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The May 2011 to April 2012 heat wave bumped the last record-setting warm year out of the way, which was November 1999 to October 2000

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has found that the last 12 months have been a record-breaking time period for warm weather in the U.S.

According to the NOAA's National Climatic Data Center, the 12-month time period from May 2011 to April 2012 has been the warmest consecutive string of months since 1895, which is when weather records began.

Over the past year, the U.S. has had its second hottest summer, warmest March and fourth warmest winter on record. It was also discovered that April 2012 was the third warmest ever, with 332 locations in the U.S. experiencing their warmest April temperatures on record.

About 22 states in the U.S. experienced their warmest year over the last 12 months. Many of the states were in the Northeast and Upper Midwest United States.

Also, cities like Washington D.C., Atlanta, Boston, Buffalo, New York City, Detroit, Chicago, New Orleans, Philadelphia, Tampa and Nashville have encountered their warmest start to the calendar year 2012. Twenty-six states east of the Rocky Mountains have recorded the beginning of 2012 as their warmest start of the year yet, with the lower 48 states experiencing temperatures about 5.4 degrees Fahrenheit above average so far.

A few examples of record-breaking states include North Dakota, which has had temperatures 10.4 degrees above normal so far this year; Minnesota, with 9.6 degrees above normal; South Dakota, with 9 degrees over average; Wisconsin, with 8.6 degrees above normal, and Iowa, with 8.6 degrees over average.

According to the NOAA, the cause of the warm weather is a jet stream pattern that has locked the cold air in the high latitudes and created "heat domes" over the center of the lower 48 states. These domes have wandered east and west periodically.

The May 2011 to April 2012 heat wave bumped the last record-setting warm year out of the way, which was November 1999 to October 2000. The average temperature was 2.8 degrees F above average at that time.

Source: Slashdot

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RE: What a difference a year makes
By TSS on 5/11/2012 5:05:32 PM , Rating: 0
Then the question is very simple. Do you trust Al Gore, or yourself?

Personally, born in 1987, i've seen the weather getting hotter and hotter with some bitchin heatwaves in the 90's. Since the turn of the millenium i've no longer seen any extreme heat waves where i live (holland), but the temperature throughout the year has been higher (less intense summers but hotter springs, fall and winter).

Then suddenly, 2 years ago, winter took a turn for the worse. the 23 years i had lived up to that point i'd never seen the same snow on the ground more then 5 days. That year, the same snow fell and stayed on the ground for an entire month, in november. It thawed, some more fell, thawed again and no fresh snow fell, though it stayed cold.

Last winter, there was less snowfall, but it was so cold that we came within an inch of a new "elfstedentocht", or 11 cities run. It's an ancient dutch custom, where when it's frozen long enough, water ways between 11 cities in the most northern province will freeze over, allowing you to iceskate between them. The elfstedentocht is the race organised around this. For this to happen it will need to be atleast -5c, -10c for multiple nights (around a week).

The last time the elfstedentocht was run was in 1997, 1986 before that. We missed it by a 1 days worth of frost (safety rules are very strict, though the ice was good enough for a few of the public to try, it has to hold thousands during the run).

Even now in may we still have crappy weather. It's been warmer the past few days and i think it'll finally stay this way now, but usually that happens mid april, not mid may.

So IMO we're definitly in cooling mode now, and have been for 2 years certain, a decade likely. How long it'll say this way, no clue. I'll just have to make sure my children know how to survive in the desert as well as build an iglo.

"The Space Elevator will be built about 50 years after everyone stops laughing" -- Sir Arthur C. Clarke

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