Friday, July 29, 2011

Streaks of 90 F or higher Temperatures

July 14-27, 2011 saw 14 days with the temperature in Lincoln of 90 F or higher.

How does this streak of 14 days compare to the climatological record?

The longest streak was July 8 through August 14 in 1934 with 38 days of temperatures reaching 90 F or higher.

The 2nd longest streak was June 24 through July 28, 1936 with 35 days of temperatures reaching 90 F or higher. AND, during the same Summer, August 8 through August 21, 1936 there was a streak of 14 days with temperatures reaching 90 F or higher. What an awful Summer with a streak of 35 days and shortly thereafter another streak of 14 days of hot temperatures.

The streak of 14 days this year, in July 2011, in perspective, wasn't all that bad!

LINK to data table showing the rankings

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Lincoln's 90 F or Higher Climatology

July 27, 2011 was the 29th day in 2011 that Lincoln had a high temperature of 90 F or higher and it was the 19th day in July 2011. How does this compare to the climatological data archive?

The following table shows the climatology of days 90 F or higher for Lincoln, NE 1887 to present.

The 1887 through 2010 average number of days 90 F or higher is 42 days
The most number of days 90 F or higher occurred in 1936 with 82 days
The least number of days 90 F or higher occurred in 1889 with only 7 days

During the past 10 years, the greatest was 65 days in 2002
During the past 10 years the least was 22 days in 2009

Link to data table.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

La Niña Update-Forecast, July 2011

We are currently (July 2011) emerging from a strong La Nina which impacted the weather patterns over the U.S. during the past Winter and spring.

From The International Research Institute for Climate and Society:

The following graph shows forecasts made by dynamical and statistical models for SST in the Nino 3.4 region for nine overlapping 3-month periods. Note that the expected skills of the models, based on historical performance, are not equal to one another. The skills also generally decrease as the lead time increases. Thirdly, forecasts made at some times of the year generally have higher skill than forecasts made at other times of the year--namely, they are better when made between June and December than when they are made between February and May. Differences among the forecasts of the models reflect both differences in model design, and actual uncertainty in the forecast of the possible future SST scenario.

Most of the set of dynamical and statistical model predictions issued during late May and early June 2011 predict neutral ENSO conditions from the June-August 2011 season currently in progress, through the end of the calendar year. However, a minority of models call for a re-emergence of La Nina conditions going forward, while a few other models suggest the development of El Nino conditions. For the June-August season the probabilities for La Nina, neutral and El Nino conditions are estimated at 9%, 84% and 7%, respectively. At the time of preparing this, the SST observations in the NINO3.4 region had returned to the climatological average (the middle of the ENSO-neutral range), with an area-averaged weekly anomaly of 0.0 C in the most recent week. Current predictions and observations indicate probabilities of 14% and 15% for La Nina conditions during the August-October and September-November periods, respectively, with corresponding probabilities for El Nino conditions of 15% and 15%. Probabilities for ENSO neutral conditions are substantially greater than those for La Nina or El Nino during all seasons, hovering near 70% for all seasons going forward into early 2012.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

June 2011 Statewide Temperature Rankings

Climate Highlights - June 2011

(From NCDC)

•June 2011 brought extremes in both temperature and precipitation across the United States. An oppressive heat wave accompanied by intensifying drought conditions shattered temperature records in the South and Southwest.
•The average U.S. temperature in June was 70.7 degrees F (21.5 degrees C), which is 1.4 degrees F (0.8 degrees C) above the long-term (1901-2000) average. Precipitation, averaged across the nation, was 2.48 inches (63.0 mm). This was 0.41 inch (10.4 mm) below the long-term average, with large variability in different locations.
•Several locations broke all-time high temperature records during June. On the 26th, Amarillo, Texas set an all time high temperature record of 111.0 degrees F (43.9 degrees C), breaking the record of 109.0 degrees F (42.8 degrees C) set just two days prior. On the 15th, Tallahassee, Florida also recorded an all-time high, 105.0 degrees F (40.6 degrees C). For the month, 42 U.S. locations tied or broke all-time maximum high temperature records.
•In addition to the daily high temperatures, average temperatures during June were also historic in Texas. In Lubbock, the average temperature of 85.8 degrees F (29.9 degrees C) was 8.5 degrees F (4.7 degrees C) above the June average. This surpassed July 1966 (85.4 degrees F or 29.7 degrees C) as the city's warmest month on record. In Midland, the average temperature of 88.0 degrees F (31.1 degrees C) was also the warmest month on record, surpassing the monthly average of 87.2 degrees F (30.7 degrees C) set in August 1964. Additionally, Houston and Galveston had their warmest June on record.
•The expansive heat across Texas resulted in an average statewide temperature of 85.2 degrees F (29.6 degrees C), which was 5.6 degrees F (3.1 degrees C) above normal, surpassing 1953 as the warmest June in 117 years of records. This was the Texas' fourth consecutive June with temperatures at least 2 degrees F (1.1 degrees C) above the long-term average.
•Several other states also had temperatures much above normal. Both Louisiana and Oklahoma (tied) had their second warmest June; Georgia tied for its third warmest. It was the sixth warmest for Arkansas, Delaware (tied), Florida, Mississippi, and New Mexico.
•Along with the heat, parts of the Southwest through much of the Southern Plains and Gulf Coast experienced a continuation of intense drought. New Mexico had its driest June on record while Arizona and Oklahoma had their fourth driest. June was the fifth driest in Texas and the ninth driest in Florida.
•According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, 63 percent of the Southeast was in moderate to exceptional drought at the end of June compared to 51 percent at the end of May. In the South, the percent area in the worst category of drought—called exceptional drought—rose from 28 percent to 47 percent.
•Above average wildfire activity continued across the Southern tier of the United States. Nationwide, 1.35 million acres burned during the month, bringing the year-to-date acreage burned to approximately 4.8 million acres -- the most on record for the period -- and more than twice the decadal average.