Korea Swelters in Hottest May on Record

  • By Park Sang-hyun, Cho Yoo-mi

    May 18, 2023 10:21

    Temperatures rose to 30 degrees Celsius in most parts of Korea on Wednesday, hitting a record 34.5 degrees in Gangwon Province's Samcheok.
    But the high-pressure front that has been heating up the Korean Peninsula is expected to dissipate on Thursday, causing temperatures to cool down slightly.
    The unseasonably hot weather is not restricted to Korea as the whole world experiences scorching conditions. A heat wave alert was issued in the western U.S., while Southeast Asia suffered the hottest April and May on record.
    Spain triggered emergency drought measures, while electricity demand surged in southern China as locals sheltered in their air-conditioned interiors. There are fears that the entire planet will suffer from an unprecedented heat wave this summer.
    People cool down at the Cheonggye Stream in Seoul on Wednesday. /News1
    So far 1994 and 2018 were the hottest summers in Korea, when the average summer temperature nationwide was 25.5 degrees. According to the Korea Meteorological Administration, this summer is expected to surpass that.
    July and August are expected to bring scorching weather, but if a low-pressure cycle strengthens around the peninsula due to El Niño, more clouds could form to block the blistering sunlight, the KMA forecast.
    There is also a chance of more rain than usual in June and July.
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