In the coastal Spanish city of San Sebastian, residents swapped sweaters for T-shirts and went to the beach for a swim. In Rome, tourists and locals in light sweaters strolled in the sun. And in the lower reaches of the Pyrenees, a lack of snowfall has forced some French ski resorts to close trails.

An unusually warm January broke dozens of weather records across Europe. Meteorologists called the record for hot weather and its breaking “staggering”, as many countries saw their warmest start to the year ever measured.

In Brest, Belarus, for example, temperatures usually hover around freezing, but on New Year’s Day they recorded a high of 60.6 degrees Fahrenheit, or 15.9 Celsius. According to the temperature in the Czech Republic on Monday national meteorological officeAt least 30 years old records were matched or broken at 90 of the 162 stations in the country.

Warsaw residents enjoyed the warmest start to the year since 1999 with a high of 66 degrees Fahrenheit. Latvia, Lithuania and the Netherlands also experienced record heat on New Year’s Day. France recorded its warmest winter night since 1947 just before the new year, said Meteo France, the country’s national forecaster.

Although temperatures have cooled in some areas over the past few days, the unseasonal heat has already captured a year of historic highs. Britain, France And Spain announced that 2022 was expected to be the hottest year on record after a wave of heatwaves.

While tying a single heat wave or warm spell to climate change requires analysis, scientists say heat waves around the world are becoming hotter, more frequent and longer-lasting.

“The record-breaking heat across Europe in the new year was more likely to be caused by human-caused climate change, such that climate change is now making each heat wave more likely and hotter,” said senior lecturer Dr. Said Friedrich Otto at The Grantham Institute – Climate Change and the Environment at Imperial College London. “As long as greenhouse gas emissions continue, such heat waves will become increasingly common and severe.”

Despite being a pleasant holiday, the unusual heat disrupted some of the winter activities and left many people stranded.

This forced some ski resorts in the lower mountain ranges such as the Pyrenees and Vosges to close the trails during their peak season. In Switzerland, where temperatures reached a record 68 degrees, the Swiss resort of Adelboden-Lenk, north of the Alps, which will host a skiing World Cup event next weekend, brought in artificial snow on New Year’s Day.

“This winter is like summer, suffocating,” said Josu Cyrus, 52, who was driving to his job selling beer on Wednesday in the northern Spanish city of Bilbao, which has seen temperatures top 77 degrees – January More typical of July than . Mr Cyrus said he was battling the heat. “The landscape is beautiful, but the body suffers.”

Unusual heat in Spain’s Basque Country, usually one of the country’s rainiest regions, prompted its regional government to issue an emergency warning on New Year’s Day, citing the risk of wildfires.

In Germany, a headline announced, “T-shirt weather on New Year’s Eve in Bavaria.” In a typical year, visitors to the area’s Christmas markets fight off the cold with mulled wine. In Munich, temperatures topped 68 degrees on New Year’s Eve, the highest ever recorded on that date.

A fast-moving, warm wind from the tropical Atlantic moved toward western Europe, leading to the unusual heat, said lead author Robert Voutard, a scientist and a coordinator for the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

“It is absolutely extraordinary this time of year,” he said. “This is what we used to call a record-breaking peak.”

The UK also experienced below-normal temperatures, with London recording a record high of 61 degrees on New Year’s Day. according to its meteorological office,

“The temperature increases seen in Europe are staggering,” London-based meteorologist Scott Duncan, who was monitoring the temperature rise, said in an email. “We have seen old records broken by large margins in many countries.”

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Reporting was contributed byaurelian breeden in paris, Christopher F Schuetz in Berlin, Emma Bubola in Rome, and jose bautista in Madrid.



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