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Assessing the Global Climate in April 2022

Month tied as the fifth-warmest April on record for the globe

White cattle egret perched on a long gray limb with fronds of tree in background against pale blue sky.
Courtesy of NOAA Fisheries

The global surface temperature for April 2022 tied with 2010 as the fifth highest for April in the 143-year NOAA record, which dates back to 1880. The year-to-date (January-April) global surface temperature was also the fifth warmest such period on record. According to NCEI’s Global Annual Temperature Rankings Outlook, it is virtually certain (> 99.0%) that the year 2022 will rank among the 10 warmest years on record.

Map of world showing locations of significant climate anomalies and events in April 2022 with text describing each event

 

This monthly summary, developed by scientists at NCEI, is part of the suite of climate services NOAA provides to government, business, academia and the public to support informed decision-making.

Global Temperature for April

Global land and ocean temperature percentiles on a color-coded world map for April 2022

The April 2022 global surface temperature was 1.53°F (0.85°C) above the 20th-century average of 56.7°F (13.7°C) – tying with 2010 as the fifth-warmest April in the 143-year record. The 10 warmest April months have occurred since 2010, with the years 2014-2022 all ranking among the 10 warmest Aprils on record. April 2022 also marked the 46th consecutive April and the 448th consecutive month with temperatures, at least nominally, above the 20th-century average.

Temperatures were much above average across parts of southern North America, the Atlantic Ocean, central South America, northern and eastern Africa, southern Asia, Australia, and across much of the Indian Ocean and northern and western Pacific oceans. Meanwhile, near- to cooler-than-average April temperatures were observed across much of central and northern North America, southern South America, central Europe, southern Africa, and central, eastern tropical and southeastern Pacific Ocean. 

Asia, as a whole, had its warmest April on record, dating back to 1910, with a temperature departure of 4.72°F (2.62°C) above average. This value surpassed the now-second warmest April that was set in 2016 by 0.09°F (0.05°C). 

Oceania had its fifth-warmest April on record, while Africa and South America had their ninth and 12th-warmest April on record, respectively. Despite Europe having a warmer-than-average April, it did not rank among the 20 warmest Aprils on record. North America was the only continent with a cooler-than-average April, and it was the coolest April for the region since 2018. 

Sea Ice and Snow Cover

Maps of Arctic and Antarctic sea ice extent for April 2022

According to data from NOAA and an analysis by the Rutgers Global Snow Lab, the Northern Hemisphere snow cover extent during April was above the 1981-2010 average at 11.92 million square miles. North America also had an above-average April snow cover extent, ranking as the 13th-largest in the 56-year record. Meanwhile, Eurasia had a below-average April snow cover extent.

The April 2022 Arctic sea ice extent averaged 5.43 million square miles, which is 243,000 square miles below the 1981-2010 average and was the 11th smallest for April since records began in 1979. Despite being below average, it was the largest April sea ice extent since 2014. Regionally, the Bering Sea had its largest April sea ice extent since 2013. 

The Antarctic sea ice extent for April 2022 was 2.25 million square miles or 390,000 square miles below average, tying with 1981 as the fourth-smallest April sea ice extent on record. Only the Aprils of 1980, 2017 and 2019 had smaller sea ice extents. 

Global Tropical Cyclones in April

Five tropical storms formed globally in April, which is above average. The Northern Hemisphere had two named storms during the month, and they formed over the West Pacific. Of the five tropical storms that formed during April, only one reached cyclone (hurricane) strength. This was Typhoon Malakas, in the West Pacific Ocean, which intensified to an equivalent Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale. The South Indian Ocean had two tropical storms, while the Southwest Pacific basin had one storm for the month. There have been a total of 23 tropical storms during January-April 2022, which is near average. 

For a more complete summary of climate conditions and events, see our April 2022 Global Climate Report.

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