Climate Extremes: Frigid Arctic Air coldest globe has seen in 30 years
The Arctic Blast of January 4-9th 2010
The strong winds will create blowing and drifting snow which is likely to lead to dangerous travel. Bitter cold air will keep the mercury from rising above zero in the Dakotas, northern Nebraska and western Minnesota Thursday. The windy conditions will combine with the cold temperatures allow wind chills to bottom out in the -20s, -30s and even -40s across these states. Farther east, highs will range from the 0s and 10s in the upper-Mississippi Valley to the 20s in the Great Lakes and Ohio Valley. By Friday morning, lows from Kansas and western Missouri northward to the Dakotas and Minnesota will be below zero. The coldest readings, -20s and -30s, are expected in the Dakotas and northern Minnesota.
Europe: Records shatter as arctic weather grips Europe
VIENNA, Austria- Vienna’s subway tracks cracked, German authorities shut a key canal to ships after it iced up, and a zoo moved its penguins indoors Tuesday as a deadly deep freeze tightened its arctic grip on much of Europe. The killer cold wave, which has been blamed for more than 50 deaths in Russia, claimed at least 13 lives in the past five days in the former Soviet republic of Moldova, where authorities said another 30 people — many of them homeless — were hospitalized with hypothermia. Romanian authorities reported 15 deaths in the past few days, five of them homeless people, after temperatures dropped as low as minus 22 degrees. Parts of Austria felt more like Siberia, with the mercury plunging well below zero. The bitter cold hit an all-time low of minus 24 degrees in the Lower Austria town of Gross Gerungs, while in the beer-making town of Zwettl, it was minus 12 — the chilliest Jan. 24 since 1929. Berlin Germany was experiencing Wednesday the coldest weather in more than 20 years, with overnight temperatures dropping below minus 20 degrees centigrade.–MSNBC
Scientists fear Earth’s climate now spinning into chaos
“Much of the Northern Hemisphere is in the grip of arctic air and record snowfalls that have been inflicting hardship and havoc from China to Russia to Western Europe and over to the American Plains. Meanwhile, the Southern Hemisphere has been experiencing a warmer than average summer. Planet-wide, the weather has become remarkably unpredictable. There are few precedents for the global sweep of extreme cold and ice that has killed dozens in India, paralyzed life in Beijing and threatened the Florida orange crop. Chicagoans are taking shelter from a potentially deadly freeze, Paris is enduring sunny Siberian cold and Poland has counted at least 13 deaths in record low temperatures of about 13 degrees below zero. A string of deadly avalanches in northern Italy's Alps led to seven deaths. In northeastern Asia, they are suffering the worst winter weather in six decades. More than 10 inches of snow cover Seoul, the South Korean capital -- the heaviest snowfall since records began in 1937.
But life in the warmer parts of the planet is equally off-kilter. 2009 was the hottest year in history in most parts of South Asia and Central Africa. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported in September that the world's ocean surface temperature was the warmest for any August on record, according to a preliminary analysis based on records dating back to 1880. The United Nations' weather agency, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), reported on the second day of last month's Copenhagen climate conference that the last decade was on track to become the warmest since records began in 1850. 2009 could rank among the top-five warmest years, the U.N. weather agency said. Overall, this fall and winter are shaping up to be off-average worldwide. According to the NOAA, from Dec. 13 to 19, below-average temperatures were observed throughout Canada, Europe, western Russia, and eastern Asia -- although above-average temperatures were observed in Africa. From Dec. 27 to Jan. 2, below-average temperatures were observed over the eastern U.S., central Russia, and northeast Asia -- and above-average temperatures were observed over northeast Canada, northern Africa, and southern Europe." (excerpts) –Fox News: Why Mother Nature has gone bonkers