On July 6 and 7, an struck the Northeast, from Maine down to Pennsylvania. Parts of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut were hit with temperatures above 100°F. Overall, the month of July was the in Rhode Island and Delaware and it ranked amongst the 10th warmest for each state along the East Coast.
August was another scorcher in the U.S.. According to , which is part of the (NOAA), hundreds of cities broke their daily maximum temperature records. In fact, August was the eighth consecutive month with above average temperatures in the Northeast. The Southeast also felt the late summer heat, with 20 locations reporting their warmest-ever month of August. Among them: Gainesville, Fla., Columbus, Ga., Greenville, S.C. and Charleston, S.C..
Even though the West Coast didn’t experience the same intense heat through the summer – and in fact was – the period of June to August 2010 was the fourth warmest on record for the entire country.
6. Pakistan Monsoon and Flooding
The monsoon season was particularly cruel in Pakistan. In late July, unrelenting battered the eastern part of the country, triggering severe flooding. Within just four days after the rains began, the Associated Press nearly a thousand people had been killed. The floods continued well into September. According to the United Nations, floodwaters drove millions of people from their homes and affected a total of . In addition to destroying homes and livelihoods, the flooding caused extensive damage to Pakistan’s infrastructure, including power plants and thousands of miles of roads, railways, and public buildings. Labeled as the worst natural disaster in Pakistan’s history, the death toll has reached nearly 2,000.
The Asian Monsoon happens every year when cool humid air from over the Indian and Pacific Oceans washes over the land, warms and then rises, cools and condenses, causing the moisture in the air to fall as heavy rains. But in 2010, the in the Pacific may have intensified the process. During La Niña years, the waters in the Western Pacific are warmer than average, and the air above the ocean is more humid. This especially humid air may have increased the amount of rain that pounded Pakistan.
7. Third Lowest Arctic Sea Ice Extent
Every summer, as the Northern Hemisphere warms up, the amount of sea ice in the Arctic begins to shrink back. It usually reaches its minimum extent in September, then starts to refreeze as temperatures begin to drop. The came on September 19, 2010 — and this year’s was the since such records began in 1979.