Yes, we know, it may be hard to hear this week through your earmuffs, but Tampa set a temperature record in 2017 for the warmest year on record, according to the National Weather Service.
The final average temperature was 76.3 degrees, said Paul Close, an NWS meteorologist in Ruskin. That edged 2015 by just a tenth of a degree.
It may seem small, but it’s actually "quite a bit," when considered over a full year, said WTSP 10Weather forecaster Grant Gilmore.
"A tenth of a degree is significant, just what that means over the long term," he said.
Of course there are warm days and cold days (see: today), Gilmore said, but the general trend since the 1970s points toward warmer temperatures across the world.
St. Petersburg experienced its second-hottest year in recorded history in 2017, according to NWS figures, with an average temperature of 76.1 degrees. That fell three-tenths of a degree shy of 2015. Four of the top five hottest years in Tampa history have come since 2012, and the top three hottest years in St. Petersburg have all happened since 2013.
Forecasters say it’s impossible to know yet whether 2018 will also approach any records.
"There will be ups and downs still," Close said. "The year’s starting out cool, but it’s hard to say really."
Another warm year would not be a surprise, though, said Jennifer Collins, a professor in the University of South Florida School of Geosciences. A rise in greenhouse gas levels has contributed to a general uptick in temperatures across the globe, she said, and that will certainly continue.
WARMEST YEARS / TEMPERATURES (degrees)
2017 | 76.3
2015 | 76.2
1990 | 75.3
2016 | 75.2
2012 | 74.8
2015 | 76.4
2017 | 76.1
2013 | 76.0
2005 | 75.7
1948 | 75.6