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Much red, little blue in USA’s record warm March 2012

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Land surface temperatures in USA in 2012 March, red for warm anomalies and blue for cool. Image: Earth Observatory, NASA

NASA’s Earth Observatory has an image-story on how a huge, lingering ridge of high pressure over the eastern half of the United States brought summer-like temperatures to North America in March 2012. The warm weather broke records across the central and eastern United States and much of Canada.

The unseasonable warmth broke temperature records in more than 1,054 locations between March 13–19, as well daily lows in 627 locations. Cities as geographically diverse as Chicago, Des Moines, Traverse City (Michigan), Myrtle Beach, Madison (Wisconsin), Atlantic City, New York City, and Duluth, (Minnesota) all broke records for high temperatures in recent days.

The intensity and scope of the heat wave is clearly visible in this map of land surface temperature anomalies. Based on data from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument on the Terra satellite, the map depicts temperatures compared to the average of the same eight day period of March from 2000-2011. Areas with warmer than average temperatures are shown in red; near-normal temperatures are white; and areas that were cooler than the 2000-2011 base period are blue.

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Written by makanaka

March 28, 2012 at 14:48