Spring 2012: Warmest Spring in Last 118 Years

Figure 1. Delaware statewide spring season (MAM) temperature from 1895-96 through 2011-2012.

Preliminary data from the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) indicates that spring (MAM) of 2012 was the warmest across Delaware since records began in 1895.

The March through May 2012 mean temperature of 58.5 degrees Fahrenheit was nearly six degrees above the 1895-2011 average (Figure 1).

Figure 2. Delaware statewide spring season (MAM) precipitation from 1895-96 through 2011-2012.

The last three spring seasons have all ranked in the top five warmest springs since records began.

The statewide March through May precipitation average of 6.93” was more than four inches below the 1895-2011 average, making 2012 the 5th driest spring season since 1895 (Figure 2).

Although the final data may change the rankings slightly, it is clear that spring 2012 was unusually warm and dry across the First State.

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Delaware Environmental Observing System
Delaware Geological Survey
UD College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment