Earlier this year, NASA declared 2015 the hottest year on record. Not to be outdone, the 2015-6 winter also broke the record for the hottest US winter ever.
Across the continental US, the average temperature was 36.8°F this winter, 4.6 degrees higher than the 20th century average, and beating the previous record of 36.5°F set by the winter of 1999/2000.
The record was influenced by El Nino, which gave the US an exceptionally warm December. This winter also saw the 7th hottest February on record, and Alaska had the 2nd hottest winter on record.
Six states—Connecticut, Rhode Island, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont—also saw record breaking winter temperatures.
The record of US temperatures dates back to January 1895, resulting in 122 years of data.
However, some scientists think that these claims of “record-breaking” weather should be taken with a grain of salt.
A widely shared opinion article published in the Telegraph last year by Christopher Booker raised the idea—which is not his alone—that global warming numbers are cooked:
“When future generations look back on the global-warming scare of the past 30 years, nothing will shock them more than the extent to which the official temperature records—on which the entire panic ultimately rested—were systematically ‘adjusted’ to show the Earth as having warmed much more than the actual data justified.”
Needless to say, the view is a highly controversial one.