Right Opinion

The Past Is Once Again Giving Valuable Hints to the Future: This Summer's Texas Heat!

Joe Bastardi · Jun. 1, 2018

This June could challenge the hottest June on record in Texas. What’s astounding is that two of the five following-year accumulated cyclone energy (ACE) analogs we have been using since last October — 1934 and 2011 — are two of the hottest.

You can’t make this up.

Look at the hurricane seasons of 1933 and 2010 — classic development years with a hyperactive ACE.

Now look at Texas temperatures the following Junes and the blend of both.

Because of the nature of heat, the higher the temperature, the tougher it is to make it hotter. These are remarkable years!


But if there was ever a setup for it happening again — perhaps to an event greater extent — we have it!

Notice the boiling Gulf of Mexico. By the way, Florida, which is surrounded by cooler water, is likely to see below-average temperatures this summer.

The ground is very dry over Texas and very wet in Florida. It takes less energy for the sun to heat dry soil than it does wet soil, so temperatures — especially daytime highs — are affected. At night, the prevailing southeast wind in summer off the Gulf means lows are higher than average where the water is warm. It’s a double whammy, and the feedback of the season means there’s no way out.


In any case, the two hurricane seasons shown above — which have been part of our five-year analog package since last October — correctly pointed to both the type of winter we would have and this May’s sudden summer. Those analogs also suggest a warm summer for the U.S. this year.

We once again see a “forward into the past” precedence, with two known hyperactive Atlantic hurricane seasons pointing the way. So a June and summer tantamount to 1934 and 2011 is setting up for Texas based on those analogs.

How does that square with the current CFSv2 for June?

It’s warm, but not nearly as impressive as what the 1934 and 2011 analogs show. And 1934 was not even in the satellite era. If we had today’s technology and city buildup, who knows what it would have come up with.

The link to past events, while cognizant of current conditions, points towards 1934- and 2011-type heat centered in Texas in June. It will be hard to break out of this, as it would take a strong cold front or a tropical cyclone to disrupt it. The point is that past extremes tell us two things.

1) These events have happened before.

2) Meticulously dissecting the past — not just using bell-curve averages but actually looking at each setup (I call this ditch-digging work) — can help isolate patterns that will help us going forward.

There’s nothing magical or mystical about using the lessons of the past as the foundation you stand on today to reach for tomorrow. If you are able to recognize a large-scale event from the past, chances are it will help you find the answer to tomorrow So when other explanations start flying — and they will — remember there is a precedent for what you see. We have a record-threatening June forecast for Texas!


I will end with this note: Barring any major rains (and I don’t see any coming), the pattern in Texas is summed up by one of my favorite “Sponge Bob” episodes. The fry cook games centered on Texas heat is on.

If you have seen it before, and you see the links, you make the call!


Joe Bastardi, a pioneer in extreme weather and long-range forecasting, is a contributor to The Patriot Post on environmental issues. He is the author of “The Climate Chronicle: Inconvenient Revelations You Won’t Hear From Al Gore — and Others.”

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