Global Climate Report - January 2002

Global Highlights:

  • *Global average land and ocean temperature was the warmest on record for January
  • Lower tropospheric temperatures were above average during January
  • Temperatures in the lower stratosphere were cooler than average
  • During January, above average precipitation was most notable across eastern Brazil and Scandinavia, with drier than average conditions across southern Europe and much of Australia

Contents of this Section:

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Top of Page Introduction

Using a 1992-2002 base period as shown in the adjacent blended temperature product of satellite and in-situ data, anomalously warm temperatures during January in the Northern Hemisphere occurred where upper level ridges of high pressure (depicted by positive 500 millibar height anomalies) were present. Cooler than average temperatures were most pronounced across eastern regions of the Sahara Desert and southeastern Europe. Temperature anomalies calculated from in-situ station data using a 1961-1990 base period also depicted the large area of warm anomalies that covered much of the mid and high latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere. Global Blended Temperature in January 2002
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Top of Page Temperature

  • Indications of a likely trend toward El Niño conditions continued during January, as the global land and ocean temperature was the warmest in the 1880 to present record or 0.69°C (1.24°F) above the long-term average
  • Temperatures averaged across land areas were also warmest on record, or 1.35°C (2.43°F) above the long-term January mean
  • Ocean temperatures ranked as third warmest, or 0.41°C (0.74°F) above the 1880-2000 mean
Global Temp Anomalies in January 2002
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Northern Hemisphere extratropical temperature Anomalies in January 2002
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  • Based on data available at the time of this report, temperatures in the extratropical regions of the Northern Hemisphere (90°N-20°N) were warmest on record for January, or 1.15°C (2.07°F) above the 1880-2000 mean
  • Globally, the period November-January was the second warmest on record, or 0.57°C (1.03°F) above average
  • Significant positive temperature anomalies during the November-January period were centered across the eastern half of the United States
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Top of Page Precipitation

  • Drier than average weather prevailed across much of the United States, southern Europe and large areas of Australia
  • Above average precipitation fell in eastern Brazil, Indonesia, Scandinavia and Japan
  • Additional details on significant precipitation events can be found on the Global Regional page
Global Precip Anomalies in January 2002
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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 Centers for Environmental Information, State of the Climate: Global Climate Report for January 2002, published online February 2002, retrieved on January 17, 2018 from