The National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) released their numbers for 2014 and Illinois ended up at 49.5 degrees and the 6th coldest year on record for Illinois. Other Midwestern and southern states experienced one of the 10 coldest years for their particular state. Meanwhile, many of the western states experienced one of their warmest years on record. In fact, the two extremes cancelled out leaving the US ranked as the 34th warmest on record.
This result differs from an earlier post where I calculated the 2014 temperature at 49.4 degrees (0.1 degrees colder) based on available data right at the start of the new year. This new calculation moved us from 4th to 6th place in the list. I normally defer to the NCDC numbers and rankings as the final answer on the subject. However, it’s important to keep in mind that their numbers are preliminary as well so the final number and ranking may not be settled for another month or two as more data arrives and is processed.