period 1925-1955 to that for 1991-2020. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The Met Office’s Mark McCarthy, who works in the team responsible for weather and climate records, said: “It’s officially the hottest June on record for the UK, for mean temperature as well as average maximum and minimum temperature. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“June started with a good deal of high pressure and temperatures initially around average for many, but once that subsided, warm, humid air began to influence temperatures, with 32.2°C the highest temperatures reached. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“What’s striking is the persistent warmth for much of the month, with temperatures widely into the mid 20s Celsius for many and even into the low 30s at times.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Eight of the twelve calendar months now have an average temperature record set since 2006 in a series which dates back to 1884. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Rainfall was in short supply for much of June, though totals did climb in the second half of the month. The UK had just 68% of its average rainfall for the month, with 52.2mm of rainfall. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Wales was particularly dry, recording just over half of its average monthly rainfall with 46.7mm (51% of average). ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland all recorded drier than average months, though not enough to trouble any records according to the Met Office. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The North Atlantic, including waters around the UK, has been experiencing record-breaking temperatures of its own in June, which has played an underlying role in the land-based temperature figures for the UK. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Met Office Scientific Manager Segolene Bethou said: “These settled conditions also contributed to a fast warming of the sea surface around the British Isles: a severe marine heatwave was declared mid-June (NOAA – Category 4). ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“Provisional findings from the Met Office suggest this marine heatwave in turn amplified land temperatures even further to the record levels seen during the month.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

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