2012 Third Hottest Year in Baltimore Area

It was also the hottest year on record in the D.C. area, according to the National Weather Service.


2012 was the third hottest year on record in the Baltimore area, according to the National Weather Service.

It was the warmest year ever recorded at BWI airport since 1950 when temperatures were first recorded there, said Jared Klein, a NWS meteorologist.

The average temperature in 2012 at BWI was 58.6 degrees, just a half degree lower than the 59.2 degree average in 1931 and 1949 when temperatures were recorded at the customs house in downtown Baltimore City, according to Klein.

“We had one of the warmest winters on record, the warmest spring on record and the thirteenth warmest summer on record,” said Klein. “Each month was consistently above normal, except November.”

The 2012 average was 3.5 degrees warmer than the 1981-2010 normal, according to NWS.

July 18 and July 7 were the hottest days in 2012, with an average recorded temperature of 104 degrees both days, tying for the eighth hottest days since 1871, when records were first recorded in Baltimore. July 2012 was the fifth hottest month ever recorded, coming in at an average of 81.4 degrees during the month, according to NWS.

But Baltimore actually bucked a trend nationally, where many large cities experienced their hottest years ever recorded.

2012 was the hottest year for Washington DC, Atlanta, Boston, Detroit, Houston, Las Vegas, New Orleans, New York City, Oklahoma City, Philadelphia and St. Louis, among many others, climate data shows.

In fact, 2012 was the hottest year ever recorded (55.3 degrees) in the contiguous 48 states, coming in a full degree warmer than the previous record in 1998, according to the National Climatic Data Center.

In a New York Times article about the recently released figures, the Times wrote, “the 10 warmest years on record all fell within the past 15 years, a measure of how much the planet has warmed. Nobody who is under 28 has lived through a month of global temperatures that fell below the 20th-century average, because the last such month was February 1985.”

In Maryland, significant weather events during 2012 included the fast-moving derecho that swirled through the state in late June, knocking down trees and leaving thousands without power. Afterwards, in early July, a significant summer heat wave rolled through, possibly contributing to record average highs experienced in the area that month.

Then in October, Superstorm Sandy pummeled the region with rains, marking the second hurricane-strength storm to make landfall in Maryland in the last two years.

“2012 was a historic year for extreme weather that included drought, wildfires, hurricanes and storms; however, tornado activity was below average,” reads the first sentence of the National Climatic Data Center’s report on the state of the climate in 2012, which was released Tuesday.

Do you think global warming is changing our climate? Tell us your thoughts in comments.

JaySmith January 10, 2013 at 12:39 PM
These statistics are very unreliable......and articles in the NYTimes WANT to shout that it's happening so that Obama can continue to close down coal mines generating our electricity. It's very easy to see OTHER studies that are reliable which find there has been NO noticeable global warming over the past 15 YEARS. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2217286/Global-warming-stopped-16-years-ago-reveals-Met-Office-report-quietly-released--chart-prove-it.html If any Obama-voters wanted to learn about the global warming hoax (which they don't) they could go to www.wattsupwiththat.com But again, they don't, so they don't mind that Obama and Harry Reid hate the fact that our country runs on gasoline and coal.
Daniel January 10, 2013 at 01:16 PM
These statistics are quite reliable, and they are a straightforward result of human activity. Combustion of fossil fuels puts carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Carbon dioxide, unlike nitrogen and oxygen, can absorb and emit infrared radiation, so the more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, the harder it is for heat from earth's surface to get out to space. The earth has to warm up, so that outgoing radiation can come back into balance with the incoming radiation from the sun. It's going to keep getting warmer until we convert our economy to energy sources that don't produce carbon dioxide pollution: wind, solar, nuclear, biofuels. We've known all this as well as anything in science is known for 30 years. Time to get serious.
Sanchez January 10, 2013 at 01:51 PM
Pure hypotheses and no "settled" science to prove any of it. ALL theory. the climate models are proving to be flawed as is the "science" used to input the data. The Earth can be in only 1 of 2 states, cooling or warming and we have been warming since the great ice sheet over most of out nation receded 120000, years ago. Other parts of the planet are experiencing record cold and snow. Must be global cooling.
Dan Helfrich January 10, 2013 at 02:39 PM
Do the research yourself. Climate change is no hoax. Global warming is unfolding pretty much as NASA and many other reputable and independent scientific organizations have been predicting for decades. Anthony Watts is a paid shill for the fossil fuel lobby. Denial and obfuscation will be the seed of bitter fruit for generations to come.
Daniel January 10, 2013 at 02:49 PM
@Sanchez, a few corrections. First, the great ice sheet started to recede about 18,000 years ago, not 120,000 years ago. Second, the recovery from the last glacial maximum was complete by about 7000 years ago, and temperatures were steady or falling very gradually since then, until the warming of the last century. Third, climate science models has made a number of important predictions that have been borne out by observations: global mean warming of about 0.2 C/decade, loss of sea ice, cooling of the stratosphere, greater warming over land than sea, etc.
Sanchez January 10, 2013 at 03:31 PM
My typo, it was meant to be 12,000. Whats a few thousand years in geologic time? The climate of Earth is always changing. We only live in Maryland and north due to warming. History has shown a warmer planet is a healthier planet.
Dan Helfrich January 10, 2013 at 09:21 PM
"Healthier planet" is a subjective term. Civilization as we know it arose during the last 5000 years or so when sea level and climate have been relatively stable. Our planet's agricultural systems are highly adapted to weather patterns that are now changing to new extremes that will likely lead to food insecurity and price spikes that will further destabilize international relations. Who steps into the breach to keep peace and protect innocent civilians? The US military. Do you have family serving in the armed forces like I do?
Sanchez January 10, 2013 at 09:29 PM
The "healthier planet" was meant to suggest a healthier populace. More conductive to a healthy population. See the cold streak that came over Europe last year. "Europe cold snap death toll tops 650" http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/9085412/Europe-cold-snap-death-toll-tops-650-as-100-car-pile-up-is-blamed-on-snow.html See the death toll of the Little Ice Age. https://www.uwgb.edu/dutchs/WestTech/x14thc.htm Millions died.
Sanchez January 11, 2013 at 02:06 PM
"2012 [wasn't] necessarily warmer than it was back in the 1930s ... NOAA has made so many adjustments to the data it's ridiculous," Roy Spencer, a climatologist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, told FoxNews.com. But NOAA has adjusted the historical climate data many times, skeptics point out, most recently last October. The result, says popular climate blogger Steve Goddard: The U.S. now appears to have warmed slightly more than it did before the adjustment. "The adjusted data is meaningless garbage. It bears no resemblance to the thermometer data it starts out as," Goddard told FoxNews.com. He's not the only one to question NOAA's efforts. "Every time NOAA makes adjustments, they make recent years [relatively] warmer. I am very suspicious, especially for how warm they have made 2012," Spencer said. The newly adjusted data set is known as "version 2.5," while the less adjusted data is called "version 2.0." www.foxnews.com/science/2013/01/10/hottest-year-ever-skeptics-question-revisions-to-climate-data/#ixzz2Hfxifxri
Daniel Kirk-Davidoff January 11, 2013 at 04:42 PM
Did you read to the end of that article? Even Fox feels obliged to move beyond their usual fringe sources (Spencer, Goddard, Watts). Did you notice that even those guys don't actually claim that this year *wasn't* the warmest on record? Have you checked the completely public documents that explain what the adjustments in the USHCN are for- mainly to compensate for changes in the time of day of observation. They're available here: http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/research/ushcn/ Do you have an actual substantive objection to the adjustments they made? Have you bothered to do the math to find out whether the adjustments would actually change the trend? Remember the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature project that was supposed to pull back the veil on the big climate fraud, but instead wound up confirming what mainstream science had shown, that the earth is warming up?
Sanchez January 11, 2013 at 04:57 PM
Daniel, I posted that and yes did read it. I only show that there are those who are far more qualified than YOU and I who feel different than YOUR sources. It is NOT settled science by a long shot. IF the theory was correct then your High Priest Al Gorezeera has the blood of millions on his hands for selling out to the Big Oil producing Qatar. To believe only YOUR sources are legitimate and not "fringe" is the sign of a closed mind and and ignorant one as well.
Sanchez January 11, 2013 at 04:57 PM
Daniel, I posted that and yes did read it. I only show that there are those who are far more qualified than YOU and I who feel different than YOUR sources. It is NOT settled science by a long shot. IF the theory was correct then your High Priest Al Gorezeera has the blood of millions on his hands for selling out to the Big Oil producing Qatar. To believe only YOUR sources are legitimate and not "fringe" is the sign of a closed mind and and ignorant one as well.
Daniel January 16, 2013 at 11:40 AM
Actually, Sanchez, I'm pretty well qualified to judge who's "fringe" and who's not. But qualifications aren't the issue. The issue is what you know and what you don't. If you're not an expert, you should be looking to established scientific bodies (e.g. The National Academy of the Sciences) for information on science questions, and not to blow-hards who happen to agree with your ideology. Go read http://nas-sites.org/americasclimatechoices , and then come back and talk.
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