Over 50% of the USA is now covered in snow

UPDATE: The East coast snowstorm seen from space

Snow storm buries the U.S. East Coast

Image: NASA Earth Observatory - click for hi-res version

The Mid-Atlantic states were completely white on Sunday, December 20, 2009, in the wake of a record-breaking snow storm. The storm deposited between 12 and 30 inches of snow in Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C. on December 19, according to the National Weather Service. For many locations, the snowfall totals broke records for the most snow to fall in a single December day.

The storm shut down the federal government in Washington DC, stranded travelers, left hundreds of thousands without power and sharply cut holiday sales the weekend before Christmas.

=======

From the “weather is not climate” department here’s interesting news from the National Operational Hyrdologic Remote Sensing Center. While certainly not unprecedented or unusual, it is interesting, especially when comparing years past:

Indeed, it looks like a white Christmas for much of the USA. Here’s the data:

December 21, 2009

Area Covered By Snow: 51.7%
Area Covered Last Month: 8.0%
Snow Depth
Average: 3.8 in
Minimum: 0.0 in
Maximum: 887.0 in
Std. Dev.: 6.4 in
Snow Water Equivalent
Average: 0.7 in
Minimum: 0.0 in
Maximum: 435.0 in
Std. Dev.: 1.4 in

Their weather summary indicates more snow on the way:

One to 3 feet of snow fell in the western Plains yesterday, while up to 1/2 inch of freezing rain fell in the central Plains. The precipitation was in response to a potent upper low in the Southern Plains and an associated surface low, which caused upslope flow conditions. The heaviest snowfall amounts were observed in the Colorado Front Range and in the Sangre de Cristo mountains of New Mexico. Strong surface winds in these areas caused much blowing and drifting snow.

Most of the snowpack across the West and western Plains is cool, with cold conditions at the lower elevations of the Great Basin. In the central Plains, where rain and snow fell yesterday, the snowpack there is warm, but snowmelt occurred along the southeastern edge of the central U.S. snowpack. Very warm conditions exist on the windward side of the Cascades where warm onshore flow occurred yesterday; slow snowmelt occurred there. Strong surface winds caused high blowing snow sublimation in the Western Plains from southeastern Wyoming and the Nebraska panhandle southward to northeastern New Mexico.

The upper low, currently over the Central Plains, will move slowly northeastward during the next three days, passing through the Great Lakes region by Sunday. A surface low will accompany the system. Little additional deepening of the system is expected since it appears that dry air is wrapping around the system. But on the cold side of the low, about 1/2 foot of snowfall is expected today in northeastern Colorado through southwestern Minnesota today. Heavier amounts are expected in orographically-favored areas of the Western Plains and northern Front Range. Snowfall is expected in the eastern part of the Upper Midwest and south of western Lake Superior. Up to 1/2 foot of snowfall is possible in this band with higher amounts snowfall likely in northwestern Wisconsin and the Michigan Upper Peninsula.

A deep surface low just off the central British Columbia coast has a cold front extending southward through the Northwest. Onshore flow behind the cold front and midlevel dynamics associated with the front will bring up to a foot of snowfall to the Cascades, Intermountains, Northern Rockies, and northern Sierra Nevada today and from northwestern Wyoming through southern Utah tomorrow. Another front will bring 4 to 8 inches of snow to the Cascades on Saturday.


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160 thoughts on “Over 50% of the USA is now covered in snow

  1. Just please hold off more snow in the midwest till Thursday! Im driving wednesday from NW arkansas to North Indiana, but the worst part is my winter tires were on backorder…so im driving a 400hp car with summer only tires….could be intresting..

  2. I assume the snow covered portion includes Alaska, but not Hawaii.

    For kicks, is there any indication of how this compares to average for this time of year?

  3. It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas
    Ev’rywhere you go;
    Take a look in the five and ten glistening once again
    With candy canes and silver lanes aglow.
    It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas
    Toys in ev’ry store
    But the prettiest sight to see is the holly that will be
    On your own front door.

  4. Emmmmm, Ireland has a wide-spread but not too heavy snowfall covering some 60% of the Northern and Western regions. The United Kingdom has a spot of snow ………could this be the sky falling ?

  5. Ummm –

    The Western Plains are mostly snow free.
    They certainly didn’t get 1 to 3 feet of snow yesterday.

    “One to 3 feet of snow fell in the western Plains yesterday, while up to 1/2 inch of freezing rain fell in the central Plains”

    The linky you have is to a map from Dec 2006 – not 2009.
    In fact, Burlington, COlorado had a high of 53 degrees yesterday with clear skies.

  6. OT: They are so desperate to see sunspots are Spaceweather.com that they use a purple filter to spot the micro-specs.

  7. John Egan (14:13:12) :

    No, the map is dated 2009-12-21. The 06 on the end seems to be an unrelated number.

  8. Joe Romm has a posting blaming the big weekend snowstorm on global warming. I know that global cooling is a far more serious matter than global warming but I am praying for a “little ice age” to shut up all of these AGW alarmists, especially Romm and his ilk.

  9. I understand that cold-related deaths are beginning to rise. Not only those where cold is peripherally involved, like car crashes, but direct freezing-to-death type deaths.

    The BBC is a bit coy about drawing attention to the dangers of the cold. We got inundated with messages about carrying water and staying in the shade during the two days in the summer when it was hot, but there seems to be an unacountable shortage of warnings about similar precautions to take in Global Cooling weather.

    So for all those rural drinkers out there, I’d like to warn them not to sit down for a short rest while walking back from the pub across the snowy fields on a cold night. It’s quite a painless way to die, and you probably won’t notice you’re doing it…

  10. Frank K. (14:13:08) :

    Remember – the theory of global warming states that MORE snow is a sure sign of global warming!

    Confirmed by BBC Radio 5 Live in a very weak interview by Peter Allen, leading questions by a true believer, gave Hillary Benn the easiest interview “extreme events are symptoms of climate change” answer he’s ever likely to get.

    If it wasn’t so sad it would have been funny.

  11. vboring (14:04:53) :

    “I assume the snow covered portion includes Alaska, but not Hawaii.”

    Not on the map, but

    “Around noon Sunday, the Mauna Kea Access Road closed because of snow and ice. The closure will remain in effect until crews can remove the snow and ice from the road, as well as evaluate the conditions and deem the route safe for traveling, according to Mauna Kea Observatories Support Services.

    The National Weather Service in Honolulu stated snowfall accumulations of up to 5 inches were possible on Big Island summits, where temperatures have typically been in the mid-20s at night.”

    http://www.westhawaiitoday.com/articles/2009/12/21/local/local01.txt

    There’s mention of a daily rainfall record broken as well.

  12. I’m just waiting for January when the usual suspects announce that 2009 was one of the hottest years on record. Right in the middle of the pantomime season so all together now: “Oh no it wasn’t!”

    If they try that one the chorus of laughter, even from the real believers in the media might become deafening.

  13. I bet by spring the driveway shovelers will have had their fill of all the global warming.

    It was in the upper 40s in SWFL last night and that’s cold. We jsut aren’t built for that.

  14. Joe Romm is having a surge. He is in full panic attack on Climate Progress. News busters noticed his rant and Climate depot came out. He of course lied. When they claim fires and drought, it can’t at the same time be cold and wet. It is very cold and wet in new Orleans this month. We need to call them on coplld and wet being proof of their forecasts of hot and dry.

    Their “theory” is all wet. Since they have no science, they can’t prove their emotional claims.

    And people are dying. More cold deaths this winter than there have been heat deaths in Arizona in decades.

  15. “A deep surface low just off the central British Columbia coast has a cold front extending southward through the Northwest.”

    I just knew that sooner or later, someone would “Blame Canada”!

  16. The heaviest snowfall amounts were observed in the Colorado Front Range…

    Something’s wrong here, no snow for days now in Denver.

  17. @Chuck L (14:22:43) :
    “Joe Romm has a posting blaming the big weekend snowstorm on global warming. I know that global cooling is a far more serious matter than global warming but I am praying for a “little ice age” to shut up all of these AGW alarmists, especially Romm and his ilk.”

    Ask not the gods for what you want, lest, be they in malevolent mood, they give it to you.

    Personally I’d prefer a pleasant warm period, though not perhaps as warm as the medieval one. :)

  18. Global Warming is a living, breathing entity in and of itself. It is smart and demonic, seeing how it causes more precipitation in the form of deadly and harmful snow and less precipitation in the form of needed and healthy rain. Deaths from the evil-doer are horrendous and to be reported on every news outlet, while life forms ceasing to exist due to natural over-heating is part of the normal cycle of life and should forever remain silent, in respect to the passing of said being. Cue the Japanese film makers to bring to life the on the big screen the Global Warming vs ManBearPig epic film to see if humanity can be saved from this evil!

  19. jmt (14:19:21) :

    Why is there virtually no coverage of the dozens of people that have frozen to death in eastern Europe?

    hundreds, not dozens.

    and it’s not limited to homeless people.

    on Saturday night, Latvian poet Andris Bergmanis (1945-2009) froze to death on his way home. (story [poorly] translated by Google)

    in a sad irony, his 1970 début book was “Bestow Me Clean Snow”.

  20. During a glacial epoch, the earth doesn’t cool down overall, it has accentuated temperature gradients–the equatorial regions get hotter while the poles get colder. As you can imagine, such a temperature regime is going to set up some very wild weather across the globe. And rather than having a massive block of ice move slowly down from the north, I think it’s more likely that the winter’s snows simply fail to melt one spring because of insufficient irradiance, and the next winter’s snows pile up on top of that, and in just a few years there’s no hope of growing crops or raising cattle, or even living there–the next Glacial Epoch has arrived.

    In the meantime, green snow enthusiasts will laud it as the greatest demonstration of global warming the earth has ever witnessed and a direct confirmation that their work to contain CO2 is successful.

    I’m just wondering what they will find to eat at that point.

  21. As you get north, lack of snow tends to be a sign of cold (very cold air doesn’t hold much water). In Manitoba atm there is certainly snow, but we only have had one blizzard, so probably less than a foot on the ground (it was a while ago, so its settled). We had a very cold early December, but now it is about seasonal~warm (high – 10, low -20 ish). (local weatherman reported we have a 99.8% chance of a white Christmas here each year : ).

    You often see reports equating snow with cold, but really ‘snow line’ would probably be more relevant (so the bottom of that map for sure). Above that, its all about temperature : ).

  22. Winter outlook till spring (then tornado season starts)

    One of the problems with the current models is the reference time frame is very narrow for initial conditions, and changes with in the past three days, a lot of times, will introduce presistance of inertia, to the medial flows, for several days, consistent with the actual flows, as the Lunar declinational atmospheric tides, make their runs across the equator from one poleward culmination to another.

    Then as the tide turns and we have the severe weather bursts at declinational culmination, they get confused, or surprised, as the initial inertial effects reverse for about four days before the sweep to the other pole, that brings back the smooth flows, the models understand.

    So that when the Lunar declination went to Maximum North on December 3rd, turbulence and shear introduced into the atmosphere, from the turning tide, (the models do not know about), surprised them with the usual couple of tornadoes.

    Now (12-21-09) that we are just past the Southern extent culmination, producing a secondary tidal bulge in the Northern Hemisphere, bringing us to the mid point of a 27.32 day declinational cycle (one of the four routine patterns that cycle on an 109.3 day period). This particular one (#1) that started back on Dec 3rd, has incursions of polar air masses that come down from Western Canada, through Montana and the Dakotas, to make up the Northern part of the atmospheric tidal bulge.

    So by 12-30-09 I would expect to see a large invasion of cold dry air sweep almost all the way to the Gulf coast again, then the produced frontal boundary with the interesting weather, that includes change state intense precipitation. Freezing rain, where the warm over runs cold, and snow where the cold undercuts the more sluggish warm air, still moving North East by inertia alone, severe weather to form in that trailing edge of the warm moist mass, that gets over taken from behind by the polar air mass that tries to follow the tidal bulge back to the equator, which for the next 4 of 5 days powers up the cyclonic patterns generated by carolis forces, and finishes out as the Moon approaches the equator again.

    Expect the same type of interaction again for a primary bulge production by the passage back North, culminating on 12-30-09, pumping in a solid polar air mass very consistent with the pattern we had on 12-03-09, (the North “lunar declination culmination”)[LDC], then (#2) the next Rossby wave / jet stream regime pattern, comes back into play with much more zonal flow, and air masses invading from the Pacific, (of the two sub types of) phase with lesser amounts of Gulf moisture entrainment in this one, more in the other #4.

    The (#3) third 27.32 day pattern with polar air masses invading in from the Minnesota / Great Lakes area and sweeping out through the Eastern sea board, and mostly zonal flow out west, from 01-27-10 till 02-23-10, comes next.

    The fourth 27.32 day cycle, that looks very similar to #2 but with much more moisture from the Gulf of Mexico, usually has more hail and tornadoes associated with it than Pattern #4, and typically flows up Eastern side of tornado alley. Will be in effect from 02-23-10 through 03-22-10, and should produce the first big surge of severe tornado production, from about March 20th 2010, until about March 26 or later as the Next polar air mass cycle is coming out of western Canada, and should make for steep temperature gradients, and ion content differences.

    Richard Holle

    http://www.aerology.com/national.aspx

  23. To prevent potential problems in the future when this month will be reported as the hottest in 1000 years, I would suggest that the title ” Its only weather department ” is expanded as ” Its only weather and raw data department”. What we are seeing here is only the weather and the raw data in the northern hemisphere. Except for the a few days this month, the southern hemisphere spring has been cooler than usual based on raw data.

  24. jmt (14:19:21) : Wrote

    “Why is there virtually no coverage of the dozens of people that have frozen to death in eastern Europe?”

    The price of freedom always has to be paid in blood. The body count will be high on both sides.

  25. jmt (14:19:21) :

    Why is there virtually no coverage of the dozens of people that have frozen to death in eastern Europe?

    REPLY:
    Because only deaths caused by heat count and are newsworthy. TPTB do not want to spook the chicken littles.

  26. Folks, John is correct about the links embedded in the text they are pointing to 2006 pics not 2009.

  27. Hello ???
    I know what I am talking about.

    There’s no snow in Burlington, Colorado or throughout most of the High Plains.
    Here’s a Colorado DOT webcam image from this afternoon.
    Not a bit of snow.

    The linked map is titled –
    “Scaled Snow Precipitation
    24-Hour Total Ending 2006-12-21″ with an 06 following
    It’s 2006.

    Here’s the correct image – -

    And if you look at the initial map –
    You will also see that the High Plains are snow free.

    <<>>

    I live out here. I know.
    It was cold last week – but generally dry.
    It’s been quite warm this week.
    That is characteristic of the High Plains.
    In fact – the Western Plains are generally warmer than the Eastern Plains.
    And there is often a snow-free zone just east of the Rockies.

    It’s no major issue –
    Just a mistake.

  28. Galen Haugh (15:12:23) :

    During a glacial epoch, the earth doesn’t cool down overall, it has accentuated temperature gradients–the equatorial regions get hotter while the poles get colder. As you can imagine, such a temperature regime is going to set up some very wild weather across the globe. And rather than having a massive block of ice move slowly down from the north, I think it’s more likely that the winter’s snows simply fail to melt one spring because of insufficient irradiance, …..”

    Part of the problem is a much WETTER winter causing more snow and an increase in the snow pack that accumulates year to year as well as shorter cooler summers…… It has been a very wet winter here in NC. I am ankle deep in mud and ice and can not leave the porch without boots. I left NH/MA to get away from shoveling snow so instead I am stuck shoveling 8 tons of gravel in to the driveway potholes to get the vehicles out …

  29. All that snow and travel woes. But look on the bright side — “The storm shut down the federal government in Washington DC.”

  30. Report on the Weather Channel; over 80 people froze to death in Europe. That’s what happens when you don’t prepare for global cooling.

  31. Of course there is the question: Is this really snow and is it really cold? Once the data has been adjusted no doubt we will have had a very warm winter. I am on the freezing cold south coast of England. But that’s only about 1,500 kilometers from the north coast of Africa and the Sahara starts a little way south of that. That’s close enough for a ‘scientific’ measurement isn’t it?

  32. AGW believers.

    “There will be extreme weather events, heavy snow, drought, record temperatures, floods, rising seas and hurricanes, all at the same time and in the same place”

    HMMM, I left out volcanic eruptions and shifting tectonic plates.

  33. The news here in the UK is “More snow brings travel chaos to Britain”

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/topics/weather/6861343/Transport-chaos-blizzards-bring-Britain-to-standstill-with-more-snow-on-the-way.html

    The Uk has had four days of deep sub-zero temperatures now and some regions have had a great deal of snow. Motorways have been closed – along with many major roads; Gatwick airport was closed today and the Eurostar trains have been unable to operate for three days now. Thousands of people are sleeping on the concourse at St Pancras Station – some have been there with their children for two or three successive nights now. It is chaos.

  34. Chuck L (14:22:43) :

    “I know that global cooling is a far more serious matter than global warming but I am praying for a “little ice age” to shut up all of these AGW alarmists, especially Romm and his ilk.”

    Perhaps independently, but I suspect if a Little Ice Age hit then we’d be far better off not having to cope with the various regulations, taxes, and overreactions meant to deal with global warming.

  35. Chuck L (14:22:43) :

    “Joe Romm has a posting blaming the big weekend snowstorm on global warming.”

    Its this kind pf nonsense that has turned over half of Americans into skeptics.

  36. John Egan (16:03:13) :

    Hello ???
    I know what I am talking about.

    There’s no snow in Burlington, Colorado or throughout most of the High Plains.
    Here’s a Colorado DOT webcam image from this afternoon.
    Not a bit of snow.

    The linked map is titled –
    “Scaled Snow Precipitation
    24-Hour Total Ending 2006-12-21″ with an 06 following
    It’s 2006.

    Here’s the correct image – -
    http://i82.photobucket.com/albums/j270/JohnnyGunn/Snow_precip_24hr_2009122105_Nationa.jpg
    ************

    No, thats not the correct image, nor the same image, nor is either an image from 2006. Go to the source and choose
    “Snow Depth”:

    http://www.nohrsc.noaa.gov/nsa/index.html?region=National&year=2009&month=12&day=21&units=e

  37. I think I’ve pointed out before that the data base that generates the maps and tables has something weird about it. There is apparently one station with a snowpack of 400+” of water equivalent. This makes all the info in the site suspect. Whoever is in charge of the site should explain what is going on here.

  38. Fortunately the US is going to get the two of the one two punch from mother nature. Ice storms in Chicago Wednesday. Christmas shopping is canceled.

  39. I think the green goddess is punishing us for not signing a deal at copenhagen. Maybe we should play it a different way, and ask them how much coal we have to burn to get back to the winters of the 90s. I liked them. Perhaps they should adjust cap and trade for how cold it was the year before. Or maybe we will have less time now because of all of the gas we burn keeping our houses warm. That 50 days has just ticked down to 49, or have we already run out of time..

  40. Glenn and the rest of you piling on to John the links in the text are pointing to the wrong flipping maps.

    MODS please fix the links.

  41. I SWEAR to GOD, my Dad told me “People don’t understand this global warming”.. I said, oh, how so. He said “Well, cold places will get warm and warm places will get cold”. So, really, this snowfall, the fault of AGW. Period. I don’t know what to do.

  42. The Chunnel has been shut down because some trains have been stranded in it. One theory is that it’s due to snow in France getting sucked into the tunnel.link

  43. Oops, I apologize, John.
    The link on the words “snow fell” in the first sentence “One to 3 feet of snow fell in the western Plains yesterday,” is from 2006. Anthony, this needs correcting.

  44. Doug in Seattle (16:54:44) :

    “John, sorry – Glen wins.”

    No. I misunderstood what was being referenced; it wasn’t the map but the hyperlinked words in the text. The “linked map” language fooled me.

  45. I keep checking to see if the links point to 2006 maps, and I find 2009 maps. Where are you finding the links to 2006?

  46. Oh, I see. Some of the words (snow, etc) are hyperlinked to the wrong things. The map and the data shown at the top are 2009 data.

  47. Mankind gathers in Copenhagen, with certain absolute knowledge that it is they who have screwed up to climate of the planet and they alone who have the power to fix it.

    Mankind is rewarded with a massive global cooling and snowfall that shatters many previous records, with many lives lost in the freeze.

    I hope the truth about Climategate is spread far and wide. I hope this fraudulent “man-made warming” nonsense is thoroughly destroyed.

    Because, say what you will about the divine, if there is such a gathering next year at Mexico City with as much or more supreme confidence in the power of man over planetary affairs, I fear it would likely require massive volcanic eruptions to cause enough cooling for those at the conference to take notice. And that will not be pretty, and it will take years for the effects to pass, if it doesn’t throw us right into another ice age.

    Ignoring that one volcano in the Philippines for the moment, would you say we have had quite a lull in volcanic activity for awhile?

  48. Not to mention – -
    That I live in the High Plains of Wyoming – -
    And it has been quite pleasant and warm.

    When I saw the statement about three feet of snow –
    I did a double-take. We get our news/weather feeds from Denver –
    And there has been nary a word about a blizzard – even any snow.

    So I checked the link which is in the text about the Western Plains.
    It showed Burlington, Colorado as the center of snow activity.
    I checked Burlington’s NOAA weather history the past 48 hours.
    No snow – - warm. Then saw that the map was from 2006.
    Not to mention that the initial snow cover map shows the High Plains as dry.

    Anyone can make an error.
    Even moi – as Miss Piggy was wont to say.
    Thanks to those who mea culpaed.

  49. gtrip (17:30:46) :
    Here is a clip of where the warmest’s are right now:

    I actually should have said: This is Joe Romm right now.

    But they are one in the same, aren’t they?

  50. Chuck L (14:22:43) :

    “Joe Romm has a posting blaming the big weekend snowstorm on global warming. I know that global cooling is a far more serious matter than global warming but I am praying for a “little ice age” to shut up all of these AGW alarmists, especially Romm and his ilk.”

    You can’t confuse these people with the facts, they’ve already prepared a theory to explain how global warming will trigger another ice age and made a movie on the premise.

    We need to understand and accept that this is the modern equivalent of the Darwin vs Lysenko battle that occured in the Soviet Union in the mid 20th century. The LyAGWists are using the same tactics used by Lysenko: character assasination, professional exile, corruption of peer review, falsification of data, defunding, labelling opponents as mentally deranged, etc.

  51. This is definitely a Global Antropogenic Climate Anomaly.

    BTW, the idea of setting up a huge CO2-Cap’n’trade scam (Europe already has it and as Fox correctly pointed out, it doesn’t bring down emissions but generates windfall profits for heavy emitters, profits for VAT-Scammers and people who run the Carbon credit exchanges – oh, Fox missed the VAT scam, that would be about 5 bn euros damage) – well the benefit of that idea is: As CO2 has only a very slight influence on the total radiative forcing – about 4 W*m-2 for each doubling of the CO2 content according to the IPCC – they could run this scheme forever without interfering much with the ongoing natural variability. In other words, generate profits forever without ever solving or causing a problem with the climate – whether or not there was one in the first place. We might never know. I admire these people for their cunning.

  52. John Egan (17:18:18) :

    “Anyone can make an error.
    Even moi – as Miss Piggy was wont to say.
    Thanks to those who mea culpaed.”

    What threw me in addition to referencing the map was “with an 06 following
    It’s 2006″ language, which I mistook as an error in understanding the timestamps on the maps. The “06″ is the time of day.

  53. “Mike B. (15:27:40) :

    The links associated with “snow fell” and later “snowfall” are clearly from 2006, not 2009.”

    And others…

    Get off your thing and go check, just a couple of clicks. Select 2006 there and actually look. It’s very different.

    Ok?

  54. @ Graeme From Melbourne (17:15:50) :
    Yee-ouch, I see what you mean about Joe Romm.

    Reference link.

    [JR: It ain’t cold. It’s the hottest friggin’ decade on record, probably in thousands of years.

    O-kay. Sure.

    For the record, for those among the duped who aren’t so inanely illogical, we’ve only warmed in the last several decades a bit over 1°F, which isn’t enough to turn December into July, but is enough to increase the incidence of extreme weather events, especially extreme precipitation events — and that includes extreme precipitation during the wintertime.

    If we listen to your ilk, however, we’re going to warm 10°F over much of the United States this century, and your children will certainly figure out just how misled you have been.]

    So, for several decades we’ve had just over a degree F of warming, and If We Don’t Act NOW we will see more than 10 degrees F in 90 years? And during those decades we’ve been basically doing nothing but pumping out more CO2, for only that amount of rise? And the “hottest friggin’ decade on record, probably in thousands of years” involves just a fraction of “a bit over 1°F” warming from when those several decades started? Thus at the start of those several decades we were very very close to having the hottest decade in probably thousands of years right then?

    climateprogress.org, meet logicretreat.org.

  55. The result of any Global warming agreement will be to stop 3rd world countries developing. Maybe the British/American Governments believe it’s a long term method of keeping us on top? Of course it’s mistaken and the more development in the World,the better for all but with the nonsense economics currently holding sway it wouldn’t surprise me if it was the basic motivation behind it all.

  56. If albedo were that large a factor in global climate, I would think events like these would cause some sort of tipping point. The fact that they don’t tells me climate sensitivity to anything except orbital changes (which directly affects energy received from the sun) is very low.

  57. Hmm, I think this was originally to be an article comparing 2006 to 2009, but something was left out and mis-linked.

  58. Monday, Dec 21; Colorado Springs; Fair, dry, 60 degrees F.

    No snow here, but that is exactly what Climate Change theory would have predicted.

    (Actually, snow predicted within 24 hours, but that is exactly what AGW theory would have predicted also.) [grin]

  59. jmt (14:19:21) :

    Why is there virtually no coverage of the dozens of people that have frozen to death in eastern Europe?

    Do you have links please?

  60. Michael (15:49:18) :

    The body count will be high on both sides.

    People are dying because of optimists/deniers? Who are those?

  61. Long range models are showing a massive cold outbreak with much of the South below freezing for several days straight right after Christmas.

  62. Michael (16:15:56) :

    Report on the Weather Channel; over 80 people froze to death in Europe. That’s what happens when you don’t prepare for global cooling.

    Mother Nature is showing the world global warming isn’t happening. No matter how many times they are told ‘there is a consensus among scientist’ they are going to believe what’s really going on in the world.

  63. Ha! Booted from Desmogblog for responding to the allegation that James Inhofe had been at Copenhagen only to spew disinformation and having done so, burned another tank of jet fuel to get back to Washington. Because, as you all know, Al Gore, Hugo Chavez and Robert Magabe all traveled on the fumes of humanitarian good intentions.

  64. denier (16:59:19) :

    I SWEAR to GOD, my Dad told me “People don’t understand this global warming”.. I said, oh, how so. He said “Well, cold places will get warm and warm places will get cold”. So, really, this snowfall, the fault of AGW. Period. I don’t know what to do.

    It’s kinda easy—-where are the warm places that are supposed to be happening??? They don’t exist! The ‘cold places will get warm’ part isn’t happening.

    The earth is cooling and has been for years.

  65. The easiest way to get a roaring laugh out of a customer when they walk in the store shivering is to exclaim “Don’t you know? Global Warming causes Global Cooling”. They all think that’s about the most assinine thing they have ever heard.
    It’s so stupid it makes people bust up.
    I’ve tried it on about 50 people so far.
    Works every time.
    Try it yourself.

  66. Austin (19:46:42) :

    Long range models are showing a massive cold outbreak with much of the South below freezing for several days straight right after Christmas.

    December started with record cold. Now record snow. It will end in record cold?

  67. There was some talk of where could it snow 800 inches or something like that, the coldest, snowiest place in the continental U.S. I think is a place called Mount Washington, NH., about 6,288 feet MSL. It receives an average of 102 inches in precip a year and almost 600 inche of snow. It also blows like heck with a max wind speed of 231 mph.

  68. I really think that Joe Romm has acquired Mad Gore Disease. I also think that it has disseminated to his brain already. The things that he is claiming nowadays are amazing. I think he even gave out kudos to the Detroit Lions for winning last years Super Bowl against the Cleveland Browns!

  69. Enduser (19:17:17) :
    Monday, Dec 21; Colorado Springs; Fair, dry, 60 degrees F.

    There is no such thing as “normal” weather along the Front Range.

  70. I think it’s more likely that the winter’s snows simply fail to melt one spring because of insufficient irradiance, and the next winter’s snows pile up on top of that,

    Indeed, it is something of a myth that climate change happens slowly.

    A likely scenario is a cold snowy winter followed by a major volcanic eruption in the spring. Snow persists late into summer and even through summer in many places with increased albedo due to the snow and volcanic clouds. The following winter is very severe with snow down to very low latitudes. Earth’s albedo is permanently increased by the snow cover and rapid ice accumulation starts. In the 2nd or 3rd year another volcanic eruption continues the cooling trend.

    The albedo tipping is passed and the ice advances until the next Milankovic Cycle warming starts in a 100,000 years or so.

  71. JMac (16:39:33) :

    We have about 12 inches of snow over North Yorkshire, most I have seen in over 30 years.

    30 years – Inline with the PDO cycle.

  72. kadaka (19:44:40) :

    New info on the Eurostar train problems.

    The problem, it was the “wrong type of ‘fluffy French snow.’”

    Very fine, very dry…

    Hmmm “fluffy” not “rotten”… It is just as I suspected it would be…

  73. Some Ethiopian Australian friends of mine who have never seen snow are currently visiting family and friends, in Washington DC. One goal was to see and expereince snow. Well they certainly got that.

    Outstanding image, thanks NASA.

  74. Larry Weitzman (20:36:18) :

    Donner Summit, I-80, 1982-83 El Nino event – 880 inches of snow.
    Snow traps people.

  75. Larry Weitzman (20:36:18) :

    There was some talk of where could it snow 800 inches or something like that, the coldest, snowiest place in the continental U.S. I think is a place called Mount Washington, NH., about 6,288 feet MSL. It receives an average of 102 inches in precip a year and almost 600 inche of snow. It also blows like heck with a max wind speed of 231 mph.

    No, not at Mount Washington. I think you need to look to the North Cascades where they wring out the moist feed from the Pacific Ocean.

    There are no glaciers on Mt Washington. While it can snow any day of the year, the summit melts pretty readily. Being above tree line, a lot of the summit blows into Huntington and Tuckerman’s Ravines. Snow there lasts into June and July.

    http://www.mountwashington.org/weather/normals.php says 314.8″ (800 cm) snow on average, 566.4″ record (1968-69). Precip ranges between the extremes of 71.34″ (1979) and 130.14″ (1969), mean is just over 100″ (260 cm).

    Mt. Washington’s claim to “The World’s Worst Weather” comes from the ease of access to the summit and how several common storm tracks pass nearby. I think many more people die each year on Mt Blanc in France, but that’s much taller and a longer hike. A typical hike up Mt Washington is only a 3000′/1000m climb vertically.

    I suspect that 800″ you’re looking for is a snowfield that should become a glacier. I don’t know where it is, but would like to know.

  76. Graeme From Melbourne (21:29:45) :

    JMac (16:39:33) :

    We have about 12 inches of snow over North Yorkshire, most I have seen in over 30 years.

    30 years – Inline with the PDO cycle.

    The PDO cycle is about 60 years. However, we were in a cooling period too
    over 30 years ago.

  77. Ric Werme (21:58:22) :

    Graeme From Melbourne (21:29:45) :

    JMac (16:39:33) :

    We have about 12 inches of snow over North Yorkshire, most I have seen in over 30 years.

    30 years – Inline with the PDO cycle.

    The PDO cycle is about 60 years. However, we were in a cooling period too
    over 30 years ago.

    Which is the meaning that I intended – the earlier observation from JMac could be correlated to the last “Cold” PDO phase. Which may well be sufficient to explain the current NH weather. The 60s and 70s had some extreme cold periods.

  78. “Weather” is that word which is used to describe natural events, quite unpredictable, which have and will cause large destruction of human constructions, and which have and will cause extremely large numbers of people to die.

    “Climate” is that word which is used by charlatans to frighten people who have little or no knowledge of history and/or science.

  79. kadaka (19:44:40) :
    New info on the Eurostar train problems.
    The problem, it was the “wrong type of ‘fluffy French snow.’”
    Very fine, very dry…

    Chablis snow?

  80. @Dodgy Geezer (14:35:14)

    Quite right about the dangers of freezing when drunk.
    Last time I was in Russia (2001) I was reading some statistics (I think they were American?) and they claimed that in Russia there were more fatalities from drunks falling down and freezing to death than fatalities from traffic accidents.

    I bet that more old people in the UK in 2009/2010 will die of hypothermia than will die from the over-hyped Swine flu.

    Nothing to do with the 80% hike in energy bills due to carbon trading and building wind (=subsidy) farms, of course.

  81. how long is an extreme event to be called an event??

    say the temperature drops 3 degrees for a year, is that still an extreme event.. or if the weather drops for 50 years.. is that still classed as an extreme event..

    How long does an event last to become normality?

  82. With regard to Eurostar, there have been several news stories blaming the ‘wrong’ kind of snow, a reference to an excuse given several years ago when much of the UK’s rail network came to a halt.

    When interviewed last night, Eurostar’s CEO said that the breakdowns were caused by unprecedented low temperatures in Northern France which resulted in heavy condensation when the trains entered the warmer tunnel. This triggered safety cut-outs designed to prevent damage and injury when water comes into contact with electrical equipment.

    The important reference here is to unprecedented low temperatures, not snow.

    It’s also important to remember that at the end of November, the Met Office and their climate change supercomputers promised us a mild winter..

  83. rbateman (22:30:50) :

    When was the last time the Arctic Ice Cap connected with Iceland?

    In the early 1960′s

    By the way that talk about an Ice Age starting from one year to another doesn’t hold. It’s a fairly quick process, yes, but it takes a few centuries. If it was more or less instantaneous there wouldn’t be any arctic plants or animals since they would have been snowed over and gone extinct long ago.
    The process at the end of previous interglacial has been pretty thoroughly studied.

  84. Perry (00:38:51) :

    What that report You link to describes *is* a lull. There hasn’t been any major explosive eruptions (which are the only ones that affect climate) for nearly 20 years (Pinatubo 1991), which is an unusually long interval.
    Mayon by the way has a history of large explosive eruptions.

  85. Please…

    It’s important to correct mistakes…

    1. READ THE FOLLOWING PARAGRAPH IN THE ORIGINAL POST.

    2. Try clicking the inline links to images that appear in this piece of the article. Look carefully at the images. they clearly say 2006-2007 VERTICALLY along the LEFT hand side of the image. I’m NOT talking about the trailing “..06..” at the end of the map’s name shown HORIZONTALLY at the top.

    3. If we are going to criticise the scientific method of others and hold them to account then we must get our own facts right.

    4. This has been mentioned a number of times in the comments for this article, but all that’s happened is ineffectual bickering.

    “…Their weather summary indicates more snow on the way:

    One to 3 feet of snow fell in the western Plains yesterday, while up to 1/2 inch of freezing rain fell in the central Plains. The precipitation was in response to a potent upper low in the Southern Plains and an associated surface low, which caused upslope flow conditions. The heaviest snowfall amounts were observed in the Colorado Front Range and in the Sangre de Cristo mountains of New Mexico. Strong surface winds in these areas caused much blowing and drifting snow.

    Most of the snowpack across the West and western Plains is cool, with cold conditions at the lower elevations of the Great Basin. In the central Plains, where rain and snow fell yesterday, the snowpack there is warm, but snowmelt occurred along the southeastern edge of the central U.S. snowpack. Very warm conditions exist on the windward side of the Cascades where warm onshore flow occurred yesterday; slow snowmelt occurred there. Strong surface winds caused high blowing snow sublimation in the Western Plains from southeastern Wyoming and the Nebraska panhandle southward to northeastern New Mexico…”

    EXCELLENT WEBSITE…

  86. The good news is that I cleaned my pool today here in Queensland Australia and the water temp was 29 degrees Celsius.

  87. Sunfighter (14:04:44) :

    Just please hold off more snow in the midwest till Thursday! Im driving wednesday from NW arkansas to North Indiana, but the worst part is my winter tires were on backorder…so im driving a 400hp car with summer only tires….could be intresting

    I reccomend staying on I-70 or south as far as you can because I-80 through Nebraska and Iowa are going to start getting freezing rain topped off with heavy snow over the next few days. I have not completely finished digging out from the last one yet. On a positive note my mother in law is flying in from Florida today, so it will be fun to hear her whine about the blizzard :)

  88. photon without a Higgs (19:54:39) :

    If record snow falls all over the world can the UN hear it?

    The simple answer is no, the UN is much like Bill Murry’s character John Connor in GroundHog Day where he is arguing with the cop that the snow is really not happening.

  89. John Levett (00:31:36):
    “…. at the end of November, the Met Office and their climate change supercomputers promised us a mild winter..”

    Though the winter is not yet over I hope that at the end of winter 2010 the Met Office gets egg all over its face. However, if it does there will be a lot of very angry people who made preparations based on their 50% forecast / hedge.

    Why not just look out the window and re-adjust your forecast instead of relying on their Nintendo games.

  90. Sat photo: wow look at geology! A snowfall nicely details differences in stratigraphy among formations. Ibelieve the thinly bedded formation is a band of sandstones and shales that contain the famous Pennsylvania Bluestone.

  91. @jmt heres a linkie for you re European deaths. http://www.rte.ie/news/2009/1222/weather1.html

    and the bottom one says we in Eastern Ireland might get a white chrimbo. Thank you uncles Al and Jimbo and Michael and especially Uncle Phil and the team at UEA for cooking up this lovely surprise.
    “Southern Munster, southern Leinster and eastern Leinster could experience sleet or snow showers tomorrow afternoon and into Christmas morning.”

    http://www.rte.ie/news/2009/1222/weather.html

  92. GaryPearse (04:52:18) :

    “Sat photo: wow look at geology! ”

    I second that! Look at all that folded strata!

    By the way Joe Romm attributes this particular snowfall to global warming?!?!?!?!?!?!

  93. Ah man you really need to have a printer-friendly version, your article are awesome, but I don’t want to save the comments.

  94. Hey anyone home here or are you all on holiday with a bot in charge?

    Please fix this story it is an embarrassment.

    I figured it out, you are auditioning for the part of Phil Jones in the upcoming drama entitled as the world freezes or otherwise overheats.

  95. Here in western MD I got 20″ (50.8 cm) on cold surfaces like my car & roof, but only 17″ on the ground. Measuring on the ground is the proper way, so that would be the “official” amount.

  96. Mayon volcano in the Philippines now emitting 6000 tons of sulfur dioxide a day, up from the normal 500. (Apparently “American” short tons not metric tonnes, “feet” used in article.)

    Nathan Myhrvold at Intellectual Ventures, as mentioned in SuperFreakonomics, suggests pumping liquid sulfur dioxide into the stratosphere for solar dimming to take care of global warming. Considered against volcanic and other natural processes, it would only involve a 1% increase.

    I’ve been searching for data on the annual amounts of SO2 released by volcanoes and other sources, no great luck yet. One thing I am wondering about is rising sulfurous emissions from coal use, namely how China has increased emissions by 27% from 2000 to 2005. Yes I know, different atmospheric heights are involved, but I wonder how much of the power plant emissions could wind up in the stratosphere. The proposed “global cooling” method does not appear to involve much more SO2, and worldwide human emissions seem to be going up as the post-1998 global cooling trend continues. Yes, I am only looking at one factor of this complex system, but that is the one item being cited as all that is needed for man-made cooling.

    I have noticed two major things about the proposed “Stratoshield.” One, at climateprogress.org they are in foaming-at-the-mouth complete rage that this cheap ($250 million) little plan should even be considered as a solution, which qualifies as a ringing endorsement to me.

    Two, commenters here are convinced it is a horrible plan as acid rain is as bad or worse than global warming, the acidification of the oceans would be devastating.

    Very well then. I await the mass protest by Greenpeace and many others at the base of Mayon, as they extend their fight at Copenhagen to include other major sources of ocean acidification besides CO2, and demand something be done about these abnormal SO2 releases. Maybe someone will bring some marshmallows and hot dogs.

  97. THis is the Mass New Media concertration its vast resources in distracting us, sidetracking us from the urgent news,m the most important happening, Cop15.
    So instead of looking at the International happenings, we narrow our outlook locally.

    When I was a kid, we often had 36 inches of snow. Right here in the U.S.North East area. Other times 24 inches. Then again, 36 inches.

    People, this is called Winter. Remember?

  98. Something interesting on the first photo is that the Appalachian mountains aren’t visible because the view can pick up higher elevations per say, but because the mountains are forested compared to the flat, agriculturally-cleared and urbanized areas. The darkness of the mountains are forests.

    This shows that, at least during snow-covered periods, albedo is increased significantly due to land-clearing & urbanization. But I don’t think it has much temp effect this time of yr during minimum sun exposure.

  99. WEATHER: MORE INCONVENIENCE IN ITALY, TRANSPORT AT RISK

    (ANSAmed) – ROME, DECEMBER 22 – Even if temperatures are rising, inconveniences caused by the wave of bad weather in Italy continue. Problems have been reported on the motorways, like the icy rain affecting much of northern Italy, which cannot be eliminated by using salt to cover the asphalt. To avoid further problems, the Autostrade d’Italia group has decided to use a safety car, that is a police vehicle to impose a safe speed on the columns of vehicles. There have also been problems for train transport. FS reported that of the 430 medium and long distance trains scheduled for today, about 5% have been cancelled. It is a number that increases to 6% for the 7,700 regional trains. There have also been serious repercussions on air traffic. Milan, in spite of the fact that it is operative, the Linate airport is practically blocked due to the cancellation of Alitalia flights until 12:00; Malpensa will remain closed until 13:00. The airports of Genoa, Malpensa and Verona are closed at the moment and there are severe limitations in Turin and Bologna. This is the situation in the airports of Northern Italy, according to Alitalia. Due to the bad weather it has emerged, the company explains, “that it is impossible to regularly operate numerous flights, in particular on the North-South routes in the country”. In any case, the company, “in line with the evolution of the situation and in particular with the take-offs and landings authorised by airport management, special flights are being operated to allow for the transport within the day of passengers involved in the irregularity of flights”. Moreover, Alitalia “foresees regular departures from the Linate airport in Milan, on the basis of what the airport management has communicated, by 11:00″, where the limitation of one arrival per hour continues, causing the delays at the airports of departure for Linate. While the company confirms that all intercontinental flights to and from the Fiumicino airport in Rome.(ANSAmed).
    2009-12-22 13:10

    http://www.ansamed.info/en/news/ME03.XAM13104.html

  100. tty (01:48:42) :

    “…By the way that talk about an Ice Age starting from one year to another doesn’t hold. It’s a fairly quick process, yes, but it takes a few centuries. If it was more or less instantaneous there wouldn’t be any arctic plants or animals since they would have been snowed over and gone extinct long ago.
    The process at the end of previous interglacial has been pretty thoroughly studied.”

    Some do not agree with that statement

    “Evidence for abrupt climate change is readily apparent in ice cores taken from Greenland and Antarctica. One sees clear indications of long-term changes discussed above, with CO² and proxy temperature changes associated with the last ice age and its transition into our present interglacial period of warmth. But, in addition, there is a strong chaotic variation of properties with a quasi-period of around 1500 years. We say chaotic because these millennial shifts look like anything but regular oscillations. Rather, they look like rapid, decade-long transitions between cold and warm climates followed by long interludes in one of the two states.” Terrence Joyce, Senior Scientist, Physical Oceanography and Lloyd Keigwin, Senior Scientist, Geology & Geophysics (Wood Hole)

    http://www.whoi.edu/page.do?pid=12455&tid=282&cid=10046

  101. You can give it all to us. Why the hell does the east coast need snow? Give it to us here in Summit County Colorado!!! We have NO SNOW!!!! Sheesh!!!

  102. Bonnie (08:01:40) :

    “People, this is called Winter. Remember?”

    Actually, this is called unusual and record breaking climatic events.

  103. f8te (12:47:04) :

    “You can give it all to us. Why the hell does the east coast need snow? Give it to us here in Summit County Colorado!!! We have NO SNOW!!!! Sheesh!!!”

    Digging out and can’t report the good news?

    http://weather.msn.com/local.aspx?wealocations=wc:USCO0040&q=Breckenridge%2c+CO

    “AREAS OF LIGHT SNOW WILL CONTINUE TO SPREAD NORTHWARD OVER THE NORTH CENTRAL MOUNTAINS AND HIGH VALLEYS THROUGH 10 PM. INITIAL SNOWFALL RATES WILL MOST LIKELY BE UNDER A QUARTER INCH PER HOUR… BUT AS THE EVENING GOES ON MOUNTAIN AREAS SOUTH OF INTERSTATE 70 MAY SEE SNOWFALL RATES APPROACHING AN INCH PER HOUR.”

  104. Holiday travelers, plan carefully and think twice, please. This looks serious. I’ve canceled my road trip between Xmas and NY due to the forecast in northern Arizona/New Mexico. My roof almost blew off the house yesterday, and three died in a high wind dust storm accident.

    “This is a life-threatening system,” the National Weather Service warned, “and any travel from Wednesday night into Friday will be treacherous.”

    “The storm is said to be a “once in a quarter century storm,” and will move onto the plains Wednesday, intensifying into Thursday. Wind gusts of up to 30 to 40 miles per hour and 10 to 20 inches of snow are expected, along with freezing rain.”

    http://www.dglobe.com/event/article/id/30897/group/News/

  105. “Their weather summary indicates more snow on the way:………………………………………………”

    I guess you mods never removed the text portion of this article which is just false for the dates, 2006 others have said………was that the great Denver snowstorm of a few years back?

    Wait long enough and it becomes current.

    C’mon, this site has to be accurate. Just remove the whole four paragraphs.

  106. It might be a little rarer than once very 25 years.

    My brother just called from Tulsa, and he says the radio is declaring this the first blizzard in Tulsa’s history….

  107. Strange how we are having it really cold all over the nothern hemisphear and the thing that drives our planets weather i.e.the sun has zero sunspot activity.
    Time these so called experts stopped trying to make the facts fit what they want to believe.
    The only thing we need to realise is overall a warmer planet is better than a colder one because if it’s all ice we wont be eating well.Only a small fall in temperture will cause the ice caps and winter ice to expand hugely.

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