The Malta Independent 3 August 2021, Tuesday

757 hours of sunshine brightened the meteorological spring

Tuesday, 15 June 2021, 17:21 Last update: about 3 months ago

May brought to a close the meteorological spring, which treated the Maltese islands to 757.7 hours of sunshine, the Met office said in a statement.

Following a somewhat cloudy April, May ushered in clearer skies, with the mean cloud cover for the month standing at 2.6 oktas rather than the seasonal norm of 3.1 oktas.

May 13 went down on record as last month’s brightest day, having clocked up 12.9 hours of sunshine, while May 5 was the gloomiest with just 1.1 hours of sunshine.

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May also brought to the islands warmer weather than expected at this time of year, with both the month’s mean minimum and maximum air temperatures exceeding the climate norm by 1.1°C. At 19.5°C, the mean sea surface temperature too was warmer, going over the climate norm by 1.5°C, the statement read.

“Throughout the spring season, the air temperature ranged between a lowest minimum of 8°C, registered on March 19, and a highest maximum of 30.9°C, reached on May 17.”

“In contrast with spring 2020, which was wetter than average, last spring produced just 29.6mm of precipitation – barely half the seasonal precipitation quota. Precipitation levels for the season petered out from 27.0mm measured during a drier-than-average March to just 0.4mm of dew collected on two days in May. Like the two preceding spring months, May was windier than the norm, having sustained a slightly higher than average mean wind speed of 8.6 knots. The month’s windiest days were May 15 and 20, with a maximum gust of 33 knots blowing from a northwesterly direction recorded on both days. The maximum gust for the season was recorded in April, blowing at 40 knots from an easterly direction.”

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