April brings above-normal warmth in Alaska and around the world
April 2019 was the second hottest April on record for the entire planet. The impacts of the above-normal warmth were felt around the world, including here in Alaska.
The global average temperature for the entire month of April typically sits at 56.7 degrees, according to a monthly climate report released Monday from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Records that date back to 1880 and data collected from around the world shows the planet averaged 1.67 degrees above the 20th century norm.
The trend of above-normal warmth isn't anything new. April 2019 marks the 412th consecutive month of above-normal temperatures, according to the report. The month of April alone has a long history of above-normal warmth. The past 43 consecutive Aprils have trended above-normal in terms of temperatures.
Arctic sea ice reached a record low for the month of April, according to the National Centers for Environmental Information. This is the smallest amount of Arctic sea ice since satellite records began 41 years ago. The average Arctic sea ice coverage was down 8.4% from the 1981-2010 average coverage during the month of April.
Antarctica had near-record low sea ice coverage during the month of April. Averaging 16.6% below the monthly average for April, Antarctica recorded its third-smallest amount of ice for the month of April on record.
Alaska experienced above-normal temperatures during the month of April. According to University of Alaska Fairbanks climatologist Rick Thoman, the state tied the record for the 10th-warmest April on record since 1925.
NCEI also states the year-to-date was the third-warmest first four months of the year on record for the globe. Despite much of Canada and the north-central U.S. averaging about 3.6 degrees below normal, the world as a whole was warmer than the average. From the start of January to the end of April, global land and ocean temperatures averaged 1.62 degrees Fahrenheit above the 54.8 degree normal.
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