Extreme heat waves in April 2023 in Asia and Europe

It has never been so hot in April in areas of Asia and Europe like in 2023. Hundreds of weather stations in China with long timeseries have recorded new temperature records with values higher than 42ºC. On 15 April, Thailand had its warmest April on records with the highest value of 45.4ºC. Three days later, on 18 April 2023, Laos reported the highest recorded temperature with 42.7ºC.

Not only in Asia, but also in Europe extreme heat waves have started to influence western Europe and the Iberia Peninsula suffers from very high temperatures and serious drought. On 27 April, Cordoba in Spain reported the highest ever recorded temperature for April, with 38.8ºC, a value that is 4.8ºC higher than the previous record, and 14ºC higher than the normal values for this period of the year. This value is also the highest recorded temperature in Europe for the month of April.

The Spanish government reports that about 60% of the country’s farmland has been destroyed due to the lack of rainfall and high temperatures, and the numerous wildfires have already burned nearly 60.000 ha of forests. 

Summer 2022 was the warmest ever recorded in Europe and climate projections show an even warmer near future. We cannot rule out the possibility of 50ºC hitting Europe soon, putting humans, livestock and farms in very high stress.