Atypical Year in Costa Rica: September Breaks Temperature Records Despite Being Rainy Season

    However, extreme warming in the Caribbean Sea may generate changes in the coming months

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     The El Niño phenomenon is generating an atypical year in Costa Rica to the point that September records record temperatures.According to experts from the National Meteorological Institute (IMN), the situation is unusual because it is a month during the rainy season.

     “On September 26 in San José, the second highest temperature of the year was recorded.  Under normal conditions, this would not happen, since September is not among the hottest months of the year,” the meteorologist indicated.

    In addition, this month the maximum temperature records have been broken in the areas of:

    • Santa Elena, La Cruz de Guanacaste: reached 36.1 °C
    • Santa Cruz de Guanacaste: reached 36.5 °C
    • San Pedro, in Santa Bárbara de Heredia: at 31.6 °C

    “According to the record of the 10 highest temperatures of 2023, half occurred in June, which is also not a dry season month, when the hottest conditions of the year occur,” mentioned the IMN.

     In fact, none of this year’s 10 highest temperatures occurred during a month of dry season.  Five temperatures belong to June, which according to world records, is the warmest recorded to date on the planet.Likewise, August records indicate that temperatures were up to 1.3 degrees higher than normal, a situation that generates an even greater sensation of sultry.

     The European Copernicus observatory announced that 2023 will probably be the hottest year in history

    And in the first eight months of the year, the planet’s average temperature is “only 0.01 °C behind 2016, the hottest year ever recorded.”But this record will soon fall, seeing the forecasts and the return in the Pacific Ocean of the El Niño climate phenomenon, which will lead to more warming.

     “Taking into account the excess heat on the ocean surface, 2023 is likely to be the warmest year (…) that humanity has ever known,” Samantha Burgess, deputy head of the climate change service copernicus(C3S), said.

    The Copernicus database dates back to 1940, but can be compared to the climate of previous millennia, established by tree rings and ice cores, and synthesized in the latest report by UN climate change experts (IPCC).On this basis, “the three months we have just experienced are the warmest for around 120,000 years, that is, since the beginning of human history,” said Burgess.

    Hurricane season

    On the other hand, another particular situation that is occurring is the formation of tropical cyclones.During this past Thursday, Tropical Storm Rina formed in the Atlantic Ocean and is the seventeenth tropical cyclone of 2023.

     Therefore, this season exceeds the historical average from 1991 to 2022 in number, with 14 cyclones.  According to the forecast for this year, it is up to 20 cyclones, which means that there would be three more to go until November when the season officially ends.

     “The abnormal thing about this relatively active season is that it is occurring under the effects of El Niño, which theoretically causes a decrease in the number and intensity of cyclones, but rather the opposite is happening, it is even being more active than that of 2022, in a La Niña phenomenon,” said the Institute.

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