The month of October has been very warm in Malaga and on the Costa del Sol, no one has any doubts about that, but to know to what extent this situation has been unusual, it is necessary to compare it with previous years.
Firstly, referring to the highest average temperature for the month, it has only been surpassed once in the last 80 years, although by only one tenth of a degree, according to data provided by the state meteorological agency, Aemet.
Specifically, the 21.8C degrees (provisional) monthly average temperature in the last 31 days is just short of the 21.9 recorded in the same period of 2013. The latter, therefore, remains as the warmest October since records began at the airport.
But the data also makes disturbing reading, and that is that, as the director of the Aemet Meteorological Centre in Malaga, Jesús Riesco, explained, “almost every day of the month the temperatures have been above the average, both the maximum and the minimum, although there have been none spectacularly above; hence we have such a high average. This marks a scenario with hardly any ups and downs, with a warm and stable temperature during the day and, especially, at night.”
This has been mainly due to a situation of a low pressure system in the Atlantic, near the peninsula, which has generated a southwesterly flow of air coming from North Africa. "That warm mass has remained stable, and to this is added the cloudiness that makes the minimum temperature stay high at night... It has been an extension of summer," said Riesco.
Other Aemet data allows a detailed analysis of what happened this month, which has behaved in the opposite way to what might be expected: colder at the beginning (just after summer) and hotter towards the end (already in autumn).
Thus, the warmest day was 26 October, with an average of 23.8 degrees, after hitting 29.6 during the day and 18.1 at night.
The highest maximum temperature was 'only' 30.8C (on the 16th), far from the historical record, which was 36.3 on the 22nd of October in 2014. For much of the month the maximums have been between 25 and 30, with an average of 26.4, that is, 2.3 degrees higher than usual (24.1 is the historical average for daytime).
Meanwhile, the coolest day was 1 October, with an average of 18.4C, when the maximum was 24.1 and the minimum was 12.7 (that was also the lowest of the month). On the 20th, the lowest daytime temperature was registered, with 21.4C.
At night, except for the first day of the month, the rest of the period has been clearly above normal. "Between 15 and 20 degrees have been the minimum for almost the entire month, they are very high values for this time," said Riesco. The highest minimum was 20.4 degrees (on the 19th), and in general almost every night they have been around this value, the so-called "tropical nights". At night in October, it is usual to have around 15 degrees. But, a monthly average minimum temperature of 17.1 degrees has been reached this year, two degrees higher than normal.