Climatologist: Last Year’s Warm Temps, Dry Conditions Brutal For Farmers

(CBS) — Illinois has just lived through the second warmest and tenth driest year on record.

WBBM Newsradio’s John Cody reports Illinois State Climatologist Jim Angel said 2012 saw an average statewide temperature of 55.5 degrees, which is 3.3 degrees above normal.

The only warmer year on record was 1921, when the average temperature was 55.6 degrees.

With a rainfall of only 30 inches – 10 inches below average – it was a brutal year for Illinois crops.

Angel said it was the 10th driest year for Illinois since the state started keeping track in 1895.

He said reasonable precipitation this year would recharge soil moisture for farmers, before it begins to refill groundwater aquifers, and bring lakes and streams back up to average levels.

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