New climate normals released, summer temperatures slightly higher


TAMPA (WFLA) – The National Center for Environmental Information (NCEI) recalculates what we consider as normal temperatures every ten years based on the previous 30 years temperature data. The NCEI just released this decade’s update and there are a few changes.

Locally, the normal summertime high temperature increased. For meteorological summer, which is June, July, and August, our normal high temperature climbed from 89.5°to 90.9°

We saw a slightly more dramatic rise in average high temperatures in our winter (near 2° from 71.2 to 73°) and Spring (also near 2° from 81.1 to 83°.)

According to the National Weather Service office in Tampa, a “normal” of a particular variable (like temperature) is defined as the 30-year average. For example, the minimum temperature normal in January for a station in Tampa, Florida, would be computed by taking the average of the 30 January values of monthly averaged minimum temperatures from 1991 to 2020.

Each of the 30 monthly values was in turn derived from averaging the daily observations of minimum temperature for the station.

Nationally, the new normals show that warming from 1981-2010 to 1991-2020 is widespread, but not found everywhere, with recent cooling in the north-central U.S. Also the central and eastern US are trending wetter, with a more wet normal presented.

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