2016 Monthly Air Temperature Review

What did you think of 2016? Was it a hot year? A cooler than average year? Would you believe that the summer was close to average?

Where the heat really came in was the spring and fall. Those were the seasons that climbed way above average.

For the year, 2016 was slightly warmer than the long-term 15-year Oklahoma Mesonet average from 2001-2015. Putnam and Minco were the warmest locations at 3 degrees above their average air temperatures. Most of the eastern side of Oklahoma was 2 degrees above average. In the west, most Mesonet sites were 1 degree above average.

2017-01-05.2016 Avg Air Temperature Continue reading

Cattle Comfort Rollercoaster

Oklahoma’s weather roller coaster has opened for business. And on the farm, the cattle are feeling it. Warm, cold, warm, cold and how about a day of drizzle that turned to freezing rain with a biting wind (Thursday, Dec. 15, 2016).

2016-12-17.Cow in snow.face

Temperature weather variability has two sides. One side is the peak-to peak (amplitude) of the variability, how high or low temperatures go. The mornings of December 17th and 18th are going to be bitter cold with extreme lows. Continue reading

October Warm Temps and Lack of Rain

October followed a warm September with above average temperatures. Unfortunately, what was below average in October were our rainfall totals.

Looking back at October, our average air temperatures for the month were 4 to 7 degrees above average. Northern and central sections of the state, the yellow-orange areas, had the largest departure from the Oklahoma Mesonet Long-term 15-year average (2001-2015).

2016-11-04.Oct 2016.Air Temp Avg departure Continue reading

Summer Crop Heat Units in 2016

As July comes to an end in Oklahoma, farmers’ thoughts are jumping ahead to harvest. Farmers that planted corn, cotton and peanuts are thinking about the heat units those crops need to mature. They want their efforts to end in good yields and good quality. To check on crop maturity they can turn to the Oklahoma Mesonet Degree-day Heat Unit Calculator.

2016-07-28.AgBlog.No 01.Summer crops

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Working and Playing in the Heat

One of the weather risks that falls through the cracks of concern is heat stress. Maybe that’s because air conditioning is so prevalent in our homes, cars, and businesses. Maybe folks think Oklahoma’s a hot place and we should just tough it out. But heat can be a real risk, especially if you haven’t acclimated to the heat.

2016-06-14.Woman exercise red face
Source: Popsugar.com Health Jenny Sugar, March 17, 2016

When you go outside are you ready for the heat? Do you know how warm it will be? Can you work or play without risk? Do you have an idea as you grow older of how much heat stress you can take? Do you know when young kids should reduce outdoor activities? Do you let an outdoor task dictate how long you will work or do change your work or play time to the heat conditions? Continue reading

Historical Climate Trends Tool

Right in the middle of your conversation about how drought has cut hay production someone brings up climate. What pops into your mind? Do you have a picture of climate?

Drought is easy to picture. The empty ponds, low lakes, dried up crops are ready reminders of drought’s devastating impact. Weather is easy to picture. It’s what’s going on as soon as we step outside. Sun, wind, rain, heat, cold all give us an immediate picture in our mind. Pictures of climate? For most of us, it’s hard to picture climate. And if we can’t picture it, how can we get a grasp on the long-term cycles and patterns of climate? How can we know where in the cycle we are? How can we know what to expect?

One way to picture climate is with a graph over time. There is a tool that can be used to create graphs of climate for any of the 48 continental USA states or any of the 344 climate divisions. These graphs use data from NOAA’s National Climate Data Center back to 1895.

The tool is the Historical Climate Trends Tool made available through the Southern Climate Impacts Planning Program at www.southernclimate.org.

2014 07 19.SCIPP.Data Products page

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