2005 Was Warm, Dry Year, Illinois State Water Survey

Press Release

For Immediate Release January 10, 2006
2005 Was Warm, Dry Year
Jim Angel - (217) 333-0729, Fax: (217) 244-0220, jimangel@illinois.edu
Eva Kingston - (217) 244-7270, Fax: (217) 333-6540, eva@sws.uiuc.edu

"Preliminary data for Illinois indicate 2005 was the 11th driest and 12th warmest year since 1895. Precipitation in 2005 averaged only 31.48 inches (7.75 inches below normal), compared to 26.32 inches in 1901, the driest year on record. Statewide temperatures in 2005 averaged 53.8°F (2.1 degrees above normal) compared to 55.6°F in 1921, the warmest year on record. Temperature extremes during 2005 year ranged from 107°F at Monmouth on July 25 to -17°F at Mt. Carroll on December 19," says State Climatologist Jim Angel of the Illinois State Water Survey (http://www.sws.uiuc.edu), a division of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

"After a very cold start to December, even temperatures much above normal the last 10 days of 2005 didn't warm up the statistics. Statewide December temperatures were the 24th coldest on record and averaged 26.7°F (3.1 degrees below normal). Precipitation also averaged 1.23 inches (1.51 inches below normal), the 17th driest December since 1895. Temperature extremes ranged from -17°F at Mt. Carroll on December 19 to 64°F at Carbondale on December 28.

"The National Weather Service forecast shows an increased chance of warmer-than-average temperatures for January and for January–March. Historically, this is not surprising because January and February are usually mild after a cold December. Don't expect too much relief of drought concerns in January and February either, typically they are Illinois' two driest months, with precipitation averaging 2 inches each month compared to a monthly average of 4 inches during the growing season," reminds Angel.

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