Long Island’s winter of 2011-2012 brought back memories of winters long ago, when we enjoyed snowfalls of 18 inches of snow on a regular basis. This summer reminded me of the lazy days of summer in the 1960s, days filled with heat, humidity and summer lethargy. Apparently we should expect more variety in our weather. “The technical word for that is, insane.”
This summer has seen record heat waves and wildfires in the U.S, the worst flooding in Beijing’s modern history, and droughts that devastated the U.S. corn crop and led India to set up “refugee camps” for livestock. These extreme events were not freak occurrences — this is how the earth works now…In fact, you could argue that the North American summer actually started two days before the official end of winter this year, when the town of Winner, South Dakota turned in a 94-degree temperature reading. It was part of that wild July-in-March heat wave that stretched across two-thirds of the country, a stretch of weather so bizarre that historian Christopher Burt called it “probably the most extraordinary anomalous heat event” that the nation has ever seen. International Falls, “the icebox of the nation,” broke its heat records 10 straight days, and Chicago nine. In Traverse City, Michigan, on March 21, the record high was 87 degrees. But the low was 62 degrees, which was 4 degrees higher than the previous record high. The technical word for that is, insane.
As reported by Yale Environment 360, a publication of the Yale School of Forestry& Environmental Studies