Houston just experienced one of its hottest December days, ever. Today could be warmer

Tuesday’s high temperature at Hobby Airport reached 85 degrees, breaking the record high at the airport of 81 degrees set in 1999. The mark also tied for the second hottest day on any day December, based on records that go back more than eight decades. Prior to last year, 85 degrees would have tied for the hottest day of all time in December at the airport. However that record was pushed upward in 2021, when the mercury reached 87 degrees on December 9.

We are far from alarmist on this site, but such extreme heat for December is consistent with the background warming of climate change. During the first six days of this month, the average temperature at Hobby Airport is 9 degrees above normal. And more heat is on the way over the next week.

High temperature forecast for Wednesday in Houston. (Weather Bell)

Wednesday

We’re seeing patches of fog near the coast this morning, which is to be expected as dewpoints match air temperatures. After the fog lifts we’ll be left with partly to mostly sunny skies this afternoon, and another hot December day. With high pressure in place we can probably expect highs to push up into the low- to mid-80s again today. Along with Tuesday, this will probably be the warmest day of the week, although we’re going to have to wait until next week for some significant relief. There will also be a slight chance of very light rain this afternoon. Winds will be out of the south at 5 to 10 mph. Lows tonight may briefly drop below 70 degrees.

Thursday

Fog, again, will be a possibility. Otherwise expect highs in the low 80s with mostly sunny skies. There will be humidity and mosquitoes aplenty.

Friday

This will be another warm day, with highs likely in the low 80s and partly sunny skies. Areas south of Intestate 10 will see perhaps a 20 or 30 percent chance of light, misty rain. Accumulations will be nothing to write home about, however.

Saturday and Sunday

Conditions this weekend will continue to be warm and humid, although high temperatures may back off slightly into the upper 70s with partly sunny skies. A weak front will try to push southward on Saturday night, but at this point I don’t think it will get too far down into the metro area. This may produce a chance of light showers, more like a mist, later on Saturday or overnight. Lows should drop into the mid-60s.

Change is about a week away. (Weather Bell)

Next week

Monday will be sticky again, but change should finally come on Tuesday or Tuesday night with the arrival of a more significant front that pushes off the coast. There may well be a line of showers and storms with this front, given the upper level pattern. By the second half of next week we should see highs perhaps only in the 50s, with lows in the 30s and 40s. Details are yet to come, but we will certainly see a return of winter-like weather by that time. If I may borrow a phrase from Monty Python, it would be, “And there was much rejoicing.”

73 thoughts on “Houston just experienced one of its hottest December days, ever. Today could be warmer”

    • There’s always a few of the denialists who show up every time climate change is mentioned. I feel bad for them. It must suck for them, always having to hide behind discredited sham data and misinterpreted studies in order to keep their dumb worldview from being shattered by reality.

    • What most people are opposing is the hyperbolic, fear mongering characterizations of climate–“catastrophe” “disaster” “emergency” “crisis” and other such hysterical terminology. The idea that the climate is changing is also presented as something new. Throughout the life of the planet, the climate has changed–it has not been and never will be a static thing. What is controversial is what role humans play in climate patterns, whether or not humans can do anything about it, and how concerning it should be to humans.

      • Those who try to make the “always changing” argument completely ignore the rate of change when they present it. Ice ages and warm periods were not flipping in a matter of decades or centuries. Our world’s plants and animals had thousands of generations to adapt to such changes.

        And what you state as controversial is not controversial to those who study it.

        • I just got a “Share your memories” notification on Facebook. Five years ago, it was snowing at my house in Richmond. Please square that with your “Ice ages and warm periods were not flipping in a matter of decades or centuries” comment. So can “climate change” flip in just 5 years? No, I don’t think so.

          • Can’t believe I have to say this, but an ice age is different from ‘it snowed at my house one day’.

      • Actually, there is zero controversy amongst atmospheric and climate scientists about the role humans play. Zero. We know with absolute certainty that increases in heat trapping greenhouse gases in the troposphere are caused primarily by the burning of carbon based fuels and secondarily by deforestation of photosynthetic forests. As you say, what humans choose to argue about doing with regards to our cause of the highest CO2 levels in 800,000 years is, well, human political fodder.

    • Yes, seriously. If you don’t believe in it, maybe you should get your forecast from a less scientific source, like the farmers almanac.

      I’m glad Scw lives in evidence-based reality.

    • Yes, seriously. Middle-to-long-term it is likely the most serious existential threat the human species faces.

    • We do suck at taking care of our communities, our world..
      Who wants to see chemicals being spilled into rivers, emissions stinking up the air, and garbage strewn about in our parks..Whether or not climate change is something that is a natural cycle, vs a phenomenon being caused by humans, we can still stand to be more responsible with our consumption and wastage..

  1. I don’t usually comment on this site, but c’mon guys. How about our unusually cold November we had. Or the calm hurricane season we just had that everyone was saying was going to be extremely active.. Were these a sign that climate change is reversing? No hype, right?

    • Why do you think an unseasonably cold November would be a sign that climate change is reversing? Do you think “climate change” is confined only to warming events? Why do you think that?

    • You said it yourself. Unusually cold November, unusually warm December. “Unusually” and climate change go together like Houston and humidity.

      • So any time the weather differs year to year, its climate change. We cant have that!! I’ve been alive long enough to hear all the climate alarmists talk about global cooling and the next ice age is coming (it didnt), the hole in the ozone was going to fry us all (it didnt – it closed on its own), now global warming turned to climate change because its easier to point to all weather anomalies as gasp…. CLIMATE CHANGE.. we definitly need to take care of the world better than we currently are, but the weather also changes year to year, decade to decade.. lets leave the hype out

        • The ozone hole didn’t close on its own. Countries across the globe agreed in 1989 in the Montreal Protocol to ban the number one cause of ozone depletion: CFCs and other chemicals. The ozone has been in recovery since then. Climate change is real, humans are responsible, and we can make a difference. The recovering ozone is the perfect example of that.

        • It sounds like you’re trying to use histrionics and anecdotes to refute evidence. How do you think that’s gonna work out for you?

    • November was only 1.6 deg F below average at IAH, hardly unusual. October was 1.8 below average. July was 2.9 above average.

    • “We are far from alarmist on this site, but…” I believe it, and I’m literally never sarcastic.

  2. Please don’t rush to the whole “climate change” dogma just because we had the warmest day in 23 years. Yesterday is more endemic to a longer term pattern or an outlier. Sure we impact the environment and climate around us but the broader impacts and changes invoked as “climate change”/fka “global warming” in the 90s/fka “global cooling” in the 70s are based on purely speculative computer modeling that does not even come close to ascribing reality which is why the goalposts and markers for it keep moving into the future. We we’re all going to drown by 2000 but now it’s “2150 or 2200” when we’ll be dead. More religious ideology than any science plays into it. We have short lives and think our 70 or 80 yrs represent something meaningful to such patterns on a planet that measures some climate cycles in the millions of years. Our “80 years of records” reflect just a nanosecond slice of activity on that scale if that and a single new hottest day record does not warrant such speculative association.

    • How do you know? Credentials? Yes, this planet, time, space, other forces/dimensions obviously are way bigger than the human species can imagine..Religion, science, philosophy are some ways we make sense of our world..For as long as the human species has been around,I would imagine records may go back way more than 80 years, just not in a language or measurement that we can understand..

  3. I’ve follow SCW for a long time, but I will unsubscribe if you do not please quit talking about climate change, unless you are willing to address the geoengineering that manipulates natural weather patterns. The term “climate change” has so many nuances and while I’m sure you see it as a notable changes in overall weather patterns, it is often used to invoke fear mongering tyrannical policies, so, again: please stop. It makes me wonder if you are getting paid off by the Establishment to propagandize.

    • Maybe just stop being an armchair expert on weather and climate and listen to actual professionals instead of Fox News and Facebook memes.

      • lol, Brooke is talking “geoengineering.” If she’s trotting that word out, she’s getting her news from way dumber places than fox. That’s straight-up Alex Jones conspiracy loony tunes talk. Seek help, Brooke F. Your family probably misses you and wants you to stop listening to infowars.

    • We write about climate change once every three months. If that is enough to run you off, so be it. We’re just trying to be as real with readers as we can possibly be.

      • Your paragraph was very mild, but happy with the comment section? Think you or anyone else here are changing anyone’s opinions? IDK what you are trying to accomplish by turning this site into Facebook/Twitter levels of bickering? Do you really want that with your site?

        • They are the owners of this site, they have valid reasons and data to post reasonable content about climate change. If you don’t like what is being posted then don’t come here or on to any site that disagrees with your beliefs.

      • So, once every 3 months the minimum requirement for you to mention it per your donor’s request. Got it. If they paid you more would you mention it more? Y’all’s lack of integrity is what would run me off. And your rudeness. What do you care about the people you preach to if someone else is paying your bills. You brag about ‘no hype’ and push the latest PC nonsense. Good riddance.

        • “Surely this is all a conspiracy and shadowy interests are opposing the truth and paying off a local weather web site!! Because that’s how the real world works!!!”

          Lol you’re a fruitcake, Brooke. Stop getting your news from liars who exploit you. Question your obviously wrong biases. Touch grass, girl.

          • Many of these conspiracy types live in a bubble of paranoia and fear. Of “ I’m right and if you disagree you’re a dumb sheeple” they can’t handle differing opinions so they default to anger and insult. That’s been my experience.

  4. The trend is that the winters have been much warmer in the last few years..I’ve lived here since the early 80s, when entire winters were pretty darned cold..Even 10-15 years ago, I remember baseline highs were around or below 60 degrees, for weeks straight, with frequent cold fronts mixed in..For the last several years, I saw typically mild weather in the winter with a handful of chilly days..Feb seems to be our only consistently colder month, in recent years..I am active, and I spend a lot of time outside..
    I don’t have to sit here and argue about climate change..I have my opinion, you have yours..Its a fact though, with each decade winters became warmer here locally, the cold days becoming much fewer, overall..I think this is something easily proven, measurable, by going back and looking at records..

    • We did have some pretty warm winters in the 50s here in Southeast Texas. The warmest January on record for Houston was in 1950. The 50s decade was unusually warm and dry for Texas as a whole. Some of our worst summer heatwaves occurred in the 50s and the 60s. This was before co2 emissions were near as high. Urbanization was not near as pronounced as it is today as well. I’m not saying that co2 emissions are not slowly warming the Earth up. My point is that “unusual” weather events are nothing new. I think that La Nina has more to do with the wacky weather we are seeing lately. This is our 3rd La nina Winter in a row. The polar jet stream tends to stay north of Texas throughout the Winter months during La Nina winters. This keeps the cold air locked to the north and the warm tropical air sits over Texas longer. With El Nino it’s the opposite. We usually see colder and wetter than normal weather during the Winter. A quick google search will tell you all you need to know about the El Nino-Southern Oscillation. Now I do fully believe that our co2 emissions do add some extra spice to this global pattern. I don’t want to be labeled a climate denier. I just think that the overall global weather patterns are still dictated by the constant shift between El Nino and La Nina. I’m sure other factors play a part as well. I am also glad that SCW briefly mentions the climate issue. It is good to have these discussions from time to time.

  5. Enjoy reading the site guys and love the information that you provide. Keep it up into 2023! Anyways, I know its still 2+ weeks away but, are there any early indicators on what our Christmas weather might be like? Hoping for something other than mid-upper 70s and sticky conditions. Would love to have a cold Christmas this year.

  6. I appreciate everything you guys do. Please continue to raise awareness on climate change. Do not let deniers bully you from doing so.

  7. All the people criticizing SCW for bringing up climate change need a reality check. It’s happening. Stop acting like this is normal. This is the second year in a row that we had unusually hot weather in December. If you want to deny reality and continue listening to your Facebook news, no one is stopping you from leaving. You don’t have to announce your departure, because I doubt SCW will care.

    Thank you SCW for bringing awareness. Please keep doing what you do.

  8. LOL! It doesn’t take much to get the crazies out in-force hammering those that like to stay informed rather than just jumping on the Greta bandwagon. Why is it you people hurl insults when challenged rather than being able to actually debate?

    • If you’re interested in debate, provide a single shred of non-debunked peer-reviewed evidence in support of your position.

      You won’t be able to find one, but try anyway.

      You snowflakes really, REALLY need to realize that facts don’t care about your feelings.

    • The only one who seems offended is you. People aren’t hurling insults. I don’t believe the planet is warming because of some little girl. I can scientifically see it. You don’t HAVE to believe what others believe, it’s OK to disagree and not be a jerk about it.

  9. It is a vacuous statement to assert that two warm December weeks in two consecutive years in one city in the world is “consistent with the background warming of climate change.” You could state with equal vacuity that the Texas cold snap of February 2021 is consistent with climate change. Both are true but they don’t prove anything. I had a sore knee last week; that fact is also consistent with climate change.

    If you are really interested in supporting the fact that the Earth’s average temperature has increased by around 1 degree Celsius since 1970, using local data, the you should show LONG TERM TRENDS in average temperatures over the past several decades from several Texas cities.

  10. Interesting how so many comments immediately attacked deniers before they even showed up, almost like a religion.

    • Probably because you guys immediately showed up, like clockwork, and started pushing your religion. And by “religion” here I mean “point of view devoid of factual basis and contradicted by observed reality.”

      Why do ya’ll keep coming back? It’s not like Eric is going to stop talking about facts. Shouldn’t you go find a forecast site more suited to your fantasy views? Maybe a republican site where they blame hurricanes on migrant caravans or something?

      • Read the first comments on here, all attacking people simply because they don’t agree with them. That’s not Science, that’s religion. Science should not be a final case closed subject, but ever evolving and open to debate, yet anytime someone questions sacred climate change they’re mocked and ridiculed. I mean, just look at what you wrote. “Why do we keep coming back?” Do you realize how snooty and close-minded you sound. Guess all us “republicans” (which i’m not but i suppose we’re all the same to you) should be banned from public discussion so we won’t infect society with our misinformation. Believe it or not, there are those who enjoy the weather without politics, and yes it is politics.

        • Right – science SHOULD be ever evolving and open to debate. Which is why when you denialist ding-dongs show up and try to spread your BS, you get shut down.

          You’re not trying to add to the discussions. Anthropogenic climate change is a fact. What you’re trying to do is litigate REALITY.

          You’re not trying to debate—you’re raising discarded, disproven arguments and trying to pass them off as worth of discussion.

          It’s not politics. It’s reality. Just because you don’t like it and disagree doesn’t make it so.

          Cite ONE peer-reviewed, non-debunked study that supports your position. One. We’ll wait. We’ll be waiting forever, and the reason is there IS none. Your position is unsupported by fact.

          And THAT’S why people aren’t willing to “debate” with you. Because how do you debate with someone whose argument is based on falsity?

  11. Climate change is such a threat that countries like the US, Canada, the UK, Germany, France, etc. agree to strict regulations while giving countries like China a waiver because everyone knows who the global master is. If the scheme of climate change wasn’t a redistribution plan, countries like China would not receive waivers, instead they would be held to the same standard.

    The main reason why greenhouse gas emissions have been significantly reduced in the US is due to replacing coal with natural gas. The same oil and gas industry that many vilify, has provided the US with an abundance of cheap and plentiful natural gas which benefits our daily lives. Many countries in Europe are now classifying natural gas as green energy after realizing that they can’t rely on energy sources like wind, solar, and hydro for all of their energy needs. I didn’t include nuclear because many European countries are decommissioning or planning to decommission nuclear power plants.

    The climate has always been in a constant state of change, but the scheme wasn’t introduced until some figured out that they could make a buck and control people. The first sign that someone is being an alarmist is when they claim to not be an alarmist.

    • I do think Oil and Gas companies are vital parts of a solution and Natural Gas as a fuel source is much better than coal. The world will always need hydrocarbons but burning them as wastefully as we have has had dire consequences for our future as a species. There are no countries only people and whether you believe that’s political or monetary driven is of no consequence to the planet that cannot adjust to the drastic shifts in climate.

      People will be alive and find a way to survive. Not sure about the rest..

      • The points made about Natural Gas and nuclear power in Europe are confused. The EU government seeks to classify nuclear and natural gas “green” power to unlock subsidies for projects. Lots of experts and even policy makers are opposed to the idea because natural gas isn’t “green” and still produces plenty of emissions and, of course, we all know about the dangers of nuclear power. There is just as much of a call for sustainable energy in Europe, but money and politics intervene, as they always do. Please do not make it sound like Europeans have a different outlook on energy than we do. In fact, scientifically and politically, it’s the same. Science says sustainable energy is the way too go, politics follows the money.

        However, the measures are expected to pass because member states will be able to get funding for green projects. Cheap energy wins over clean energy

  12. looking forward to the chilly weather! It’d be nice to have some moderate temps and low humidity so I can open the windows, but that’s just alright with me. Crank up the oven and let’s get baking! Maybe some slowcookers or some cast iron dishes to warm the house right up.

  13. You knew what you were doing and I’m not surprised that what is usually 8 comments on a given day is, so far, in excess of 40. November had 15 days of above average temperatures and 15 days of below average temperatures. I don’t know that any day was the “average” high or low based on the records. I will note, that every year when I put up the Christmas tree in Houston, I do it in shorts and a t-shirt. Yesterday was no different and the AC was blowing on me too.

    However, I’m not going to write everything off as a one-time anomaly that will never happen again. We are in a cycle —for however long — of colder colds, hotter hots, wetter wets and drier dries. Denying that the climate is changing is “fake news”

  14. Thanks SCW for the data-drive/fact based reports. I know you guys don’t like to stir the pot, and a lot of my Oil and Gas friend’s get scared about their livelihoods when Climate Change is brought up.

    I appreciate you guys and giving us the no nonsense version of weather reports. Let the rest go bury their head’s in the sand and believe what Exxon said “We’re coming out of an Ice age..this is normal” even though records show they knew the truth and were lying. source: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/exxon-knew-about-climate-change-almost-40-years-ago/

    All I want for Xmas is cold weather! Happy Holidays!

  15. It’s sad that you can’t even use the word climate change without people foaming at the mouth and coming at you with pitchforks. YOU are the scientist here, not these armchair internet “scientists”.

    • A lot of people are scientists. Doesn’t mean much these days.

      Weather manipulation isn’t made-up. You can look up the 100 US parents on weather modification since the 1800s. You can pull up the Air Force PDF from the 90s that talks about owning the weather. You could look at the obvious evidence of nexrad satellites warming the atmosphere. Or you could listen to Eric Berger sprinkle it casually in his forecasts and assume it’s all just a benign thing that happens to be and “oh dear we need to do our part to save the planet”. Of course we do, but not by eating cockroaches. Exposing the weather manipulators is part of that. They need to stop. It’s not about denying climate change. They sure are trying to “change the climate”, whatever their motives may be is for each their own speculation. It’s about touting the jargon they want you to parrot without at least considering it’s not the “climate change” they want you to think it is.

  16. Bravo, Brooke! I’ve looked over those patents before, and it’s quite enlightening! I knew it was going on, but didn’t realize it has been a thing for so long! And since we’re all Texans here, it may interest others to check out the Texas(dot gov) website and look over Texas’s own regulations on how they use weather manipulation. It’s no secret that this is done. You just have to do your own research instead of being spoonfed by MSM.

  17. What happened to a real discussion about the climate
    The are many scientists, including Dr. Neal Frank, former head of National Hurrican Center, who isn’t buring the global warming Fact, but one theory about the changing climate.Many millions of Christian’s understand the climate is mostly driven by high and low pressure systems which affect the areas we live in. In the end, the main plague affecting our world is not weather. But the EVIL mankind has caused due our selfish desires and attempts to play God.
    My man concern is the spiritual condition of all mankind. This Earth has an expirstion date, but only GOD knows that Date. So. Enjoy each day GOD gives us.

  18. No mention of Dallas having the earliest recorded snowfall on November 18th or Northern Hemisphere snowfall at record highs. Sierra snowpack at 200% before winter. If you are going to claim climate change every time IAH sets a record I’m going to toss my vacuum flask. UAH only +.17c per decade. Pause now 8 years long. How about focusing on the meteorological reasons for the heat. Otherwise a nice site. Thanks.

  19. I think mentions of climate change distract from your “Hype-free forecast” brand. For one, weather and climate are not the same thing. Weather is highly variable and climate deals with long term trends. But the bigger problem is that breaking yesterdays record by 4F means nothing if the record high on Dec. 9th is 87F. Such variability in daily records shows we probably don’t have enough data points to truly represent what’s within the range of normal for any given day. We need to use some type of statistical analysis approximate that range of normal. How many standard deviations is 85F from the mean temperature for that day/week/month? From a quick look at Hobby records, it would seems that 83F-85F is feasible all year around. Breaking a record high by a degree or two isn’t all that significant……if we started hitting 100F in December, that would definitely be shocking.

    The other issue is that 8 decades ago, the land composition around Hobby Airport was likely much different. Probably more greenery back then vs more asphalt today. On top of that, I doubt they use the exact same thermometer to capture this data, and the calibration of such recording devices is probably also much different today than over the past. Which once again, brings into question is breaking above the range of possible normal temps mean all that much?

    • Do you realize how condescending your response sounds as you try to quote 4th grade textbook language to literal meteorologists. I’ve never understood the armchair arrogance that so many climate change deniers feel entitled to. Do you people attempt to lecture your doctors about the causes of high cholesterol when they tell you to lay off the meat and sedentary lifestyles? Do you go to the cockpit of a plane when the captain turns on the fasten seatbelt sign to argue it’s not necessary?

      This is their job and their background. They are the experts, so why pretend that you are entitled to any type debate with them just because something doesn’t fit your narrative?

      • A meteorologist isn’t a climate expert, just as my doctor isn’t a dietitian. Sure each profession might take a class on the subject in school, but that hardly make them an expert on the subject. My skepticism is a result of these types of thin statements/arguments made by all over the general media on the subject. “Oh a record high, must be climate change!”

        But really, this is about their branding. How does that sentence add to their forecast? The record high in December at Hobby has reached 85F 5 other times and the lowest value for the month is 81F. Hitting 85F is hardly outside the range of highs for the month of December, so it isn’t even outside the norm. The sentence was only placed their for the purpose of sensationalism…..aka, hype.

        Also, if they didn’t want readers to engage with them, they wouldn’t have a comment section. There whole brand is to provide an accurate forecast to non-meteorologists.

  20. October was 1.8 degrees below normal.

    Not official yet but November will be between 1.5 and 2 degrees below normal.

    I’m not saying man is not having an effect but the planet is doing exactly what it has done in every “interglacial” period in our history.

    It’s warming.

  21. People love a good argument don’t they? Just wanted to chime in and thank Eric and Matt and SCW for all they do.

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