Sunday, August 06, 2017

Death Valley Sets New Global Record for Hottest Single Month

So the average high temperature must be even higher.

Christopher C. Burt · August 6, 2017, 2:50 AM

Sustaining extreme heat for an entire month is a more impressive feat than doing so for just one day. This past July, Furnace Creek station at Death Valley, California, measured an average monthly temperature of 107.4°F—the hottest single month ever reliably measured anywhere on Earth.

Average monthly temperatures are typically calculated by adding the highs and lows for each day of the month, then dividing by 2 and dividing by the number of days in the month. A more precise method is to include every hour’s temperature reading and to divide accordingly. By using this technique, which is applied by the Global Historical Climatology Network (GHCN), the Death Valley average for July 2017 was 107.24°F. (Note that conversions from degrees Fahrenheit to Celsius, and vice versa, may have a small effect on the results from Death Valley.)

Various media sources, including USA Today and the Washington Post, reported the Death Valley reading as being the second-hottest monthly average ever observed on the planet, behind the 107.44°F reported at the King Khaled Military City site in northern Saudi Arabia during August 2014. New evidence clearly shows the value from King Khaled to have been in error. Thus the Death Valley figure from this past July is, in fact, the warmest single month (average monthly temperature) reliably measured to date in the world.


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