StormTeam10: 2016 Historically Warm & Dry
It may not come as much of a surprise to you that 2016 was a warm year in southern New England...but what MAY surprise you is how it ranked in our all-time warmest years. In 111 years of record keeping for the Providence area, 2016 ranks as the 3rd warmest all-time! That's remarkable. But a deeper look at the data shows that our 4 warmest years on record all occurred in the last 10 years and the top 10 warmest years have all occurred since 1983.
It's clear that our definition of "average" temperature in our area is becoming redefined as we notice each year running warmer than the 30 year "average"...we can discuss why this is happening at another time and in much deeper fashion!
2016 was also a year in which we were talking more and more about drought. It was a VERY dry year, finishing up over 7" below normal in terms of precipitation.
In spite of the excessive dryness, however, 2016 did not even rank among the top 40 driest years on record. Nonetheless, we find ourselves starting off the new year in a serious situation and in desperate need of rain and/or snow.
We find ourselves hoping for a wet winter...maybe not so much an extremely snowy winter but we do need the precipitation, whether it comes as rain or snow melt. Only time will tell what 2017 brings but if recent history is any indicator we should at the very least expect the temperatures to run above "average" !
Thanks for reading...Mark