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Freakish Winter Continues
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Moogs
Hates the Infotainment
 
Join Date: May 2004
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2007-01-06, 14:05

After getting hit with a 3rd blizzard-like storm in 3 weeks (nearly unheard of), helicopters are being used to spot survivors and livestock in the Denver / central Colorado region. Meantime this morning a giant avalanche has buried several cars off a mountain highway.

Quote:
A huge avalanche buried several cars and sent others over the edge Saturday on U.S. 40 near 11,307-foot-high Berthoud Pass, Colorado highway officials said.

"Our crews said it was the largest they have ever seen. It took three paths," said Stacey Stegman, spokeswoman for the Colorado Department of Transportation.

Crews had rescued at least six people at the site some 60 miles west of Denver, she said. Rescuers were probing the area for other survivors. She said some cars were buried by the snow in an area called Stanley near Berthoud Falls between 10:00 and 10:30 a.m.

Berthoud Pass is the main route to Winter Park, one of Colorado's largest ski areas.
In the upper midwest, we've seen a straight month of 40-50 degree daytime temperatures since early December. After living here for over 20 years, I can tell you we've never seen anything like it. A few days here, a week there... sure it's happened. But never this long and never this warm. Anyone who thinks every bizarre weather phenomenon we've been witnessing over the last couple years, is all coincidence / random chance, you need to pull your head out. Things are slowly but surely changing in very pronounced ways and it ain't the cycle of mother earth that's driving it.

FUBAR. I can't even go skating in January for Christ's sake!

...into the light of a dark black night.
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Brad
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2007-01-06, 14:14

40-50 degrees? I'd kill for cooler weather like that. It's been is the 70s here lately. I've been wearing t-shirts and shorts virtually all winter.

I seriously dread the coming spring and summer. The bugs are going to be hell.

The quality of this board depends on the quality of the posts. The only way to guarantee thoughtful, informative discussion is to write thoughtful, informative posts. AppleNova is not a real-time chat forum. You have time to compose messages and edit them before and after posting.
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Yontsey
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2007-01-06, 14:23

Yeah, definitely sucks. It's 47 here right now. It's been consistantly around 40-50 degrees here in the Cleveland area.

I think we had 1 big snow storm that was on the ground for about 2-3 days before it melted and one other snow fall besides that. All I wanna do is frickin' go snowboarding!!!!! AHHHHHH!!!!

Yesterday, we had crazy rainfall. We got like 2 inches and our backyard was flooded. It was insane.


This is your planet on global warming.....

Die young and save yourself....
@yontsey
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dmegatool
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2007-01-06, 14:25

Same here in Quebec. Feels like we're already in spring with the melting snow and all the shit.
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ast3r3x
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2007-01-06, 15:02

We had a cold spell here in lower PA for a little, but it was just 30's, it's been 50's and 60's the past week or two. It's 70 here today, and while nice, makes me sad because I love snow, and I dread the hot summer to come. I heard 2007 is supposed to be the hottest year on record

On a hopeful note, they are still saying February and March could be cold. Like Brad said, it would at least be nice for a snow to kill insects.
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zsummers
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2007-01-06, 15:24

You need more than snow to kill insects. You need a butt-load of really, really cold days to freeze the ground 3, 4, 5 feet down and more. Otherwise, we're all insect food next summer.
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Yontsey
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2007-01-06, 15:27

Quote:
Originally Posted by zsummers View Post
Otherwise, we're all insect food next summer.
YES!!!!!!! Just what Ive always wanted to be!!!!!
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rollercoaster375
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2007-01-06, 15:31

I'm in central Mass... It's 68º out, at the moment.

[Might I add that the skiing SUCKS.]
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BlueRabbit
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2007-01-06, 15:33

Be thankful that you're all having nice (i.e. warm and sunny) weather this winter. Over here in Seattle, in the past couple months we've had a snow storm and a killer windstorm (1 million people without power). On the plus side, the skiing has been excellent this season.
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Yontsey
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2007-01-06, 15:38

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueRabbit View Post
Be thankful that you're all having nice (i.e. warm and sunny) weather this winter. Over here in Seattle, in the past couple months we've had a snow storm and a killer windstorm (1 million people without power). On the plus side, the skiing has been excellent this season.
Im jealous
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rasmits
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2007-01-06, 15:45

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueRabbit View Post
Be thankful that you're all having nice (i.e. warm and sunny) weather this winter. Over here in Seattle, in the past couple months we've had a snow storm and a killer windstorm (1 million people without power). On the plus side, the skiing has been excellent this season.
Not to mention record flooding in the northern counties. Yeah, November was crazy...
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Moogs
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2007-01-06, 16:09

Yah 40-50 is a nice break in winter when you get it, but it's not winter when it stays that way. Eh?

1) I like change of seasons / playing winter sports;
2) There are other repercussions as already noted (bugs, potential crop issues because there's less water suspended in the upper soil, etc). And there's all sorts of bizarre stories overseas too.

When I was in England and Wales people were keenly aware of it and spoke of it in everyday terms, there wasn't this "is there or isn't there" BS "debate" that the lobbyists and politicians try to spin over here. There is no debate among serious scientists... at least not those without ties to the energy industry - the only ones that have the balls to contradict this stuff are the ones who are funded by corporations that stand to lose money if they're forced to rethink the way their factories work, etc.

It's happening, and it's not good. There are warming cycles of course (if you look on very long time horizons), but if you look at the data and trends over the last 50 years in a variety of areas, the signs are unmistakable. There's really not much head-scratching to do beyond "how are we going to improve our everyday habits and behavior as a civilization to minimize the abnormal effect we're having on the earth's climate cycle and the engines that drive it?"

Obviously, we all need to live our lives and have some of our modern conveniences to get things done but those same things, in ever increasing numbers (global population and industrialization across giant swaths of Asia) have a sort of unstoppable momentum. All we can really do, is reduce our own footprints and hope the man-made effects we've already set in motion (over the last 50 years) play themselves out without ruining half of civilization. Even if it takes 100 years to ruin it.

Anyway, keep the freakish winter stories coming as I think it's stuff like this that makes us all stop and go "oh, well maybe I am seeing the effects and until now just wasn't paying attention." We all need to wake up, and especially Americans, as we are responsible for a gigantic proportion of the world's CO2 problems. The only way China and India will ever "follow our lead", is if we make some sacrifices and actually *lead* (i.e. do some significant and widely visible things, soon). Why should their prosperity be curtailed when we already had our day in the sun -our modernization and build up onto the world markets- UNLESS we show them we've got the balls to eat our own dog food and make some changes.

...into the light of a dark black night.
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MSFT
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2007-01-06, 16:10

New York has not received any winter weather yet. In fact, it hasn't even snowed once this year.
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Robo
Formerly Roboman, still
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2007-01-06, 16:14

It's been freakishly warm in my little slice of Minnesota, too. Well, not warm, per se - especially not compared to Vegas - but not cold, either.

I don't think we had any snow until New Years' Eve. It arrived just in time to upset our party plans.

And it rained this morning. Raining. In January. In Minnesota.

Global warming much?

and i guess i've known it all along / the truth is, you have to be soft to be strong
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Moogs
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2007-01-06, 16:28

I am glad to see you guys noticing this stuff, because it's very easy to just dismiss it and chalk it all up to the farmer's almanac brand of science the critics are using.

It's going to take a lot of people -regardless of affiliation- doing some hard thinking and making real day-to-day efforts to even put a dent in this thing. It's not even a "can we stop it" thing... it's a "how bad is it going to be" thing, and the answer depends on us all doing little things. Demanding our corporations behave more responsibly, using better light bulbs, driving less, planting a few trees every year, etc etc ad infinitum. There won't be any "OK we're done" in most of our lifetimes IMO. It will need to be continuous because our desire to advance and have better lives is continuous. Constant vigilance will be the name of the game.

...into the light of a dark black night.
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Windswept
On Pacific time
 
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2007-01-06, 16:28

Omg, Moogs. Those cars that went 'over the edge' during the avalanche... do they suspect that people were still 'in' them?

How horrible such a thing would be.

I do feel so sorry for those poor cows stuck out there in four to ten feet of accumulated/drifted snow, freezing and starving.

I saw a photo of one lone cow who had beaten a path around an outlying hay shed - a place that I think contained hay bales, but that was inaccessible for the rancher (and for the cow). You could just tell that he didn't understand why he was being allowed to starve, as he looked up at the aircraft taking the pic.

I think the reports of polar bears drowning out at sea because of the lack of pack ice is very sad.
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turbulentfurball
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2007-01-06, 16:31

It's been pretty much the same here. I've seen frost/ice maybe two or three times this winter, and I've seen sleet once, with no snow. I dare say the worst is yet to come; last january and february tend to be the coldest. However, we got the best snow in years last March which was a bit weird. (well, best depending on how you view snow. I built the best snow man )
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Moogs
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2007-01-06, 16:33

Carol: yes, I think it's fair to assume there were people in all of the cars, as it swept them off the road as they were driving AFAIK. A horrible thing. The only hope is that their windows weren't crushed in / that they have some air while crews try to find them / dig them out.

...into the light of a dark black night.
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zsummers
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2007-01-06, 16:38

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moogs View Post
Anyway, keep the freakish winter stories coming as I think it's stuff like this that makes us all stop and go "oh, well maybe I am seeing the effects and until now just wasn't paying attention."
My only fear is that relying on the current weather to change people's minds will backfire. For instance, if the freakish winter weather continues this year and maybe next, a lot of politicos might take the curretn weather up, saying, "See, we told you, the world is going to crap because of global warming--look outside your window." Then, in Year 3, we get an unbelievably cold year, the first politicos are discredited, and the politicos on the other side come out saying, "See, we told you so. Global warming is bunk: look out your window." Global warming a trend with exceptions, obviously, and exceptions would be a killer if we only look at and rely on the short-term. I'd prefer to see the debate rest on the long-term data, even if it's less compelling.

Quote:
We all need to wake up, and especially Americans, as we are responsible for a gigantic proportion of the world's CO2 problems. The only way China and India will ever "follow our lead", is if we make some sacrifices and actually *lead* (i.e. do some significant and widely visible things, soon). Why should their prosperity be curtailed when we already had our day in the sun -our modernization and build up onto the world markets- UNLESS we show them we've got the balls to eat our own dog food and make some changes.
I couldn't agree with this more. We led so brilliantly when it came to fighting communism. Why can't we do so when fighting a (potentially) far more devastating phenomenon.
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hiltond
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2007-01-06, 16:42

Two days ago waiting at a transfer station I had my head down reading a magazine trying not to pay too much attention to the goings on around me. The State Police, Transit Police and Guard all were up in a tizzy about something and as has become standard procedure in the last five years, everybody just acted bored and ignored them.

It takes a lot to stir most people from whatever they are doing while traveling. People get into fist fights, people scream. NJ Transit has these prerecorded announcements they play on panic days. They seem to get more and more excited at each station as you approach a major city. In the towns they are very much "New Jersey Transit requests that you be aware of your surroundings and report any unusual activity to 1-800-" whatever, it is in my phone. By the time you are one stop out of New York or the Philly transfer they become something akin to " New Jersey Transit would like to warn you Osama Bin Laden is right behind you, kiss your ass goodbye." Nobody ever looks around.

When two guys walk onto a platform carrying golf clubs talking loudly about the round they are going to play on January 4, everyone stops and looks.
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Windswept
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2007-01-06, 17:05

Quote:
Originally Posted by hiltond View Post
...By the time you are one stop out of New York or the Philly transfer they become something akin to " New Jersey Transit would like to warn you Osama Bin Laden is right behind you, kiss your ass goodbye."


Okay, that was really funny.

Thanks for the laugh.
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MBHockey
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2007-01-06, 17:33

it was 73 here today in NY....very odd
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zsummers
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2007-01-06, 18:35

New York's Polar Bear Club protests the freakish weather:

Polar Bears Unite!
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bassplayinMacFiend
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2007-01-06, 18:55

We just had record high temps here today, just over 70F. Northern ME had the first green 12/25 in over 100 years. Here in CT, Winter has yet to make a visit.
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ast3r3x
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2007-01-06, 18:57

Do you guys really think this is all because of global warming? From my understanding global warming is a gradual thing that is just increasing the temperature per year a few degrees, not causing effects like these. I really think this is mostly just a weird warm winter (talking about the east mind you) that is aided by global warming, but the the primary effect. Just like zsummers said, don't get all worked up that every winter from now on is going to be 70 degrees unless we do something, because I think on an average we are still way below that point. Of course if we don't do something we will be at that point, and continue to pass it.

Unlike the systems the earth has in place to stop the earth from getting too cold, there isn't a system in place to stop the earth from getting too warm
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Majost
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2007-01-06, 19:01

Right, but if I remember correctly, global warming will also cause more unstable weather patterns -- and not necessarily warm ones (cf. Denver Blizzards). The warming comes from the fact that the *global average* temperature is raising. But locally- and temporally-isolated events should not be rashly blamed entirely on global warming.

I think that global warming is partially the culprit for this winter's unusual weather patterns, and maybe the trigger -- but we'll never know.
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BlueRabbit
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2007-01-06, 19:43

Majost is correct. global warming is a pretty bad name for the concept, since many people automatically assume that it means warming everywhere on the Earth instead of an average rise in temperature. If the rise in average temperatures does continue, some places will end up getting cooler, their drops in temperature being offset by higher rises in other places. One example: if global warming happens as predicted, the gulf stream current in the Atlantic could stop flowing altogether. Since that current carries warm water by Europe, European weather would get a lot cooler.

As for this winter's weather, weather systems are much too complicated to assign blame solely to one cause or another. I must admit though, it is really far away from ordinary.
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ast3r3x
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2007-01-06, 21:14

Yeah, I know there is more to it than that, I just mean I don't think this is really because of global warming, as much as it's just a contributing factor.
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Moogs
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2007-01-07, 00:07

FWIW when I am talking about the concept of global warming I am talking about the whole ball of wax. Things we used to occasionally see but now seem to see all the time, in places we're often not used to seeing them. And to extents we're not used to seeing them. Terrible flooding in a variety of European regions; multiple blizzards in and around Denver over 3 weeks; entire months during the middle of winter that are mild and see no snow fall, in areas where there is usually 18-24 inches of snow; long dry spells in traditionally wet climates and vice versa. Entire glaciers that disappear in the span of 10 years. Giant swaths of permafrost and ice-shelves melting over the span of not decades or centuries, but a few years. And all this crap is happening within a very compressed time period.

No global warming is not just warming, but YES, what we're seeing are the localized effects of global warming. What has to happen before people believe this, "The day after tomorrow"? I mean that movie was bordering on retarded but this sort of makes my point. We're always eager to say "yah but I remember a few winters ago it was unseasonably warm for a time" or whatever. Always easier to dismiss it because it's so hard to believe we've screwed up something so gigantic as the global climate system. We feel so small and see such small parts of the world everyday, we don't realize the huge impact years and years of over-polluting has had. It's the preponderance of evidence that should be leading you to a conclusion (or not), because it's certainly more than one odd thing here or there. It's many things, all over the place, all the freakin time. At least over the last few years that seems to be the new pattern.

Look back at the posts in this thread; half the damn country is experiencing this. And whether it's an el nino or whatever, the fact is, the stuff we are putting into the atmosphere in greater and greater quantities every year, is what's fueling a lot of the screwed up weather / ecological events. It takes the normal patterns and variances, and magnifies them / makes them much worse. So while it's possible this same winter could've occurred before the industrial revolution, in exactly the way it's happening now in exactly the same places and same number of places, it's very unlikely IMHO.

This is something that's man-made. Call it by whatever theoretical name you want; our way of life in the industrialized world, is having negative effects on our climate and ecology worldwide.

...into the light of a dark black night.
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ast3r3x
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2007-01-07, 00:30

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moogs View Post
It takes the normal patterns and variances, and magnifies them / makes them much worse. So while it's possible this same winter could've occurred before the industrial revolution, in exactly the way it's happening now in exactly the same places and same number of places, is very unlikely.

This is something that's man-made. Call it by whatever theoretical name you want; our way of life in the industrialized world, is having negative effects on our climate and ecology worldwide.
I agree with you, I am just saying that I think to bang on the global warming drum as causing this is irresponsible. It is playing a part yes, it's shitty yes, it isn't going to be like this and worse every year from now on. It is going to get slightly worse every year, but this isn't a new norm, that is all I am saying. Global warming is serious, bad, and happening I know. We hopefully have a chance to try and curb our destruction of the Earth before we end up like Venus, but I feel that your over emphasizing the cause from the effect. I think the man-made bad weather now is really just a little worse than it would have been naturally.

It comes down to we disagree to the severity of how much global warming is effecting us right now. And I'm done.
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