The government is now certain about what farmers, boaters and just about everybody else already knew: it's been dry.
A government report out today is confirming that the drought parching the West and Southeast spread into the Mid-Atlantic states last month. The National Climate Data Center says 43 percent of the country -- not including Hawaii and Alaska -- is in moderate to extreme drought.
The agency also says it's been one of the world's warmest years ever. Temperatures on land have been the warmest on record, while over the oceans it's been the seventh warmest. Overall that works out to the fourth warmest year worldwide.
The worldwide warming has reduced the extent of Arctic Sea ice to its lowest September amount since satellite measurements began in 1979.
For the U.S., the report says September was hot enough to break 1,000 daily high records across the country.