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U.S. Breaks Record For Hottest Winter

Picture of green earth cradled in hands

Federal meteorologists say the winter that has just ended was the hottest in U.S. records, due to the combination of El Nino and global warming.
The average temperature for the Lower 48 from December through February — known as meteorological winter — was 36.8 degrees, 4.6 degrees above normal. It breaks the record set in 1999-2000.

All six New England states had their warmest winters. Every state in the Lower 48 had winters at least 1.7 degrees warmer than normal. Alaska was 10.6 degrees warmer than normal.

Last month was the seventh warmest February. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration climate scientist Jake Crouch said a super-hot December pushed the winter to record territory. The fall of 2015 also set a U.S. record.

Records go back to 1895.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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