Skip to main content Help with accessibility

Chances of 40°C days in the UK increasing

A new study by Met Office Hadley Centre scientists has found that the chances of extreme high temperatures in parts of the UK could increase significantly by the end of the century. The research paper has been published in the journal Nature Communications.

The highest temperature ever recorded in the UK is 38.7°C set in Cambridge in July 2019. This prompts the question of whether exceeding 40°C is now within the possibilities of the UK climate.

The study suggests the current chance of seeing days above 40°C is extremely low, however by 2100 under a high emissions scenario the UK could see 40°C days every 3-4 years. If emissions are reduced in line with the Paris climate agreement, the future probabilities are expected to be considerably lower.