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Climate Focus: Warmer Spring Temperatures in the Bay Area

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As we "spring forward" in terms of time this weekend, from a weather perspective, our temperatures have also started springing forward of late.

In some ways, now spring is turning more into an earlier start to summer-like conditions across the region.

A look at county-by-county data around the Bay Area courtesy of the National Centers for Environmental Information shows, with the exception of only two years (2010, 2011) since 2000, our spring month temperatures have been warmer than average.  

That's about 90% of the time.

It is interesting to note how even areas near the Pacific Ocean and cooler inner bay are seeing similar spikes to their inland county counterparts. The cause is likely due to stronger or more persistent high pressure reducing the depth of the marine layer, and more warming across the higher elevations and somewhat less intense onshore winds (sea breeze).  

The trend to warmer and in many cases also drier Spring months tends to increase evapotranspiration rates for soil, vegetation leading to conditions becoming primed earlier in the year for wildfire danger.  This is one half of the extended fire season pattern of late in California, with hotter and drier Fall months also helping to lengthen fire seasons as well.

Bay Area region temperature average March-June time frame:

Here's a look at the data county-by-county from the March to June time frame:

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