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Climate change: Australia faces ‘abnormal’ spring heat, record temperature in sight

Climate change: Australia faces ‘abnormal’ spring heat, record temperature in sight

Much of Australia was in the grip of “unusual” spring heat on Saturday, the country’s weather forecast service said, with record temperatures possible on Sunday.

In Sydney, the capital of Australia’s most populous state of New South Wales, the temperature at Sydney’s Kingsford Smith Airport hit 34.2 degrees Celsius, 12 degrees above the September average, according to Bureau of Meteorology data.

The bureau said this week that indicators of an El Niño climate could strengthen and develop between September and November, resulting in much hotter and drier conditions in Australia.

8 to 16 degrees Celsius above average

He said the “initial level of heat” in many parts of the country was “very rare in September”. “These temperatures will intensify from Sunday to Tuesday,” he said on Facebook, forecasting 8 to 16 degrees Celsius above average.

Record daytime and nighttime temperatures for September are expected from Sunday to Thursday across inland areas of South Australia, New South Wales and northeastern Victoria.

El Nino can cause extreme weather events from bushfires to cyclones and prolonged drought, with Australian officials already warning of increased bushfire risks this summer.

A thick cloud of smoke enveloped Sydney for days this week as firefighters tackled burns in preparation for the bushfire season.

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