2012 is Warmest Year on Record for Delaware Since 1895

Statewide Mean Annual Temperature 1895-2012
Figure 1. Delaware statewide mean annual temperature (°F) 1895-2012.

Preliminary data indicates that Delaware saw its warmest year on record during 2012.

The mean annual temperature of 58.8 ° F was 3.9 ° F above the 1895 – 2012 mean temperature, making it the warmest year since records began in 1895.

This year broke the previous record of 58.1 ° F set in 2011.

The six warmest years on record have all occurred since 1990 (Figure 1).

The warm temperatures were accompanied by very dry conditions across the state during the year. The statewide mean precipitation of 34.53” was 10.05” below the 1895-2012 statewide mean, making 2012 the 6th driest year since records began in 1895 (Figure 2).

Conditions in Delaware mirrored those across much of the United States.

The contiguous 48 states had their highest temperature and 15th driest year since 1895 (Figures 3 and 4).

Statewide Annual Precipitation 1895-2012
Figure 2. Delaware statewide mean precipitation (inches) 1895-2012.
US temperature anomalies for 2012
Figure 3. Temperature anomalies (°F) across the contiguous United States. Map provided by the National Climatic Data Center.
US temperature anomalies for 2012
Figure 4. Precipitation anomalies (inches) across the contiguous United States. Map provided by the National Climatic Data Center.
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