India's monsoon rains finally arrived in August—two months late—and vegetation conditions showed some improvement.
July 2012 wasn’t just the hottest July on record, it was the hottest month ever recorded for the contiguous United States since records began in 1895.
The rainy season in India arrived late and delivered far less precipitation than usual in summer 2012, leading to severe drought across large parts of the country.
In early July 2012, conditions throughout most of the contiguous 48 states ranged from abnormally dry to exceptional drought.
The lead character in the 2011 climate story was La Niña—the cool phase of the El Ni
Scorching temperatures during the second half of June 2012 broke or tied over 170 all-time temperature records in cities across America.
Spring storms across Europe and the Mediterranean Sea finally swept away a high pressure system that had been fostering increasingly dry conditions over the Horn of Africa in early 2011.
Since the beginning of 2012, drought conditions have worsened along the eastern seaboard, adding to a dry picture for much of the United States.