Ireland set to hit hottest June on record

Crowds of people enjoying the sun on Portmarnock beach near Dublin (Niall Carson/PA)
Crowds of people enjoying the sun on Portmarnock beach near Dublin (Niall Carson/PA)

This month will be the hottest June on record, forecaster Met Eireann has said, surpassing the previous record that held for 83 years.

June 2023 will be more than half a degree higher than the previous record set in June 1940.

Provisional data shows that Ireland has experienced its first June with an average temperature above 16C.

The highest temperature of 2023 so far, 28.8C, was reported at Oak Park in Co Carlow on June 13, and marks the third year in a row that a temperature at or above this value has been recorded in Ireland.

As well as climate change making these record-breaking temperatures more likely, a marine heatwave off the coast has brought extreme sea-surface temperatures to Irish shores recently.

Met Eireann climatologist Paul Moore said that although temperatures have fallen in recent days, they will not prevent this month from being a record-breaker.

He added: “This year’s particularly warm June is part of an observed warming trend and our research shows that this trend will continue. Our recently published Translate project provides a reminder that right across society we need to understand and plan for a changing climate.

“An average monthly temperature of greater than 16C has been seen in July and August, but never before in June. June 2023 was well above normal due to persistent warm days and nights.

“Twenty-three of 25 Met Eireann primary weather stations are showing their warmest June on record. In early June, cool easterly winds on the east coast meant that Phoenix Park and Dublin Airport stations were cooler but they still show their warmest June since 1976.”

Met Eireann researcher Dr Padraig Flattery said that as climate change continues, further records are likely to be broken and more frequent and extreme weather events are likely to hit Ireland.

“A warmer atmosphere can hold more moisture (about 7% for every 1C of warming) and warmer waters, in turn, provide more energy for storms and can contribute to extreme rainfall events.”

Met Eireann said that during June, and especially over the past two weeks, Ireland has seen nine days of intense thunderstorm activity, with heavy downpours, lightning and hail at times.

Dramatic flooding was experienced in parts of Dublin during that period.

Although prolonged thunderstorms are not normal in Ireland, it is more likely as the climate warms, the forecaster added.