Special Report

American Cities With the Most Unusually Warm Temperatures This Year

Tomwang112 / Getty Images

The United Nations Climate Change Conference, also known as COP26, ended Nov. 12 in Glasgow, Scotland, with significant differences among nations on how to keep global temperatures from rising more than 1.5 degrees Celsius (34.7 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels and how to compensate poorer nations for the climate havoc inflicted on them by rich nations.

While people argue over global warming — including many who still deny human activity has anything to do with it — and what to do about it, temperatures keep climbing. (This city emits the most carbon dioxide in the world.)

The global average temperature has risen by 0.14 degrees Fahrenheit per decade since 1880, but the rate of warming over the past 40 years has been more than double that, at 0.32 degrees, according to the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The 10 warmest years on record have occurred since 2005, and there’s no end in sight. (These are 25 cities where rising seas could leave millions homeless.)

Rising temperatures have a significant incremental impact on local weather and the environment. They significantly alter weather patterns, causing more severe and frequent storms, and increase the frequency of droughts. The knock-on effects include a greater range of infectious diseases that thrive in warmer climates.

In the U.S., the effects of rising temperatures are already causing intense flooding in urban and suburban areas of the Northeast, insect outbreaks and tree diseases in the Northwest, damages to energy and agricultural infrastructure in the Southeast, extreme heat and flooding across the Midwest, and seasonal wildfires across the West. 

To determine the 25 U.S. cities with the most unusually warm temperatures this year, 24/7 Tempo reviewed data on average temperatures in September from the National Centers for Environmental Information of the NOAA. Cities were ranked based on the highest difference in the average temperature in September 2021 from the historical average temperature for September from 1901 to 2000. Data on the hottest and coldest September months on record also came from the NCEI, with records dating back to 1895. Data for cities in Hawaii was not available.

This list of U.S. cities that had far hotter temperatures in September than their historical average are mostly inland and in the northern and central parts of the contiguous 48 states. Among the 25 cities, North Dakota has five, while Kansas and Nevada are home to three, including Las Vegas. The only cities on this list outside this region are Montpelier, Vermont, and Lubbock, Texas. 

Temperatures in the cities on the list were at least 5.2 degrees above their respective historical averages in September. In the hottest city, they were 7.8 degrees above historical average. 

Click here to see the U.S. cities with the most unusually warm temperatures this year

Source: f11photo / iStock via Getty Images

25. Las Vegas, Nevada
> Average temperature, September 2021: 86.3°F (5.2°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 81.1°F
> Hottest September on record: 2018 (87.7°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (75.5°F)

[in-text-ad]

Source: DenisTangneyJr / iStock via Getty Images

24. Rapid City, South Dakota
> Average temperature, September 2021: 65.2°F (5.3°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 59.9°F
> Hottest September on record: 1998 (67.2°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (48.3°F)

Source: Davel5957 / iStock via Getty Images

23. Des Moines, Iowa
> Average temperature, September 2021: 70.4°F (5.3°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 65.1°F
> Hottest September on record: 2019 (71.6°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1993 (59.4°F)

Source: Sean Pavone / iStock via Getty Images

22. Milwaukee, Wisconsin
> Average temperature, September 2021: 68.3°F (5.3°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 63.0°F
> Hottest September on record: 2005 (69.9°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1943 (58.4°F)

[in-text-ad-2]

Source: DenisTangneyJr / iStock via Getty Images

21. Topeka, Kansas
> Average temperature, September 2021: 73.3°F (5.3°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 68.0°F
> Hottest September on record: 2019 (76.2°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1974 (61.5°F)

Source: DenisTangneyJr / E+ via Getty Images

20. Lubbock, Texas
> Average temperature, September 2021: 75.9°F (5.4°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 70.5°F
> Hottest September on record: 2019 (77.5°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1974 (62.7°F)

[in-text-ad]

Source: NNehring / iStock via Getty Images

19. Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota
> Average temperature, September 2021: 66.5°F (5.4°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 61.1°F
> Hottest September on record: 2015 (67.9°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (53.5°F)

Source: chapin31 / iStock Editorial via Getty Images

18. Pueblo, Colorado
> Average temperature, September 2021: 70.3°F (5.6°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 64.7°F
> Hottest September on record: 2019 (72.8°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1961 (59.1°F)

Source: marekuliasz / iStock via Getty Images

17. Scottsbluff, Nebraska
> Average temperature, September 2021: 67.5°F (5.6°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 61.9°F
> Hottest September on record: 1998 (69.2°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1912 (53.0°F)

[in-text-ad-2]

Source: 4kodiak / iStock via Getty Images

16. Reno, Nevada
> Average temperature, September 2021: 68.3°F (5.6°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 62.7°F
> Hottest September on record: 2012 (70.4°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (56.1°F)

Source: haveseen / iStock via Getty Images

15. Montpelier, Vermont
> Average temperature, September 2021: 61.1°F (5.8°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 55.3°F
> Hottest September on record: 1961 (63.1°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1950 (50.8°F)

[in-text-ad]

Source: peeterv / iStock via Getty Images

14. Billings, Montana
> Average temperature, September 2021: 65.2°F (5.8°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 59.4°F
> Hottest September on record: 2009 (66.7°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (47.0°F)

Source: DC_Colombia / iStock via Getty Images

13. Sheridan, Wyoming
> Average temperature, September 2021: 62.9°F (5.9°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 57.0°F
> Hottest September on record: 1963 (64.3°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (47.2°F)

Source: Michael-Tatman / iStock via Getty Images

12. Wausau, Wisconsin
> Average temperature, September 2021: 63.3°F (6.0°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 57.3°F
> Hottest September on record: 2015 (64.9°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1993 (52.0°F)

[in-text-ad-2]

Source: Nathan Livedalen / iStock via Getty Images

11. Bismarck, North Dakota
> Average temperature, September 2021: 65.1°F (6.2°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 58.9°F
> Hottest September on record: 1948 (66.1°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (47.9°F)

Source: raksyBH / iStock Editorial via Getty Images

10. Dodge City, Kansas
> Average temperature, September 2021: 74.7°F (6.2°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 68.5°F
> Hottest September on record: 2019 (78.0°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1974 (62.2°F)

[in-text-ad]

9. International Falls, Minnesota
> Average temperature, September 2021: 59.0°F (6.3°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 52.7°F
> Hottest September on record: 2009 (60.1°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (45.6°F)

Source: DenisTangneyJr / E+ via Getty Images

8. Cheyenne, Wyoming
> Average temperature, September 2021: 63.5°F (6.6°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 56.9°F
> Hottest September on record: 2015 (64.7°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1912 (48.0°F)

7. Minot, North Dakota
> Average temperature, September 2021: 65.0°F (6.8°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 58.2°F
> Hottest September on record: 2009 (66.1°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (47.1°F)

[in-text-ad-2]

Source: Bill_Dally / iStock via Getty Images

6. Carson City, Nevada
> Average temperature, September 2021: 70.2°F (6.8°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 63.4°F
> Hottest September on record: 2012 (70.7°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (57.1°F)

Source: DenisTangneyJr / iStock Unreleased via Getty Images

5. Fargo, North Dakota
> Average temperature, September 2021: 64.4°F (6.8°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 57.6°F
> Hottest September on record: 2015 (65.1°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (48.8°F)

[in-text-ad]

4. Dickinson, North Dakota
> Average temperature, September 2021: 63.6°F (6.9°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 56.7°F
> Hottest September on record: 1998 (63.9°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (44.6°F)

Source: Jacob Boomsma / iStock via Getty Images

3. Colorado Springs, Colorado
> Average temperature, September 2021: 68.0°F (7.2°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 60.8°F
> Hottest September on record: 2019 (68.7°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1961 (54.3°F)

2. Goodland, Kansas
> Average temperature, September 2021: 71.4°F (7.2°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 64.2°F
> Hottest September on record: 2021 (71.4°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (55.3°F)

[in-text-ad-2]

Source: DenisTangneyJr / iStock via Getty Images

1. Grand Forks, North Dakota
> Average temperature, September 2021: 63.0°F (7.8°F above average)
> Average September temperature, 1901-2000: 55.2°F
> Hottest September on record: 2009 (64.1°F)
> Coldest September on record: 1965 (45.8°F)

Want to Retire Early? Start Here (Sponsor)

Want retirement to come a few years earlier than you’d planned? Or are you ready to retire now, but want an extra set of eyes on your finances?

Now you can speak with up to 3 financial experts in your area for FREE. By simply clicking here you can begin to match with financial professionals who can help you build your plan to retire early. And the best part? The first conversation with them is free.

Click here to match with up to 3 financial pros who would be excited to help you make financial decisions.

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us?
Contact the 24/7 Wall St. editorial team.