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A Warm January Relative to Normal

February 12, 2013; 4:37 PM ET

Globally speaking, January 2013 ended up tied for 4th warmest January in the satellite record, according to Remote Sensing Systems (RSS).

Satellite measured temperature anomaly records of the lower troposphere go back to 1979.

The average temperature globally for last month was 0.442 degrees Celsius above the 1979 to 1998 average, which puts it tied with January of 2003 for 4th warmest on record. December 2012 averaged 0.101 C above normal.

The RSS image below shows the January 2013 global temperature anomalies for the lower troposphere. Reds indicate above-normal temperatures, while blues/purples show below-normal temperatures.

The second RSS image below shows the decadal trend from 1979 to 2012. Clearly, most of the warming has been across the northern latitudes.

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Note: The actual, global surface temperature data for January 2013 should be coming out in the next few days via NASA GISS and the NCDC.

The views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of AccuWeather, Inc. or AccuWeather.com

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