NBC News: 2012 was the warmest year on record in the contiguous United States, according to scientists with The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
The average temperature for 2012 was 55.3 degrees Fahrenheit, 3.2 degrees above normal and a full degree higher than the previous warmest year recorded — 1998 — NOAA said in its report.
It was also a historic year for “extreme” weather, scientists with the federal agency said. With 11 disasters that surpassed $1 billion in losses, including Superstorm Sandy, Hurricane Isaac, and tornadoes across the Great Plains, Texas, and the Southeast and Ohio Valley, NOAA said 2012 was second only to 1998 in the agency’s “extreme” weather index.
Photo: People crowd the beach at Coney Island in Brooklyn, N.Y., on June 30, 2012. (Eric Thayer / Reuters)
NOAA predicts ‘near-normal’ Atlantic hurricane season
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration forecasters say they expect this year’s June 1-Nov. 30 Atlantic hurricane season to will produce 9-15 named tropical storms. NOAA forecasters say 4-8 of these may grow into 74 mph or stronger hurricanes, and 1 to 3 may become major hurricanes with winds faster than 111 mph.
Meanwhile, Hurricane Bud is gaining strength in the Pacific Ocean. AP reports a tropical storm warning and hurricane watch is in effect for Mexico’s Pacific coast from Punto Telmo to Cabo Corrientes.
Photo: Hurricane Bud is seen in this image provided by NASA, taken at 2 a.m. EDT on May 24, 2012. (NASA via AP)