Average Temperature In Chicago In December – Chicago is halfway between the Continental Divide and the Atlantic Ocean and 900 miles north of the Gulf of Mexico. Chicago’s climate is generally continental with cold winters, hot summers, and frequent short fluctuations in temperature, humidity, cloudiness, and wind direction. Many people find the mild temperatures of spring and fall to be the most pleasant. Lake Michigan provides a moderating effect on temperature and contributes to the amount of snowfall the city receives.
Four factors control Chicago’s continental climate: 1) the sun, 2) weather systems, 3) urban areas, and 4) Lake Michigan. The two main controls are latitude (which dictates the amount of solar input) and weather systems (air masses and cyclonic storms). Lake Michigan and metropolitan area effects are less important but influence local climate conditions to varying degrees in the Chicago metropolitan area rather than being uniform across the region.
Average Temperature In Chicago In December
The Sun, the main source of energy for almost all weather phenomena, is a major determinant of air temperature and seasonal variation. At Chicago’s mid-latitude location the sun’s energy is three to four times greater in early summer than in early winter; resulting in hot summers and cold winters.
December 2022 National Climate Report
Weather systems, another major factor that affects a city’s climate, create a variety of weather conditions that rotate overseas almost daily due to different air masses and storm systems. The polar jet stream is often located near or over Illinois, especially in fall, winter, and spring, and is a focal point for the formation and movement of low-pressure storm systems characterized by clouds, wind, and rain. Weather associated with high pressure systems usually ends every few days with the passage of a low pressure system.
The first local aspect is the urban climate in the Chicago metropolitan area. Buildings, car parks, roads and industrial activities make a big difference between the urban climate and the climate of the surrounding rural areas. For example, Chicago averages 2°F warmer, especially at night. In some cases, this difference may be greater. This subtle aspect of urban climate is commonly known as the “urban heat island effect”. Due to differences in development, land use, and green space (i.e., parks, trees, etc.), the urban heat island effect is more severe in some neighborhoods than others. The map below shows the difference in rooftop temperatures by census tract across the city, showing the hottest parts of Chicago compared to others.
Map of average roof temperatures by census tract in Chicago…. The map shows the magnitude of the urban heat island effect with some neighborhoods experiencing higher temperatures than others. Map Source: Sharma et al. (2018), https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/aad93c.
Average High Temperature Map Of The Us In December
Urban areas also cause changes in humidity, cloudiness, wind speeds and directions. Built-up areas not only lead to warmer temperatures but also increase stormwater runoff, leading to increased flooding.
Lake Michigan influences most of the climate in Chicago and northeastern Illinois. The lake’s large thermal mass tends to moderate temperatures, resulting in cool summers and warm winters. A major advantage is the cool breeze of the lake which provides some relief from the summer heat. The lake tends to increase cloudiness in the area and suppress summer rainfall. Winter precipitation is enhanced by lake effect snowfall that occurs when winds blow from the north or northeast. These winds allow air to pass over a relatively warm lake, increasing the energy and water content of the storm system and resulting in increased snowfall (see figure below). However, because the prevailing winds during the cold season blow from the west or northwest, Chicago does not experience as much lake effect snow as windward lakeshore areas such as western Michigan.
Climate conditions for O’Hare Airport can be found here and are based on data from the NCDC. More climate and weather data can be found at the National Weather Service (NWS) Chicago office.
Wisconsin Fall Forecast
“The city is situated in latitude 41 35′ north, a little less than halfway from the equator to the pole, on a crescent-shaped plateau about 581 feet above mean sea level. The plain is less than 100 feet above the surface of the lake and its greatest width is about 15 miles from north-east to south-west. The entire plain is surrounded internally by glacial moraines which rise about 150 feet above the higher parts of the plain itself. This edge is too low to have any significant effect on the city’s climate or weather conditions, and it does not block any cold wave areas from the west or warm winds from the southwest and south. However, such a barrier is rarely necessary, as lake waters often moderate the intensity of winter storms or the intensity of summer heat.
Located on the southwest corner of the lake, Chicago prides itself on its climate. As a result of the cold expansion of the water in summer, the city often enjoys a pleasant and refreshing breeze while the interior of the country blows in warm air away from the lake and is still almost to the point of suffocation. The city is close to a certain well-defined storm track, and with the passage of this disturbance, it ensures abundant rainfall and affects the single-wave cycle of temperature and weather changes. Chicago is known as the “Windy City,” and the following pages will show that there is a reason for the sobriquet, although wind speeds here are not much greater than in other parts of the Great Lakes region. The changes of weather are often sudden and great, but they are usually so typical that they have a striking effect on the average person; And it is not at all probable that the peculiar nature of its climate is the chief cause of the great energy of its people, which has led to the rapid building up of Chicago.”
The Weather and Climate of Chicago, The Geographic Society of Chicago, Bulletin no. 4, H.J. Cox and J.H. Armington, University of Chicago Press, 1913.
Freezing Cold Weather
Note: Google Books has “The Weather and Climate of Chicago” from 1913 by Cox and Armington and the more rare “The Climate of Chicago” from 1893 by Hazen. Whether you’re a Chicagoland native or a California freshman experiencing your first windy winter. In the city, it’s not hard to understand why Chicago is known for having one of the coldest winters in the country. During the winter season, Chicago gets an average of 28.1 inches of snow and an average temperature of 26.4F, but the breeze from Lake Michigan can sometimes feel colder than Siberia. However, with climate change, Chicago winters are changing — for good.
When you think of climate change in relation to the changing winter season, your first thought might be warming – and you’re spot on. According to Climate Central, winter is the fastest warming season in most of the US, including Chicago. Since 1970, Chicago winters have averaged 3.2F.
By mid-century, Chicago is expected to have 22 fewer days per year with a minimum temperature below 32F. Although we may benefit from this temperature increase in the form of more transportable commuting, reduced heating energy, reduced cold-related mortality, and longer growing seasons, the negative effects outweigh the negative effects.
What Is The Weather In December In Chicago?
Winters (and springs) will be wetter. Warmer air holds more moisture, about 4% more water vapor per 1F of warming. More open water on the Great Lakes, due to less ice cover, also contributes to more evaporation. As temperatures rise and cold days decrease, precipitation is expected to increase but snow cover is expected to decrease. These rains are likely to become heavier, leading to more severe flooding, potentially reduced water quality, fertilizer runoff that contributes to algae and bacterial blooms, and delayed planting seasons. Shrinking ice cover and the increasing frequency of severe storms increase flooding, damage fish habitats, damage property, and make the Great Lakes more vulnerable to erosion.
In its 171 years, classes have been canceled only six times for weather-related reasons. The most recent cancellation occurred in January 2019, when a white vortex brought the coldest temperatures Chicago had seen in 34 years: a bone-chilling -21F, with the cold dropping to -51F. Although it may seem counterintuitive, a warming world could bring more cold snaps like this to Chicago.
The Arctic vortex is a large area of low pressure and cold air that circulates around the North Pole. This cold wind is usually confined to the Arctic by the white jet stream. However, when the temperature difference between the jet stream and the mid-latitudes shrinks, the jet stream becomes weaker and distorted. The weak polar jet stream is unable to deflect the warm air masses as they move north and allow the refrigerated arctic air to flow further south.
Siberian Air To Invade U.s. For Christmas, With Record Low Temperatures And Snow
The Arctic is warming four times faster than the rest of the planet, narrowing the temperature gap between the Arctic and mid-latitudes. Rapid heating is believed to cause deformation
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