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Warmest January on record leads to warm February


Many conversations this winter tend to center around how warm it seems the season’s been. Whether you’re among those who are delighted or those who lament the lack of cold and snow, rest assured, you’re right about the unseasonable temperatures.

It was the warmest January on Earth, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. In the 141 years of climate records, there’s never been a warmer January than in 2020, the NOAA’s National Center for Environmental Information reported.

Last month, global land and ocean surface temperatures were the highest on record, at 2.05 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th century average. That rise surpassed the record set in 2016 by 0.04 degrees, NOAA said.

The first half of February continued the warming trend here in eastern Pennsylvania, where the average temperature has been 8 degrees above normal, according to the Northeast Regional Climate Center.

Allentown temperatures are among the highest in the region, where February (between the first and 15th), was 9.7 degrees above normal, the climate center reported. In Philadelphia, the normal February temperature is 34.5 degrees. This year, it’s averaged 41.3 degrees.

As for snowfall, it is several inches below normal, for the first half of this month, scientists reported. Philadelphia has not had any snow. Normally, the city would have seen 5 inches by mid-February, the Northeast Regional Climate Center stated.

Across the Southeast, snowfall is about 9 inches below normal, for this winter, to date.