National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

All Eyes on Hurricane Ian

All eyes are on Ian, which became a hurricane early this morning in the western Caribbean Sea and may become a major hurricane tonight near western Cuba. Regardless in Ian's track and intensity over the next several days, life-threatening storm surge, hurricane-force winds, heavy rain, flooding and tornadoes are just some of the impacts the Sunshine state will see this week. Read More >

Outlook for Summer 2022

 

Long range outlooks for this summer favor above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation.
This year is bearing a striking resemblance to 2011, which was the hottest summer on record.

 

 

Seasonal Temperature Outlook

 

Seasonal Precipitation Outlook

 

 

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions 

 

  • Was the drought responsible for our unusual May heatwave?

    When drought conditions occur early in the year, the onset of summer heat often occurs earlier than normal.  The upper ridging that is so well correlated to our summer heat is a seasonal artifact of global circulation, but its development is impacted by the weather beneath it.  It's a bit of a chicken-or-egg scenario.  Early season ridging can be responsible for a dry spring.  But if we're dry (thus, warmer than normal) during the spring, this can "induce" ridging earlier in the season.  This is a positive feedback mechanism as the ridging reinforces the warming at the surface.

  • What role did La Niña play?

    La Niña conditions prevailed throughout the cold season, resulting in steadily increasing precipitation deficits and the development of drought.

  • What does this mean for the summer?

    Summer is a dry season between the spring and fall rainy seasons, but this summer is looking drier than normal.  Reduced rainfall is likely to combine with the following inputs to also favor a warmer than normal summer:

    • Rainfall deficits in the spring, particularly during May and June, strongly correlate with warmer than normal summer temperatures.

    • Although it's unusual, La Niña is expected to prevail throughout the warm season.  This favors warmer than normal temperatures and below normal precipitation during the summer months.

    • Below normal precipitation generally correlates with warmer than normal temperatures, especially during the warm season when soil moisture deficits have a greater impact on the temperature increase.

  • What previous years looked like this?

    The spring of 2022 is bearing a remarkable similarity to 2011, which became the hottest summer on record for Dallas/Fort Worth, Waco, and the state of Texas as a whole.  What makes 2011 an appropriate analog for 2022?

    • On both occasions, drought-inducing La Niña prevailed throughout the preceding cold season, with intensifying drought conditions into the spring.

    • La Niña continued through the summer of 2011 with a second La Niña winter 2011-2012.  La Niña is expected to continue throughout the summer of 2022 with the potential for a "triple-dip" La Niña during the winter of 2022-2023.

    • For both DFW and Waco, April 2011 and April 2022 were the windiest months this century.  The windiest Mays this century were 2011 and 2022.  La Niña is strongly correlated with enhanced wind speeds, but 2011 and 2022 stand out.

    • Ridging tends to develop around the summer solstice, but in 2011, it was nearly a month early.  If our May heatwave is any indication, we're off to an even earlier start to the summer heat in 2022.

  • What might alter the summer outlook?

    Seasonal outlooks during the warm season are notoriously difficult for a number of reasons.

    • Pattern shifts that significantly impact summer temperatures/precipitation are generally not predictable on seasonal time scales.  Although these clues may appear in dynamical guidance, this typically won't be available to a forecaster beyond 2 weeks.

    • Other factors that affect summer temperatures/precipitation also have a limited span of predictability, such as soil moisture anomalies, the Madden-Julien Oscillation (MJO), and other climate anomalies with sub-seasonal frequencies.

  • Will this be the hottest and driest summer on record?

    Although above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation are likely this summer, this does NOT mean that we are predicting a record-breaking summer.