June 2006 Climate Summary

Dr. David A. Robinson
New Jersey State Climatologist
Center for Environmental Prediction, Cook College/NJAES, Rutgers University

July 3, 2006

Preliminary estimates indicate that this June was the 5th wettest and was tied with three other Junes for 19th warmest since statewide records began in 1895. This is based on a subset of station data that will eventually arrive in the state climate office, however experience suggests that these rankings will not change greatly once all the reports are received.

Rainfall totaled 7.37", versus an average of 3.79". Every region of the state was wet, ranging from the Atlantic coastal counties (5-6") to the counties bordering the Delaware River from Sussex down to Mercer (9-10"). Gauges mostly filled during the first and last weeks of the month. At months end, extremely heavy rains in western NJ, and even more so in the Delaware basin counties of eastern PA and southern NY, resulted in major river flooding. For the third time in the past 21 months the Delaware experienced a major flood, with each falling within the top 10 of record over the past century or more. This flood fell very close to the April 2005 crest, which was a foot or two above that experienced in September 2004.

While many may choose to ascribe the flooding to climate change or basin over development, there is no evidence of either being a principal cause. The odds have just had it that the basin has been in the bulls eye for the heaviest rains falling within the general region in each of the three flood situations (with some help from snow melt in 2005). Portions of the Susquehanna basin also felt the flooding this time, but toward the east, most of NJ has been spared significant flooding during each of the three Delaware events.

The mean June temperature of 70.8° was 1.4° above normal. 7 of the 18 warmer Junes since 1895 have occurred in the most recent 22 years (since 1984). 12 of the past 13 months have been above normal, exemplifying the warmth of recent decades (Statewide Mean Annual Temperature)

Past Climate Summaries