NOAA: U.S. Cooler and Much Drier than Normal in January

February 8, 2011

January (2011) temperature "statewide ranks" map.

January temperature "statewide ranks" maps are available at the NCDC site.

High resolution (Credit: NOAA)

Last month was the coolest January since 1994, according to scientists at NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) in Asheville, N.C. Across the contiguous United States, the average January temperature was 30.0 F, which is 0.8 F below the 1901-2000 average. And despite several large winter storms across the country, last month was the ninth driest January on record, much drier than normal. Average precipitation across the contiguous United States was 1.48 inches, 0.74 inch below the 1901-2000 average.

This monthly analysis, based on records dating back to 1895, is part of the suite of climate services NOAA provides.

U.S. Climate: January Highlights

January (2011) precipitation "statewide ranks" map.

January precipitation "statewide ranks" maps are available at the NCDC site.

High resolution (Credit: NOAA)

U.S. Climate: Three and Twelve-Month Trends

On Jan. 11, snow and ice covered 49 out of 50 U.S. states.

On Jan. 11, snow and ice covered 49 out of 50 U.S. states.

High resolution (Credit: NOAA)

NCDC’s State of the Climate reports, which assess the current state of the climate, are released soon after the end of each month. These analyses are based on preliminary data, which are subject to revision. Additional quality control is applied to the data when late reports are received several weeks after the end of the month and as increased scientific methods improve NCDC’s processing algorithms.

NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth's environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and to conserve and manage our coastal and marine resources. Visit us on Facebook.