Tag Archives: cool summer

El Nino and the Latest NWS Outlook for Summer, Fall, and Winter

Summary: According to the NWS Climate Prediction Center, El Niño has arrived and has a 90% chance of staying this summer and an 80% chance of remaining through the end of 2015. In terms of strength, this El Niño is expected to be weak to moderate. Illinois is expected to have an increased chance of cooler-than-average conditions in the late summer and on into fall.

The El Niño event has finally arrived and heavily influenced the NWS climate outlooks released this morning. For June (first figure, top row), the Southern Plains are expected to have an increased chance of cooler-than-average temperatures. A large part of the US is expected to have an increased chance of wetter-than-average precipitation, including the southern two-thirds of Illinois.

For the period June-August (first figure, second row), the increased chance for cooler-than-average conditions stretches northward and eastward and includes far western Illinois. The  increased chance for wetter-than-average conditions does not cover Illinois. This should not be a concern since no part of Illinois is in drought now.

Later forecasts for July-September, August-October, and September-November show in increased chance of cooler-than-average across Illinois (see second figure for the July-September temperatures). Continue reading

Volcanoes and Climate in Illinois

When I give talks on climate and climate change, I often get questions about volcanoes and their impact on our climate. The Washington Post had a recent article on the subject, mentioning the famous eruption of Tambora in 1815, which in 1816 led to the year without a summer in the eastern US. It probably had impacts on Illinois but we had no widespread observations in place at the time.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/capital-weather-gang/wp/2015/04/24/the-epic-volcano-eruption-that-led-to-the-year-without-a-summer/

The one I remember the best was Mount Pinatubo. The following summer after that eruption was exceptionally cool across the US and around the world.

summer1992

Summer 1992 temperature departures from average for the lower 48 states. Shades of green indicate level of coolness. Click to enlarge.

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Illinois and Global Temperatures for June-August

Based on the latest updates from the National Climatic Data Center, this summer in Illinois was the 29th coolest. Daytime highs were much cooler than average while the nighttime lows were near-average.

The average maximum temperature in Illinois was 82.3 degrees Fahrenheit, 2.6 degrees below the 1900-2000 base period and the 14th coolest on record.

illinois-max

The average minimum temperature in Illinois was 62.3 degrees F, 0.3 degrees above the 1900-2000 based period.

illinois-min

GLOBAL

In contrast to the cool summer in the central US, most of the globe was warmer than average this summer (June-August), according to the National Climatic Data Center. In fact, even in the US, temperatures were significantly warmer in the West than the East.

201406-201408

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The Impact of Cool Weather on Corn and Soybeans in Illinois

Emerson Nafziger, the well-known agronomy professor at the University of Illinois, has an interesting article on the impacts of the cool weather and late start to corn and soybeans in Illinois in the U of I Integrated Pest Management “the Bulletin”. He starts out by saying,

Late planting and weather that continues to be cooler than normal into August has many wondering if the corn and soybean crops will reach maturity and harvest moisture within a reasonable time this fall. Crop conditions remain good for both crops, but crop development, including pod formation and filling in soybean and grain fill in corn, remains well behind normal. Corn is 10 days to 2 weeks behind normal, and soybeans are 2 to 3 weeks behind normal. The number of days behind will “stretch” as the weather cools, so late crops get even later. Ten days behind in mid-August will be become 15 or 20 days behind in mid-September, even if temperatures are normal. (read more) …

Currently, the average temperature for the first 12 days of August in Illinois was 1.7 degrees below average. The temperatures over the next five days are expected to be about 6 degrees below average, according to the NWS. The 6-10 and 8-14 day forecasts look a little better with near-average temperatures in northern and central Illinois. However, cooler-than-average temperatures are expected to continue in southern Illinois.

The new NWS monthly and season outlooks for September and the next 12 months will be coming out on Thursday.  

Here are the early, late, and average frost and freeze dates for Illinois.