Map of the Lower 48 U.S. states showing precipitation patterns in August 2020.
September 10, 2020

Extreme heat in the U.S. Southwest carried August 2020 into the record books as the country’s third-warmest August in the 126-year record. Despite heavy rain from landfalling tropical cyclones, national average precipitation was in the driest third of the record. 

map of CONUS showing drought conditions as of August 4, 2020 in shades of yellow, orange, and red
August 10, 2020

But the precipitation mostly bypassed the West, where drought was widespread. 

Map of US precipitation patterns in June 2020
July 10, 2020

The latest monthly summary from the National Centers for Environmental Information also reported that the year-to-date temperature was the eighth warmest in the 126-year record.

Map of the CONUS showing temperature patterns in May 2020
June 9, 2020

While May 2020 precipitation deficits drew parts of the West deeper into drought, parts of the Upper Midwest, Ohio Valley, and the Southeast got soaked. 

map of the CONUS color-coded by drought status with lowest levels in yellow and highest drought levels in dark red
May 26, 2020

As the region’s dry summer approaches, precipitation deficits pose a threat to livestock operators, farmers, and fish, and heighten the risk of wildfires.

April 21, 2020

You can thank the polar vortex.

map of the CONUS showing January 2020 temperature patterns compared to the 1981-2020 average in red and blue colors
February 11, 2020

Although exact temperatures varied by latitude and elevation, January 2020 temperatures were above average for nearly every U.S. climate division of the Lower 48 states.