Continental Temperature Anomalies

Current Month

December 2020
Continent Anomaly (1910-2000) Trend (1910-2020) Rank
(out of 111 years)
Records
°C °F °C °F Year(s) °C °F
North America +2.62 +4.72 +0.16 +0.28 Warmest 5th 1939 +3.43 +6.17
Coolest 107th 1917 -4.39 -7.90
South America +1.17 +2.11 +0.14 +0.25 Warmest 4th 2015 +1.54 +2.77
Coolest 107th 1916 -0.77 -1.39
Ties: 2016
Europe +2.43 +4.37 +0.12 +0.21 Warmest 4th 2015 +3.13 +5.63
Coolest 108th 1933 -2.74 -4.93
Africa +1.65 +2.97 +0.11 +0.19 Warmest 1st 2020 +1.65 +2.97
Coolest 111th 1974 -0.81 -1.46
Asia +0.44 +0.79 +0.21 +0.38 Warmest 47th 2015 +2.84 +5.11
Coolest 65th 1929 -3.04 -5.47
Oceania +0.33 +0.59 +0.10 +0.19 Warmest 36th 2019 +2.67 +4.81
Coolest 76th 1916, 1910 -1.02 -1.84

Year To Date

January - December 2020
Continent Anomaly (1910-2000) Trend (1910-2020) Rank
(out of 111 years)
Records
°C °F °C °F Year(s) °C °F
North America +1.16 +2.09 +0.13 +0.23 Warmest 10th 2016 +1.92 +3.46
Coolest 102nd 1917 -1.29 -2.32
South America +1.40 +2.52 +0.14 +0.26 Warmest 2nd 2015 +1.43 +2.57
Coolest 110th 1917 -0.88 -1.58
Europe +2.16 +3.89 +0.15 +0.26 Warmest 1st 2020 +2.16 +3.89
Coolest 111th 1956 -1.08 -1.94
Africa +1.23 +2.21 +0.12 +0.22 Warmest 4th 2016 +1.47 +2.65
Coolest 108th 1918 -0.62 -1.12
Asia +2.07 +3.73 +0.17 +0.30 Warmest 1st 2020 +2.07 +3.73
Coolest 111th 1912 -0.88 -1.58
Oceania +1.15 +2.07 +0.12 +0.22 Warmest 4th 2019 +1.35 +2.43
Coolest 108th 1917 -0.84 -1.51

Regional Temperature Anomalies

Current Month

December 2020
Region Anomaly (1910-2000) Trend (1910-2020) Rank
(out of 111 years)
Records
°C °F °C °F Year(s) °C °F
Caribbean Islands +0.73 +1.31 +0.08 +0.14 Warmest 7th 2015 +0.99 +1.78
Coolest 105th 1917 -0.71 -1.28
Atlantic MDR +0.79 +1.42 +0.09 +0.16 Warmest 6th 1987 +0.92 +1.66
Coolest 104th 1929 -0.75 -1.35
Ties: 2016, 2004
Gulf of Mexico +0.01 +0.02 +0.04 +0.06 Warmest 56th 2016 +1.40 +2.52
Coolest 55th 1910 -1.16 -2.09
Ties: 1934
Hawaiian Region +0.92 +1.66 +0.07 +0.13 Warmest 5th 2019 +1.44 +2.59
Coolest 107th 1911 -1.12 -2.02
East N Pacific +0.66 +1.19 +0.07 +0.13 Warmest 19th 2015 +1.51 +2.72
Coolest 93rd 1946 -1.81 -3.26

Year To Date

January - December 2020
Region Anomaly (1910-2000) Trend (1910-2020) Rank
(out of 111 years)
Records
°C °F °C °F Year(s) °C °F
Caribbean Islands +0.98 +1.76 +0.09 +0.16 Warmest 2nd 2016 +1.03 +1.85
Coolest 110th 1910 -0.85 -1.53
Atlantic MDR +0.88 +1.58 +0.09 +0.16 Warmest 3rd 2010 +1.20 +2.16
Coolest 109th 1913 -0.81 -1.46
Gulf of Mexico +0.78 +1.40 +0.05 +0.09 Warmest 3rd 2016 +0.90 +1.62
Coolest 108th 1910 -0.80 -1.44
Ties: 2019
Hawaiian Region +0.65 +1.17 +0.07 +0.13 Warmest 11th 2015 +1.17 +2.11
Coolest 100th 1910 -0.89 -1.60
Ties: 1996
East N Pacific +0.83 +1.49 +0.08 +0.14 Warmest 5th 2015 +1.48 +2.66
Coolest 107th 1917 -1.00 -1.80

Background

The July 2015 Global State of the Climate report introduces the regional analysis report, which focuses on the analysis of temperature anomalies for six continents: North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Oceania.

The regional values, similar to the global values, are derived from the NOAAGlobalTemp data set. The continental polygons are composed of the 5° x 5° grid points with center points in the respective continents. Then, in a similar way to the global analysis, the grid points are weighted by their area and averaged to compute a continental temperature anomaly time series. The anomalies are computed back to 1910, the approximate date by which all continents have station coverage sufficient to resolve values at the regional scale.

This regional analysis complements the global analysis by allowing us to understand and describe the state of an important climate indicator across a continent. It also helps to place the current continental temperature anomalies into historical perspective, displaying how the most current month, season, or year compares to the past.

Please note that all continental anomalies are with respect to the 1910—2000 average.

Region Definitions

Regions 1
Regions 2

References


Citing This Report

NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information, State of the Climate: Monthly Regional Analysis for December 2020, published online January 2021, retrieved on September 26, 2022 from https://www.ncei.noaa.gov/access/monitoring/monthly-report/global-regions/202012.