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April 2019 was 2nd hottest on record for the globe

Arctic sea ice coverage reached a record low last month
May 20, 2019
A collage of typical climate and weather-related events: heatwaves, drought, hurricanes, wildfires and changes in sea ice coverage.

Earth continues to sweat it out, and last month was no exception. April 2019 was the second-hottest April on the record, which dates to 1880. The Arctic region wasn’t spared either, as sea ice coverage shrunk to a record low for the month.  

Here are highlights from NOAA’s latest monthly global climate report:

Climate by the numbers

April 2019

The average global temperature in April was 1.67 degrees F above the 20th-century average of 56.7 degrees F, making it the second-hottest April in the 140-year record behind April 2016. Last month also was the 43rd consecutive April and 412 consecutive month that saw  above-average global temperatures.

Year to date I January through April

The period from January through April produced a global temperature 1.62 degrees F above the average of 54.8 degrees, which is the third-hottest YTD on record. The record-warm temperatures for the fourth-month period were registered in parts of Australia, southeastern Brazil, central Asia, the southern Atlantic and southwestern Indian oceans and the Barents, East China and Tasman seas.  

An annotated map of the world showing notable climate events that occurred in April 2019. For details, see the short bulleted list below in our story and more details at http://bit.ly/Global201904.
An annotated map of the world showing notable climate events that occurred in April 2019. For details, see the short bulleted list below in our story and more details at http://bit.ly/Global201904.

More notable stats

  • Sea ice shrinks markedly at both poles: Average Arctic sea ice coverage (extent) in April was 8.4 percent below the 1981-2010 average – the lowest for April on record. The Antarctic sea ice extent was 16.6 percent below average, the third smallest for April on record.

  • Canadian coolness reached southward: Cooler-than-average temperatures were logged from January through April across much of Canada and the north-central U.S., about 3.6 degrees F below average.

More > Access NOAA's report and download images from the NCEI website.

Media contact
John Leslie, 301-713-0214