The prolonged presence of summer north winds “meltemia” have slightly cooled the Aegean Sea by 1 to 2 degrees Celsius this summer, the meteorological service of the Greek National Observatory in Athens said on Wednesday.
In contrast, weak winds and high temperatures have led to slightly higher than normal temperatures in the Ionian Sea.
The sea surface temperature on Tuesday 10 September 2019 as measured by NOAA-18 satellite.
Map shows the absolute values of sea surface temperature at the first 10 centimeters, as measured by satellites. We observe that the temperature in the Aegean is between 23-25 ° C and the Ionian 26-28 ° C.
The absence of south winds in Greece was remarkable this summer, with the meltemia to have been steady and almost permanent during July, August and even September.
According to latest weather forecast, strong north winds will continue to blow in the Aegean Sea for the next few days.
Meltemi is a strong, dry, northern wind, characteristic for the Aegean Sea during the hottest months of July and August. It can blow with an average intensity of 4 to 7 Beaufort.
The Meltemi wind was known in the past as the Etesian norther winds and although when it blows it can be pretty harsh on both land and sea, it cools things down considerably.
Unlike other breezes and winds in this region of the world, it can last a few days.
PS I realized that the sea was cooler this year also along the Athens Riviera in the Saronic Gulf.
I am living in Burgas, Bulgaria at the southern Black Sea with very similar climate to North Greece, and since about 4 years here I see like in Greece a long term cooling of the climate, coming from almost constant Northeast currents which are caused by the almost permanent course of the jetstream over the Balkans with the tip far in the south almost on North Africa, and at the same time curving very far into the north in West Europe, which means, good warm air is almost no more arriving here, when all the time this Sahara air is arriving over Spain, France and Germany. This summer at least has been almost normal here in Bulgaria, but even then, almost all months were below the long term average except June. This is the case since 4 years here.