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United States Government Stats Science News Technology

This Was America's Warmest Winter On Record (slate.com) 446

hondo77 writes: On Tuesday, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released its official assessment of December, January, and February's temperatures across the United States, and the results are striking: Not a single state in the U.S. had a cooler than average winter. (NOAA treats Alaska and Hawaii separately, due to shorter weather data records there -- though both states were significantly warmer than normal this winter. Weather records for the contiguous United States go back to 1895.) NOAA blames the recent warm weather on a record-strength El Nino "and other climate patterns," most notably, global warming. As a whole, this winter in the lower 48 was about 4.6 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than the 20th century average: a sharp contrast to the previous back-to-back frigid polar vortex winters, especially in the Northeast.
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This Was America's Warmest Winter On Record

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  • by narcc ( 412956 ) on Tuesday March 08, 2016 @07:08PM (#51662341) Journal

    Write your congress critter and tell him we want more mild winters.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Ol Olsoc ( 1175323 )

      Write your congress critter and tell him we want more mild winters.

      As soon as the Republicans take over the sente and we have a new Republican president, we'll repeal the laws of physics, and usher in a great new age. Nothing will stand in the way of our ideology..

    • by chihowa ( 366380 )

      We're already getting lots of ants, spiders, and other bugs pretty early this year, so watch what you wish for! Those who live in mosquito country are not going to be terribly happy with an extra long "growing season".

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 08, 2016 @07:10PM (#51662349)

    I hope next year is the same.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 08, 2016 @07:21PM (#51662421)

    Global warming proven to be a lie!

  • You know what? I have no idea if warming is caused by humans or not. And it really doesn't matter.

    If there is a warming trend, human caused or not, we should be dealing with the evacuations and necessary work to deal with rising sea levels.

    We're not going to be able to stop it. It's time to figure out who is going to be underwater in 5-10 years (if anyone) and get them out. If there is a problem with warming coming, that is the solution. The rest of it is just babble.

    Now, if you want to reduce CO2 emis

    • by friedman101 ( 618627 ) on Tuesday March 08, 2016 @07:42PM (#51662559)
      Now, if you want to reduce CO2 emissions at the same time, feel free. I just don't want to be sent back to the 18th Century...

      nothing screams 18th century like nuclear and solar power
    • If there is a warming trend, human caused or not, we should be dealing with the evacuations and necessary work to deal with rising sea levels.

      And we should be researching methods for cooling the planet.

      Earth's climate has never been particularly stable. Unless we want to be forever dealing with its fluctuations we need to learn how to engineer the climate we want. Now seems like a perfect time to take the next steps I say "next" because we've already taken the first steps; we've learned how to warm the planet, though perhaps not in the most controlled or efficient way.

    • by Ichijo ( 607641 )

      I have no idea if warming is caused by humans or not...

      Please tell us your thoughts on the flat earth hypothesis, the moon landing hoax, and the government's involvement in 9/11.

      • by tnk1 ( 899206 ) on Tuesday March 08, 2016 @08:35PM (#51662865)

        The earth is an oblate spheroid, the moon was landed on by the US in a number of Apollo missions starting in 1969, and a group of asshole al-Qaeda terrorists hijacked planes on 9/11/2001 and destroyed the WTC towers and impacted the Pentagon after flying low over my fucking head as I drove to work that day. Please don't be an ass.

        However, I'm not a scientist. I don't disbelieve in human causes for the warming, but I have zero first hand ability to judge whether it is true or not. And to be honest, it is entirely irrelevant to me.

        The point I was making is that ultimately, the requirement to reduce the warming of the Earth to merely two degrees is a distraction. And the bickering about who caused it is an equal distraction. Assuming we did cause warming, this happened over the period of industrialization. Fixing such a process isn't going to happen in the desired time frame. If we're dropping all our eggs in that basket, we're going to lose.

        I want to make very clear that we're doing what it takes to make sure the people impacted are taken care of. We can bicker about what caused it, but we should be preparing to get people out of there and mitigate the damage.

        To deal with the outcomes, all we have to prove is that warming is happening. If it is, then we have all the answer we need to start the process of mitigating the damage. I don't care if it is CO2, sunspots, or cow farts that is causing it. That's a problem someone else can work out. Let's get a pricetag together for what needs to be done and get on it. This doesn't have to be a disaster, but it will be if we ignore it until it is too late.

        • but I have zero first hand ability to judge whether it is true or not.
          Neither do you have for those points:
          The earth is an oblate spheroid, the moon was landed on by the US in a number of Apollo missions starting in 1969, and a group of asshole al-Qaeda terrorists hijacked planes on 9/11/2001 and destroyed the WTC towers and impacted the Pentagon after flying low over my fucking head as I drove to work that day. Please don't be an ass.

          Just nitpicking.

    • You know what? I have no idea if warming is caused by humans or not. And it really doesn't matter.

      If you don't know what is causing the present warming trend, how can you know whether or not it matters?

      We're not going to be able to stop it.

      How do you know? Didn't you profess ignorance as to the cause of the warming?

      I am all in favor of less CO2 emissions and more efficiency. I just think it is a waste of time, at this point, to make that what we throw all our money at, because it isn't going to make a bit of difference in the short term.

      How do you know what difference it will make without researching and understanding the mechanism that is causing the warming? How do you know how much it will cost, if it even IS a net cost?

      I find your statements a bit puzzling. Have we begun to treat ignorance as a source of greater authority than knowledge? After all, the und

  • by PopeRatzo ( 965947 ) on Tuesday March 08, 2016 @07:40PM (#51662547) Journal

    "Nuh-uh!"

  • by jiriw ( 444695 ) on Tuesday March 08, 2016 @07:53PM (#51662615) Homepage

    Well, here in the Netherlands, the number of days there was frost at day-time this winter could be counted on a single hand. I may have had central heating on for maybe two weeks in days in total ('80s concrete apartment, 60 sq.m, bottom corner, reasonably isolated, double glass on one side, no indirect heat from neighbours because that apartment is empty) the past half year. It certainly has been the mildest winter in human recollection here. Positive: I'll probably get returned a shit-load of money on my energy bill advances this year. There has been no snow to mention this year. In the northern part there has been one frosty period of a week or so and some nice snow... but not in the center and bottom 2/3ds of our country.

    Spring flowers are in full bloom, bees are collecting honey, trees are budding... at the end of February/start of March... it's all quite strange...

    A few decades ago we would have been able to ice-skate on natural ice for several weeks or even months each year... Marathons and '11 cities' full day races on frozen canals and rivers. One year even the Rhine (the largest river in the northwestern part of the European continent) froze over. In the last couple of years the number of days of skate-able ice may have been a few weeks, at the most. And this year it was only a few hours. So there were national championships ice skating on natural ice this year... the one day it was possible to skate on a thoroughly nurtured 'natural' ice track somewhere in the north-eastern part of our country...

    • Positive: I'll probably get returned a shit-load of money on my energy bill advances this year.

      You have to pay your energy bill a year in advance??

      • You pay monthly. But the payment is based on your previous years consumption. End of the year (or your "period") you get a yearly bill and a new monthly payment is defined. If you have payed to much because of changes in energy usage, you get money back. If you payed to less you get an extra bill to pay.

        Ofc if you have evidence through the course of the year that you are already paying to much, you sent in the numbers and let your monthly bill get adjusted.

  • It would be interesting to know if a sorta equilibrium occurs where the warmer winters means less fuel was burned.
    • Alas you should assume a warmer winter caused by global warming will be accompanied by a warmer summer, and the latter will send A/C bills flying ever higher.
  • Risk (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Smiddi ( 1241326 )
    Forget the entire "data has been manipulated" debate (cause that will never end). Look at it purely from a risk management perspective: There are 4 variables 1. If scientists are all WRONG and we DO NOTHING = We keep on going as we are now. 2. If scientists are all WRONG and we TAKE ACTION = We will have a cleaner environment (but we wont all die). 3. If scientists are all RIGHT and we DO NOTHING = We all slowly die out. 4. If scientists are all RIGHT and we TAKE ACTION = We slow and possibly reverse the ef
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by blindseer ( 891256 )

      Or we could compute this another way:
      - There is no global warming, and we do nothing, and we all live happily with a strong economy
      - There is no warming, and we spend $trillions in shifting the economy from cheap oil to expensive wind and solar, life sucks
      - There is global warming, and we do nothing, and we end up spending $trillions to adjust to the new climate, life sucks
      - There is global warming, and we spend $trillions to stop it, life sucks

      Of those options 3 of 4 have life sucking. So, it appears to m

      • There are many benefits to renewable energy even if you leave global warming out of the equation. Such as better health, reduced pollution, and less financial support for autocratic governments like Saudi Arabia and Russia.

        Moving away from fossil fuels to renewable energy is worth the effort, regardless of climate change.

  • How can it be the warmest winter when it isn't over yet. In NY ( not NY city) it can snow into April. I am predicting another white Easter.
  • by Tighe_L ( 642122 ) on Wednesday March 09, 2016 @10:29AM (#51665471) Homepage
    The NOAA historical data has been shown to have altered, this is different from the previous time it was altered. http://realclimatescience.com/... [realclimatescience.com]

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