The year 2010 brought a difficult and sometimes tragic few months of weather events—first the snowstorms and record cold that battered much of the Northern Hemisphere, then tornadoes and floods in the United States.
Residents of the mid-Atlantic can be forgiven if they’re craving a bit of calm. The weekend of 5–6 February brought what’s been variously dubbed Snowpocalypse II, Snowmageddon, Snowtastrophe, and the Superbowl Superstorm.
At first glance, the Copenhagen conference seemed like an alternate universe—enormous, byzantine, and riddled with customs and folkways that weren’t at all obvious to someone who’s never been to such a meeting.
Even though reports continue to pour in about melting glaciers, sea ice loss, and temperatures across much of the globe remaining unusually warm, fewer and fewer Americans seem to believe the climate is warming.
Few other parts of the world are showing climatic trends as distinct and ominous as Australia’s—and these changes are broadly consistent with what climate models tell us the 21st century has in store for the continent.
Every snowfall is different, including how much water is packed into the flakes and how that changes over the life of a storm. This can make it very hard to figure out how much snow “really” falls in a given storm.
The presence of El Niño boosts the odds of big Denver-area snowstorms, even though the region's winters as a whole aren’t substantially wetter during El Niño. It’s a good example of nuance in the relationship between El Niño and climate.
While most El Niños tend to inhibit Atlantic hurricanes, the Modoki variety, with its peak warming displaced further west from the Atlantic, appears to leave more room for a bumper crop in at least some years.