U.S. experiences warmest 12-month period on record--again

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 9:04 PM GMT on July 09, 2012

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Thanks in part to the historic heat wave that demolished thousands of high temperature records at the end of June, temperatures in the contiguous U.S. were the warmest on record over the past twelve months and for the year-to-date period of January - June, said NOAA's National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) on Monday. June 2012 was the 14th warmest June on record, so was not as extreme overall as March 2012 (first warmest March on record), April (third warmest April), or May (second warmest May.) However, temperatures were warm enough in June to set a new U.S. record for hottest 12-month period for the third straight month, narrowly eclipsing the record set just the previous month. The past thirteen months have featured America's 2nd warmest summer (in 2011), 4th warmest winter, and warmest spring on record. Twenty-six states were record warm for the 12-month period, and an additional sixteen states were top-ten warm. The year-to-date period of January - June was the warmest on record by an unusually large margin--1.2°F.


Figure 1. This time series shows the five warmest years that the contiguous U.S. has experienced, and how the year-to-date temperature evolved each month throughout those years. The time series also shows the 2012 year-to-date temperature through June, which was the warmest first half of any year on record for the lower 48. The 2012 data are still preliminary. Image credit: NOAA/NCDC.


Figure 2. Four of the top-ten warmest 12-month periods in the contiguous U.S. since 1895 have occurred since April 2011. Image credit: NOAA/NCDC.

Most extreme January - June period on record
NOAA's U.S. Climate Extremes Index (CEI), which tracks the percentage area of the contiguous U.S. experiencing top-10% and bottom-10% extremes in temperature, precipitation, and drought, was 44% during the year-to-date January - June period. This is the highest value since CEI record-keeping began in 1910, and more than twice the average value. Remarkably, 83% of the contiguous U.S. had maximum temperatures that were in the warmest 10% historically during the first six months of 2012, and 70% of the U.S. of the U.S. had warm minimum temperatures in the top 10%. The percentage area of the U.S. experiencing top-10% drought conditions was 20%, which was the 14th greatest since 1910. Extremes in 1-day spring heavy precipitation events were near average.


Figure 3. NOAA's U.S. Climate Extremes Index (CEI) for January - June shows that 2012 has had the most extreme first six months of the year on record, with 44% of the contiguous U.S. experiencing top-10% extreme weather.

Tuesday Webinar on the future of extreme weather impacts on business
I'm presenting a 12-minute Webinar talk on the future of weather-related disasters at 2 pm EDT Tuesday July 10. If you want to register (it's free) and listen in, visit the propertycasualty360.com web site. The title of the webinar is, "The Year-Round CAT Season: Is Your Business Prepared for Increasingly Frequent Severe Weather?"

"New McCarthyism" targets climate scientists
Bill Blakemore with ABC News has an interesting five-part interview with climate scientist Dr. Michael Mann, where Dr. Mann explains how a "New McCarthyism" is targeting climate scientists. I reviewed Dr. Mann's excellent book, "The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars", earlier this year.

A 1 in 1.6 million event?
I originally wrote in this post that "Each of the 13 months from June 2011 through June 2012 ranked among the warmest third of their historical distribution for the first time in the 1895 - present record. According to NCDC, the odds of this occurring randomly during any particular month are 1 in 1,594,323. Thus, we should only see one more 13-month period so warm between now and 124,652 AD--assuming the climate is staying the same as it did during the past 118 years."

It has been pointed out to me that the calculation of a 1 in 1.6 million chance of occurrence (based on taking the number 1/3 and raising it to the 13th power) would be true only if each month had no correlation to the next month. Since weather patterns tend to persist, they are not truly random from one month to the next. Thus, the odds of such an event occurring are greater than 1 in 1.6 million--but are still very rare. I appreciate hearing from those of you who wrote to point out a correction was needed.

Jeff Masters

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Nice!!!
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Quoting washingtonian115:
Lol Floridians are joyous.Next presents will fall from the sky.


If you lived down here you would know that this year is the 1st since about 1997 that has had a normal summertime pattern with daily thunderstorms
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Quoting redwagon:


Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 10992
Quoting weatherh98:


also an aoi in front of it. dont wanna make a pic on that yet
But the aoi doesn't have any vorticity unlike the one over the Bahamas.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 16429
1417. ncstorm
loudest lightening strike I ever heard..storms that formed today..from WWAY TV 3

click on article from Meteorologist Tim Buckley


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Quoting weatherh98:

blobs blobs everywhere
Not to single you out. Just a little wu history for anyone who might be interested.

"BLOB" related to possible tropical development was coined here in the first year of these blogs, 2005. Back then, though, the term was not used loosely. Bloggers typed things like, "Should we use the 'B' word yet?" Then "blob" was the equivalent of probably what's now a red circle on the NHC graphic - a significant mass of clouds with a good chance for development.

And, long as I'm here, "POOF" was first used by a young blogger called cjnew as a sweet sign off at the end of a comment. Meant "I'm out of here." Others picked it up and used it that way also. So, if you see old-timers type "Poof" at the end of a comment, doesn't necessarily mean they put you on ignore.
:)
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Funnel Cloud over Clearwater with the earlier storms today.
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Quoting redwagon:


also an aoi in front of it. dont wanna make a pic on that yet
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6461
Quoting RitaEvac and Weather98>



That looks beautiful. Just got home and don't know how this could happen yet, but if y'all are down with it, YE-HAW!
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Quoting StormHype:
Insane CG lightning storm in Sarasota FL. Live mobile video feed is here:
Mobile storm live feed - SW FL


Thanks man!
Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
1410. Patrap
Boil-water order issued for Galveston after sample tests positive for E. coli
by KHOU.com staff
khou.com
Posted on July 10, 2012 at 5:02 PM


GALVESTON, Texas – A boil-water notice was issued Tuesday for all residents of Galveston Island after a water sample tested positive for E. coli bacteria.
The sample was taken during routine testing. Following TCEQ procedures, the area was re-sampled again on Monday. Of those three samples, one tested positive for indicator bacteria – not E. coli. However, state law required Galveston officials to issue the boil-water notice after the second round of tests.

All residents of the island, including those in Jamaica Beach and Pelican Island, are required to boil all water for human and animal consumption -- or use bottled water -- until further notice.
Galveston officials will continue to test water samples over the next 24 hours and lift the boil-water order once all samples meet state and federal standards for potable drinking water.
A formal announcement will be made with the boil-water notice is lifted.

Officials test drinking water samples in Galveston from 32 different sites twice monthly. They said it’s "highly irregular" for samples to fail, and even more rare for a sample to test positive for E. coli.
For more information, contact the City of Galveston’s Public Works Department at 409-797-3630.
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What a crazy little storm that was....




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Insane CG lightning storm in Sarasota FL. Live mobile video feed is here:
Mobile storm live feed - SW FL
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Quoting weatherbro:


Actually regions 1 2 and 3 are just above 1.0C But regarding the slight downtick, all El Nino's go through this and the cooling wasn't just confined to eastern regions but also around the dateline as well.

Your right about the atmosphere though":) They say the lag is typically 2-3 months down the road.
Which is why I would not be surprised to see 14 named storms the way pple were talking about earlier.
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HPC 72hr precip accum. forecast

Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
Lol Floridians are joyous.Next presents will fall from the sky.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 16429
Quoting aspectre:
1295 charlottefl: I'm not gonna complain about the rain, BUT.. It's been doing this every day right as I get home, so I haven't been able to mow the grass. It's starting to get VERY tall...

So have you made some burnt offerings to MotherNature for providing an excuse to not mow?


Can't mow my grass as well and it's only been a week and my grass is atleast 6" high from all of this rain. 7.43" over the last week at my location.
Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
This weather is like Christmas for me. Call me weird but love seeing these thunderstorms everyday. We've been in this pattern around my area since mid May!
Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
1295 charlottefl: I'm not gonna complain about the rain, BUT.. It's been doing this every day right as I get home, so I haven't been able to mow the grass. It's starting to get VERY tall...

So have you made some burnt offerings to MotherNature for providing an excuse to not mow?
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Quoting Patrap:
Central Atlantic WV



less dry air

only a little less sal though
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6461
Quoting weatherh98:


remember that the atmoshere and the waters are neutral... also el nino 1 2 cooled a bit could mean modiki


Actually regions 1 2 and 3 are just above 1.0C But regarding the slight downtick, all El Nino's go through this and the cooling wasn't just confined to eastern regions but also around the dateline as well.

Your right about the atmosphere though":) They say the lag is typically 2-3 months down the road.
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Rain and lightning has finally stopped... 3.38" of rain.

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1397. Patrap
EP052012 - Major Hurricane EMILIA

Storm Relative 1km Geostationary Visible Imagery loop


click image for Loop

click on moving loop to ZOOM



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Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 10992
Quoting flsky:


Nothing here in Ponce Inlet (ECL). I'm looking inland with envy.


Better rain chances for the rest of the week and maybe some rain at night for you guys at the coast this week.

Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
Quoting WxGeekVA:
She's starting an EWRC:



I WAS FINALLY RIGHT
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6461
Silly fellas its just storms lol getting too excited I see :P
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1392. Patrap


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It feels so freak'in awesome outside.I went out for a few hours.Im loving This.I just wish it would stick around for the rest of the summer.
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1390. Patrap
Central Atlantic WV

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1388. flsky
Quoting StormTracker2K:


Looks like maybe the El-Nino transition is helping in this change in the weather pattern acorss the south. Finally people from TX to FL are getting regular rains. I saw that Houston got pounded yesterday and again today.



Nothing here in Ponce Inlet (ECL). I'm looking inland with envy.
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She's starting an EWRC:

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Quoting StormTracker2K:


Hey what's up buddy any rain by you today?


Yep a little...But I heard thunder to my south.
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Quoting CosmicEvents:
Agree on all counts.
For me personally, when I first looked at the blog today about the first thing I saw was the "Floridiot" comment. I just stepped away as I knew from past experience this bait was gonna' cause too much rancor and from experience I don't know if it really was sarcastic to begin with or more honesty.
But whatever, bad day or not, seems the thing to do is apologize and then we can move on.


it may not be nice but being from louisiana i thought it was funny!
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6461
Quoting STXHurricanes2012:
Lol! You fl guys...i still had 7 inches here in 4 hrs 10 days ago.
R u guys getting any of the rain today?
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1383. Patrap
pltttttttttttt..

LoL

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Quoting CosmicEvents:
Agree on all counts.
For me personally, when I first looked at the blog today about the first thing I saw was the "Floridiot" comment. I just stepped away as I knew from past experience this bait was gonna' cause too much rancor and from experience I don't know if it really was sarcastic to begin with or more honesty.
But whatever, bad day or not, seems the thing to do is apologize and then we can move on.
Agreed. But an apology is only worth the meaning behind it. It's a waste of time if the person making it isn't sincere. See my earlier post for other thoughts.
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Quoting weatherbro:


Probably non existent. Though sub-equatorial regions were said to have bucketfuls of rainfall so i'm sure something occasionally spun-up from there.:)


Hey what's up buddy any rain by you today?
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Quoting weatherh98:


i would click on the link... if it werent cnn...


lol, there's a quote by Jeff Masters in the write up, go fig ga
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Quoting GTcooliebai:
over 7000 lightning strikes with the line of storms that came through here, looks like FL. summertime pattern is back!


Hallelujah! Thrilled to see the daily rains here in the Cape. Third t-shower of the afternoon is hitting as I type this. Would love to see this pattern stick around for a looong time! :-D

(Jedkins, I hope you're getting some of this -- I know how much you love the rainy season!)
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Quoting BahaHurican:
I was just wondering what the tropical wx season might have been like back then... lol


Probably non existent. Though sub-equatorial regions were said to have bucketfuls of rainfall so i'm sure something occasionally spun-up from there.:)
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Lol! You fl guys...i still had 7 inches here in 4 hrs 10 days ago.
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Quoting StormTracker2K:


Looks like maybe the El-Nino transition is helping in this change in the weather pattern acorss the south. Finally people from TX to FL are getting regular rains. I saw that Houston got pounded yesterday and again today.



remember that the atmoshere and the waters are neutral... also el nino 1+2 cooled a bit could mean modiki
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6461
Quoting StormTracker2K:
This looks like a pattern to where thunderstorms are going to build even after sunset here across E C FL as there are thunderstorms building in from the south and some out in the Atlantic which may come ashore later this evening.


Lot of this looks to be URL induced to me.

1354. StormTracker2K 5:30 PM EDT

Whoa... Cuba has really lit up in the last hour or so..


Quoting washingtonian115:
Oh geez it's regular thunderstorms in Florida.Ohhh the horror.Everyone is gonna die.....
R u kidding??? Best summer in years... lol

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Quoting RitaEvac:


Tropical rains over TX now


Looks like maybe the El-Nino transition is helping in this change in the weather pattern acorss the south. Finally people from TX to FL are getting regular rains. I saw that Houston got pounded yesterday and again today.

Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
1373. icmoore
Quoting washingtonian115:
Oh geez it's regular thunderstorms in Florida.Ohhh the horror.Everyone is gonna die.....


No not everyone :) but it happens to some...
Member Since: July 18, 2005 Posts: 9 Comments: 4146
Quoting ncstorm:


If someone is having a bad day then dont take it out on the blog..stop making excuses for him and as he said so eloquent yesterday to someone, he dosent like people speaking for him..you may just catch it yourself sport..

but seriously, Baha, I am going to start calling you the Peacekeeper..your heart is in the right place
Agree on all counts.
For me personally, when I first looked at the blog today about the first thing I saw was the "Floridiot" comment. I just stepped away as I knew from past experience this bait was gonna' cause too much rancor and from experience I don't know if it really was sarcastic to begin with or more honesty.
But whatever, bad day or not, seems the thing to do is apologize and then we can move on.
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Quoting GTcooliebai:
over 7000 lightning strikes with the line of storms that came through here, looks like FL. summertime pattern is back!


More coming up the coast so get ready!
Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651

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

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