The Climate Lottery: Summer 2022 Contest

The Climate Lottery is a forecast contest free to play by giving your picks in an e-mail or in this post’s comment section. No prizes will be given out for the contest, which is for educational purposes only. The main purpose for the contest is to get climate change conscious people interested in National Center for Environmental Information climate products. The special account that I have set up for the contest is guywalton10@gmail.com. This time I will make a personal pick, following along with any players.

The National Center for Environmental Information ranking numbers for average temperatures of the lower 48 states for Spring 2022 will be posted on or shortly after September 6th, 2022, which will be the official “Climate Lottery” numbers of the contest. Any subsequent changes by NCEI after their initial posted rankings will not be valid for the contest…but those ranking numbers will change with time.

The winning Climate Lottery numbers for Spring 2022 (MAR, APR, MAY) were 103/50/107 with a Power Ball number of 100 for the season, meaning that Spring 2022 was the 29th warmest spring in recorded history for the United States.

Hello again to all weather and climate geeks out there. Spring 2022 turned out to be above average, temperature wise, for most of the United States. If you wish to play “The Climate Lottery” pick one number between 1 and 128 (with 1 representing the coldest possible ranking and 128 being the highest possible ranking) for June, July and August 2022. Also, pick a “Power Ball” or overall ranking number for the summer season as a whole between 1 and 128. The Power Ball ranking will serve as a tiebreaker for any close picks between contestants. Your picks are NCEI rankings for average temperatures across the lower 48 states. Because 2022 is the 128th year that the National Center for Environmental Information has been ranking years since 1895, all months for 2022 will have a warmest ranking of 128. Likewise, the year 2022 will have a highest ranking of 128. Monthly rankings for 2022 will have a range from 1 to 128 with the coldest ranking being the number 1.

Please give your picks to Guywalton10@gmail.com or in the comments section at the end of this post before July 5th, 2022. If you wait until just before July 5th to make your picks, you can make an educated guess as to what the ranking for March will be and also a heads-up guess for July. All data can be found at the National Center for Environmental Information site noted here:

https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/cag/national/rankings/110/tavg/202202

The Power Ball (or overall National Center for Environment Information) number for Spring 2022 for the lower 48 states was 100, which was the 29th warmest ranking and well above the average ranking of 64, for the lower 48 states. I’ve defined each individual lottery number as rankings for each month for the lower 48 states, Power Ball numbers as those for each season, and Mega Ball numbers as those for each year. 

Chances for an entire season of below average temperatures are becoming much less likely across the lower 48 states due to carbon pollution. The whole point of these posts is to demonstrate how skewed temperatures have become towards warmth due to climate change and to get people to look at NCEI data. Of course, as far as the globe goes, the larger an area that is compared to average, the more likely that area is to be above long-term averages. What has happened this decade is yet more proof of the Climate Lottery game being loaded for warmth in the United States. Balls coming out of the Climate Lottery hopper are likely to have high numbers. 

Here’s a breakdown of the National Climatic Center’s ranking numbers by state for Spring 2022, which was ranked as 29th warmest or 100th coldest (or a Powerball ranking of 100):

Temperatures were below average from Minnesota westward to the Pacific Northwest. The warmest conditions relative to average occurred in the South and in East.

The following is a breakdown of each month for Spring 2022. Each chart shows “Climate Lottery” numbers for each state (or rankings) from a scale of 1 to 128.

In March the overall ranking for the lower 48 states was 103 (out of 128): 

Spring started out warm with no states having below average temperatures. with eye popping warmth across most of the nation. The West continued to have above average temperatures, coming under the influence of a historic drought. The south-central states were the nation’s cool spot.

In April the overall ranking for the lower 48 states was 50 (out of 128):

There was a big switch in the overall weather pattern during April. Cold systems produced well below average conditions in the Pacific Northwest. Above average temperatures were prevalent from Texas into the Southwest. The month was slightly below average, as a whole.

In May the overall ranking for the lower 48 states was 107 (out of 128):

The South and East had a warm February compared with long term averages. The Pacific Northwest continued to be chilly with below average conditions. Relative to average, May was the warmest spring month.

The following are the rankings, so far, for individual months or “Climate Lottery number picks” from 2013-2022:

The average ranking for 2022 is 64 since the coldest ranking would be 1 and the hottest 128. I have color coded all well below average temperature rankings for this post at or below 43 blue and all those well above temperature rankings at or above 83 red, with rankings + or – 20 from the mean value of 64 black for near average temperature rankings. With time, the rankings for each individual month, season and year will change as more data becomes available from NCEI. Also, for reference, the annual or “Mega Ball” numbers are shown on the chart. For example, the Mega Ball number for 2020 was 122, meaning that 2020 was the seventh warmest year on record for the lower 48 states, for example. 

Seasonal or Power Ball rankings for winter are those for DEC/JAN/FEB, spring are MAR/APR/MAY, summer JUN/JUL/AUG, and fall SEP/OCT/NOV. Also, keep in mind that NCEI rankings for seasons are not merely an average of rankings of individual month of a season or year, as was the case for Spring 2022- 103/50/107 P.B.100:

Notice that since the start of 2013 only two out of the last thirty-eight seasons have been well below average or “blue.” Twenty-nine out of the last thirty-eight seasons since 2013 have been “red” or well above average. Spring 2022 definitely adds to our warm stats and was also colored red. Indeed, the Climate Lottery hopper is very much loaded for above average temperatures for the lower 48 states looking at recent history. Yes, the “Casino of Climate Averages” is cheating causing the “House of Warming” to win just about every season due to carbon pollution.

I hope that everyone will have a great, safe summer…and try to stay cool.

Guy Walton…”The Climate Guy”