January global temperatures 11th - 17th warmest on record

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:14 PM GMT on February 18, 2011

Share this Blog
4
+

January 2011 was the globe's 17th warmest January on record, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies rated January the 11th warmest on record. January 2011 global ocean temperatures were the 11th warmest on record, and land temperatures were the 29th warmest on record. Global satellite-measured temperatures for the lowest 8 km of the atmosphere were average,the 16th or 17th coolest in the 34-year record, according to Remote Sensing Systems and the University of Alabama Huntsville (UAH). The global cool-down from November, which was the warmest November on record for the globe, was due in large part to the on-going moderate strength La Niña episode in the Eastern Pacific. The large amount of cold water that upwells to the surface during a La Niña typically causes a substantial cool-down in global temperatures. Notably, the January 2011 global ocean temperature was the warmest on record among all Januaries when La Niña was present. The ten warmest Januaries occurred during either El Niño or neutral conditions.


FIgure 1. Departure of temperature from average for January 2011. Image credit: National Climatic Data Center (NCDC).

The coldest places on the globe in January, relative to average, were Mongolia, Southern Siberia, and China. China recorded its coldest January since 1977, and second coldest January since national records began in 1961. Record or near-record warm conditions were experienced in Northeast Canada, Western Greenland and Northern Siberia.

A cold and dry January for the U.S.
For the contiguous U.S., January temperatures were the 37th coldest in the 116-year record, and it was the coldest January since 1994, according to the National Climatic Data Center. Despite the heavy snows in the Northeast U.S., January was the 9th driest January since 1895. This was largely due to the fact that the Desert Southwest was very dry, with New Mexico recording its driest January, and Arizona and Nevada their second driest.

Sea ice extent in the Arctic lowest on record during January
January 2011 Northern Hemisphere sea ice extent was the lowest on record in January, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center. This was the second consecutive month of record low extent. Satellite records extend back to 1979. The area of missing ice was about twice the size of Texas, or 60% the size of the Mediterranean Sea. Ice was notably absent in Northeast Canada and Western Greenland, and Hudson Bay did not freeze over until mid-January, more than a month later than usual. This was the latest freeze-up on record, and led to record warmth over much of Northeast Canada. Frobisher Bay on Baffin Island had its warmest January on record, 1.1°C above the previous record set in 1985. Weather records for the station go back to 1942.

An incredible 110° temperature swing in 1 week in Oklahoma
The temperature in Bartlesville, Oklahoma shot up to a record 82°F yesterday, just seven days after the city hit -28°F on February 10. This 110°F temperature change has to be one of the greatest 1-week temperature swings in U.S. history. The -31°F that was recorded in nearby Nowata last week has now been certified by the National Weather Service as the new official all-time coldest temperature ever recorded in Oklahoma. What's more, the 27 inches of snow that fell on Spavinaw, Oklahoma during the February 8 - 9 snowstorm set a new official state 24-hour snowfall record. The previous record was 26", set on March 28, 2009, in Woodward and Freedom.

A 100+ degree temperature change in just six days is a phenomenally rare event. I checked the records for over twenty major cities in the Midwest in Oklahoma, Texas, Kansas, Wyoming, Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota, and Montana, and could not find any examples of a 100-degree temperature swing in so short a period of time. The closest I came was a 108° swing in temperature in fourteen days at Valentine, Nebraska, from -27°F on March 11, 1998 to 82°F on March 25, 1998. Valentine also had a 105°F temperature swing in fifteen days from November 29, 1901 (71°F) to December 14, 1901 (-34°F.) Our weather historian, Christopher C. Burt, lists the world record for fastest 24-hour change in temperature as the 103°F warm-up from -54° to 49° that occurred on January 14 - 15, 1972, during a chinook wind in Lowe, Montana. This week's remarkable roller coaster ride of temperatures in Oklahoma is truly a remarkable event that has few parallels in recorded history.

Tropical Cyclone Carlos' deluge abates
Darwin, Australia suffered its greatest 24-hour rainfall in its history on Wednesday, when a deluge of 13.4 inches (339.4 mm) hit the city when Tropical Cyclone Carlos formed virtually on top of city and remained nearly stationary. Carlos has now dissipated, and brought only an additional 1.50" (38 mm) of rain yesterday to Darwin. Over the past four days, Carlos has dumped a remarkable 26.87" (682.6 mm) of rain on Darwin (population 125,000), capital of Australia's Northern Territory. Australia's west coast is also watching Tropical Cyclone Dianne, which is expected to remain well offshore as it moves southwards, parallel to the coast.


Figure 2. Solar flare of February 15, 2011, as captured by the SOHO and SDO spacecraft. Image credit: NASA.

Space weather: biggest solar flare in 4 years
The strongest solar flare in more than four years erupted on the sun at 0156 UTC on Tuesday, when giant sunspot 1158 unleashed an X2-class eruption. X-class flares are the strongest type of x-ray flare, and this week's flare is the first X-class flare of the new 11-year sunspot cycle 24, which began in 2009 - 2010. The flare was accompanied by a Coronal Mass Ejection (CME), which means that a portion of the sun's atmosphere was ripped away and thrown into space. High-energy particles from the CME arrived at Earth at 01 UTC this morning, and sky watchers at high northern latitudes may be able to see auroras over the coming few nights. Consult NOAA's Space Weather Prediction Center or spaceweather.com for updates.

Jeff Masters

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 458 - 408

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13Blog Index

Wow. Too morbid today... think I'll go outside for a while.

You should try it.... it may be an "Arctic blast" weekend next weekend.... lol

l8r...
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20686
Seems logical to me if we are all descended from Adam and Eve, we should all have some similar genetic coding, right? It's one of the reasons why I've always found the concept of people killing each other for ethic differences so stupid.

OTOH, I also remember the first murder in the Bible was one brother killing another.... so maybe I shouldn't be so surprised....

Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20686
I'm more a Mayan/Cajun Line than Adam and Eve line, easily.

Masonry is more than bricklaying as well.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 414 Comments: 125530
Quoting caneswatch:


LOL It was the biggest meal I ate in a while. No check is necessary.


Are you behaving yourself? If not, I won't let you go to Water World this summer.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Here is Diane. Look at the abundant moisture to the North of Australia. Appears to be copious amounts of percipitation. (I took that phase from the Weather Channel)


Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
remember anything tries to eat me i kill it simple



Hey, Keep. My motto is, Never eat something one cannot pronounce.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Quoting BahaHurican:
Reminds me of a story I read once about aliens looking like large loveable dogs who came to earth, associated themselves with humans as "pets", then slowly killed their "owners" by sucking them dry of all emotions, and eventually all feeling....


Sounds like the blog sometimes.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Quoting cat5hurricane:

Hey, I know it's no joke. I have real estate investors and title company associates up there as we speak! Condo's will thrive.


And don't worry about sea level rise either. I already have a plan in place. Just drop giant sponges into the ocean to absorb the excees water. So simple, I don't know why no one has thought of it.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Quoting pottery:

What a Ghastly Thought!
That I might really be related to all sorts of people that I would rather not have anything to do with.
The list of names is flying out of my head like the tape on those old ticker-tape machines.


Hope I don't keep you awake with that thought. I've got more. Bet your list will get bigger by the end of the day.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Here is Atu

Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Quoting cat5hurricane:

LOL Gro.


Hey, I'm not kidding. Here is a picture of the coast of Greenland when my Uncle Eric Erik Thorvaldsson landed there. LOL (The vinyards are somewhere in the background.)

Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Quoting pottery:

What a Ghastly Thought!
That I might really be related to all sorts of people that I would rather not have anything to do with.
The list of names is flying out of my head like the tape on those old ticker-tape machines.
You know what they say... you can choose your friends, but you're stuck with your family... lol
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20686
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
remember anything tries to eat me i kill it simple
Reminds me of a story I read once about aliens looking like large loveable dogs who came to earth, associated themselves with humans as "pets", then slowly killed their "owners" by sucking them dry of all emotions, and eventually all feeling....
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20686
Quoting Grothar:
Of course this could be an entire fabrication. (smiling) Very interesting article. The only scary thing about it, is that we are more closely related to each other than previously thought. Why, some of us could actually be cousins.



Link

What a Ghastly Thought!
That I might really be related to all sorts of people that I would rather not have anything to do with.
The list of names is flying out of my head like the tape on those old ticker-tape machines.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting AussieStorm:
Damn, Check out STC ATU. Wow.
Wow. I didn't think it would get that strong.... looks like it's going through some changes now, though.
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20686
Quoting pottery:

True enough.
And future generations are going to need your commentary on the 'good old days' of the 20th century too.
Stay Up.


Never thought of that,good idea. But my memories of the 18th and 19th centures are more vivid. Seems nobody wants to ask me what the weather was like before the beginning of the Industrial Revolution.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Quoting BahaHurican:
Unless of course we instead become pets and food of whatever life forms may be there.......
remember anything tries to eat me i kill it simple
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 163 Comments: 52216
Quoting RecordSeason:



We can eventually go to other planets and make pets and food out of whatever life forms may be there as well.


So, rather than spend a few hundred billion dollars now to make things right, let's instead spend several hundred trillion to export humans elsewhere so we can start the process all over again? Oh, why not? Of course, that's making the assumption that we'll have enough scientists to figure out just how to engineer such a daunting task, which is highly unlikely; we have too many policymakers who even now can't read a thermometer to save their life, and aren't willing to believe anything that even smacks of science.

The vast majority of animal species that have ever lived on this planet have gone extinct, only to be replaced by something better adapted for survival. I think it's the height of hubris to think that we humans are so special that we'll manage to avoid that same eventual fate--especially with the way we're treating the place right now.
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13260
Quoting RecordSeason:



We can eventually go to other planets and make pets and food out of whatever life forms may be there as well.

Unless of course we instead become pets and food of whatever life forms may be there.......
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20686
Another very interesting link. The genetic variations is larger in a troop of chimpanzees than between a person from Finland and a person from Southeast Asia. You are getting close to my field, so be careful with the statements.

Link
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Quoting RecordSeason:



We can eventually go to other planets and make pets and food out of whatever life forms may be there as well.


I kind of like this one though.
I am all for cleaning it up, and hanging around here for a while.
No point trashing another one, LOL.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Of course this could be an entire fabrication. (smiling) Very interesting article. The only scary thing about it, is that we are more closely related to each other than previously thought. Why, some of us could actually be cousins.



Link
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Quoting Grothar:


I've got to take care of myself, pot. I have to live long enough to see if this whole GW thing is going to happen. I figure if I can hang around another 100 years, we should know a little more. I just want to see the palm trees return once more to Greenland like it was when I was a little Viking living there.

True enough.
And future generations are going to need your commentary on the 'good old days' of the 20th century too.
Stay Up.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Grothar:


Have you checked your cholesterol lately? LOL


LOL It was the biggest meal I ate in a while. No check is necessary.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
BTW, I love that blog song....

If that guy is Tamil, he might be from Sri Lanka....

EDIT: But no, it says "Tamil Nadu" star, so I guess he's Indian....
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20686
Morning everybody....

I had a bowl of muesli with ice cold milk for breakfast this morning. Very filling, and for some reason that just hit the spot today. Maybe it's the wonderfully warm temps and sunshine outside....

That egg bacon sausage toast just wasn't going to do it today for me, KOTG.... too slippery... too hot... lol. Plus I'm not that big on eggs....

The crawfish boil looks tasty, OTOH, and I don't object to eating what other people think of as dinner for breakfast.... :o)

Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20686
Quoting pottery:

Nope!
And I'm not going to, either.
I certainly dont want to ever be as old as you.....


I've got to take care of myself, pot. I have to live long enough to see if this whole GW thing is going to happen. I figure if I can hang around another 100 years, we should know a little more. I just want to see the palm trees return once more to Greenland like it was when I was a little Viking living there.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
when you are over 80 i dont think it really matters anymore anyway



Hmmmp!
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Quoting Grothar:


Have you checked your cholesterol lately? LOL

Nope!
And I'm not going to, either.
I certainly dont want to ever be as old as you.....
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting gordydunnot:
Hey isn't there a country song titled I love my blog.Oh well should be, keep up the good work ladies and gentlemen. Back to the peanut gallery. Lot's of work in that skiffle gig, didn't see many fat people in the band, I guess conducting is a little less strenuous than playing.Skiffeling off to Buffalo for now. Everyone have a nice holiday weekend.


Not a country song, but I think it is from Southern India; will this do?

Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Quoting Neapolitan:

You hit the nail on the head by stating "extreme". That is, it's not so much the change in climate, but rather the rapidity with which it changes. And as far back as scientists are able to see, there has never been a temperature change as rapid as that which is happening now that wasn't catastrophic for plants and animals.

We are in serious trouble.

Dont worry, be happy.
We going to plant the Tundra with alfalfa when it warms up, to feed more cows, so we can eat more beef.
And getting the oil out from under the ice is going to be real easy when there is no more ice.
And we can make drinking water from the sea. The fishes wont mind, they may be long gone too.
We were given Dominion over all Life, you know.
That gave us permission to mash-up the place...

(that should put the blog into remission for 4 hours or so...)
heheheheh
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting RecordSeason:


The most catastrophic droughts and famines in history have been associated with volcanism and/or extreme cooling events, not warming events.


Incorrect. Extinctions events have been triggered by various climate changes, including atmospheric content changes, ocean chemistry changes, and many other events.

Both heating and cooling events have caused extinctions, both being about equal in impact.

Paleoligical records do not back up your statement.


Member Since: October 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 1224
Quoting Grothar:


Have you checked your cholesterol lately? LOL
when you are over 80 i dont think it really matters anymore anyway
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 163 Comments: 52216
Quoting pottery:
Good food's a-servin', 'round here.
Let the 'good' colestrol roll, I say. Oh, and pass some 'bad' one too.
In liquid form, would be fine.

Have a Great Carnival Pat.
One day I will visit for that one.
good food always bring out good people

morning pottery
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 163 Comments: 52216
Quoting caneswatch:


Mmmmmmmmm. I had crawfish yesterday served in Crystal hot sauce and tiny slices of garlic, and then a chocolate chip banana bread dessert topped with bourbon cream. I've never had a better meal in my life.


Have you checked your cholesterol lately? LOL
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
Good food's a-servin', 'round here.
Let the 'good' colestrol roll, I say. Oh, and pass some 'bad' one too.
In liquid form, would be fine.

Have a Great Carnival Pat.
One day I will visit for that one.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Skyepony:



The One Hundred Fourth United States Congress was a meeting of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, composed of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. It met in Washington, DC from January 3, 1995 to January 3, 1997, during the third and fourth years of Bill Clinton's presidency. Apportionment of seats in the House of Representatives was based on the 1990 United States census. Both chambers had Republican majorities for the first time since the 1950s. Major events included passage of elements of the Contract with America and a budget impasse between Congress and the Clinton Administration that resulted in the Federal government shutdown of 1995.

& does it really matter? I think it's pretty safe to say both sides are run by oil & other large corporations.. The point is we are continuing to be screwed out of our due from these corporations.







A federal energy assistance program that began in the Reagan administration could be cut in half by the Obama administration. The president has proposed a $2.5 billion dollar reduction to the budget of LIHEAP, or Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, which helps struggling families pay the bills that heat and cool their homes. LOE's Washington correspondent Mitra Taj reports on the controversial budget item.


http://www.loe.org/shows/shows.htm?programID=11-P 13-00007

Wow, Reagan for helping low income people, Obama against!


President Obama's budget reduces funding for most federal agencies but the Department of Energy is looking at a 12 percent increase. Energy Secretary Steven Chu tells host Bruce Gellerman that his agency will prioritize financing for clean energy development, including new nuclear facilities.


Say goodbye to wind and solar, Say hello to Dr Chu. That will cause a stir amongst the green community.


Dial Joe-4-Chávez
Massachusetts Dems love Venezuela's strongman.

Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chávez is an ally of the Iranians, a supporter of North Korea, a close friend of Castro and a good customer for Russia's weapon factories. Now he's also a business partner of Joseph P. Kennedy II.

I wonder if the the Mass Gov Biofuel law applies to these delivers?

Jun. 8--NORTH ANDOVER -- For some people, "biodiesel" might seem like a novelty product for which only hybrid car-driving tree huggers wouldn't mind paying a premium.

But that's destined to soon change. Starting July 2010, any Massachusetts resident who drives a diesel vehicle or has an oil-heated home will be using biofuel. That's because the Clean Energy Biofuels Act of 2008 -- adopted by the Legislature and signed by Gov. Deval Patrick last year -- will require all diesel and home-heating oil sold in the state to contain some biofuel.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:


Mmmmmmmmm. I had crawfish yesterday served in Crystal hot sauce and tiny slices of garlic, and then a chocolate chip banana bread dessert topped with bourbon cream. I've never had a better meal in my life.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Orcasystems:

Not fair...I have not had brekkie yet.


now you have
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 163 Comments: 52216
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:

Not fair...I have not had brekkie yet.
Member Since: October 1, 2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26493
Quoting RecordSeason:


The most catastrophic droughts and famines in history have been associated with volcanism and/or extreme cooling events, not warming events.

You hit the nail on the head by stating "extreme". That is, it's not so much the change in climate, but rather the rapidity with which it changes. And as far back as scientists are able to see, there has never been a temperature change as rapid as that which is happening now that wasn't catastrophic for plants and animals.

We are in serious trouble.
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13260
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 163 Comments: 52216
Hey isn't there a country song titled I love my blog.Oh well should be, keep up the good work ladies and gentlemen. Back to the peanut gallery. Lot's of work in that skiffle gig, didn't see many fat people in the band, I guess conducting is a little less strenuous than playing.Skiffeling off to Buffalo for now. Everyone have a nice holiday weekend.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

Viewing: 458 - 408

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13Blog Index

Top of Page

About JeffMasters

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.