The last day of 2021 was one of the warmest ever for this time of year in Portugal, having even recorded the highest temperature since there are reliable records, in the month of December. According to data from the Climate Division of the Institute of the Sea and Atmosphere (IPMA), the maximum temperature recorded in Zambujeira do Mar was 26.4ºC, far surpassing the previous record in Mainland Portugal, also set this month, at 12, and also in Zambujeira, when the thermometers reached 25.5º C.
This is, by the way, a rather common situation: especially records are broken twice in the same month, especially more than two weeks apart (it can happen, in an exceptional heat wave, one day to beat the record and the next to be even more hot ) Before this, the highest temperature ever in December had been recorded in 1985 (also in Zambujeira), when the facilities reached 24.9º C.
This means that the new high beat the previous one, of December 12th, by 0.9º C, and was 1.5º C above the value that was, until 2021, the highest on record (or, at least, since 1941, the reference year for the IPMA, as it was the year in which the network of meteorological stations was expanded). These record jumps are another anomaly – it is highly unusual for weather records to be surpassed by such a huge difference. Usually, the highs beat the previous ones by a few tenths of a degree centigrade.
On December 31, there were two more stations recording values above 25º C: Odemira, neighboring Zambujeira, reached 25.8º C; Mora, in the Évora district, reached 25.1º C. Both values are higher than the previous 1985 record.
Wood approaches 30 degrees centigrade
The heat was not limited to the Alentejo Coast, this December 31st. In Monção, at the northernmost meteorological station in the country, in the district of Viana do Castelo, the thermometers hit 23.6º C. Coimbra reached 23.3º C, Porto at 22.5º C, Lisbon at 20, 9º C, Faro, at 20.7º C.
The lowest maximum temperature in Portugal was in Miranda do Douro, with 10.8º C, followed by Moimenta da Beira (12.7º C) and Penhas Douradas (13.3º C). Therefore, there was no meteorological station in the country that was below 10º C.
In Madeira, the maximum temperature reached 28.4º C, an absolute record in the country for December. But a source from the IPMA Climate Division warns that the Porto Moniz station (in the north of the island), where this value was recorded, is recent, and therefore it would be risky to make comparisons. warmest day in Madeira. The Funchal weather station, for example, reached 26º C, but already had the best highs in December. In 2018, for example, a capital of Madeira reached 27.1º C in December.