Record-breaking 2012 renews climate debate [Dayton Daily News, Ohio]
|By Steve Bennish, Dayton Daily News, Ohio|
|McClatchy-Tribune Information Services|
It was the hottest year on record in the lower 48 states and the
The year included wild weather like Hurricane Sandy and the summer's super derecho storm that swept across hundreds of miles and cut power to tens of thousands of Ohioans.
The weather last year set roughly 300 more records than the 3,251 records set in 2011, with record-breaking heat, rainfall and snow, the council said. The group used data from the
It's the third report since the beginning of the year to highlight extreme weather and climate change, and the only one so far to include county-by-county breakdowns. The State of the Climate report was released by NOAA earlier this year as was the draft National Climate Assessment, a multi-federal agency study.
Collectively, the reports could fire up renewed debate about climate change.
The council listed the top national weather record-breaking events as:
-- Hurricane Sandy's storm surge height at 13.88 feet, which broke the all-time record in
-- The summer of 2012's drought, the worst in 50 years across the nation's breadbasket, with more than 1,300 U.S. counties in 29 states declared drought disaster areas.
-- The hottest March on record in the contiguous U.S., with July the hottest single month ever recorded in the lower 48 states.
-- Wildfires that burned more than 9.2 million acres in the U.S., and destroyed hundreds of homes.
-- Record-breaking heat in 26 counties with a total of 55 new heat records.
-- Record-breaking rainfall in nine counties with a total of 10 new rainfall records.
-- Record-breaking snow in nine counties with a total of 10 new snow records.
-- One large wildfire.
Citing findings from international insurance giant MunichRe, the council said that from 1980 through 2011, the frequency of weather-related extreme events in
The council said the record-breaking is another indication of man-made climate change at work, moving at a pace that strains efforts at recovery.
"2012's unparalleled record-setting heat demonstrates what climate change looks like," said
But others say there is little evidence the Earth's climate is becoming more severe.
"When Hurricane Sandy devastated
Miami Valley Weather Records Set in 2012
Temperatures at airports:
Temperatures by county:
An interactive national map of temperature records and chart of
(c)2013 the Dayton Daily News (Dayton, Ohio)
Visit the Dayton Daily News (Dayton, Ohio) at www.daytondailynews.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services