Spring weather the warmest since 1910, NOAA says
June 7th, 2012
02:26 PM ET

Spring weather the warmest since 1910, NOAA says

Many of us went through a winter that seemed nonexistent. There were no major blizzards or numbing arctic outbreaks. And it looks as if spring continued much of the same weather pattern throughout the United States.

After reviewing the past several months, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said that May 2012 will end as the second warmest on record in the United States. It also said that the spring period of March through May will go down as the warmest on record since record keeping began in 1895.

Read full NOAA report

The average temperature in May over the contiguous United States was 64.3 degrees, or 3.3 degrees above normal. For spring, the average was 57.1 degrees, 5.2 degree above normal. The previous record for warmest spring was set in 1910; this spring beat that year by 2 degrees.

If you look back over the last 12 months from June 2011 to May 2012, it is the warmest 12-month period of any 12 months on record, according to NOAA.

The warm temperatures were not tied to any one particular part of the country. In the contiguous United States, only Oregon and Washington had spring temperatures near normal.

Data starting on January 1 through the end of May show many cities are off to their warmest start since record keeping began at the location:

Chicago – Warmest in 54 years

New York City (Central Park) – Warmest in 137 years

New York City (JFK) – Warmest in 55 years

Philadelphia – Warmest in 72 years

Washington (Dulles) – Warmest in 50 years

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Filed under: Heat • Weather
soundoff (222 Responses)
  1. Matt

    The old argument that 0.04 percent concentration of a chemical (carbon dioxide in this case) is not sufficient to alter a whole system is totally bogus. If you believe it, try elevating the concentration of cyanide if your blood to 0.04 percent and see what happens.

    June 7, 2012 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • dreamer96

      Potassium regulates the heart rate...the heart beat, and blood pressure...try messing around with that and see what happens to you...

      June 7, 2012 at 4:26 pm | Report abuse |
  2. billisfree

    Two problems. 1) this is called "cherry picking"... i.e. picking the data that supports what you want to say. 2) Cities are HEAT ISLANDS... cities are ALWAYS getting warmer. One needs to pick areas that are not being influenced by local man-made heat sources.

    June 7, 2012 at 4:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Shawn

      Yes, cities may be heat islands relative to the surrounding area but...
      "Data starting on January 1 through the end of May show many cities are off to their warmest start since record keeping began at the location"

      That means the cities have always been the location of those recordings. It also means those cities are getting warmer. Plus, the article does not mention where the recordings were being taken. Likely the temperature is being measured somewhere that is more or less environmentally consistent.

      But you don't have to be a climatologist to see the world is getting warmer. Here in the Pacific NW, the Columbia river used to freeze over. In the 1930s, people would land planes on it or drive over the ice. We used to get regular snow fall all winter. Now we never get snow, except for a light dusting maybe once or twice a year. The Columbia hasn't frozen over since the 1950s? The snow line has moved up North of Seattle, near the Canadian border. Tell me those aren't obvious signs of warming?

      June 7, 2012 at 4:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • ckbabs

      I am probably more moderate conservative but I absolutely believe in climate change. Not all conservatives believe on way or another. It is so blatantly obvious that we've done some serious damage to our planet. Natural climate change does not, per many studies, happen in one human lifetime as we're seeing. It takes decades or centuries. I am frightened by the drastic changes I've seen in my 30 years.... what will it be like in 30 more years!

      June 7, 2012 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Alex

      If what you said had any merit, Cities with declining populations would get colder, no?

      And we'd see a continuing trend of warmer and warmer cities that doesn't correlate with the surrounding suburbs.

      Unfortunately that is not the case...

      June 7, 2012 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Terry

      A) This is nothing but a report of facts, not a judgment on whay it has occurred. And as for cities being heat islands, they were for the past 50-137 years as well, so I'm not sure what the point is.

      June 7, 2012 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Allen

      Yes yes we get it. Somebody says LOOK...SHINY THING, and suddenly people notice. It must never have been there before right? Because we're noticing now means it must be important because we're all very smart if we can pronounce the big new words right? How about co2 accounts for less than 5% of the greenhouse effect (which is a GOOD thing by the way, it lets me wear shorts at disneyland in April) and we produce less than 5% of atmospheric co2. So less than 1/4 of 1 % and suddenly it's the big boogeyman on the block. Water vapor accounts for over 60% of the greenhouse effect and we're creating large inland bodies of water with damming. PLEASE CO2 FREAKS FREE YOUR MINDS!!!! ICE HUGGERS STOP WITH THE FROSTBITTEN DISPLAYS OF AFFECTION!! The only people producing useful climate predictions are Mashnich and Corbin based on solar patterns. It's the BIG YELLOW THING IN THE SKY stup1d!!

      June 7, 2012 at 8:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Allen

      CORRECT billis and the new boogeyman is OCEAN ACIDITY which was based on an 8 day study showing reduced growth which TOTALLY IGNORES the longer 178 day peer reviewed study that showed an INCREASE in growth due to lower ph water. It's not science, it's ice hugging. Ice age bad, warming good. Stop hugging the ice and swallowing the co2, it isn't good for you.

      June 7, 2012 at 8:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • willko

      Every data point has to be considered by a climatologist. I've worked with several as an engineer providing data collection systems. None that I knew were willing to risk prediction or forecasting. They were pure researchers and all admit they didn't know enough about the dynamics because it IS complex. That being said, most all agreed the globe is warming though opinions varied on AGW. However, nearly all agreed that rising CO2 is an unknown and that the fossil record shows clearly that CO2 rose with temp and sea level. Even during these periods CO2 was below ~360ppm. Co2 in the Arctic was recently measured at 400ppm and is expected to rise into this century. Fossil records clearly show extinction events at levels higher than 700ppm. Just google it and you'll see plenty of plots. Unless you are willing to ID yourself as a creationist you can't dismiss the evidence. Everything has to be considered NOT just the "big yellow thing in the sky" as one poster likes to recite.

      June 7, 2012 at 9:11 pm | Report abuse |
  3. B

    A huge part of the definition of conservative is that you hate change. Change scares you. Science, on the other hand, is always open to new evidence and thus change. Ergo, conservatives hate science and don't believe it, especially if it might change their lives in uncomfortable ways.

    June 7, 2012 at 4:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • urmomlol

      Cool story bro!

      June 7, 2012 at 4:35 pm | Report abuse |
  4. urmomlol

    Do not fear: Great King Obama the Planet-Healer has vowed to make the very seas recede, and so it shall be! Praise Obama! Yes we can!

    June 7, 2012 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Samuel

    It has been beautiful and balmy out here in California's beautiful San Fernando Valley!

    June 7, 2012 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  6. pbernasc

    and here still stupid ignorant bigot people (who a happen to be Republicans) who still think there is no global warming ..

    June 7, 2012 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Billy

    Well in 1910 there must have been a global warming epidemic!

    June 7, 2012 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kellee

      The stupidity level of majority of the Americans used to be comical but now it's down right pathetic. Most American are so busy with hate they would ruin their own country and the entire world. In the words of the Chinese behind your back please keep it up in another 20 years it's won't be the United States of America it will be the United States of China. Let's see if you care about black or white, rich or poor, and Republican or Democrat then.

      June 7, 2012 at 5:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Billy

      Your own hate is showing sister. And go ahead and ask China if they are going to curtail their contribution to pollution from the coal plants they run. They may be building hydro plants but they are just catching up to where we were with hydro 50 years ago. And as far as education you misspelled your own name. It ends in Y

      June 7, 2012 at 6:13 pm | Report abuse |
  8. ELH

    Short-term data != long-term trend.

    June 7, 2012 at 4:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • UHhello

      Not true at all, please don't spin this in to some kind of joke.

      June 7, 2012 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
  9. UHhello

    Global Climate change is not based on one region of the planet, nor one or two seasons, it is not based on what you feel when you walk outside your house. Climate change experts have been predicting for 15 yrs very accurately what regions will get warmer what will get cooler, where more and stronger storms will start to occur, what areas of coastline will erode faster than others as water temperatures and acid levels increase. This is a Global issue, it is due to Mankind's population growth and industry's. That is why we all need to understand it clearly without political or economic bias. We need to understand what are the consequences good and bad long and short term for us all. This is not a game it is not politics, it is not opinion, these are facts based on very real measureable data and understanding of our planets weather systems.

    June 7, 2012 at 4:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Samuel

      AHAHA you forgot the apostrophe in planet's! (kill me now)

      June 7, 2012 at 6:10 pm | Report abuse |
  10. I find this amusing

    "New York City (Central Park) – Warmest in 137 years" – ok then, why was it so hot 137 years ago?? I find it odd that it we are just now breaking records from 137 years ago or even 1910, because according to the reasons we have global warming, those things didn't really exist 100 years ago. I don't think this information proves anything except that we had a warm spring!

    June 7, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • professor

      Have you considered that they might have only been keeping records for that span of time?? It doesn't necessarily mean that it was warmer 138 years ago!!

      June 7, 2012 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
  11. kookoobear

    One year of record heat doesn't make it true. You have to look at averages over time. Also,I believe the sun is more the culprit than man made carbons. The sun goes throught cycles every so often.

    June 7, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
  12. miketofal

    This wasn't the warmest spring in TX. In fact, it was cooler/milder than any I remember.

    June 7, 2012 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
  13. kookoobear

    What was the climate like around the world in 2012? The US is just a small part of the total world. I believe Europe and Far East countries had record breaking cold this year. How does that all average out?

    June 7, 2012 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
  14. bam

    phew 1910.... So it is NOT illegal to use that historical information in North Carolina... land of if u dont like the facts make them illegal.......

    June 7, 2012 at 5:06 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Seth Overton

    So how do you justify the weather pattern of 1910...there certainly were very few automobiles on highways, less industrial pollution, no jets in the skies, no nuclear reactors...we have not been on this planet long enough to understand the full cycle of life, i wish the media would stop hyping everything up just for tabloid journalism....it was a warm winter, so was the winter of 1983, 2000, and 2001....a year is just an imaginary discrete term used by humans.

    June 7, 2012 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • cedar rapids

      erm no, a year is a recording of how long it takes for the earth to go around the sun.

      June 7, 2012 at 5:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Scott

      "a year is just an imaginary discrete term..." Wait, really? Are you sure it's not the time it takes the earth to go around the sun, thus setting up a natural cycle in our seasons?

      The weather pattern of 1910 was simply an anomaly. Even in cooler periods, the occasional year will be warmer. 2012 may also be an anomaly, just a little hotter than the years around it. What is NOT an anomaly is the fact that 9 of the 10 warmest years on record have been within the last 12 years. That is no longer just an anomaly. That is a trend.

      June 7, 2012 at 5:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Paul


      A year is a reliable cycle where comparisons can be made between them. Yes, those years were warm as well. Looking at the trends, the climate is getting warmer ON AVERAGE. One cold winter or one warm summer doesn't make a trend until you have many on average in a row.

      June 7, 2012 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mason Kuldinow

      There was coal burning in 1910. There was so much pollution that people were walking around black. The near virgin climate at that time might have been shocked by the introduction of so much coal burning, and reacted with strange weather. So yes, it's possible that was the beginning of global warming. How is that any crazier than–IF THE LIBRULS SAY ITS TRUE THEN IT AINT!!!

      June 7, 2012 at 5:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tom C

      @Seth. There's nothing bizarre about having a warm winter in 1910. Even if the climate gradually warms, there will still be years of with new record highs and new record lows. However, the record highs will greatly outnumber the lows. 1910 happened to be an unusually warm outlier, but it was not evidence of any warming pattern.

      At present, if the trend shows consistent strings of record highs and an occasional record low, that's pretty convincing evidence that the earth is getting warmer on average.

      June 7, 2012 at 5:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Iceback

      Over 100 years ago we were in the midst of the Industrial Revolution. Mining, Steel and other metal Founderies, Locomotives, and yes there were a few automobiles, but an insignificant amout. Yes, this planet earth we exist upon does change, however over the last 100 years no one can deny that greenhouse gasses have made a significant change to the climate here on earth. Just look at the depleting ozone layer, melting ice caps in the Arctic and Antartica and continuing receding glaciers. Yes I agree the planet exists in cycles, however mankind has also contributed to the degradation.

      June 7, 2012 at 5:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Leroy

      Because the 1910 pattern was an anomoly, a one-time occurrence caused by some extreme pattern. Today's warmth goes on year after year, at if there is too much heat stored somewhere. Scientists deduce (but are getting afraid to say) that it is related to the burning of fossil fuels.

      June 7, 2012 at 5:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • derek

      You obviously don't understand statistics, trends, and patterns. All this 'math' stuff is used in forecasting. It's actually important to know...

      June 7, 2012 at 6:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      Normally we break record by tenths of a degree. This beat the previous record by 2 degrees. That is not normal.

      June 7, 2012 at 6:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • James

      I agree with the media hype ... but also remember that in 1910 and anything past the industrial revolution .... that people were warming their homes with fire ... manufacturing plants were spewing ( god knows what in the air ) .... I personally believe the earth is warming up .... is it the normal cycle ? is it man caused ? or maybe a bit of both .( my opinion is it's both )

      June 7, 2012 at 6:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • hatruth

      One thing many people fail to realize, is that if you look at the Earth's temperatures over the millions of years, you will see that the temperatures follow a sinus wave. This means that there are periods of warmings and coolings, we happen to be in a warming period. Based on history, the Earth will eventually enter into a cooling period. Trying to artificially cool the Earth in response, could lead to an early cooling period and permanently screw up Earth's climate. Humans were not meant to control Earth's climate, so we shouldn't.

      Another thing people fail to realize is that the sun, which plays the largest part of the Greenhouse Effect is dynamic and changing over time, which means that the amount of heat it gives off will vary with time. Also, there hasn't been any scientific study that definitively proves humans are causing this so called warming or "climate change." They only leap to that conclusion because of their bias and money they receive from environmental organizations.

      June 7, 2012 at 6:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • A Better Person

      Let's say a motorcycle accident occurs at an intersection without a stoplight. Motorcycle accidents have also been reported at stoplights. Therefore, we can only deduce that the reason for the accident is random. No other explanation is possible since accidents have occurred at both lit and unlit intersections. You should run for mayor.

      June 7, 2012 at 7:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • craig

      In truth there's only one problem with your observation. However, it's a BIG problem.

      The science is pretty clear, and while there have been fluctuations in weather probably since the beginning of time, this one is being aided significantly by man. You can, if you wish, chose to ignore those Facts, but...simply remember that when you finally decide the science was based upon observable facts and factual date, it will be too late to do anything about it. You can, of course, move to North Carolina, where the sea level cannot actually rise...because they've made that illegal. I'm sure Mother Nature will respect the laws of those idiots.

      In short, mankind may not be the sole cause of this shift, and likely isn't, but we ARE making it worse, and we ARE accelerating the effect. Unlike the other animals that will either adapt or die out, we CAN make a choice, and it's people such as yourself that ensure that won't happen in time. When you've burned the last gallon of gas in your car, you'll have no choice but to return to walking...since there won't be enough horses for you to ride.

      June 7, 2012 at 7:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Santex

      Presumably Seth means the counting of years is in human terms. If you want the world to be 4.5 billion years old why worry about the 70-90 years you'll be here? Less than a blip.

      June 7, 2012 at 7:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Allen

      Screw 1910 how do they justify the medieval warm period? Some NATURAL event? Say it ain't so!

      June 7, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      "a year is just an imaginary discrete term used by humans." It's actually one earth orbin of the sun... how is that imaginary?

      June 7, 2012 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Allen

      Nobody can justify ANY weather patterns, we just obsserve and report like good climate and weather mall cops. The only people making good predictions are Mashnich and Corbin. And that's based on the BIG YELLOW THING IN THE SKY! CO2 accounts for less than 5 percent of the greenhouse effect and we produce less than 5% of that co2. Please explain to me how a sume effect of less than one quarter of one percent could possibly be the ultimate climate horror fantasy that we're continually subjected to by ice huggers.

      June 7, 2012 at 8:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bob

      Denial isn't going to keep the sea from rising.

      June 8, 2012 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
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