WMO confirms verification of new continental European temperature record

30 January 2024

The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) has officially confirmed a new record temperature for continental Europe of 48.8°C (119.8°F) in Italy on 11 August 2021. The findings were published in the RMetS International Journal of Climatology.

An international panel of atmospheric scientists verified the temperature recorded by an automated weather station in Syracuse on the Italian island of Sicilia (Sicily). Because WMO Region VI (Europe) contains parts of Asia (e.g. Israel, Türkiye and Syria) and Greenland, the WMO extremes are categorized with records for both the region as a whole and for ‘continental’ Europe.

The previous record for continental Europe of 48.0 °C (10 July 1977) was held by the Greek cities of Athens and Elefsina, Greece. This was based on official government sources and included in the WMO Archive of Global Weather and Climate Extremes at the time of its formation in 2007.

Read the full WMO press release.

RMetS Members can view the journal article by logging in to My Dashboard and visiting the International Journal of Climatology.