Nation experiences warmest first half of year; wildfires claim 1.3 million acres across nation
Commerce's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issues its monthly state of the climate report for June, 2012. The average temperature  for the contiguous U.S. during June was 71.2°F, which is 2.0°F above the 20th century average. Scorching temperatures during the second half of the month led to at least 170 all-time high temperature records broken or tied . The June temperatures contributed to a record-warm first half of the year  and the warmest 12-month period  the nation has experienced since recordkeeping began in 1895.
Precipitation totals  across the country were mixed during June. The Lower 48, as a whole, experienced its tenth-driest June  on record, with a nationally-averaged precipitation total of 2.27 inches, 0.62 inch below average. Record- and near-record dry conditions  were present across the Intermountain West, while Tropical Storm Debby dropped record precipitation across Florida. Full NOAA release