The Russian capital experienced a total of eight hours of sunlight in December, the head of Russia’s meteorological center said Thursday.
While less than 4% of the city’s possible sunlight hours without cloud coverage, the eight hours still surpassed the six minutes of clear skies that Moscow saw in December 2017.
“Muscovites saw only eight hours of sunlight” in December 2019, Roman Vilfand, the head of Russia’s meteorological center, was quoted by the state-run RIA Novosti news agency as saying.
St. Petersburg, Russia’s second-largest city, fared even worse when the sun peeked out of the clouds for just two and a half hours last month.
Moscow and some parts of Russia have been reeling from an unusually warm winter, which meteorologists said was due to an atmospheric front from the Atlantic Ocean.
Vilfand said current temperatures were on track to make this winter the “hottest” in Moscow’s recorded history, according to the state-run TASS news agency.
Moscow’s temperature Thursday also reached a 95-year high of 3.1 degrees Celsius, the meteorological center’s chief forecaster, Marina Makarova, told TASS.
Not to be outdone, St. Petersburg’s chief meteorologist said the city's average January temperature of 2 degrees Celsius was its highest on record, TASS reported.