Large parts of Japan saw with the warmest winter since records began this year, causing a lack of snow in areas that are usually blanketed
It is unseasonably warm. In Europe, winter sports enthusiasts and reindeer herders are among the humans missing the snow and ice, while further north, animals such as polar bears, seals and walruses are seeing their habitats melt away.
Temperatures in Europe were 0.2C higher than the previous warmest January for the continent – recorded in 2007, and it has been 3.1C warmer than the average January in the period 1981-2010.
But in some areas the difference was more extreme. Average temperatures were especially high over swathes of northeastern Europe, from Norway, across Sweden and Finland to Russia, where some areas experienced temperatures more than 6C above the 1981-2010 January average.
Norway recorded its hottest January day since records began,