New Year's Day 2012, Playa de Muro. | Andrew Ede


Astronomical winter will start at 11.02 (CET) on Monday. The forecast for the whole of Spain is a drier and warmer winter than usual, with average values in the Balearics and elsewhere predicted to be 0.7 degrees above normal.

The spokesperson for Aemet, Rubén Del Campo, said on Thursday that these values could be even higher in certain parts of the country, e.g. the northeast. Rainfall is expected to be lower.

The average winter temperature for Spain is 7.9 degrees, but Del Campo explained that this winter there will be a clear continuation from autumn, which is ending "warm and dry". The average temperature for the mainland has been 14.8C, 0.5 degrees above the seasonal average. This has been the seventeenth warmest autumn since 1961 and the eighth warmest this century. The average temperature has been above normal for the tenth consecutive autumn. "None of the autumns from 2011 to 2020 have recorded a temperature lower than the average for the period 1981 to 2010."

Del Campo added that Aemet has analysed autumn temperature records for the past ten years at eighty weather stations and compared these with data for at least a forty-year period. Over the past decade there have been 1,430 warm records and 79 cold records. Ninety-five per cent of the temperature records have therefore been for warmer weather.

In Europe, he noted, this has been the warmest autumn since 1880. It is quite possible that 2020 will have been the warmest year in Europe.