NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information calculates the global temperature anomaly every month based on preliminary data generated from authoritative datasets of temperature observations from around the globe. The major dataset, NOAAGlobalTemp version 5, updated in mid-2019, uses comprehensive data collections of increased global area coverage over both land and ocean surfaces. NOAAGlobalTempv5 is a reconstructed dataset, meaning that the entire period of record is recalculated each month with new data. Based on those new calculations, the new historical data can bring about updates to previously reported values. These factors, together, mean that calculations from the past may be superseded by the most recent data and can affect the numbers reported in the monthly climate reports. The most current reconstruction analysis is always considered the most representative and precise of the climate system, and it is publicly available through Climate at a Glance.
The September 2022 global surface temperature departure tied September 2021 as the fifth highest for September in the 143-year record at 0.88°C (1.58°F) above the 20th century average of 15.0°C (59.0°F). The ten warmest Septembers on record have all occurred since 2012. September 2022 also marked the 46th consecutive September and the 453rd consecutive month with temperatures, at least nominally, above the 20th century average.
Warmer-than-average conditions were observed across much of North America, Greenland, southern and southeastern Asia, and Africa. Parts of northern South America, the Arabian Peninsula, and northern Oceania were warmer than average this month. Record-high September temperatures were observed in parts of the western U.S., north-central and southeastern China, the Mediterranean region, and Indonesia and Papua New Guinea. Sea surface temperatures were above average across much of the northern, western, and southwestern Pacific, the northern and central Atlantic, the Gulf of Mexico, the Mediterranean Sea, and parts of the eastern Indian oceans. Overall, record-warm September temperatures encompassed about 6.1% of the world's surface.
Temperatures were near- to cooler-than-average throughout parts of Europe, Mexico, the southeastern U.S., central South America, southern Australia, and most of Russia. Consistent with the ongoing La Niña, sea surface temperatures were below average over much of the south-central, central, and eastern tropical Pacific. However, there were no areas with record-cold September temperatures this month.
North America had its warmest September on record, surpassing the previous record set in 2019 by 0.30°C (0.54°F). The Caribbean Islands region had its sixth-warmest September on record.
- The contiguous U.S. had its fifth-warmest September on record.
- After an unusually cool summer, Greenland experienced record-breaking temperatures for September at multiple stations along the west coast, making for an exceptionally warm September. In Paamiut and Qaqortoq, this month's average temperature exceeded any of the three previous summer temperature averages.
- The Atlantic Main Development Region, an area in the tropical Atlantic Ocean basin closely monitored for storm development that stretches from the westernmost Caribbean Sea to the west coast of Africa, had its tenth-warmest September on record.
Asia had its fifth-warmest September on record. Africa had its sixth-warmest.
- Hong Kong had an especially warm and sunny September, where the average temperature, mean maximum temperature, and mean minimum temperature were each the second highest on record for the month.
Europe, Oceania, and South America each had a warmer-than-average September, but it did not rank among their top ten on record.
- Europe and South America each had their coolest September since 2013.
- Paraguay had a slightly cooler than normal September and start to Southern Hemisphere spring, with average temperatures 1°C to 3°C below average for the month.
- While much of Australia had near- to cooler-than-average mean temperatures, northern parts of the country had much-warmer-than-average temperatures. According to Australia's Bureau of Meteorology, the country as a whole had a September mean temperature that was 0.69°C (1.31°F) above than the 1961-1990 average. The above-average mean temperature was mainly driven by the warmer-than-average minimum (nighttime) temperatures (1.36°C or 2.45°F) that ranked as tenth-highest on record for September.
(out of 143 years)
|Land||+1.22 ± 0.28||+2.20 ± 0.50||Warmest||7th||2020||+1.45||+2.61|
|Ocean||+0.75 ± 0.14||+1.35 ± 0.25||Warmest||4th||2015||+0.83||+1.49|
|Coolest||140th||1903, 1904, 1908||-0.47||-0.85|
|Land and Ocean||+0.88 ± 0.16||+1.58 ± 0.29||Warmest||5th||2015, 2016, 2019, 2020||+0.94||+1.69|
|Land||+1.40 ± 0.23||+2.52 ± 0.41||Warmest||4th||2016||+1.61||+2.90|
|Ocean||+1.03 ± 0.14||+1.85 ± 0.25||Warmest||4th||2015||+1.13||+2.03|
|Land and Ocean||+1.17 ± 0.17||+2.11 ± 0.31||Warmest||5th||2019||+1.23||+2.21|
|Land||+0.78 ± 0.12||+1.40 ± 0.22||Warmest||19th||2020||+1.52||+2.74|
|Ocean||+0.53 ± 0.15||+0.95 ± 0.27||Warmest||8th||2016||+0.62||+1.12|
|Ties: 2012, 2019|
|Land and Ocean||+0.57 ± 0.15||+1.03 ± 0.27||Warmest||13th||2021||+0.69||+1.24|
|Land and Ocean||+1.10 ± 0.16||+1.98 ± 0.29||Warmest||13th||2016||+1.95||+3.51|
500 mb maps
In the atmosphere, 500-millibar height pressure anomalies correlate well with temperatures at the Earth's surface. The average position of the upper-level ridges of high pressure and troughs of low pressure—depicted by positive and negative 500-millibar height anomalies on the September 2022 map—is generally reflected by areas of positive and negative temperature anomalies at the surface, respectively.
Year-to-date Temperature: January–September 2022
January to September was characterized by warmer-than-average conditions across much of North America, Europe, Asia, northern Africa, Oceania, and central South America, as well as across parts of the Atlantic, Indian, and northern and western Pacific oceans. Meanwhile, near- to cooler-than-average conditions were present across parts of northern North America, north central Africa (namely, Chad and Niger), the western coast of South America, the northern Atlantic Ocean, the central and eastern tropical Pacific and the southeastern Pacific Ocean.
The January–September global surface temperature was 0.86°C (1.55°F) above the 1901-2000 average of 14.1°C (57.5°F) — the sixth-highest January–September temperature in the 143-year record. The ten warmest January–September periods on record have occurred since 2010. According to NCEI's statistical analysis, the year 2022 is very likely to rank among the ten warmest years on record but a less than 5% chance to rank among the five warmest years on record.
Both Europe and Asia had their third-warmest January–September period on record, while the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Islands had their eighth-warmest. Oceania and the Atlantic MDR each had their tenth-warmest January–September period on record.
(out of 143 years)
|Land||+1.33 ± 0.18||+2.39 ± 0.32||Warmest||6th||2016||+1.66||+2.99|
|Ocean||+0.69 ± 0.18||+1.24 ± 0.32||Warmest||6th||2016||+0.83||+1.49|
|Land and Ocean||+0.86 ± 0.17||+1.55 ± 0.31||Warmest||6th||2016||+1.05||+1.89|
|Land||+1.51 ± 0.21||+2.72 ± 0.38||Warmest||4th||2016||+1.86||+3.35|
|Ocean||+0.87 ± 0.17||+1.57 ± 0.31||Warmest||4th||2020||+1.00||+1.80|
|Land and Ocean||+1.11 ± 0.18||+2.00 ± 0.32||Warmest||5th||2016, 2020||+1.31||+2.36|
|Land||+0.86 ± 0.13||+1.55 ± 0.23||Warmest||11th||2019||+1.22||+2.20|
|Ocean||+0.56 ± 0.18||+1.01 ± 0.32||Warmest||8th||2016||+0.73||+1.31|
|Land and Ocean||+0.61 ± 0.17||+1.10 ± 0.31||Warmest||8th||2016||+0.80||+1.44|
|Land and Ocean||+1.76 ± 0.13||+3.17 ± 0.23||Warmest||5th||2016||+2.56||+4.61|
The maps shown below represent precipitation percent of normal (left, using a base period of 1961–1990) and precipitation percentiles (right, using the period of record) based on the GHCN dataset of land surface stations.
Precipitation anomalies during September 2022 varied significantly around the world. September precipitation was generally less than normal across the northwestern, central, and south-central U.S., and southern South America, as well as across parts of southeast China and southwestern Asia. Wetter-than-normal conditions were notable across parts of Central America and the Caribbean region, central and eastern Europe, central-western Africa, India and Indochina, and Australia.
Global Precipitation Climatology Project (GPCP)
The following analysis is based upon the Global Precipitation Climatology Project (GPCP) Interim Climate Data Record. It is provided courtesy of the GPCP Principal Investigator team at the University of Maryland.
- Tropical Cyclone rainfall contributed significantly to the monthly precipitation pattern for the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian basins with especially devastating results for Cuba, Florida and Puerto Rico.
- September rainfall somewhat alleviated drought over western Europe, but arrived with floods over Portugal and Italy.
- La Niña-type anomalies continued over most of the Pacific Ocean areas, Maritime Continent and Australia with effects on global totals.
- Global totals for September show a positive trend since 1979, with counter-balancing swings between ocean and land.
This September's global mean precipitation map (left, top panel) combined the usual seasonal features, the continuing effects of La Niña, and smaller scale features that resulted from tropical cyclones, among other features. Heavy rainfall was evident over South Asia as part of the summer monsoon there, while Australia was in its dry season in its end of the seesaw with South Asia. The Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) extended across the Pacific and Atlantic north of the Equator, and the tropical African and South American rain features were near their northernmost points. Mid-latitude cyclone tracks were evident, especially over the ocean in both hemispheres.
The middle and bottom panels (left) show the anomalies for this month in relative magnitudes and percentages, respectively, showing smaller scale features than the mean map. On the large scale in the tropics, the La Niña continued, nearly two and a half years at this point in time, with cool sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the central, tropical Pacific associated with general negative rainfall anomalies there, and the response to the west of warmer SSTs surrounding and positive rainfall anomalies around and over the Maritime Continent and extending into the Indian Ocean. This month the La Niña produced its typical positive anomalies over Australia, which is especially evident in the percentage map during Australia's dry season. The South Asian monsoon was also active with general positive anomalies and associated flooding over India and Indochina. However, Pakistan became drier this month after the major floods of August.
Elsewhere in the tropics, the rain belt across central Africa had large excesses of rainfall compared to climatology, which were accompanied by significant floods. In Nigeria, 300 people have perished from the flooding, and extreme rainfall has led to landslides in Uganda and floods in Senegal. Meanwhile, the rainfall maximum in northern South America was below normal with negative anomalies, which is the opposite of what is typical with La Niña conditions.
Some of the relative small scale, intense positive departures from climatology in the tropics were associated with a very active tropical cyclone month. Typhoon Hinnamnor hit South Korea and Typhoon Noru came across the northern Philippines, progressed west across the South China Sea and then into Vietnam and Laos. Both typhoons left a trail of heavy rain which affected the monthly pattern. In the Atlantic, the monthly rainfall anomaly maps also showed the rainfall results of Hurricane Fiona moving from the western Atlantic into the Caribbean, devastating Puerto Rico, and then continuing northward and smashing the maritime provinces of eastern Canada. A similar topical to extratropical march occurred in the Pacific as the remnants of Typhoon Merbok hit Alaska. And at the end of the month, Hurricane Ian marched across the Caribbean, hit Cuba resulting in a total loss of electrical power and flooding in the island's western half. Ian continued on to devastate Florida with wind, storm surge, and flooding.
Even the eastern Pacific was active in September, with a number of tropical cyclones producing a set of connected or semi-connected positive high monthly rain features just off and along the coast of Central America and Mexico. Impacts included landslides in Honduras and heavy rain from Tropical Storm Kay causing some flooding to parts of Arizona, New Mexico and southern California. The southern half of California and some of the adjoining state of Arizona have had their long-term drought somewhat ameliorated from the substantial moisture related to these storms. Further east, the drought continued in the U.S. plains and Mississippi Valley with significant rainfall deficits over most of this area this month. Longer-term drought has led to low flows on the Mississippi River and problems for barge traffic. However, in the northern fringes of the central plains, there were floods in Chicago and southern Wisconsin.
In western Europe, September saw a change from the very dry conditions of the last few months, which have led to drought that has affected crops and helped to initiate wildfires, to above average rainfall in the region this month. Although this rainfall weakened the region's drought, it was also associated with hazards of the opposite kind, such as flooding in central Italy (over 400 mm of rain reported) which killed nine people, and floods and landslides in Portugal. Positive rain anomalies were also evident in the eastern portion of the Eurasian continent at higher latitudes across into Alaska.
The global mean precipitation for this month was 2.76 mm/d, which is 0.06 mm/d above the September global climatology. The preliminary data indicates this overall positive anomaly comes from the land areas, with oceans showing a negative anomaly, as is typical for La Niña conditions. A look at the September totals since 1979 (right) shows a small upward trend (not necessarily significant) in the global totals, but also shows the land-ocean opposite fluctuations and the seemingly record land precipitation this September compared to other Septembers.
Large parts of the world's agricultural-producing areas were in drought during September 2022. These include the Canadian Prairies, Great Plains of the United States, Brazil and Argentina in South America, Western Europe, southeast China, and East Africa. According to media reports, in Tunisia, farmers say they are fighting a losing battle with drought and disease that is forcing many to abandon plantations where some of the world's finest dates are grown. Grape yields fell in most European countries. France, the biggest grain grower in Europe, lowered its maize forecast by 1 million tons to the lowest level since 1990; the drought-stricken crop is expected to yield 11.33 million tons, down 8% from the initial August projection, and may be the smallest production in over 30 years. Europe-wide, the maize harvest is expected to be at a 15-year low. Heat and drought may reduce Spain's olive oil harvest by 33% to 38% when it begins in October. Reuters reported that, "Argentina's main farming zones are facing the driest conditions in around 30 years, agricultural and weather experts said, raising fears about a new 'great drought' and stalling planting of corn in the world's No. 3 exporter of the grain," and that Argentine wheat farmers are beginning to abandon some wheat fields due to prolonged drought. The Buenos Aires Grains Exchange estimates that wheat yields will fall by as much as 60% during the 2022/2023 season. The drought has delayed corn planting in Argentina.
In early September, the Associated Press reported that, "The United Nations says 'famine is at the door' in Somalia with 'concrete indications' famine will occur later this year in the southern Bay region. This falls just short of a formal famine declaration as thousands are dying in a historic drought made worse by the effects of the war in Ukraine." In mid-September, they warned: Widespread food shortages are likely next year as the world is looking at "a perfect storm on top of a perfect storm." The number of people nearing starvation was 80 million roughly 5 and a half years ago. With Russia's invasion of Ukraine in February, which has led to a food, fertilizer and energy crisis, the number of starving people has reached 345 million. "Within that are 50 million people in 45 countries knocking on famine's door," said World Food Program Executive Director David Beasley. "If we don't reach these people, you will have famine, starvation, destabilization of nations unlike anything we saw in 2007-2008 and 2011, and you will have mass migration."
September brought above-normal precipitation to much of Europe, with temperatures that were slightly warmer than normal in western portions to slightly cooler than normal in eastern portions. This was a break from the persistently hot and dry conditions that have plagued much of the continent in most of 2022. But the precipitation did little to replenish moisture in parched soils or restore depleted groundwater. Precipitation deficits continued across much of Europe at the 2-month to 12-month time scales and longer, and evaporative stress was still high. The European Combined Drought Indicator continued to show drought stretching from Spain to southern Scandinavia and from the British Isles to Ukraine. According to media reports, in Portugal, the previous order to temporarily restrict water use for electricity production and irrigation was expanded to more of its hydropower dams.
The northern half of Asia was cooler than normal during September while the southern half was warmer than normal. Precipitation was below normal from eastern China to central Asia as well as parts of Southwest Asia, while the month was near to wetter than normal in surrounding areas. Soil moisture was depleted, groundwater levels low, and evaporative stress continued high in portions of eastern to northern China, central to northwestern Asia, and Southwest Asia. These areas also have pronounced precipitation deficits for the last 1 to 3 months. Precipitation deficits extended to the last 12 months and longer in parts of central to Southwest Asia, and satellite observations revealed widespread vegetative stress in these areas
The GPCC Global Drought Index (DI) indicated drought in southern Africa out to 6 months, and in eastern and northern Africa out to 9 months. Satellite observations revealed areas of depleted soil moisture, low groundwater, and stressed vegetation in these areas. In East Africa, pronounced precipitation deficits existed at the 6-month and longer time scales, extending out to 24 months.
Most of Australia was wetter and near to cooler than normal in September. Parts of northern Australia were warmer than normal in September, and the Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index (SPEI) and DI reflected lingering drought here with some evaporative stress. But the rain has replenished soil moisture and ended drought across most of the country, with drought reflected in northern portions at 6- to 12-month time scales on the Australian Bureau of Meteorology Combined Drought Indicator analyses.
Rain fell across some of the drought areas in South America again during September. Temperatures were near normal over parts of southern Brazil to northern Argentina and Chile, but warmer than normal to the north and south. Other areas were drier than normal in September, and this month's dryness compounded precipitation deficits that have developed over the last 3 to 12 months. The SPEI and DI show drought over eastern to southern Brazil and northern Argentina, westward, at 1- to 9-month time scales. Evaporative stress was high, soil moisture and groundwater levels low, and vegetation stressed in these areas. Drought in southern and eastern Brazil was confirmed on the Northeast Brazil Drought Monitor.
In North America, September was warmer than normal across most of the continent and drier than normal across much of Canada, in the northwest U.S., and from the Great Plains to southeast United States. The combination of abnormally warm and dry conditions resulted in excessive SPEI values and above-normal evaporative stress. These conditions have existed in these areas for much of the Northern Hemisphere summer. September precipitation was above normal in the western U.S., but it was not enough to make up for several years of below-normal precipitation coupled with excessive heat. Soils were dry and groundwater depleted across large parts of the western U.S., Great Plains, and western half of Canada, and in parts of eastern Canada and the northeastern U.S. Satellite observations showed stressed vegetation across most of the western U.S. and from the U.S. Great Plains to Canadian Prairies.
The North American Drought Monitor product depicted drought over parts of central and eastern Mexico, much of the U.S. from the West Coast to the Mississippi River, and across large parts of western Canada, as well as across parts of the U.S. East Coast. Dozens of large wildfires continued to burn in the northwestern U.S., reservoirs were low in many parts of the western U.S., ponds and wells were going dry in the central U.S., and the Mississippi River was so low at points that barge traffic had to be halted. According to media reports, in Canada, thousands of salmon died at the head of Neekas Cove in British Columbia's Heiltsuk Territory due to the very dry summer and fall.
Ocean Heat Content
Ocean Heat Content (OHC) is essential for understanding and modeling global climate since > 90% of excess heat in the Earth's system is absorbed by the ocean. Further, expansion due to increased ocean heat contributes to sea level rise. Change in OHC is calculated from the difference of observed temperature profiles from the long-term mean.
|Basin||0-700 meters | Rank (1955-2022)|
|Entire Basin||Northern Hemisphere||Southern Hemisphere|
|Source: Basin time series of heat content|
Global OHC for July–September 2022 is the highest July–September OHC in our records, which extend back to 1955. Overall, the latest quarterly OHC reveals widespread warmer than normal conditions relative to the 1955–2006 mean, a situation observed since the end of 2016. In general, current OHC features are similar to those observed since October–December 2021. Cooler than normal conditions, about -10x105 J/m3, persist across the Subtropical North Pacific Ocean. Much higher, > 30x105 J/m3, than normal OHC conditions continue to exist in the Gulf of Mexico, Gulf Stream/North Atlantic Current, the North Pacific Current, and the western tropical Pacific Ocean. Higher, > 10x105 J/m3, than normal OHC conditions dominate the Indonesian Throughflow, the eastern tropical Indian Ocean, the Arabian Sea, the northern Antarctic Circumpolar Current in the Indian Ocean and Southwestern Pacific Ocean sectors, and the Tasman Sea. Cool conditions, < -10x105 J/m3, persist in the subpolar North Atlantic Ocean south of Greenland and Iceland. Higher than normal OHC conditions dominate most of the subtropical South Atlantic Ocean with the exception of the Brazil/Falkland Confluence Zone, where much cooler than normal conditions, < -30x105 J/m3, exist.
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