No Repeat Of Last Year’s Extreme Heat For Iberia, Balearics, Canaries As 2018 Get’s Off To Cool, Wet Start

Written by on April 25, 2018 in Rest of Europe with 0 Comments

Recent springs have been dominated by hot, dry weather extending from Morocco up into Southwest Europe. Remember the record heat of March, April, May June and July heat last year?

A young man cools off at a fountain in downtown Córdoba, which was the hottest city in Spain on Thursday. Salas EFE

It started off with Alicante on the Costa Blanca soaring to 34.8C. A new all-time record for both March and April and hottest outwith Jun, Jul, Aug.

In May Porto, Portugal reached a new May benchmark of 35.1C.

In June Alcácer do Sal, Portugal reached 44.9C while Cordoba, Spain neared a city and national June record with 44.5C.

Then came July and it’s said that Spain set a new all-time high with Montoro reaching 47.3C.

Past records

According to a study from AEMET, which covers all of the heatwaves in the country between 1976 and June 2017, temperatures above 46ºC have rarely been seen in Spain. Temperatures exceeding 45ºC have been registered on five occasions, including at Córdoba airport in the summer of 2015, and in 2012 when 45.9ºC was reached at Seville airport.
However, the maximum temperature ever recorded in Spain was not actually during a heatwave: on July 23, 1995 the heat at Córdoba airport hit 46.6ºC.
The longest heatwave on record took place in 2015 and lasted 26 days.

Extreme Heat Looking Unlikely This Summer If Wet Pattern Continues Through May

Well it’s not repeating this year thanks to the opposite upper air setup this year of a blocky ‘high over low’ pattern. Persistent Scandinavian high pressure and Azores-Iberian low pressure Jan 1 through now has led to a cool, wet pattern for Spain, Portugal, Balearics, Canaries and northwest Africa.

London has beaten Madrid for the year’s first 27C.

Wetter than normal often means cooler than normal and that’s exactly what we’ve got.

Precip anomaly for year to date.

Temp anomaly

Cooler air also means cooler SST’s.

Credit: Tropical Tidbits

Just like heat is bred by dry, so wet breeds more wet and subsequently cooler than normal temps.

2015 through 2017 has seen Spain, Portugal, Balearics and the Canaries drier and hotter than normal but given the projected upper air pattern through May, the cool and wet doesn’t appear to be ending any time soon.

Credit: Tropical Tidbits

Credit: Tropical Tidbits

Credit: Tropical Tidbits

Credit: Tropical Tidbits

In fact a cool, wet late winter and spring could support the continuation of cool and wet through at least the first half of the summer months, especially Iberia and Balearics.

CFSv2 monthly for May through July

Credit: Tropical Tidbits

Credit: Tropical Tidbits

Credit: Tropical Tidbits


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