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Sunday, January 07, 2007

Where's winter?

2006 was the second warmest year on-record. The Bristish Met Office reports that there is a 60% chance that 2007 will be a record-breaking warm year. For more on that see my blog post for January 5th.

As if to prove the point, Mother Nature decided that she should give us a glimpse of things to come with unbelievably warm weather on the 6th day of January.

The temperature yesterday in Kennebunk, ME topped out at about 67 degrees. In New York City, it got up to 72 degrees - and they still have not seen any snow this year!

Jeff Masters at The Weather Underground website says "The reason for the warmth? A moderate El NiƱo event is adding a tremendous amount of heat to the globe this winter, and has helped displace the jet stream farther to the north than usual. Global warming is also partly to blame, along with natural variability in the Earth's weather. I also believe that the on-going melting of the Arctic Ice Cap may have contributed to this winter's warmth, although it is difficult to know how much so without doing detailed model studies."

Though I enjoyed the warmth and loved taking a walk with my family as we all wore short sleeves, it is not natural for January 6th. I know that we have cold, snowy days ahead of us, but with the mild winter that we've been having, I cannot help but wonder if "normal" winters are a thing of the past.

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