Warm Year: 2012

Average Annual Temperature for the Twin Cities 1873-2012
Average Annual Temperature for the Twin Cities 1873-2012

2012 will finish in a tie with 1931 as the warmest year on record in the Twin Cities and will range from the warmest to third warmest on record depending on the location around the region.

For so long, it appeared like 2012 would be the warmest year on record for the Twin Cities, but then winter decided to arrive as if on cue on December 21 and since then temperatures have been mostly below normal. As a result, the average temperature for the Twin Cities for 2012 will wind up to be 50.8 degrees, the same as the 50.8 degrees recorded in 1931. The 1981-2010 average temperature for the year is 46.3 degrees so 2012 will finish 4.5 degrees above normal. Every month of 2012 was above normal except October which finished 1.4 degrees below normal. March 2012 was 15.5 degrees above normal and greatly assisted in lifting the average temperature for 2012.

The hottest day of 2012 in the Twin Cities was 102 degrees on July 6 and the coldest temperature of the year was -11 on January 19.

Twin Cities (1873-2012)

Rank Year Average
-----------------
1.   1931   50.8
     2012   50.8
3.   1987   49.7
4.   2006   49.3
5.   1998   48.8

(1981-2010 normal: 46.3)

How will other larger cities fare in Minnesota and the surrounding region? It appears as though 2012 will range from the warmest on record to the third warmest on record depending on location. The final averages for 2012 may change a little from the averages noted below.

St. Cloud (1895-2012)

Rank Year Average
-----------------
1.   1931  47.9  
2.   2012  47.1
3.   1921  46.6 
4.   1987  46.4
5.   1998  46.2

(1981-2010 normal: 42.9)


Duluth (1875-2012)

Rank Year Average
-----------------
1.   1931  44.5
2.   1878  44.4
3.   2012  44.0
4.   1998  43.2 
5.   1877  42.8 

(1981-2010 normal: 39.7)

International Falls (1947-2012)

Rank Year Average
-----------------
1.    1987  42.2
2.    1998  41.1
3.    2012  40.5
4.    1981  40.1 
      2006  40.1 (tie)

(1981-2010 normal: 37.5)

Rochester (1910-1919, and 1929-2012)

Rank Year Average
-----------------
1.   2012  50.2
2.   1931  49.8
3.   2006  47.6
4.   1987  47.4
     1987  47.4

(1981-2010 normal: 45.4)

La Crosse (1873-2012)

Rank Year Average
-----------------
1.   1998  51.8  
2.   1931  51.6
3.   2012  51.1
4.   1878  50.6
5.   1987  50.4

(1981-2010 normal: 47.4)


Fargo (1881-2012)

Rank Year Average
-----------------
1.   1987  46.3 
     2012  46.3 tie
3.   1931  45.8
4.   2006  45.2
5.   1998  45.1

(1981-2010 normal: 42.4)

Grand Forks (1893-2012)

Rank Year Average
-----------------
1.   1931  44.3
2.   1987  43.9
3.   2012  43.6
4.   1981  42.8
5.   1998  42.4

(1981-2010 normal: 40.0)

Sioux Falls (1893-2012)

Rank Year Average
-----------------
1.   1931  50.6 
2.   1921  50.5
     2012  50.5 tie
4.   1938  50.2
5.   1987  49.8

(1981-2010 normal: 45.8)

Last modified: April 29, 2015
Pete Boulay, DNR Climatologist

 

For more information contact: climate@umn.edu