It’s another one for the Record Books: March 2024 was the Hottest in History 

The European Union’s (EU) Copernicus Climate Change Service has reported that, at 1.68 degrees Celsius hotter than the “pre-industrial” era, March was the warmest March on record and the tenth straight temperature record-breaking month.

Globally, the temperature in March averaged 14.14 degrees Celsius, 0.73 degrees Celsius higher than the 1991-2020 average for March and 0.10 degrees Celsius above the previous high set in March 2016, Copernicus said in its latest surface air temperature climate bulletin.

The new March high was calculated from an estimate of the average March temperature during the “pre-industrial” reference period, designated as 1850-1900 which also shows a year-round global average temperature from April 2023 to March 2024 period that is 1.58 degrees Celsius higher than the pre-industrial average.

The average global temperature for the same 12-month period also came in at the highest on record, at 0.70 degrees Celsius above the average for 1991-2020.

The climate group’s top scientist called for urgent cuts in the volume of greenhouse gasses being pumped into the atmosphere.

“March 2024 continues the sequence of climate records toppling for both air temperature and ocean surface temperatures, with the 10th consecutive record-breaking month. The global average temperature is the highest on record, with the past 12 months being 1.58 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels,” said Copernicus deputy director Samantha Burgess. “Stopping further warming requires rapid reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.”

The report showed the greatest deviations from average temperatures globally on the eastern side of North America, Greenland, eastern Russia, Central America, parts of South America, many parts of Africa, southern Australia and parts of Antarctica. Conversely, temperatures in parts of Australia and Antarctica, as well as northwestern India, were a little below average.

In Europe, heat on central and eastern regions helped push the average March temperature 2.12 degrees Celsius higher than the 1991-2020 average for March, the continent’s second warmest March on record just slightly lower than March 2014 when the temperature was 2.14 degrees Celsius above the reference period.

Copernicus said the El Nino sea warming effects continued to weaken in the eastern equatorial Pacific, but generally, marine air temperatures were holding steady at an unusually high level averaging 21.07 degrees Celsius between latitude 60 degrees south and 60 degrees north.

The figure is the highest monthly value on record, slightly higher than the 21.06 degrees Celsius recorded for February. The February report by Copernicus found the month was 1.77 degrees Celsius warmer than the February average for the 1850-1900 reference period. Average surface air temperatures hit 56.37 degrees Fahrenheit, an increase of 0.12 degrees Celsius above the old record set in 2016.

In a plea for action to address global warming, Copernicus Director Carlo Buontempo said it was no surprise that the continuous heating up of the climate was producing record temperatures. “February joins the long streak of records of the last few months. As remarkable as this might appear, it is not really surprising as the continuous warming of the climate system inevitably leads to new temperature extremes,” said Buontempo.

Photo Credit: Collective Arcana /