July was the 365th consecutive month of above average temperatures on planet Earth, and the hottest month since record keeping began in 1880. According to paleoclimatologists, it may have been the hottest month since the Bronze Age 4,000 years ago. The reason for the extraordinary and rapid heating that is taking place worldwide is that the oceans are no longer absorbing heat and are instead themselves warming to record levels. In addition, substantial increases in methane emissions across the arctic are contributing to record arctic heating and reducing atmospheric circulation, especially in the northern hemisphere.

Data from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, NASA and the Japan Meterological Administration all show the same records and the same trends. The powerful el Nino now under way in the Pacific will continue to make 2015 a very warm year, almost certainly the warmest ever recorded. Much of Europe, Asia and the Middle East sweltered under a vast heat dome throughout the month. Austria saw its hottest month in the 249 years since that country has been keeping records. Spain, Germany and the United Kingdom broke all-time July heat records. On July 31, the city of Bandar Mahshahr set a record heat index of 165F when temperatures reached 115F and humidity reached 90%.

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