ranks as 9th-warmest year for Illinois
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[JAN. 3, 2007]
CHAMPAIGN -- Based on
preliminary data, temperatures of 54 degrees statewide
-- 1.8 degrees above 30-year normals -- made 2006 the ninth-warmest
year in Illinois since 1895, according to the state climatologist,
Jim Angel. This was largely the result of a record-setting January
last year with an average temperature of 37.9 degrees, which was
13.3 degrees above normal.
According to Angel, similar annual
average temperatures in recent years occurred in 1998, the
third-warmest year, with 55 degrees; 1987, the 12-warmest, 53.8
degrees; 2005, the 13th-warmest, 53.8 degrees; and 1991, the
14th-warmest, 53.7 degrees. Top-ranked years remain 1921 with 55.6
degrees and 1931 with 55.3.
It was the 15th-warmest December on
record, with temperatures 5.4 degrees above normal. Temperatures the
first nine days were 13 degrees below normal and then 12.9 degrees
above normal the last 22 days. December temperature extremes ranged
from minus 7 at Dixon, Rochelle and Havana on Dec. 8 to 69 at
Grayville on Dec. 18.
Statewide precipitation for 2006 was 41.11 inches, which was 2.32
inches or 6 percent above normal. While most of the state was wetter
than normal last year, areas around Quincy and east of St. Louis
were drier than normal.
December precipitation, the 13th-wettest December on record,
averaged 3.67 inches, which was 0.98 inches or 37 percent above
normal. Claremont reported 2.93 inches, the largest one-day
rainfall, on Dec. 1. Grand Chain Dam reported the largest monthly
total, 7.12 inches.
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Other than snowfall from the Nov. 30-Dec. 1 winter storm, which
received wide press coverage, no other significant snowfall was
reported in Illinois during December.
The National Weather Service outlook for January-March calls for
temperatures above normal and precipitation below normal across
Illinois. That forecast is driven largely by a moderate El Nino
event now present in the Pacific Ocean but expected to diminish
gradually in the next few months.
"Even so, we can still expect periods with temperatures and
precipitation more typical of the winter season," concludes Angel.
The state climatologist is on the staff of the
Illinois State Water Survey,
a division of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.
[Illinois State Water Survey