May 2013 was among the top three warmest months of May in more than 130 years, when scientists began regularly collecting temperature records, according to a new report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
The globally averaged temperature for May 2013 tied for third place with those recorded in 1998 and 2005, and also marked the 37th consecutive May with a global temperature above the 20th century average of 58.6 degrees Fahrenheit (14.8 degrees Celsius), NOAA officials said in a statement. In fact, the last below-average global temperature in May was recorded in 1976, and the last below-average global temperature for any month was recorded more than 28 years ago, in February 1985.
The monthly summary also indicated that several regions of the world experienced record warm temperatures in May, including much of Siberia, parts of northern and eastern Europe, west-central Australia, areas of Libya and Algeria in northern Africa, and parts of northeastern China. Today's report continues a global trend in warming temperatures: Earlier this year, NOAA declared 2012 the warmest year on record in the contiguous United States. May 2012 is the warmest May on record.