The Climate Lottery: Summer 2017 Contest

*A special note: I am offering a $100 cash prize for the winner of  the contest that will be open from the time of this blog posting and close on midnight EDT July 5th, 2017.* Just give your picks in an e-mail. The special account that I have set up for the contest is

*The National Center for Environmental Information ranking numbers for average temperatures of the lower 48 states for summer 2017 will be posted on or shortly after September 7th, 2017, which will be the official “Climate Lottery” numbers of the contest. Any subsequent changes by NCEI after their initial posted rankings will not be valid for the contest, and those ranking numbers will change with time.*

The winning Climate Lottery numbers for (MAR) (APR) (MAY) 2017 were 115/113/69 with a Power Ball number of 116 for the spring season.

The winner of the spring 2017 contest is Rob McGregor with his picks of 113 123 105 pb 114, which were the closest of anyone who played to the actual numbers. Way to go Rob!😊

Hello again to all weather and climate geeks out there. Spring 2017 turned out to be one of the warmest across the continental United States since records began in 1895. If you wish to play the Climate Lottery, pick three numbers between 1 and 123 (with 1 representing the coldest possible ranking and 123 being the highest possible ranking) for June/July/August 2017. Also, pick a Power Ball, or overall ranking number for summer 2017, between 1 and 123. The Power Ball ranking will serve as a tiebreaker for any close picks between contestants. Your picks are NCEI rankings for average temperatures across the lower 48 states. Since 2017 is the 123rd year the National Climatic Center has been ranking years since 1895 all months for 2017 will have a warmest ranking of 123. The coldest ranking would be the number 1. Please give your picks to before July 5th, 2017. If you wait until just before July 5th to make your picks, you can make an educated guess as to what the ranking for June will be (and, also a heads-up guess for July). All data can be found at the National Center for Environmental Information site noted here:

The Power Ball (or overall National Climatic Data Center Ranking) number for spring 2017 for the lower 48 states was 116, which was well above the average ranking value of 61.5. In the Climate Lottery game, I’ve defined each individual lottery number as rankings for each month for the lower 48 states, Power Ball numbers as those for each season, and Mega Ball numbers as those for each year. Spring 2017 temperatures were well above average across most of the lower 48 states. Chances for an entire season of below average temperatures are becoming much less likely across the lower 48 states due to carbon pollution. Other references to Climate Lottery blog posts can be found at:

The spring season, as a whole, saw above average temperatures across the lower 48 states. The whole point of these posts is to demonstrate how skewed temperatures have become towards warmth due to climate change. Of course, as far as the globe goes, the larger an area that is compared to averages, the more likely that area is to be above long term averages. What has happened, so far, this decade is yet more proof of the climate lottery game being loaded for warmth in the United States. Balls coming out of the Climate Lottery hopper are likely to have high numbers. Here is a breakdown of the National Climatic Center’s ranking numbers for spring 2017, which was the 8th warmest spring on record:

Most of the U.S. had above average temperatures through the spring months. Only the Northeast and the state of Washington had near average temperatures.

The following is a breakdown of each month for spring 2017.  Each chart shows Climate Lottery numbers for each state (or rankings) from a scale of 1 to 123.

In March the overall ranking for the lower 48 states was 115 (out of 123):

The ball landing out of the Climate Lottery Hopper ended up well above average in March 2017 across the lower 48 states, which averaged 9th warmest since 1895. New Mexico and Colorado saw their warmest March in record. The Northeast did see below average temperatures.

In April the overall ranking for the lower 48 states was 113 (out of 123):


The Ohio and Mid-Atlantic states had their warmest spring on record. Only the state of Washington saw below average temperatures.

In May 2017 the overall ranking for the lower 48 states was 69 (out of 123):

May 2017 was the 69th coolest May on record, which was just slightly above average for temperatures. Cooler than average conditions occurred in the south-central states. Above average temperatures were felt in most of the Southeast.

The following are the rankings, so far, for individual months or Climate Lottery number picks for the 2010’s:

The average ranking for 2017 is 61.5 since the coldest ranking would be 1 and the hottest 123. I have color coded all rankings for this post at or below 41 blue and all those at or above 82 red with rankings + or – 20 from the median value of 61.5 black. With time, the rankings for each individual month, season and year will change as more data becomes available to the National Center for Environmental Information. Also, for reference, the annual or Mega Ball numbers are shown on the chart.

Seasonal or Power-Ball rankings for winter are those for DEC/JAN/FEB, spring are those for MAR/APR/MAY, summer is JUN/JUL/AUG, and fall is SEP/OCT/NOV. Also, keep in mind that NCEI rankings for seasons compare seasons and are not merely an average of rankings of individual months of a season or year. The spring ranking was in the red representing the above average temperature range:

Notice that since the start of 2010 only four out of thirty seasons have been below average or blue. Twenty-two out of thirty seasons since 2010 have been red, or above average. Indeed, the Climate Lottery hopper is very much loaded for above average temperatures for the lower 48 states looking at recent history. The last ten seasons were all red and ranked above 100. Yes, the casino of climate averages is cheating causing the house of warming, due to climate pollution, to win just about every season. I hope that everyone will have a great summer. I will be posting a heat diary blog as the summer progresses. You can also look at those to get hints at what the numbers or rankings might be for June and July. 😊

The Climate Guy