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Warm temperatures break records in Vermont, New York

People on a sandy beach in front of water.
Liam Elder-Connors
Vermont Public File
In this file photo from June 2020, beach goers enjoy some sun at North Beach in Burlington. Record-setting temperatures yesterday, April. 14, 2023, also sent many residents to Lake Champlain's sandy shores.

The National Weather Service in Burlington says the first warm day of the year yesterday broke temperature records in multiple communities.

Burlington hit 88 degrees Fahrenheit — four degrees higher than the previous record set in 1945 — and the earliest in the year Burlington has hit 88.

Plattsburgh, New York also hit 88 — blowing past its previous record of 84 degrees set in 1968.

Montpelier and Massena, New York both hit 81 yesterday. That's two degrees higher than the previous record of 79 set in 1968 in both communities.

While the warm weather was welcome for many after a long winter, it's also in line with what Vermont is already experiencing with climate change.

Temperatures in Vermont have risen about 2 degrees Fahrenheit since the beginning of the 20th century, according to the state's most recent climate assessment.

More from Vermont Public: Poll finds most Vermonters expect major impacts from climate change in the next 30 years

Winter temperatures have increased 2.5 times faster than average annual temperatures since 1960. Vermont is also seeing wetter conditions. Data show precipitation has increased 21% since 1900.

Climate change in Vermont

Federal and state officials also warned this week that while air temperatures may be up, water temperatures in lakes and rivers remain very cold and immersion could quickly lead to hypothermia or death.

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Corrected: April 14, 2023 at 10:09 AM EDT
A previous version of this story misspelled Plattsburgh.
Brittany Patterson joined Vermont Public in December 2020. Previously, she was an energy and environment reporter for West Virginia Public Broadcasting and the Ohio Valley ReSource. Prior to that, she covered public lands, the Interior Department and forests for E&E News' ClimateWire, based in Washington, D.C. Brittany also teaches audio storytelling and has taught classes at West Virginia University, Saint Michael's College and the University of Vermont. She holds degrees in journalism from San Jose State University and U.C. Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism. A native of California, Brittany has fallen in love with Vermont. She enjoys hiking, skiing, baking and cuddling with her rescues, a 95-pound American Bulldog mix named Cooper, and Mila, the most beautiful calico cat you'll ever meet.
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