In case you were wondering, yes, it really is getting hotter out there (unless you’ve been living in the Pacific Northwest, where summer just arrived this weekend). To prove it, the NOAA National Climactic Data Center has released their “State of the Climate: National Overview for June 2012,” which, among other things proves that the past 12 months have been the warmest on record for anyone living in the mainland United States.
The Huffington Post reports that the 12 month period was July 2011 until June 2012, and is the warmest since they began keeping track in 1895. the nationally averaged temperature was 56.0 degrees, which is 3.2 degrees higher than the long-term average.
In fact, according to the report, every single state in the contiguous U.S. saw warmer-than-average temperatures in the past 12 months, with the exception of Washington.
Not only that, but the period from January to June 2012 has also been the warmest first half of a year on record. As if that information isn’t enough, CNN notes that 170 all-time temperature records were matched or shattered in the contiguous U.S. in the last half of June alone.
South Carolina and Georgia may even have set all-time record highs of 113 degrees and 112 degrees respectively. Dev Niyogi, earth and atmospheric sciences professor at Purdue University, stated, “There are a lot of things going on that have been very unusual over the last several months.”
The Huffington Post reports that National Climatic Data Center scientist Jake Crouch stated of the long-term warming trend that:
“It’s hard to pinpoint climate change as the driving factor, but it appears that it is playing a role. What’s going on for 2012 is exactly what we would expect from climate change.”
CNN notes that the NOAA reports that most of Colorado is experiencing extreme to exceptional drought, and is also experiencing an outbreak of huge wildfires. Places like Arizona, Georgia, and Indiana are experiencing the same. The National Weather Service has even noted that conditions in central and southern Indiana even “resemble the Dust Bowl days of the 1930s.”
With all of these factors in place, do you believe that climate change and global warming may actually be real?