2020 one of the warmest years on record in the Maritimes
Mild winter followed by hot, dry summer and warm fall
It's become a very familiar headline over the past couple of decades. We've just had another one of our warmest years on record.
Looking at the list of warmest years both here in the Maritimes and around the world, it's filled mostly with years since 1999 — a sure sign of our changing climate.
An analysis will need to be completed by Environment Canada's Climate Atlantic Centre, however, it appears likely that 2020 will rank in the top-10 for warmest years, at least for most of the Maritimes.
The World Meteorological Organization confirmed Thursday that 2020 was also one of the three warmest years on record for the planet.
WMO consolidation of 5 major temperature datasets:<br><br>🌡️2020 one of the 3 warmest years on record, rivalled 2016 for the top spot<br>2011-2020 warmest decade<br>Warmest 6 years all since 2015<br><br>Cooling <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/LaNi%C3%B1a?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#LaNiña</a> put a brake on the heat only at very end of the year.<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/climatechange?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#climatechange</a> <a href="https://t.co/Lrx75kai13">pic.twitter.com/Lrx75kai13</a>—@WMO
2020 joining the ranks of the warmest years should come as little surprise.
Last winter was mild. We experienced a hot and dry summer, followed by a warm fall.
In Halifax, December was the warmest on record, and the year as a whole will rank near fifth all time. The 11 warmest years in Halifax have all occurred over the past 23.
Once again, the 2020 temperature needs to be verified by Climate Atlantic, but there's a chance the Halifax mean temperature was even warmer than the preliminary figure of 7.7 C. The record is 8.6 C in 1999.
Where is winter?
2021 has started where 2020 left off. It's been warmer than average. Mild temperatures and the lack of snow have dominated the weather headlines through the first half of January.
We'll see a push of polar cold air next week, however it appears the end of the month will also trend near or warmer than average. Temperatures for February, March and April are also expected to be warmer than normal.
While we'll no doubt see some rounds of cold and snow in the coming weeks, sticking with our recent climate trend, a 'good old fashioned' finish to the winter season doesn't appear likely.
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