In 117 years of weather keeping in the United States, 2012 has really stood out.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration charted weather trends and found that the "… January-July period was the warmest first seven months of any year on record for the contiguous United States. The national temperature of 56.4°F was 4.3°F above the long-term average."
The NOAA reported that July has been the hottest on record for the US, with the average temperature at 77.6°F, 3.3°F above the 20th century average.
A drought has covered nearly 63% of the Lower 48 and wildfires have consumed two million acres.