July was the hottest month in recorded history

[Science ★★★]


(P1) July was the hottest month on Earth since scientists started taking records 136 years ago. NASA said that: “July 2016 was absolutely the hottest month since the instrumental records began.” It beat the previous record, which was July 2011, by 0.11 degrees Celsius. Scientists say this is a big rise. NASA said July was the tenth straight month of record-breaking temperatures. The year 2016 could now become the hottest year on record.

(P2) The website gizmodo.com said July could be the hottest month since prehistoric times, the hottest in 125,000 years. A weather expert said: “It’s a little alarming…that we’re going through these records like nothing this year.” The organization Climate Central reported that the record temperatures are because of fossil fuels and El Niño. However, an Australian politician recently said climate change was a conspiracy theory created by NASA.

WORDS: 139

SOURCE: http://www.breakingnewsenglish.com/1608/160819-hottest-month.html

VOCABULARY: instrumental, record-breaking, prehistoric, fossil, conspiracy


If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.

  1. Briefly, summarize the content of the article in your own words.
  2. Do you agree or disagree with the Australian politician that climate change is a conspiracy theory? Why?
  3. Do you think it’s a little alarming that record-breaking high temperatures are occurring frequently? Why or why not?
  4. What do you think can be done to stop climate change?


  1. How long ago did scientists begin to log temperatures?
  2. It’s not possible that 2016 will be the hottest year in history. (T or F)
  3. Which internet site is mentioned in the article?
  4. What are the 2 reasons given by Climate Central for the record-breaking temperatures?
  5. Who supposedly started the conspiracy theory about climate change?


What do the following expressions or phrases mean?

  • absolutely the hottest month (P1)
  • tenth straight month (P1)
  • a little alarming (P2)
  • like nothing (P2)
  • El Niño (P2) *click on phrase in the paragraph for meaning*

Cambly Practice Button

Image source: NASA http://www.breakingnewsenglish.com/1608/160819-hottest-month.jpg

One thought on “July was the hottest month in recorded history

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