Extreme Temperatures

Eggs Fried

Prince Charles ignorantly labels global warming skeptics as "headless chickens" - response from Lord Monckton

© Wattupwiththat
The royal prince in waiting of Britain labels climate skeptics as "headless chickens"

From The Telegraph:
Prince Charles has criticised climate change deniers, describing them as the "headless chicken brigade" during an awards ceremony recognising a leading young green entrepreneur.
Charles, who has campaigned for years to reduce global warming, also spoke out against "the barrage of sheer intimidation" from powerful anti-climate change groups during the event held at Buckingham Palace last night.
The mark of a true leader is bringing people with diverse views and backgrounds together, clearly with this recent pronouncement, Prince Charles clearly has failed as a leader.

I'll point out a few things the prince who may be king should know, but doesn't, or chooses not to.

1. Rational climate skeptics don't doubt that some portion of the proposed greenhouse effect is real, it's just that nobody (and that includes many scientists) seems to be able to agree upon how much. The few who actually deny the Greenhouse effect exists, such as the "Slayers" aka "Principia Scientific" only represent the views of a fringe.


20-inch snow dump burying parts of Northeast in massive winter storm

snow clearing
© AP Don Hammond of Newtown shovels his driveway as snow continues to fall in Connecticut on February 13

As if the East Coast hadn't gotten the point by now, Mother Nature drove it home yet again -- that this is winter, hear it roar.

The storm that threw down a concoction of sleet, snow and freezing rain over the South is pounding an icy path from Philadelphia to Maine Friday.

It is burying many places in the Northeast under up to 20 inches of total snow accumulation, the Nation Weather Service says.

The skies will be teeming with flakes falling at a rate of 2-3 inches per hour in the northernmost regions. Massive piles of snow will become a stumbling block to most people there.

But closer to Philadelphia, freezing rain could make things dangerously slick, the weather service said.

Winter storm wallops Northeast Snowplow kills pregnant woman in NYC Vehicles slipping and sliding in the storm Storm might ruin Valentine's Day

Even in the North, where people are more accustom to dealing with winter's trickery than their compatriots farther South, fast-falling snow on Thursday caused tractor-trailers to jackknife. It prompted authorities in New York to ban commercial traffic on Interstate 84 -- a major east-west highway running through the state.


Where's the snow? On the ground in 49 of 50 states

Snowstorm in Washington
© Michael Reynolds, epaThe Washington Monument is barely visible behind visitors to the Lincoln Memorial in Washington on Feb. 13.

Some snow is on the ground at the highest elevations of the Big Island of Hawaii.

Snow is on the ground in 49 out of the 50 states - only the Sunshine State of Florida is completely snow-free, according to a map produced Thursday morning by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

(This doesn't mean that those 49 states are snow-covered, of course, only that some part of each state has snow.)

Although this map doesn't show it, there is snow in Hawaii, where webcams are showing snow on the high peaks of the mountain volcanoes of Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea.

HAWAII SNOW: Webcam from peak of volcano

The map also doesn't include Alaska, but it's a given that most of that state is snow-covered this time of year. A quick check with the National Weather Service forecast office in Fairbanks found 19 inches of snow on the ground there.

There doesn't appear to be much snow on the ground in Texas or Louisiana, and with the forecast of mild temperatures, it doesn't figure to last much longer there, if it even makes it through the day Thursday.

The map shows how sparse the snow is in parts of the West, as only small parts of Nevada, Arizona and New Mexico are showing snow because of the ongoing drought and warmth.

How dry and warm has it been in the Southwest so far this winter? January 2014 was the driest January ever recorded in New Mexico, while Arizona had its second-driest January on record, according to data released Thursday by the National Climatic Data Center.

As for warmth, both Arizona and New Mexico, along with California, had a top-10 warm January.

Snowflake Cold

Storm engulfs US east coast as havoc persists in South

Capitol Hill
© Getty Images

A huge snow storm is blanketing the densely populated US North-east, after wreaking havoc in the South.

Across the typically mild South, more than half a million homes and businesses lack power, and thousands of flights have been cancelled.

The weather system has affected people in about 22 states from Texas to Maine and caused a dozen deaths.

The storm dumped more than 12in (30cm) of snow in the Washington DC region, before descending on New York.

Snow-covered streets were deserted during the morning commute in the nation's capital, where the federal government shut down its offices.

Ten to 20 inches of snow could fall from north-eastern Pennsylvania to New England on Thursday, said the National Weather Service.

Nearly 5,000 flights were cancelled by Thursday morning, according to airline-tracking website FlightAware.com.

Ice Cube

U.S. Bone-chilling winter blast wipes out power to 300,000 in southern states

Deep freeze
An army of emergency crews were gearing up for battle Wednesday with a vicious ice storm in Georgia that had already cut off power for tens of thousands of people across a long arm of the Southeast and left the streets of Atlanta looking like a sci-fi wasteland.

Nearly 300,000 customers across Louisiana, Arkansas, Texas, Mississippi, Alabama and the Carolinas were without power early Wednesday. But Georgia was bearing the brunt of the wicked weather, with more than 200,000 customers in the dark Wednesday after frozen tree limbs slashed power lines, while emergency planners urged drivers across the state to stay off "deceptively dangerous" roads.

Metro Atlanta was a veritable ghost town as an eerie calm settled over desolate streets slick with ice. The highways were deserted as freezing rain and ferocious wind gusts kept drivers at home. At local retailers, shoppers scrambled to stock up on supplies before the brunt of the storm came crashing down.


Winter storm wallops the Southern U.S.; 4 killed in Texas

© AP Photo/ Atlanta Journal & Constitution, Curtis Compton
The city dodged the first punch of a dangerous winter storm Tuesday, but forecasters warned of a potentially "catastrophic" second blow in the form of a thick layer of ice that threatened to bring hundreds of thousands of power outages and leave people in their cold, dark homes for days.

The streets and highways in metro Atlanta were largely deserted as people in the South's business hub heeded advice from officials to hunker down at home, especially after the epic snow jam two weeks ago that saw thousands of people stranded on icy, gridlocked roads for hours when two inches of snow fell.

"Last time I was totally unprepared, I was complete blindsided," said Lisa Nadir, of Acworth, who ended up spending the night in her car after sitting in traffic 13 hours when the storm hit Jan. 28. "I'm going to be prepared from now on for the rest of my life."

Nadir was telecommuting from home Tuesday and she had kitty litter in her trunk in case she needed to put it down on icy roads for extra traction.

The forecast drew comparisons to an ice storm in the Atlanta area in 2000 that left more than 500,000 homes and businesses without power and an epic storm in 1973 that caused an estimated 200,000 outages for several days. In 2000, damage estimates topped $35 million.

Ice Cube

Coming Winter storm in U.S. 'could be biggest of the season'

© Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
A major winter storm is expected to barrel up the East Coast mid-week, bringing a potentially significant snowfall to the already winter weary Washington region.

The powerful Nor'easter will blow into the mid-Atlantic region sometime after dark Wednesday is forecast to dump between 6 inches and a foot of snow on the area before blowing north Thursday afternoon.

"There's even a chance of more than a foot, especially just north and west of the District," meteorologist Bill Deger said.

WUSA 9 meteorologist Topper Shutt also believes the storm has the potential to be a monster.

"This could be the biggest storm of the season," said Shutt.

A mix of rain and sleet could decrease accumulations in southern Maryland and eastern Virginia, but the immediate Washington region should primarily see snow.

A Winter Storm Watch has been issued for the entire D.C. and Baltimore metro areas from 7 p.m. Wednesday to 10 p.m. Thursday. A Winter Storm Watch means there is a potential for significant snow accumulations that may impact travel, according to the National Weather Service.


North Carolina DOT preparing roads for winter storm

© WSOCDOT prepares for winter storm.
North Carolina Department of Transportation crews were back on the roads early Monday morning, preparing them for the snow that is expected to fall in the coming days. They already treated some of the major roads Sunday.

Crews will be gassing up trucks and heading out on the roads all morning to pour more brine.

An NCDOT spokesperson said they have replenished their salt supply and are ready to go. Meanwhile, as people are re-stocking ahead of the winter storm, they said supplies are hard to find.

"If it gets bad, I'm just going to stay indoors because the traffic will be horrible," LaToya Patterson said.

Patterson spent her Sunday getting supplies for the storm.

"Last time I was out without a shovel, and now I have a shovel," Patterson said. "So now the only problem is finding salt."

At the Lowe's on Perimeter Parkway, shovels, generators, and gloves were laid out for customers, but salt was nowhere to be found. The store ran out after the last winter storm, and since this storm is happening so soon after, Lowe's hasn't been able to restock.

Snowflake Cold

Chicago nearing record for days below zero

© Scott Olson/Getty ImagesWith temperatures hovering around -10 degrees steam rises from Lake Michigan January 27, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois.
With temperatures plunging below zero again overnight, Chicagoans were starting another work week in frigid conditions, and the city was approaching the record for number of days of subzero cold.

As Monday morning's temperature dipped to 3 below zero at O'Hare International Airport, Chicago now has had 20 days of below zero temperatures this winter. Temperatures were even colder in the outlying suburbs, where it was up to 14 below in Aurora and McHenry, and 13 below in Kankakee.

Only six winters on record have had more days of below zero weather in Chicago: 1884-85, 1935-36, 1962-63, 1981-82, 1874-75, and 1978-79.

The record for most days of below zero temperatures was set in the winter of 1884-85, when there were 25 such days. With more than a month left until the first day of Spring, and at least one more day of subzero temperatures this week, it's quite likely Chicago will break that record.


Cold winter brings rare seagull invasion on Allegheny River, Pittsburgh

The extremely cold winter we're having is affecting wildlife and causing a rare sight in Pittsburgh.

People are now gathering nightly to watch thousands of seagulls that have converged on the Allegheny River, not far from Heinz Field.

While seagulls are normally around here, Bob Mulvihill from the National Aviary in Pittsburgh says what's going on right now is very rare.

There's an estimated flock of as many as 8,000 gulls that congregate each evening on the Allegheny River and what's most abnormal is how far some of them have traveled.

"It's very uncommon to have the conditions that lead to this kind of concentration," said Mulvihill. "These birds will stay on the Great Lakes until they freeze over, and then, they hesitatingly go south looking for some open water."

But he and the other birdwatchers that have started gathering in the evenings to examine the rare sight, say a few of the gulls are from very far away - some from the arctic. The same areas as polar bears.

Comment: For the last couple of months, across the northern hemisphere, extremely cold weather conditions have been driving many wintering Arctic and boreal bird species much further south than is usual. These include Snowy Owls recorded in Hawaii and Bermuda!! Additionally, many are turning up in unprecedented numbers. This all points to a probable return of the Ice Age. See also this selection: Rare Arctic bird turns up in Darwin, Australia

UK storms bring in rare Arctic gulls to Pembrokeshire

Storm blows Canadian bird 3,000 miles on to Tyrone lough, Northern Ireland

Bird watchers flock to Portland, UK after a rare Arctic Brunnich's Guillemot spotted

Ice Age Cometh: Snowy Owl invasion coming in North America?

Maine experiencing a Canadian owl invasion

Incredible Hawk Owl invasion in Estonia!

Huge Snowy Owl invasion becomes official in Canada and U.S.

Thousands of Hawk Owls descend on Finland as food in northern Russia runs out

Ice Age Cometh: Unprecedented influx of Arctic Ivory Gulls into UK