The National Climatic Data Center is responsible for producing the official US climate normals every 10 years for the preceding 30-year time period.  NOAA, the National Weather Service, and many other sectors use 30-year normals in their products, services, and research.  The new 30-year normals for the period 1981-2010 were released on July 1, 2011.  They were used in our climate products starting August 1, 2011.

 


A public information statement on the new normals is available here.


In many locations, the "new" normals are warmer than the "1971-2000" normals, since the 1970s (a very cold decade) was replaced by the 2001-2010 decade (a warm decade). Charts illustrating comparisons between the new normals and those for 1971-2000 are available in the table below.  Select a graph for a larger version.

At Albuquerque, the normal annual temperature increased by 0.4 degrees F. The normal annual maximum temperature actually cooled by 1.6 F, and every month was somewhat cooler than the 1970-2000 normals.  However, normal minimum temperatures increased every month, such that the annual normal increased by 2.3 F.  Normal precipitation is still higher than our long term average (due to wet years in the 1980s), with little difference between the new normals and the previous normals.

At Clayton, maximum, average and minimum temperatures all showed an increase. Also, the new normal precipitation increased by 0.66 inches for the years.  Individual months showed both increases and decreases.   

The comparison of temperature normals at Roswell  are similar to those at Albuquerque with a slight increase in average temperature, a decrease in maximum temperature normals, and an increase of 1.0 F in the normal minimum temperature. Normal precipitation decreased by 0.43 inches, with the greatest decreases occuring in August and September.

Information regarding the new 30-years normal can be found on the NCDC web site.

 

 Albuquerque

 Clayton

 Roswell

ABQ 30 normal comparison Max T CAO 30 normal comparison Max T ROW 30 normal comparison Max T
ABQ 30 normal comparison Ave T CAO 30 normal comparison Ave T ROW 30 normal comparison Ave T
ABQ 30 normal comparison Min T CAO 30 normal comparison Ave T ROW 30 normal comparison Ave T
ABQ 30 normal comparison precip CAO 30 normal comparison precip ROW 30 normal comparison precip

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