The temperature of the ocean in February reached a record level

Liza Brovko

In February 2024, the ocean temperature reached a record high — the global average ocean surface temperature was 21.06 ℃.

This was reported by the EU Copernicus Climate Change Service.

The average ocean surface temperature in February broke the previous record of 20.98 ℃, set in August 2023. Observations have been conducted since 1979.

Another temperature record is worrying as it negatively affects marine life. For example, the fourth global milestone of mass coral bleaching in the Southern Hemisphere, caused by warming waters, is most likely underway. It may become the worst in the history of the planet.

Under the influence of abnormal heat, corals turn white because they throw out the beneficial algae that live in their tissues, leaving behind a white skeleton. Then the corals become vulnerable to hunger and disease, many of them die. This situation can lead to the collapse of fragile reef ecosystems, leaving coastlines vulnerable to erosion and storms.

In February, Antarctic sea ice also reached its annual low, making it the third smallest on record, also 28% below average.