Hong Kong sweats through highest temperature it's ever recorded in March following hottest summer on record last year

Hong Kong’s temperature on Sunday reached the highest recorded level during the month of March in 140 years, according to the city’s observatory.

The maximum temperature measured at the Observatory was 31.5C (88.7F) — the highest reported during the month of March since records began in 1884 — while it surged to above 32C in the northern areas of the territory close to the mainland Chinese city of Shenzhen.

On Thursday, the observatory warned that the city is expected to see above-normal mean temperatures this year, “with a high chance of reaching the warmest top 10 on record.” Climate change has caused searing heat, and increasing frequency and intensity of extremely weather events across the world.

Hong Kong experienced the hottest summer on record last year, measured by the average temperature of 29.7C between June and August, the observatory said in a January report. All 12 months of 2023 were warmer than usual. The city reported a quarter of the normal annual total rainfall in the 24 hours ending 4 p.m. on Sept. 7 during a black rainstorm, just shy of the record amount in May 1889.

The rainstorm and typhoon Saola resulted in combined gross insurance claims of HK$1.9 billion ($243 million), according to a Dec. 4 statement from the city’s Insurance Authority.

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