Global Analysis - October 2003


Global Highlights:

  • Based on preliminary data for October 2003, global average combined land and sea surface temperature was warmest on record
  • Temperatures were much above average across the Middle East, the western U.S. and Alaska with below average temperatures across Europe, the northeastern U.S. and most of Australia
  • Precipitation during October 2003 was above average in the U.S. Pacific Northwest and Europe, with drier than average conditions over the United Kingdom and the majority of the U.S.
  • Slightly warmer than normal SST's remained across the equatorial Pacific basin indicating the possiblity of a developing weak El Niño event.
 

Contents of this Section:

This is a break in the document The data presented in this report are preliminary. Ranks and anomalies may change as more complete data are received and processed. The most current data may be accessed via the Global Surface Temperature Anomalies page. This is a break in the document

Top of Page Introduction

The October 2003 mean temperature was above the 1988-2002 average across western Russia, the Middle East and Canada as shown in the adjacent map of blended satellite and in situ data. Cooler than average temperatures occurred over the northeastern U.S., Germany, and Scandinavia. The mean position of upper level ridges of high pressure and troughs of low pressure (depicted by positive and negative 500 millibar height anomalies) are generally reflected by areas of positive and negative temperature anomalies at the surface, respectively. For all Global map products see the Climate Monitoring Products page.  temperature in October 2003
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Global Temperature Anomalies in October 2003
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October temperature anomalies calculated from the Global Historical Climatology Network data set of land surface stations (using a 1961-1990 base period) also show above average temperatures across the western U.S. and Alaska, Algeria, Argentina and Turkey. Monthly temperatures were 3-5°C (5.4-9°F) above the mean in many of these areas. Cooler than average temperatures were present throughout Europe, central Mexico, eastern China and southern Australia where monthly temperatures were as much as 2-4°C (3.6-7.2°F) below average.
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Top of Page Temperature

October
  • For October 2003, the global average land and ocean surface temperature was 0.67°C (1.21°F) above the 1880-2002 average, ranking as the warmest October in the period of record
  • Globally averaged land temperatures were warmest on record, 1.00°C (1.80°F) above the long-term mean
  • Globally averaged ocean surface temperatures were 0.54°C (0.97°F) above the 1880-2002 mean, also warmest on record for October 2003.
Global Temp Anomalies in October 2003
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  • October 2003 temperatures averaged across the Northern Hemisphere were warmest on record, 0.79°C (1.42°F) above the long term mean
  • Temperatures averaged throughout the Southern Hemisphere were fourth warmest, 0.50°C (0.90°F) above average
Global Temp Anomalies in October 2003
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January-October
  • For January-October 2003, the global average land and ocean surface temperature was 0.56°C (1.01°F) above the long term mean, third warmest
  • Globally averaged land temperatures were third warmest on record, 0.86°C (1.55°F) above the long-term mean
  • Globally averaged ocean surface temperatures were 0.44°C (0.79°F) above the 1880-2002 mean, second warmest for January-October 2003.

  • January-October 2003 temperatures averaged across the Northern Hemisphere were third warmest on record, 0.64°C (1.15°F) above the long term mean
  • Temperatures averaged throughout the Southern Hemisphere were third warmest, 0.47°C (0.85°F) above average
Global Temperature Timeseries
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Global Temperature Timeseries
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  • Serial monthly global surface temperature departures with respect to a 1971-2000 mean are shown in the figure to the left
  • Globally averaged surface temperatures (land and ocean) have been warmer than the 1971-2000 average for the last 90 consecutive months
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Top of Page Precipitation

  • During October 2003, much above average precipitation fell in Spain, southern and eastern portions of India, northeastern U.S., Thailand and Singapore
  • Below average precipitation was observed in southeastern Asia, Ireland, the southern U.S., and Iceland
  • Additional regional analysis can be found on the Global Hazards page
Global Precip Anomalies in October 2003
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Top of Page ENSO SST Analysis

The Last week of the month's ENSO condtions Map
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  • Sea surface temperatures were a slightly above average over much of the equatorial Pacific (as shown in the adjacent animation of weekly sea surface temperature anomalies), indicating a likely development of a weak El Niño. A comprehensive summary of October 2003 ENSO conditions can be found on the ENSO monitoring page. For the latest advisory on ENSO conditions go to NOAA's Climate Prediction Center (CPC) and the CPC ENSO Diagnostic Discussion
  • Images of sea surface temperature conditions are available for all months to date during 2003 at the weekly sst page

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References:

Peterson, T.C. and R.S. Vose, 1997: An Overview of the Global Historical Climatology Network Database. Bull. Amer. Meteorol. Soc., 78, 2837-2849.

Citing This Report

NOAA National Climatic Data Center, State of the Climate: Global Analysis for October 2003, published online November 2003, retrieved on October 25, 2014 from http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/global/2003/10.