Warm and Dry for May in Illinois

May 2012

A glance at the forecast for Memorial Weekend shows near record-breaking temperatures in Illinois. Already the statewide average temperature for May 1-22 is 66.1 degrees, and 3.7 degrees above average. It is now in 19th place as far as the warmest May on record. We will see how that changes over the weekend and into next week.

Monthly Temperatures Since 2011

Below are the temperature departures in Illinois since the beginning of 2011. The statewide average temperature in every month in 2012 has been above average in Illinois. As a result, we are now at 48.4 degrees for the period of January – May 22. That makes this January-May the warmest on record. It beats second place by a full 1.1 degrees (47.3 degrees set in 1921). Statewide records go back to 1895. By the way, the summer of 1921 was about 3 degrees above average with average precipitation.

The streak of warmer than average temperatures extends back to October 2011. Also, eight of the 12 months in 2011 had above average temperatures.

Statewide monthly temperature departures for Illinois in 2011 and 2012. Blue bars mean cooler than average. Red bars mean warmer than average. Average is the 1971-2000 statewide average. Illinois State Water Survey 2012. Click to enlarge.
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