The six months of January-June 2012 were also the warmest in the contiguous U.S. in 118 years.
For Alabama, the January-June average temperature was the second-warmest in 118 years of records, the center reported.
Nine other states — Louisiana, Mississippi, Georgia, West Virginia, Maine, Minnesota, North Dakota, Colorado and New Mexico — also posted their second-warmest January-June period in 118 years.
Those states surround a huge swath of the United States that posted its warmest January-June ever recorded. This includes 28 states scattered from the Great Plains through the Midwest and east to the mid-Atlantic states and most of New England.
Along with record warmth, some 56 percent of the contiguous United States experienced drought as of July 3, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. This is the largest area under drought conditions in the 12-year record of the U.S. Drought Monitor, the National Climatic Data Center said.
This week Alabama is getting a break from the punishing heat wave that hit at the end of June and start of July. Alabama is part of a broad area from Texas to North Carolina that expects to see needed rain and milder temperatures, according to AccuWeather.com.
But the three-month trend through September calls for above-average temperatures in the Southeast, mid-Atlantic states, Midwest, Great Plains and Mountain West, according to the National Climate Prediction Center.
The Prediction Center also expects a trend of persistent drought through the end of September for eastern Alabama and in the portion of central Alabama that includes metro Birmingham.
During June, 173 all-time daily temperature records in the U.S. were broken or tied, the National Climatic Data Center reported. These records fell into two clusters.
One centered on Colorado and western Kansas.
The other centered on Tennessee, but stretched from northern Indiana to south-central Georgia, and east to Virginia and North Carolina.
In Alabama in June, all-time daily temperature records were broken or tied at weather stations in Huntsville, Muscle Shoals, Russellville, Tuscaloosa and Gadsden.
The record heat in Alabama’s Tennessee Valley area made it the most devastating June ever for Madison County corn growers, according to Thomas Atkinson, county executive director for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency. In the July 8 “Crop Progress and Condition” report for Alabama, he writes that “extremely hot temperatures and drought conditions have annihilated all corn planted after April 1.”
Article source: http://blog.al.com/spotnews/2012/07/post_769.html