State of The Climate - February 2012

How warm was this winter? Read here to find out.

The State of The Climate for February is out and as we all know, it was warm.
How warm? Here are a few of the highlights.  
Read the entire report here at DaculaWeather.com


Winter Highlights:

  • Warmer-than-average temperatures dominated the northern and eastern regions of the country in December, January and February, leading to the fourth warmest winter on record for the contiguous United States.  
  • The average contiguous U.S. temperature during the December to February period was 36.8 degrees F, 3.9 degrees F above the 1901-2000 long-term average, the warmest since 2000. The precipitation averaged across the nation was 5.70 inches, 0.78 inch below the long-term average.
  • This winter had the third smallest winter snow cover footprint in the 46-year satellite record.


Here are a few highlights for February:

  • During February, the contiguous United States experienced above-average temperatures with a national average temperature of 38.3 degrees F. This was 3.6 degrees F above average, making it the 17th warmest February on record.
  • According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, as of February 28, about 39 percent of the contiguous United States was experiencing drought conditions, a slight increase compared to the beginning of the month. However, the percent area experiencing the worst category of drought, called D4 or exceptional drought, shrank from 3.2 percent to 2.5 percent. 


And here are a few Southeast US highlights:

  • The greatest departures were found across Virginia, Alabama, and the northern half of Florida, where monthly temperatures were 4 to 5 degrees F (2.2 to 2.8 degrees C) above average.
  • Monthly precipitation totals were below average across most of the Southeast in February. The driest locations were found across northwest South Carolina and parts of the Florida Peninsula, where monthly precipitation totals were less than 25 percent of normal. 
  • February 7 marked the end of a 41 day stretch with no measurable precipitation in Melbourne, FL, the second longest dry spell ever at that location (the record is 46 days from 1968 to 1969). Vero Beach, FL also ended its second longest dry spell ever of 39 days on the fourth of the month (the record is 41 days in 1970). 
  • The lack of precipitation was evident across meteorological winter as well. In particular, Augusta, GA recorded only 3.8 inches (96.5 mm) of precipitation from December through February, making it the third driest winter in a record extending back to 1874.


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