AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – In 2022, the statewide temperature for Massachusetts averaged 50.3 degrees.
According to a 2022 climate overview by the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Massachusetts had its eighth warmest July, followed by the warmest August on record, which contributed to the state’s second warmest summer on record.
“Climate change is not just a far off threat. We’re experiencing climate change in these extreme weather events with some regularity,” said Michael Rawlins, Associate Director of the Climate System Research Center at UMass Amherst.
Spring ranked the sixth warmest and fall was the seventh warmest. January was the only month that had an average temperature that was below normal. The average statewide temperature was 3.4 degrees above the 1901-2000 mean.
The total precipitation for Massachusetts was 43.18 inches, which is 1.57″ below 1901-2000
mean. The summer total precipitation was just 7.41 inches, ranking the 10th driest on record to date. The monthly total precipitation in February ranked the ninth wettest.
Boston and Worcester had their fourth warmest year on record, Hartford ranked fifth, and Providence sixth.
A new study from the New England Public Policy Center at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston found communities could see expenditures go up by 30 percent by the end of this century. Rawlins said those costs can look like the impacts on the coast for rising sea levels but also a greater need for cooling shelters in extreme heat events.
“Extreme precipitation events: widening culverts to handle these extreme flows. So adaptation to climate change is certainly a need,” said Rawlins.
Easthampton Mayor Nicole LaChapelle said that’s why it’s important that local governments make the investment now so we won’t have to pay later, “The city just got a grant from the state and we’re going to be using ARPA money to do a full climate action plan that we hope to get started in the next six weeks.”
Last week, the city of Northampton established a $3 million to establish a climate change mitigation stabilization fund.