Despite the cool July in much of the USA, the Earth as a whole had its fourth-hottest month on record in July, the National Climatic Data Center reported Monday. Only the Julys of 2005, 2010 and 1998 were warmer.
July is typically the hottest month of the year.
Overall, the combined average temperature over global land and ocean surfaces for July 2014 was 1.15 degrees above the 20th-century average of 60.4 degrees, the climate center reported.
Eight of the 10 warmest Julys have occurred within the past 10 years (2002 also ranks among the 10 warmest).
Additionally, July 2014 marked the 38th consecutive July — and 353rd consecutive month — with a global temperature that was above average.
Thirty-two countries or territories across every continent, with the exception of Antarctica, reported at least one station with a record warm July temperature. Norway had its hottest month on record.
In the USA, several states in the West had a July temperature among their 10 warmest, while Indiana and Arkansas each had their coolest July in the 120-year period of record.
The eastern half of the USA and much of central Asia were the two spots on Earth that had a significantly cooler-than-average July.
The average Arctic sea ice extent for July was 3.19 million square miles, 560,000 square miles below the 1981-2010 average and the fourth smallest July extent since records began in 1979, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center.
On the opposite pole, the Antarctic sea ice extent for July was 6.72 million square miles, 370,000 square miles above the 1981-2010 average. This marked the largest July Antarctic sea ice extent since records began in 1979.
Global sea ice extent during July is decreasing at an average rate of 2% a decade, according to the data center.