Crowded Bondi Beach during heat wave in Sydney, NSW, Australia, 07 Jan 2018 (European Pressphoto Agency)
A recent heat wave in Australia was so severe that asphalt melted on some highways, firefighters had to battle wildfires and bats fell out of trees after literally boiling to death.
The daytime high reached a scorching 47.3 C in a western suburb of Sydney on Sunday which was the hottest since 1939 and while Melbourne was cooler, the thermometer still climbed to 40 C.
Beaches were so crowded in Sydney, there was virtually no room to move around.
While it is the height of summer Down Under, the normal January high in the New South Wales capital city is 27 C with an overnight low of 20 C.
Residents of Alberta were golfing rather than skiing this weekend as chinook-like weather brought record high temperatures.
On 09 December, Calgary set a new record of 15.4 C which broke the old record by one full degree from 1890.
The normal daytime high for Calgary is -1 C with an overnight low of -13 C.
Other records were set in Claresholm which hit a summer-like 20.3 C while Sundre reached 16.3 C.
Environment Canada says double digit highs are likely for at least the next few days.
Wildflowers and annuals in northeast Moncton, 03 Nov 2017 (Dearing)
A warm southerly flow allowed temperatures in the Maritimes to climb into the low 20s C yesterday with record highs broken in all three provinces.
Bouctouche was the hot spot in New Brunswick at 21.1 C which was the same record high set at St. Peters, Prince Edward Island.
Greenwood, Nova Scotia reached a summer-like maximum of 25.5 C which was the warmest in Canada.
A new high was also set at the Greater Moncton International Airport at 19.7 C edging out a record from 1999.
After a cold front moved through the region with some much needed rain, temperatures fell back to more seasonal values.
Aboiteau Beach, Cap-Pele, NB, 08 Oct 2017 (Dearing)
The jet stream brought warm southerly air into the Maritimes allowing temperatures in Southeast New Brunswick to climb into the 20s this Thanksgiving weekend.
Environment Canada says Greater Moncton reached a daytime high of 20.2 C on 07 October, 23.7 C on 08 October (near the record of 23.9 C from 1970), and 22.9 C on 09 October.
Given the autumn warmth, I couldn’t resist a visit to Aboiteau Beach (and neither could a handful of others) which was near 24 C under a mostly cloudy sky and it was quite windy.
Greenwood, Nova Scotia was the hot spot in Canada hitting 26 C for two days in a row.
Maple leaves changing colour in Fairview Knoll Park, Moncton, 04 Sept 2017 (Dearing)
September turned out to be a continuation of summer in Southeast New Brunswick right up until month end.
Daytime highs in Greater Moncton climbed above 25 C on ten days and a monthly maximum of 31.1 C turned out to be the warmest of 2017 set in early fall (26 Sept).
Although hurricanes never directly affected the province, meteorologists say much of the warmth last month came from tropical air pushed northward from these storms.
Rainfall was exactly normal but almost all of the precipitation fell during a single rain event spread over two days (6-7 Sept).
SEPTEMBER 2017 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)
Average HIGH 22.3 C
Average LOW 9.4 C
AVERAGE 15.8 C (about 2.2 degrees ABOVE normal)
Extreme HIGH 31.1 C (26 Sept, warmest high of 2017)
Extreme LOW 0.6 C (30 Sept)
RAINFALL 93.5 mm (Exactly NORMAL)
(Data courtesy Environment Canada)
Sunflowers flourishing during heat wave, Salisbury, NB, 24 Sept 2017 (Dearing)
Having a heat wave in late September is unusual for Southeast New Brunswick but even more so is that the highest temperature of 2017 has occurred in early autumn.
The thermometer soared to 31.1 C yesterday (26 September) at the Greater Moncton International Airport which breaks the previous maximum of 29.6 C from 2007 and records date back to 1881.
The previous high for the year had been 30.6 C recorded on 04 August.
At least 10 other New Brunswick communities set new record highs yesterday including Fredericton at 32.8 C, Woodstock at 32.3 C and Bouctouche at 31.8 C.
Environment Canada says temperatures will return to more seasonable values by the weekend with highs between 16 and 18 C.
Aboiteau Beach, Cap-Pele, NB, 23 Sept 2017 (Dearing)
This may have been the first weekend of autumn in Southeast New Brunswick but it felt more like the first weekend of summer instead.
Greater Moncton climbed to 27.7 C yesterday (23 September) while today (24 September) it hit 27.9 C and the normal high for late September is 17 C.
High pressure and a northerly jet stream has pushed heat across Eastern Canada with highs in the low 30s C in many parts of Ontario and Southern Quebec.
A heat warning was in place as Toronto Pearson Airport reached a record-breaking 33.1 C yesterday and 33.6 C today.
Flowers are flourishing in the September heat, 16 Sept 2017 (Dearing)
September usually doesn’t disappoint in Southeast New Brunswick when it comes to warm weather and so far this month is no exception.
Environment Canada reports on 14 September, the thermometer climbed to 27.8 C in Greater Moncton which ties the record high from 2003.
St. Stephen was the hot spot in the province and all of Canada with a high of 29.2 C which eclipsed the old record from 1903.
As we approach the first day of autumn on 22 September, temperatures in Greater Moncton can still climb into the 30s Celsius with a record high of 32.8 C in 1965.
Sunset over San Francisco, CA, USA, 01 Sept 2017 (Twitter)
San Francisco rarely suffers from hot weather which is why many residents are struggling to stay cool during a heat wave since most homes don’t have air conditioners.
The U.S. National Weather Service says the thermometer climbed to an all-time record-breaking 41.1 C (106 F) on 01 September and another record of 38.9 C (102 F) was set the following day.
Those sizzling highs are a far cry from the average of 21 C for the northern California city.
Numerous wildfires in the region have produced smoke and haze which has added to air quality concerns.
The heat has also stretched northward to Oregon, Washington State and British Columbia where temperatures could exceed 30 C on Vancouver Island.
Temperatures across southern Europe have been so hot in recent days – climbing to more than 40 C in some areas – the heat wave has been called “Lucifer”.
Several deaths have been reported and severe weather warnings have been issued in Spain, France, Italy and the Balkan States.
Serbia’s capital Belgrade reached a scorching 39 C and train service in the southern part of the country was halted after rail tracks buckled in the extreme heat.
By contrast, northern Europe has been much cooler and wetter with the thermometer dropping as low as 4 C in the Scottish Highlands.