Earth Day Turns 50
April 22, 2020 marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day! In honor of the day, let’s take a look at weather conditions at the Northeast’s 35 major climate sites since Earth Day was first celebrated back in 1970.
The hottest temperatures on Earth Day ranged from the 70s to 90s.
The average high temperature on Earth Day ranges from 50.9°F in Caribou, ME, to 69.4°F in Washington, D.C. The hottest Earth Day celebration occurred in Wilmington, DE, in 1985 when the mercury soared to 94°F. Average low temperatures range from 31.9°F in Caribou, ME, to 50.1°F in Washington, D.C., The Earth Day celebration in 1981 was a bit frosty in Caribou, ME, when the low dropped to 19°F.
The coldest Earth Day temperatures ranged from the teens to the 30s.
The wettest Earth Day featured more than 2 inches of precipitation at eight major climate sites. Click to enlarge.
What’s the likelihood of precipitation on Earth Day? It ranges from 34% in Wilmington, DE; Philadelphia, PA; and LaGuardia Airport, NY, to 52% in Burlington, VT; Caribou, ME; and Erie, PA. The soggiest celebration occurred at Dulles Airport, VA, in 2006 when the site saw 2.88 inches of precipitation.
Only 14 major climate sites have reported measurable snow on Earth Day.
As we approach the end of April, snow becomes less likely, even in some colder locations. For instance, Caribou, ME, historically only has a 12% chance of seeing measurable snow on Earth Day. Interestingly, the site is not where the snowiest celebration occurred. That was in Binghamton, NY, which picked up 8.6 inches of snow in 1993. Of note - Hartford, CT, is the only major climate site to not report snow, not even a trace, on Earth Day (although, the site is missing a few years of data). Caribou is the most likely site to have at least an inch of snow depth on April 22 with a 22% chance. It also tied Binghamton with the greatest Earth Day snow depth of 5 inches, in 1982 for Caribou and in 1983 for Binghamton.
For a majority of the major climate sites, the greatest snow depth on Earth Day was none!