Hottest Years for U.S. Cities
We calculated the average annual temperatures at 244 individual U.S. stations throughout their periods of record, highlighted the decade in which each record hot year was established, and showed the breakdown of each station’s records by decade.
Only one place in our sample had its hottest year on record in 2018 — Palm Springs, California. On the broader scale, 2018 is the first time since 2014 that the U.S as a whole did not have one of its 10 hottest years. Of the stations analyzed, 53 percent experienced their hottest year during the decade of the 2010s, consistent with this being the hottest decade on record in the U.S. This far exceeds the second-place decade of the 1930s, when 18 percent notched their hottest year on record. Periods of record vary, but 70 percent of stations were active by the 1930s and 96 percent were active by the 1960s.