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.
Upper Salmon River, Alma, NB, 30 July 2017 (Dearing)
As the month of July progressed in Southeast New Brunswick, lawns turned brown and forests became extremely dry as temperatures soared with little rain fell.
Greater Moncton only received one-third of its normal monthly rainfall and 15 days had no precipitation at all.
The heat was steady throughout July with 20 days reaching 25 C or higher and four days climbing to 30 C or more.
A brief cool down near month end lowered daytime highs to the low 20s C and brought a chilly overnight low of 6.9 C.
JULY 2017 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)
Average HIGH 26.0 C
Average LOW 12.3 C
AVERAGE 19.2 C (about 0.4 degrees ABOVE normal)
Extreme HIGH 30.5 C (31 July)
Extreme LOW 6.9 C (23 July)
RAINFALL 30.0 mm (about 67 percent BELOW normal)
(Data courtesy Environment Canada)
Heavy rain during thunderstorm in NE Moncton, 21 July 2017 (Dearing)
The temperature climbed to 30 C for three days in a row in Greater Moncton which is an unofficial heat wave since 32 C is the maximum by definition.
Those warm daytime highs, 30.4 C (19 July), 30.4 C (20 July) and 30.0 C (21 July), still haven’t eclipsed the season-to-date maximum of 30.8 C recorded on 11 June.
A cold front moved west to east through New Brunswick yesterday triggering scattered thunderstorms with heavy rain, gusty winds and even hail.
The heat and humidity have been replaced by a cooler, drier air mass with highs in the low 20’s C which is slightly below normal for late July.
Wildfire north of Cache Creek, BC, 07 July 2017 (BC Transportation/Twitter)
A state of emergency is in place across British Columbia which gives government special authority over more than 230 wildfires.
B.C. wildfire officials say weeks of hot, dry weather combined with strong winds and dry lightning have led to almost 16,000 hectares being burned so far.
More than 7,000 residents in the Interior and Cariboo regions have been evacuated from communities like Cache Creek, Princeton, Ashcroft and 100 Mile House to be housed in Kamloops.
Temperatures remain hot in these areas this weekend soaring above 30 C.
Weather watches, warnings, statements re: heat and thunderstorms, 08 July 2017 (Environment Canada)
A strong ridge of high pressure over Western Canada has pushed the thermometer into record high territory for British Columbia and Alberta.
On 07 July, dozens of communities set new maximum temperatures with the highest at 39.4 C in Warfield and 38.3 C in Nelson but the hot spot in Canada was Garden River in northern Alberta at 40.3 C.
The major cities were warm too with Calgary reaching 33 C and Edmonton 30 C.
Heat warnings have been issued for most of Alberta and parts of Saskatchewan where temperatures will be near 29 C or higher for the next few days and residents are urged to take precautions.
Children play at a water park in Las Vegas, NV, USA, 20 June 2017 (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Excessive heat warnings have been posted in parts of California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico where record highs have been broken.
Las Vegas tied its record today of 47 C and Phoenix came close to its all-time high at 48 C.
Many flights have been delayed or cancelled since smaller jets can’t operate properly in dangerously hot conditions.
Temperatures have soared to 53 C in Death Valley, California which climbed to 56.7 C on 10 July 1913 – the hottest ever in North America.
Thunderstorm moves into Saint John, 12 June 2017 (AKS/Twitter)
After three days of daytime highs above 28 C in Greater Moncton, much cooler weather is coming thanks to a cold front and a change in wind direction.
The warm sometimes unstable air mass has created severe thunderstorms across the region.
Flash flooding was reported in Saint John yesterday after heavy downpours with wind and and hail which were also observed today in northeastern Nova Scotia.
Environment Canada is forecasting below seasonal temperatures for Southeast New Brunswick over the next couple of days.
Warm weather in Ontario heading to the Maritimes, 17 May 2017 (TWN)
A high pressure system is pushing warm, southerly air into the Maritimes with highs approaching 30 C tomorrow in New Brunswick.
Environment Canada says humidex values could climb to 39 which has led to a Level 1 Heat Alert for Fredericton and St. Stephen.
The provincial health department issues this alert when anyone vulnerable to the heat may be affected.
Greater Moncton could break a record on Thursday if the temperature reaches the forecast high of 28 C.
The Rocks Provincial Park, Hopewell Cape, NB, 01 Aug 2016 (Dearing)
To help celebrate New Brunswick Day, admission to all provincial parks was free on Monday.
Like thousands of others, I visited The Rocks Provincial Park at Hopewell Cape.
Hoping to escape the heat of Greater Moncton, the typical cool breeze off the Bay of Fundy was much warmer and temperatures climbed into the mid-20s Celsius.
Officials reported that more than 6,300 visitors took in the Rocks which was the highest figure for the date in at least 13 years.
Warm air arrives in Eastern Canada, 18 June 2016 (Environment Canada)
After almost a week of cold, rainy weather in Southeast New Brunswick, a warm air mass is moving in from Central Canada which will raise temperatures considerably.
After a chilly low this morning of 4.5 C in Greater Moncton, temperatures could reach as high as 30 C tomorrow which will be very close to a record high.
The heat returns just in time for the official arrival of summer on Monday night.