Jan 15, 2016

Weird weather rolls on with Hurricane Alex after hottest December, year

Azores
Portugal
by
Peter Hannam
,
Sydney Morning Herald
Sydney cleans up after a scorching 40-degree day was swept away by ferocious storms. Photo: Kate Geraghty
Sydney cleans up after a scorching 40-degree day was swept away by ferocious storms. Photo: Kate Geraghty

Hurricane Alex on Friday was heading for the Azores islands after forming over sea-surface temperatures much cooler than the 26 degrees usually required to trigger such a storm, according to the US National Hurricane Centre.

Preliminary figures from the Japan Meteorological Agency indicate last month was easily the hottest December for global land and sea-surface temperatures in data going back to 1891. Compared with the average December for the 1981-2010 period, temperatures last month were 0.67 degrees above normal. The biggest previous discrepancy had been 0.31 degrees set only a year earlier