John Heaton (jheaton) wrote,
John Heaton
jheaton

Brr!

It's cold! It was -7° F when I woke up this morning, though by now it's up to -3°. And before the day is out, it will have reached a comparatively balmy 7° or 8°. Air temperature, that is. With wind chill, temperatures will remain below zero.

But it's Wisconsin in January, so I suppose that sort of thing is to be expected. And by Wisconsin in January standards, it hasn't been a particularly cold winter. Heck, as recently as last Friday it was up in the 40s!

But that's sort of coming to be expected too. Late last year I saw an article at grist.com headlined, "If you’re 27 or younger, you’ve never experienced a colder-than-average month." That's true only in the broadest sense; the National Climatic Data Center report they were summarizing was talking about the average temperature across all land and ocean surfaces worldwide, not about temperatures on the ground in any particular location. Indeed, the national overview released by the same organization in the same month reported that the average temperature in the contiguous United States in October 2012 was, in fact, below average. Only by 0.3 degrees F, but lower is lower.

Nevertheless, the trend is in the opposite direction. November and December of last year were 2.1 and 3.4 degrees warmer than average respectively, and October 2012 was only the time in the last 18 months that the average temperature was below normal. Disturbing.
 
Tags: current events, wisconsin, wisconsin: madison, your tax dollars at work
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