New meteorological data suggests that El Niño is behind the sudden increase in unseasonably hot temperature readings for the sixth month so far this year.
Climate scientists are sounding the alarm as a recent report revealed that this pas August was the hottest in the past 124 years. According to a report from the Sydney Morning Herald, Japan’s Meteorological Agency has reported that El Niño is contributing to record-breaking temperatures across the globe.
In August, the temperature over the land and sea was an average 0.45 degrees than the average over the past 29 years, breaking the 0.33-degree record set the past year.
The new data breaks the sixth consecutive record so far this year, and scientists believe El Niño is to blame. The weather event has been building in the Pacific and has helped drive temperatures upward in conjunction with the worsening effects of climate change.
The Pacific Ocean absorbs less heat in years when El Niño is strong, and this contributes to a temperature increase of up to 0.2 degrees elsewhere across the planet.
El Niño made a notable appearance in weather news in 1997, when worldwide temperatures spiked considerably. It has also affected weather patterns in 2005, 2010, and 2014.
This year’s El Niño effects are shaping up to be the strongest yet. The phenomenon occurs amidst a complex series of climatic changes that affect the Pacific Ocean along equatorial latitudes, and the cycle occurs every few years. It is characterized by the migration of warm, nutrient-poor water from the coast of mid-Pacific South America toward the end of the year.