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Showing posts from January, 2016

Preliminary January Climate Summary

Preliminary January Climate Summary: Despite some temporary visits by Arctic air masses which brought sub-zero temperature readings on at least 7 days, January mean temperatures around the state generally will end up ranging from 1 to 5 degrees F warmer than normal at most locations, a typical signature for an El Nino winter. Extremes for the month ranged from daytime highs in the mid 40s F on January 27th, to a low of just -36°F at Cotton (St Louis County) on the 12th.

January was generally drier than normal, falling 0.1 to 0.25 inches less than normal. Most observers reported less than a half inch of precipitation. Though snowfalls were relatively numerous, amounts were pretty modest. Most climate stations reported less than 6 inches for the month. Only a few locations in northeastern counties received over 10 inches for the month.

It was mostly a cloudy month with fewer than normal sunny days. Mean wind speeds were less than normal as well.

Annual Climate Adaptation Partnersh…

2015 Climate Summaries Issued

2015 Climate Summaries Issued: This week NOAA, NASA, the Hadley Centre, and the MN-State Climatology Office all issued climate summaries for the year 2015. The NOAA, Hadley Centre, and NASA summaries highlighted that 2015 was the warmest year globally over the record period 1880 to present, surpassing last year (2014) significantly. This was anticipated by these agencies as 10 of 12 months in 2015 showed significantly warm signatures in temperature, aided by unusually warm ocean temperatures, not just in the equatorial El Nino region, but other regions as well. An animated graphic showing the historical context for the global temperature record was available from Bloomberg.

For the USA specifically the states of Oregon, Washington, Montana, and Florida reported their warmest year in history. Many more western states and southeastern states reported that 2015 was among the 5 warmest years in their respective histories. Texas and Oklahoma reported their wettest year in history …

Colder than normal temperatures, then moderation

For perspective the colder than normal temperatures which prevailed this week over January 9-13 were the most significant since the first week of March last year. The average departure from normal temperature in the Twin Cities for January 9-13 was 13°F less than average, the largest magnitude since March 2-6, 2015 when temperatures averaged 14°F less than average. The recent string of colder than normal days across Minnesota is exceptionally unusual in the context of the prevailing climate pattern since September 1st. From September 1, 2015 to January 8, of this year (130 days) over 82 percent of all days produced above normal temperatures in the state, a level of persistent warmth that is rare.

A short mid-week respite from the cold pattern prevailed on Thursday (Jan 14), pushing daytime high temperatures well above normal for mid January, even mid 30s F at some locations. But even colder air awaits for the forthcoming days, as temperatures for the MLK long weekend and early nex…

Cold Air Coming

The National Weather Service offered an advisory to Minnesota citizens earlier this week about the expected spell of colder than normal weather which will start this weekend and linger through much of next week. This is likely to bring daily maximum temperatures in the subzero range for northern Minnesota, and just the single digits for the south, with common wind chill conditions that range from the teens below zero to -30sF.  This Quick Fact Sheet was issued by the NWS earlier this week.


Since the forecast calls for temperatures from just 0°F to 4°F during the day on Sunday (Jan 10), it is very likely that the weather conditions for the Minnesota Vikings-Seattle Seahawks football game at TCF Bank Stadium this weekend will be among the coldest in NFL playoff history. According to NFL.com the coldest game time temperatures in the NFL playoffs were:

2°F for Dec 22, 1990, Lambeau Field, Green Bay, WI (Packers vs Lions)0°F for Jan 15, 1994, Ralph Wilson Stadium, Buffalo, NY (Bills vs Raid…