July hottest month on record in U.S.—warming and drought to blame?

Lower 48 sweltered due to widespread heat ridge, expert says

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July was the hottest month on record in the United States, perhaps due to a combination of global warming and a widespread drought, experts say.

The lower 48 U.S. states experienced an average July temperature of 77.6 degrees Fahrenheit (25.3 degrees Celsius).

That’s
about 3.3 degrees (1.8 degrees Celsius) above the 20th-century average
and the highest July average since record-keeping began in 1895,
according to a report released August 8 by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

For
2012, July wasn’t an anomaly, either. Taken together, the first seven
months of the year have been, on average, the warmest January-to-July
period on record in the contiguous U.S. states.

Read more at National Geographic.