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Anchorage reaches 50 degrees amid record warmth for Alaska

CBS News logo CBS News 3/31/2019 CBSNews
a boat parked next to a body of water: Alaska Wilderness Road © James Brooks/Kodiak Daily Mirror via AP Alaska Wilderness Road

Alaska had unusually high temperatures on Saturday, with record-tying temperature of 50 degrees at Anchorage International Airport, the National Weather Service said. This is the 18th straight day of seeing temperatures above 40 degrees, CBS Anchorage affiliate KDKA reports.

March had seven record-high temperatures at Anchorage International Airport, the National Weather Service said. 

As of 10 a.m., Anchorage ended 102 consecutive days with snow on the ground, the National Weather Service said. If this is the end of snow for the season, it will the fourth earliest meltout on record. The earliest meltout was March 22, 2016. 

The warmth is all part of a rapid, long-term trend in Alaska, CBSN contributing meteorologist Jeff Berardelli reported. In the past 50 years, the city of Barrow on the northern tip of Alaska has seen an 11-degree spike in its average yearly temperature. By comparison, the average global rise in temperature since the late 1800s has been about 2 degrees.  

According to the 2018 National Climate Assessment Alaska "is among the fastest warming regions on Earth." It is warming two to three times faster than the rest of the lower 48 states and faces a myriad of issues associated with a changing climate." .

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