It's deja vu all over again. Sweaty, sweltering deja vu. For the third consecutive month, the mainland United States has experienced its hottest 12-month period on record (that is, the hottest since recordkeeping began in 1895). This is getting to be a bit ridiculous.
According to NOAA, which yesterday released its State of the Climate National Overview for June:
The average temperature for the contiguous U.S. during June was 71.2°F, which is 2.0°F above the 20th century average. The June temperatures contributed to a record-warm first half of the year and the warmest 12-month period the nation has experienced since recordkeeping began in 1895. Scorching temperatures during the second half of the month led many cities to set all-time temperature records.
For those of you keeping track at home, 2012 has seen close to 25,000 record highs either set or matched nationwide, including 15,000 in the month of March alone. Compare that to a mere 2,500 record lows. Among the country's coolest outliers was Washington state. Apparently, amidst the heat stroke that the rest of the country is going though, you somehow managed to have your seventh coolest June on record — and everyone hates you for it.
Additional highlights from the extensive report include:
- Precipitation totals across the country were mixed during June. The nation, as a whole, experienced its tenth driest June on record, with a nationally-averaged precipitation total of 2.27 inches, 0.62 inch below average. Record and near-record dry conditions were present across the Intermountain West, while Tropical Storm Debby dropped record precipitation across Florida.
- Warmer-than-average temperatures were anchored across the Intermountain West and much of the Great Plains during June. Colorado had its warmest June on record, with a statewide temperature 6.4°F above average. Seven additional states in the region had a top ten warm June.
- Cooler-than-average temperatures were present for the Pacific Northwest, where Washington had its seventh coolest June on record. Cooler-than-average conditions were also present for the Southeast, despite record warm temperatures towards the end of the month.
- Record-breaking temperatures occurred across a large portion of the nation during the second half of June. Over 170 all-time warm temperature records were broken or tied during the month. Temperatures in South Carolina (113°F) and Georgia (112°F) are currently under review by the U.S. State Climate Extremes Committee as possible all-time statewide temperature records.
- Precipitation patterns were mixed across the country. Drier-than-average conditions were present from the West, through the Plains, into the Ohio Valley and Mid-Atlantic. Wyoming had its driest June on record, with a precipitation total of 0.45 inch, which is 1.27 inches below average. Eleven additional states from Nevada to Kentucky had June precipitation totals ranking among their ten driest.
- According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, as of July 3, 56.0 percent of the contiguous U.S. experienced drought conditions, marking the largest percentage of the nation experiencing drought conditions in the 12-year record of the U.S. Drought Monitor. Drought conditions improved across Florida, due to the rains from Tropical Storm Debby. Drought conditions worsened across much of the West, Central Plains, and the Ohio Valley, causing significant impacts on agriculture in those regions.
Check out the rest of the report at NOAA.