The Last 30 Years Have Been The Hottest, U.S. Records Suggest

By Anthony K

Images Courtesy of The Guardian

The U.S. government has changed its precipitation and temperature values reference. The values now indicate that the past three decades have been on record the warmest. This news may not be surprising to people living in the Pacific Northwest and American west. This is because, especially in June, multiple cities were repeatedly hit by record temperatures, resulting in two back-to-back heatwaves. In mid-June, cities such as Neb., Omaha, and Sacramento had record temperatures of up to 105º Fahrenheit or 40.6º Celsius.  Other cities such as Death Valley, Calif, and Phoenix, Ariz on June 17 hit monster extremes of 128 ºF and 118 ºF or 53.3 ºC and 47.8 ºC respectively. Another heatwave then hit the North Pacific in late June. With Seattle setting temperatures that were a record high at 105 ºC or 46 ºC. Portland, Ore, hit a record 116 ºC or 46.7 ºC.

Image Courtesy of NOAA

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reports climate norms, which offer a standard way to compare the weather patterns today against averages recorded for 30 years. The agency accumulates three decades of observations from approximately 8,700 weather stations in the U.S. It then checks for the data’s quality. It only uses data that has passed a quality test to calculate the multiple climate measures.

Image courtesy of Climate Central

Over the past 30 years, the typical temperature throughout the U.S mainland has been 53.3 ºF or 11.8 ºC. The prior period’s temperatures averaged about 11.6 ºc. According to the NOAA, no part in the U.S. is cooler now than the average measures of the 20th century.