Comment: Summer 2023 hottest on record

Summer 2023 was the warmest on record globally by a large margin, says EU's Copernicus Climate Change Service.

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By George Smeeton

Last updated:

Commenting on the news that Summer 2023 was the warmest on record globally by a large margin [1], Gareth Redmond-King, Head of International Programme at the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU) said: "Assessments like this are no longer just ‘warnings’ of dangers ahead. This, the hottest northern hemisphere summer by some margin, has seen devastating impacts in many parts of the world. Fires and floods have done terrible damage, and lengthy periods of extreme heat will almost certainly have caused additional deaths, as they did in Europe last year.

“Just because the UK hasn’t borne the brunt of it this summer doesn’t mean we’ve dodged a bullet. We live in a globalised world. Half our food is imported; a quarter of those imports come from the heat and fire plagued Mediterranean region.[2] Harvests and food quality were hit by last year's drought and heat; they will likely be hit again by this hotter summer, leading to shortages and even higher prices in our supermarkets. Until we stop burning fossil fuels and get to net zero emissions going into the atmosphere, this will get worse; the risk will grow, and summers will become even more dangerous."


Notes to editors:

  1. Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S): and World Meteorological Organization:
  2. ECIU: Climate extremes like this summer’s heatwaves threaten UK food imports from Mediterranean:

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George Smeeton, Head of Communications, ECIU, Tel: 07894 571 153, email: