The year 2012 ties with 2006 for the warmest on record in Dallas, says the National Weather Service.
This may surprise north Texans who endured the record-setting heat of 2011; even though the summer of 2012 had less intense heat, the year overall was slightly warmer.
Nationally, it was the warmest year on record outright, with reliable climate data going back to the late 1800s in many places.
Some people do not accept that human-produced carbon dioxide and other gases may contribute to this warming, but there's little doubt that temperatures are warmer now than at any time in the past 500 years.
Longer-term records through pollen and ice cores are less precise, but they also point to the past few decades of warmth possibly being the greatest in tens of thousands of years.