- Associated Press - Monday, January 12, 2015

FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) - It wasn’t quite warm enough to hang up the parkas, but 2014 was the warmest year on record for Alaska, according to the National Weather Service.

Based on information from the National Climatic Data Center, the National Weather Service Alaska said 2014 was warmer than 1926, the previous warmest year on record, the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (https://bit.ly/1AINtCN ) reported. The agency made the announcement last week on its Facebook page.

Alaska was .2 degrees warmer last year than 1926, said climatologist Rick Thoman, climate science and services manager in the Fairbanks office of the National Weather Service. That’s not much, he said, but those two years are the warmest by at least .7 degree over the third-place year.

“2014 and 1926 are head and shoulders above everything else,” he said. “They’re really the hot ones.”

The National Climatic Data Center stores, monitors and assesses historical weather data from across the country. Climate data for Alaska has been kept since 1918. Elsewhere data has been available since 1895.

To figure out the warmest year, the center uses temperatures from its Alaska monitoring stations and computes the statewide departure from the long-term average. The baseline for the long-term average is climate data from 1971 to 2000.

The center ranks each year based on how the temperatures compared with temperatures throughout the entire historical record.

Nearly 200 weather monitoring stations gather data from Alaska locations. Most are operated by the Federal Aviation Administration.

Nome, McGrath, Kotzebue, Bethel, Cold Bay, King Salmon and Homer experienced their warmest years on record in 2014.

Fairbanks’ 2014 was its fourth warmest year on record with an average temperature of 31.2 degrees.

Anchorage for the first time since temperature monitoring did not see a temperature below zero.

The statewide perspective was helped by exceptionally mild temperatures in January, May, November and December.

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