National Overview - May 2007


NCDC transitioned to the nClimDiv dataset on Thursday, March 13, 2014. This was coincident with the release of the February 2014 monthly monitoring report. For details on this transition, please visit our public FTP site and our U.S. Climate Divisional Database site.

Maps and Graphics:


May Most Recent 3 Months Most Recent 6 Months
Most Recent 12 Months Year-to-Date US Percent Area Very Wet/Dry/Warm/Cold
Annual Summary for 2006

PLEASE NOTE: All temperature and precipitation ranks and values are based on preliminary data.  The ranks will change when the final data are processed, but will not be replaced on these pages.  Once available, graphics based on final data will be provided on the Climate Monitoring Products page.


For graphics covering periods other than those mentioned above or for tables of national, regional, and statewide data from 1895-present, for May, last 3 months or other periods, please go to the Climate At A Glance page.
[------- visual page separator -------]

National Overview:


May / Spring
  • For the contiguous U.S., the average temperature for May was 63.14°F (17.30°C), which was 2.08°F (1.16°C) above the 20th century mean (based on preliminary data) and the 11th warmest May on record.

  • For the spring (March-May), the average temperature for the contiguous U.S. was 54.38°F (12.43°C), which was 2.49°F (1.38°C) above the 20th century mean (based on preliminary data) and the 5th warmest spring on record.

  • The warmth during the spring was widespread: Wyoming and Missouri both had their third warmest spring, Illinois and Nevada had their fourth warmest spring, and the Central and West North Central regions were 5th warmest on record for spring.

  • The majority of the contiguous U.S. was warmer than average in May, with only two states cooler than average for the month (Texas and South Carolina).

  • For May, the average precipitation for the contiguous U.S. was 2.65 in (67.31 mm), which was 0.22 in (5.67 mm) below the 20th century mean (based on preliminary data) and the 42nd driest on record.

  • May was unusually dry in a number of areas: Georgia was driest for the month, Ohio and Alabama had their 3rd driest, and the Southeast region also had its 3rd driest May. Parts of the Southwest and High Plains were wetter than average in May, with Texas, New Mexico, North Dakota, and South Dakota all much wetter-than-average for the month.

  • The average precipitation for the contiguous U.S. for spring was 6.91 in (175.51 mm), which was 0.80 in (20.24 mm) below the 20th century mean and the 23rd driest on record.

  • Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia had their driest spring on record. On the regional scale, the central third of the U.S. was wetter or much wetter-than-average, while the Southeast region was driest on record for the spring.

  • The dry conditions across the Southeast exacerbated wildfire activity in May, which continued to be focused across Florida and southern Georgia. Severe-to-extreme drought conditions were felt across the Southeast, with extreme drought spreading across parts of Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Tennessee, Florida, and North Carolina. Please see the 2007 Fire Season page for more information.

  • The past six months (Dec-May) were the driest on record for the Southeast region.

  • For the past 12 months, the Western region (California and Nevada) had its driest June - May on record. The abnormally dry conditions have led to severe-to-extreme drought from the southern California coast to Arizona and north along the Sierra Nevada Mountains in the Great Basin. Additional information on drought conditions is available here.

For information on local temperature and precipitation records during the month of May, please visit NCDC's Extremes page.

  • Across the United States, extreme drought conditions were observed in areas of Wyoming, as well as northern Minnesota and throughout much of the Desert Southwest and the Southeast region. For more information on drought during May, please visit the U.S. Drought page.

  • El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) conditions are in a neutral state. Sea-surface temperatures (SST) anomalies remain near-zero in the central equatorial Pacific and below average across the eastern equatorial Pacific in May. Current forecasts indicate that a transition from ENSO-neutral conditions to La Niña could occur over the next 1-3 months. For additional information on ENSO conditions, please visit the NCDC ENSO Monitoring page and the latest NOAA ENSO Advisory.
For additional details, see the Monthly and Seasonal Highlights section below and visit the May Climate Summary page. For details and graphics on weather events across the U.S. and the globe please visit NCDC's Global Hazards page.
[------- visual page separator -------]

Monthly and Seasonal Highlights:


Contiguous U.S.:

For additional national, regional, and statewide data and graphics from 1895-present, for May, the last 3 months or other periods, please visit the Climate At A Glance page.
  • May Temperature: 11th warmest May in the 1895-2007 record.  The preliminary nationally averaged temperature was 63.14°F (17.30°C), which was 2.08°F (1.16°C) above the 1901-2000 (20th century) mean.

  • May Precipitation: 42nd driest nationally in the 1895-2007 record. An average of 2.65 inches (67 mm) fell over the contiguous U.S. in May, 0.22 inches (6 mm) below the 20th century mean for the month.

  • March - May Temperature (3-Month): 5th warmest in the 1895-to-present record, 2.49°F (1.38°C) above the 20th century mean. The preliminary nationally averaged March - May temperature was 54.38°F (12.43°C).

  • March - May Precipitation (3-month): A total of 6.91 inches (176 mm) of precipitation fell during this 3-month period, which corresponds to a ranking of 23rd driest.

  • December - May (6-month): The national average temperature was the 12th warmest for this 6-month period. The nationally-averaged temperature was 44.13°F (6.74°C), which was 1.68°F (0.93°C) above the 20th century mean. At 13.19 inches (335 mm), December - May precipitation was below average and ranked as the 34th driest such period in the 1895-2007 record.

  • January to May (Year-to-date): The 20th warmest January - May on record. The nationally averaged year-to-date temperature was 45.57°F (7.54°C), or 1.33°F (0.74°C) above the mean. The year-to-date period was the 14th driest January - May in the 113-year record, receiving a national average of 10.66 inches (271 mm) of precipitation during the period, or 1.29 inches (33 mm) below the 20th century mean.

  • June 2006 - May 2007: The 10th warmest such period in the 1895-2007 record.  The preliminary nationally-averaged annual temperature was 54.12°F (12.29°C), which was 1.30°F (0.72°C) above the mean. Precipitation for the June 2006 - May 2007 period ranked as the 58th driest June to May in the 112-year record.  The nationally-averaged annual precipitation accumulation was 29.14 inches (740 mm), ranking near the 20th century mean.

Alaska:
  • Alaska had its 16th warmest May since 1918 on record, with a temperature 1.40°F (0.78°C) above the 1971-2000 average.

  • Alaska tied for its 38th coldest spring (March - May) on record, with a temperature 1.73°F (0.96°C) below the 1971-2000 average.

Other Statewide and Regional Highlights:
  • May temperatures were much above average for four states, including Illinois and Missouri which ranked 7th and 9th warmest, respectively. Texas ranked 26th coldest. Precipitation across Georgia was driest on record. Alabama and Ohio were 3rd driest and North Dakota was 6th wettest on record.

  • March - May temperatures across Wyoming and Missouri ranked 3rd warmest on record. Illinois and Nevada were 4th warmest. Maine was the only state with below average temperatures for the period. Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, and Tennessee ranked driest for the March - May period. Nebraska was 3rd wettest.

  • The Southeast region, ranked driest for the March - May period with a value of 5.88 inches (149 mm). The previous record dry spring was March - May 1914, with a total of 6.77 inches (175 mm).

  • Temperatures over the past 6-months (December - May) were above average in all regions except the South, which was near average. Precipitation for the period was driest in the Southeast.

  • December - May temperatures were much above average for six states, including Wisconsin and New Jersey. Texas was the only state with below average temperatures during the six month period. Mississippi ranked driest for the period, while Nebraska experienced its wettest such period on record.

  • During the year-to-date period (January - May), temperatures were near average to above average in all states except Texas and Maine. Alabama and Mississippi ranked driest for the period.

  • January - May precipitation across the Southeast was record driest.

  • June 2006 - May 2007 was near average to much-warmer-than-average for the lower 48 states. Seven states, including Florida, and California, ranked much below average for precipitation. New Hampshire was 2nd wettest for the period.

See NCDC's Monthly Extremes web-page for weather and climate records for the month of May.

[------- visual page separator -------]
PLEASE NOTE: All of the temperature and precipitation ranks and values are based on preliminary data.  The ranks will change when the final data are processed, but will not be replaced on these pages.  Graphics based on final data are available on the Climate Monitoring Products page.

Citing This Report

NOAA National Climatic Data Center, State of the Climate: National Overview for May 2007, published online June 2007, retrieved on December 19, 2014 from http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/national/2007/5.