Extreme Temperature Diary-Saturday January 11th, 2020/ Main Topic: Climate Central’s New Assessments On Australia And 2019

Saturday January 11th… Dear Diary. The main purpose of this ongoing blog will be to track United States extreme or record temperatures related to climate change. Any reports I see of ETs will be listed below the main topic of the day. I’ll refer to extreme or record temperatures as ETs (not extraterrestrials).😉

Main Topic: Climate Central’s Assessments On Australia And 2019

Dear Diary. This week Climate Central came out with two major reports, one on the horrific situation in Australia, and one about 2019 U.S. climatology with a statistic from yours truly. There are plenty of links here for you to explore. These are quite educational:

australian fires and climate change


   ATLANTA  |  January 9, 2020

So far this Australian fire season, more than 15 million acres have burned, which equals roughly the size of the state of West Virginia. For perspective, this is dramatically larger than the area burned during the past two years of fires in California–2018 (1.96 million acres) and 2019 (260,000 acres).  The Australian state of New South Wales, home of Sydney, has more than 100 active fires.

Australia Fire Danger Index

australia fire danger index

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Australia Summer Heat

australia summer heat

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Here is Climate Central’s 2019 Assessment:


Version:1.0 StartHTML:000000249 EndHTML:000046821 StartFragment:000011131 EndFragment:000046765 StartSelection:000011189 EndSelection:000046749 SourceURL:https://medialibrary.climatecentral.org/resources/2019-in-review-u.s.-climate-rankings 2019 in Review: U.S. Climate Rankings | Climate Matters

2019 in Review: U.S. Climate Rankings

Resumen del 2019: Ranking Climático en EE.UU.

Jan 8, 2020

NOAA released the U.S. climate data for 2019. It was the second-wettest year on record with temperatures above average, wrapping up the warmest decade on record.

La NOAA ha publicado los datos climáticos de los Estados Unidos para 2019. Fue el segundo año de mayor precipitación registrado con temperaturas por encima del promedio, concluyendo la década más cálida en récord.

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The nation’s year-end climate numbers are in. 2019 was the second-wettest year on record in the U.S., and temperatures were above average despite regions that were among the only cool spots on the planet. 2019 also concluded the warmest decade on record—the 2010s were the warmest of the past five decades for 87% of the 244 cities analyzed. Here’s a recap of the year’s U.S. climate rankings, before global statistics are released next week. 

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Rain was the defining story of the year—again. Nationally-averaged precipitation missed the previous record by 0.18 inches, bumping 2018 to 4th-wettest in the 125-year dataset. Five states experienced their wettest year on record, while another 18 finished the year in the top ten. Rainfall was most extreme in the Upper Midwest and Mississippi River basin, where months-long floods cost billions of dollars in damage to farms and homes. While climate change has a mixed effect on overall precipitation, heavy rain is intensifying as rising temperatures evaporate more water into the atmosphere.

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U.S. temperatures weren’t as scorching as the rest of the globe, but some regions still took the heat. Alaska set a new annual temperature record after historic highs of 90°F in Anchorage and historic lows of Arctic sea ice extent. North Carolina and Georgia also experienced their hottest years on record, and three other states were second-hottest. Seventeen states had one of their 10 hottest years, while none had one of their 10 coldest. Interestingly, the NOAA report shows that nightly minimums were more above-average than maximum temperatures. This follows a long-term trend: according to meteorologist Guy Walton’s database, record-high minimums outnumbered record-high maximums by 34% in the 2010s. 

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Of course, rising temperatures aren’t just statistics—they can intensify extreme weather events that affect lives and damage economies. NOAA reports that 14 such events cost the U.S. more than $1 billion in 2019. None were cold-weather related; all came from flooding, fires, or storms. It was the fifth straight year with at least 10 billion-dollar weather and climate disasters; only four of the previous 35 years had recorded that many. As climate change strengthens hurricanes, lengthens wildfire seasons, and intensifies heavy rain, these costs may continue to rise—unless we rapidly reduce the emissions that warm our planet. 

METHODOLOGY: Average decadal temperatures (1970s – 2010s) for 244 cities were calculated using data from the Applied Climate Information System. Decades with five or more years of insufficient daily data (>10% missing) were excluded from this analysis. State data in the National maps are from NOAA/NCEI’s National Temperature and Precipitation Maps.

Here are more notes on the current climate change influenced storm (Isiah) affecting the United States this weekend:

Here is more climate and weather news from Saturday:

(As usual, this will be a fluid post in which more information gets added during the day as it crosses my radar, crediting all who have put it on-line. Items will be archived on this site for posterity. In most instances click on the pictures of each tweet to see each article.)

Here are some “ET’s” from Saturday:

(If you like these posts and my work please contribute via the PayPal widget, which has recently been added to this site. Thanks in advance for any support.) 

Guy Walton- “The Climate Guy”

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