March 2012: Warmest on record in USA, but “coolest” globally in 13 years

There’s an old saying in the weather biz. “All weather is local”

That was clearly demonstrated in March 2012.

While the USA enjoyed “Springtime Indian Summer” with the warmest March ever recorded, much of the rest of the globe was cool in March.

The result? the 16th warmest march on record globally, but the “coolest” March in 13 years…since 1999.

The details here from NOAA.

Here are some highlights:

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“March global temperatures were coolest since 1999

Month ranks 16th warmest March for globe; La Niña expected to dissipate by the end of April

The average global temperature for March 2012 made it the coolest March since 1999, yet the 16th warmest since record keeping began in 1880. Arctic sea ice extent during the month was below average but was the largest extent since 2008 and one of the largest March extents of the past decade. Additionally, La Niña conditions continued to weaken during March as temperatures across the equatorial Pacific Ocean warmed during the last two months. According to NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, La Niña is expected to dissipate by the end of April 2012.

Global temperature highlights: March

•The combined average temperature over global land and ocean surfaces for March 2012 was the 16th warmest March record and the coolest since 1999 at 55.73°F (13.16°C), which is 0.83°F (0.46°C) above the 20th century average of 54.9°F (12.7°C). The margin of error associated with this temperature is ±0.13°F (0.07°C).

•Warmer-than-average conditions occurred across nearly all of Canada, the contiguous United States, Mexico, Europe, Argentina, Peru, and parts of northern and central Russia, India, China, and eastern Brazil. Cooler-than-average regions included Alaska, Australia, eastern and western Russia, and parts of New Zealand.

•Norway experienced its warmest March since national records began in 1900, while Australia had its third coolest March maximum temperature since national temperature records began in 1950.

•The United States also experienced its warmest March, with more than 15,000 warm temperature records broken and the average temperature of the lower 48 states being 51.1°F, 8.6°F above the 20th century average for March.”

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