ROANOKE, Va. – Just recently, NOAA’s State of the Climate for March 2020 was released. March 2020 was the second-warmest March on record globally. (This is also true for the first quarter of the year.)
Only March of 2016 was warmer, when a strong El Niño was present in the Pacific. All 10 of the warmest Marches have come since 1990.
This also marks the 44th consecutive March and 423rd consecutive month in which the global average temperature has been warmer than normal, according to the report. In addition, the global temperature was 2.09°F above average which is tied as the 3rd-highest departure from average of any month in the 1,683-month record.
Temperatures were most notably warmer in the eastern U.S., including in our area, as well as much of Asia and southern South America. In fact, the U.S. as a whole had its 10th-warmest March on record, with Florida seeing its warmest March. No state had a record cold March, according to the map provided by NOAA below.
Closer to home, March 2020 was in the top 5 warmest on record for our area. This was capped off by three straight days of 80° warmth late in the month. The 29th wound up being Blacksburg’s warmest March day on record, when the town hit 86°.
On average, Blacksburg doesn’t hit that mark for the first time until late May!