As evidenced by the photo collage above from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the first six months of 2016 have been warmer than the proverbial snake’s tail in a wagon rut.
June marked the 14 consecutive month of record heat for the globe, with average sea surface temperature also at a record high for the period, the agency reported in a July 19 summary of the first half of the year.
June 2016 was 1.62 degrees F above the 20th century average, breaking last year’s record for the warmest June on record by 0.04 degrees F, according to scientists from NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information. NOAA’s global temperature records date to 1880, or 137 years.
For the year to date, the average global temperature was 1.89 degrees F above the 20th century average. This was the highest temperature for this period, surpassing the previous record set in 2015 by 0.36 degrees F.
The June temperature for the contiguous U.S. was 71.8°F, or 3.3°F above the 20th century average, surpassing the previous record of 71.6°F set in 1933. The year-to-date (January-June) temperature was 50.8°F, 3.2°F above the 20th century average, making it the third warmest on record.
As the map below shows, Colorado has been warmer by varying degrees the first six months of this year compared to the 20th century average. The state’s 20th century average for June was 61.2 degrees. This June it was 66.4, a jump of 5.2 degrees F.
This post was updated on Aug. 2 to include Colorado’s June comparison information.