Yes, it was warmest year on record...

DESPITE a dismal, damp summer in 2007, Irish weather for the year was the warmest ever since records began 115 years ago.

The year saw several records broken, while the highest wave ever was recorded off the west coast last month.

Average air temperatures for 2007 were one degree above normal. In fact, it was the warmest year on record at several weather stations, including Belmullet, Rosslare and Kilkenny.

At Valentia Observatory and Malin Head, it was the warmest year since records began in 1892 and 1885respectively. April was the warmest month, while exceptionally warm temperatures also occurred during the autumn months.

The lowest air and ground temperatures of the year were recorded during a cold snap in early February.

However, the summer also saw unprecedented floods of rain.

June, July and August were exceptionally wet, especially in the east, where more than twice the normal rainfall was recorded at some stations.

Annual sunshine totals were above normal everywhere, with Malin Head and Belmullet recording their sunniest years since 1968.

According to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in the US, the global average surface temperature has risen between 0.6C and 0.7C since the start of the century.

Meanwhile, record climate conditions during December saw the highest wave ever recorded off the Irish coast.

The striking record was set off the west coast, where a wave measuring 17.2 metres — the height of Dublin’s General Post Office — was registered.

The giant wave was clocked by a weather buoy at midnight on December 9, some 300km off the west coast.

Sunshine levels were above normal in most places for December, especially in the east. Dublin airport’s total of 71 hours for the winter month was more than twice that in the south and west.

Elsewhere, localised flooding was seen in the first 10 days of the month, with significant rain in the west and southwest. Met Éireann have recorded Christmas week brought a return to windy and wet conditions.

Overall during the month, shoppers and those travelling home battled sharp winds.

These were the highest for December for between eight and 24 years in many places. The highest gust, 68 knots (126km/h), was at Belmullet on December 4.

Many parts of the country also saw thunder and while hail was recorded on several days, the only snow was at Knock on December 28.

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