For the US, 2016 was the second warmest year on record

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(By: Weather.com)

Near-record warm temperatures blanketed the United States from coast to coast in 2016, propelling the Lower 48 to its second warmest year on record. It was also a costly year with 15 weather-related events with a preliminary price tag of a billion dollars or more.

The annual report from NOAA's National Centers For Environmental Information (NCEI) released Monday says that the average temperature for the Lower 48 in 2016 was 54.9 degrees Fahrenheit, 2.9 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th-century average (1901-2000). Only 2012 was warmer with an average temperature of 55.3 degrees Fahrenheit.

11 PHOTOS
Severe, hot summer weather in the US in 2016
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Severe, hot summer weather in the US in 2016
A woman rests in the shade during a hot and sunny day at Central Park in New York July 17, 2016. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz
People sit in the shade around the fountain at the Christian Science Plaza on a hot summer day in Boston, Massachusetts July 20, 2015. REUTERS/Brian Snyder TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
A helicopter drops water near a hot spot on the Wagg Fire near Lake Berryessa, California July 24, 2015. A rapidly expanding wildfire in Northern California is threatening about 150 structures and has forced evacuations in several rural areas as the wind-whipped blaze rips across parched vegetation, officials said on Wednesday. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith
People cool off beside a fountain during heat wave at the Word War Two Memorial in Washington July 18, 2013. The northeastern United States sweltered on Tuesday in a scorching summer heat wave, complete with stagnant, sticky air and no winds for relief, forecasters said. Even in a summer already filled with stretches of very hot weather, this week will be stubbornly brutal, with no relief in sight until the weekend brings thunderstorms to the region, they said. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas (UNITED STATES - Tags: WEATHER)
Friends Grace Greenwood (L) and Alex Place, both of Arlington, Virginia, leap into a water sprinkler for a "high ten" during heat wave at the Washington Monument in Washington July 18, 2013. Greenwood was celebrating her birthday with a visit into the city. The nation's capital is experiencing a heat wave with temperatures around 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius). REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENVIRONMENT TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)
NEW YORK CITY, NY, UNITED STATES - 2016/07/24: New York City, New York. A dog keep cool during a heatwave across the city. (Photo by Louise Wateridge/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)
People enjoy a day in the pool during a heat wave called "Heat Dome" in the Astoria borough of New York, U.S., July 24, 2016. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz
Children play in a fountain during a heat wave in Washington, U.S., July 24, 2016. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
People cool off in the Pacific Ocean during a record-setting heat wave across the U.S. Southwest, on the summer solstice in Santa Monica, California, U.S. June 20, 2016. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson
Jun 5, 2016; Baltimore, MD, USA; A general view as storm clouds roll over Oriole Park at Camden Yards during the eighth inning of the game between the Baltimore Orioles and the New York Yankees . Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
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Georgia was the lone state in the Lower 48 that saw a record warm year, while 10 other states saw their second warmest year on record. All other states finished 2016 ranked among their seven warmest years on record.

Outside the contiguous United States, Alaska observed a record warm year as well. This is the third year in a row that our nation's 49th state has set a new record warm benchmark for a calendar year.

NOAA says that 2016 was the 20th year in a row that the annual average temperature in the Lower 48 has exceeded the long-term average. Additionally, temperatures have trended upward by 0.15 degrees Fahrenheit each decade in the U.S. since 1895 when records began.

(MORE: Record Warm Year For the Earth Also Likely)

59 PHOTOS
Winter weather 2016-2017 -- snow, ice and sleet
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Winter weather 2016-2017 -- snow, ice and sleet

Dogs walk through the snow during a spring snow storm in Boston, Massachusetts April 4, 2016.

(REUTERS/Brian Snyder)

People walk through Times Square during a snow storm on January 7, 2017 in New York City.

(Photo by Gary Hershorn/Getty Images)

A woman walks in the snow at Times Square in New York U.S., January 31, 2017.

(REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton)

A man sweeps the street after snow fell in Manhattan, New York City, U.S. December 17, 2016.

(REUTERS/Kevin Coombs)

A young child smiles while catching snow flakes on his tongue during snow flurries in New York, U.S., January 31, 2017.

(REUTERS/Lucas Jackson)

Semi-truck driver Don Kerns removes chains from his truck during record rain and snow outside Lakeview, Oregon, U.S., January 5, 2017.

(REUTERS/Jim Urquhart)

A snowman stands in Times Square following a morning snow in Manhattan, New York City, U.S. December 17, 2016.

(REUTERS/Andrew Kelly)

A man skis under a snowfall in Central Park during a winter storm on January 7, 2017 in New York.

(EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)

A woman walks through snow as it falls in New York City, U.S., January 31, 2017.

(REUTERS/Brendan McDermid)

A general view of snow covered seats at New Era Field before a game between the Buffalo Bills and the Pittsburgh Steelers.

(Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports)

Snow falls in the streets of Chicago, United States on December 11, 2016.

(Photo by Bilgin Sasmaz/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

Siblings (L-R) Leo, Max and Zoe Zavrachy, on vacation from Ireland, ride down a snow covered hill on Boston Common during a snow storm on the second day of spring in Boston, Massachusetts March 21, 2016.


(REUTERS/Brian Snyder)

A person crosses Delancey Street during morning snow in Manhattan, New York City, U.S. December 17, 2016.

(REUTERS/Andrew Kelly)

A woman walks through snow as it falls in New York, U.S., January 31, 2017.

(REUTERS/Lucas Jackson)

A worker clears the snow from the crosswalk in Times Square, Manhattan, New York City, U.S. December 17, 2016.

(REUTERS/Andrew Kelly)

A person walks over the Brooklyn Bridge during morning snow in Manhattan, New York City, U.S. December 17, 2016.

(REUTERS/Andrew Kelly)

Snow is cleared from the Donner Pass rest area at Donner Pass summit during a winter storm, near Truckee, California, U.S. January 7, 2017.

(Bob Strong / Reuters)

People walk under a snowfall as they visit Central Park during a Winter storm on January 7, 2017 in New York.

(EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)

People walk under a snowfall as they visit Central Park during a winter storm on January 7, 2017 in New York.

(EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)

Children play under a snowfall in Central Park during a winter storm on January 7, 2017 in New York.

(EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)

A woman falls down as people walk under a snowfall as they visit Central Park during a winter storm on January 7, 2017 in New York.

(EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)

People walk amid a snowfall in Central Park during a Winter storm on January 7, 2017 in New York.

(EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)

A snow boarder prepares his gear at the Mount Rose Highway summit during a winter storm near Incline Village, Nevada, U.S., January 7, 2017.

(REUTERS/Bob Strong)

Motorists travel through heavy snow on the Mount Rose Highway during a winter storm near Incline Village, Nevada, U.S., January 7, 2017.

(REUTERS/Bob Strong)

A person prepares to throw a snowball at their companion during a winter snow storm in Medford, Massachusetts, U.S. January 7, 2017.

(REUTERS/Brian Snyder)

Marine One blows up a cloud of snow as it lands on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, U.S., January 7, 2017.

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts)

Two dogs play in the snow during a winter snow storm in Medford, Massachusetts, U.S. January 7, 2017.

(REUTERS/Brian Snyder)

A pedestrian walks through the snow during a winter storm in Medford, Massachusetts, U.S. January 7, 2017.

(REUTERS/Brian Snyder)

People walk through Central Park during a snow storm in New York City, U.S. January 7, 2017.

(REUTERS/Stephanie Keith)

People walk through Central Park during a snow storm on January 7, 2017 in New York City.

(Photo by Gary Hershorn/Getty Images)

A woman plays under a snowfall in Central Park during a winter storm on January 7, 2017 in New York.

(EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)

People walk through Times Square during a snow storm on January 7, 2017 in New York City.

(Photo by Gary Hershorn/Getty Images)

People walk along The Mall in Central Park during a snow storm on January 7, 2017 in New York City.

(Photo by Gary Hershorn/Getty Images)

A snowboarder rides over a ridge of snow in the afternoon sunlight on the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of year at Hunter Mountain ski area in Hunter, New York, U.S., December 21, 2016.

(REUTERS/Mine Segar)

People walk through Central Park following morning snow in Manhattan, New York City, U.S. December 17, 2016.

(REUTERS/Andrew Kelly)

A young Native American man rides his horse through the snow near the Oceti Sakowin camp as "water protectors" continue to demonstrate against plans to pass the Dakota Access pipeline near the Standing Rock Indian Reservation, near Cannon Ball, North Dakota, U.S., December 4, 2016.

(REUTERS/Lucas Jackson)

Snow falls in the streets of Chicago, United States on December 11, 2016.

(Photo by Bilgin Sasmaz/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

Footsteps can be seen on a recently cleared sidewalk during a spring snow storm in Boston, Massachusetts April 4, 2016.

(REUTERS/Brian Snyder)

A pedestrian crosses the road during a snow storm on the second day of spring in Boston, Massachusetts March 21, 2016.

(REUTERS/Brian Snyder)

Snow falls in the streets of Chicago, United States on December 11, 2016.

(Photo by Bilgin Sasmaz/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

A woman with an umbrella walks through the snow during a spring snow storm in Boston, Massachusetts April 4, 2016.

(REUTERS/Brian Snyder)

A cyclist passes pedestrians on a sidewalk on 12th Avenue in the Manhattan borough of New York City as snow falls February 15, 2016.

(REUTERS/Mike Segar)

A woman stands on a snow covered path at Central Park in New York, U.S., January 6, 2017.

(REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton)

Snow falls in the streets of Chicago, United States on December 11, 2016.

(Photo by Bilgin Sasmaz/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

CHICAGO, IL - DECEMBER 11: Snow falls in the streets of Chicago, United States on December 11, 2016. (Photo by Bilgin Sasmaz/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

A man walks in the snow at Times Square in New York U.S., January 31, 2017.

(REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton)

New England Patriots fans are seen standing in the snow, sleet, and freezing rain in anticipation of seeing their team at city hall plaza during Super Bowl LI victory parade in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S., February 7, 2017.

(REUTERS/Barry Chin/Pool)

BOSTON, MA - FEBRUARY 13: A woman and her grandchilden sled on Boston Common following a winter storm February 13, 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts. Another winter storm has brought heavy snow and wind to the region. (Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - FEBRUARY 13: A woman feeds pigeons near the Boston Common following a winter storm February 13, 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts. Another winter storm has brought heavy snow and wind to the region. (Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - FEBRUARY 13: A worker uses a tractor to plow the sidewalks around the Boston Common following a winter storm February 13, 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts. Another winter storm has brought heavy snow and wind to the region. (Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images)
LYNNFIELD, MA - FEBRUARY 13: A snow plow works to widen a street during a snow storm February 13, 2017 in Lynnfield, Massachusetts. Another winter storm has brought heavy snow and wind to the region. (Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - FEBRUARY 12: Ross Wilson, 9, of Boston and his brother, Sam, 7, take advantage of the snow as they sled down a hill on the Boston Common in Boston on Feb. 12, 2017. (Photo by Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
QUINCY, MA - FEBRUARY 9: An owl toughs out the blizzard sweeping through the region on a branch in the Squantum neighborhood of Quincy, MA on Feb. 9, 2017. (Photo by Stan Grossfeld/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
QUINCY, MA - FEBRUARY 9: Snow and ice coat the window of an inbound MBTA Red Line train at Quincy Central station in Quincy, MA on Feb. 9, 2017. MBTA trains kept running as a blizzard swept through the region. (Photo by David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
Pedestrians walk up a street on Beacon Hill during white-out, blizzard-like conditions in a winter nor'easter snow storm in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S. February 9, 2017. REUTERS/Brian Snyder
Residents dig out following a winter snow storm in the Boston suburb of Wakefield, Massachusetts, U.S. February 13, 2017. REUTERS/Brian Snyder
Surfers take advantage of wind and waves from a winter snow storm in Gloucester, Massachusetts, U.S. February 13, 2017. REUTERS/Brian Snyder
A man clears snow off his vehicle following a winter snow storm in Somerville, Massachusetts, U.S. February 13, 2017. REUTERS/Brian Snyder
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Precipitation in the U.S. was also above average in 2016, but not to the extent that the warmth was. NOAA said that it was the twenty-fourth wettest year on record dating to 1895.

Minnesota and Wisconsin experienced their second wettest year on record, while Connecticut (fourth driest), Georgia (ninth driest), and Massachusetts (10th driest) had one of their top 10 driest years in 2016.

Costly Weather Disaster Year
The United States endured 15 weather-related billion-dollar disasters in 2016, the second most to occur in a given year dating to 1980, according to NOAA. Only 2011 had more with 16 weather-related disasters costing that much.

Severe thunderstorms and flooding accounted for the largest number of disasters costing a billion dollars or more with eight and four such events for each, respectively. Hurricane Matthew, wildfires and drought made up the rest. A combined 138 people lost their lives during those weather events.

The four inland flood events that cost a billion or more dollars in 2016 is double for that type of event in any year since 1980.

Hurricane Matthew and the catastrophic flooding that struck Louisiana in August have the highest preliminary damage costs at $10 billion a piece.

The damage cost of all 15 disasters combined added up to a preliminary estimate of $45 billion. That $45 billion estimate for all 15 disasters ranks as the eighth highest for a calendar year, behind 1992, 1993, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2011 and 2012.

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