Illinois Had the Warmest Spring on Record, Illinois State Water Survey

ISWS Press Release

For Immediate Release June 1, 2012
Illinois Had the Warmest Spring on Record
Jim Angel, Ph.D. - (217) 333-0729,
Lisa Sheppard - (217) 244-7270,

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Spring in Illinois-March, April, and May-was the warmest on record dating back to 1895, according to State Climatologist Jim Angel of the Illinois State Water Survey.

This year's spring temperatures averaged 59.1 degrees.  The second warmest was 1977 with an average of 57.3 degrees.

It was also the warmest January–May on record in Illinois with an average temperature of 48.8 degrees.

“What's interesting is that out of the top five warmest January-May periods, three have occurred in the past 15 years,” Angel said.

The statewide average temperature for May in Illinois was 68.1 degrees, which is 5.7 degrees above normal and the 5th warmest May on record, based on preliminary data.

Precipitation was below normal for the month of May and the entire spring season in Illinois. The statewide average precipitation for May was 2.4 inches. That is 1.8 inches below normal and 57 percent of normal.

The statewide average precipitation for spring in Illinois was 7.71 inches, which is 3.65 inches below normal and the 18th driest spring on record. The driest spring on record was 1934 with 5.16 inches of precipitation.

The Illinois State Water Survey at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a division of the Prairie Research Institute, is the primary agency in Illinois concerned with water and atmospheric resources.

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