Environment

January Thaw. Image: Michael Bouman
Environment News Science

Looking Forward To The January Thaw

The January thaw is coming. The term describes unusually warm weather for the time of year–and many people in Canada and the United States should experience it around the end of this month.

Many cities in Canada and the U.S. have been hit with blizzards and extremely cold temperatures, as well as high winds and lots of snow.

Many cities in Canada had snow and temperatures of -20 degrees Celsius (-4 degrees Fahrenheit) or colder. With the “wind chill factor,” -20 degrees Celsius feels like -35 degrees Celsius.

Map Plotting the Track and Intensity of Hurricane Irma. Image: OverlordQ
Breaking News Environment News

Large Storms Affecting Caribbean, US

Everyone is talking about Harvey, Irma, Jose and Katia.

They are the names of very large storms, affecting the area around the Caribbean*, Mexico and the southern United States.

Hurricanes are given names, like “Irma” to make it easier to refer to them.

People in these areas are used to dealing with storms. But these storms are much larger than normal. They have very high winds—up to 120 kilometres an hour—with lots of rain that can flood people’s houses and force them to leave the area. (In this case, leaving your home is known as “evacuating.”) In Florida, more than 6.4 million people have been told to evacuate before Irma gets there, according to a report from CBC News.

The decrease in sea ice in the Arctic is seen in this image, which compares 2012 sea ice levels with the yellow outline, which shows the average sea ice level from 1979 through 2010. Image: NASA
Environment News Science

Scientists Working To Save Arctic Ice Cap

A team of scientists has come up with a plan they say could help rebuild the Arctic ice cap. The ice cap is a huge area of sea ice that covers most of the Arctic Ocean all year round.
Usually, the sea ice gets thicker and spreads further each winter, but this hasn’t happened for the past few years.
Last month, the ice cap had shrunk to its smallest size since scientists began keeping records of it 38 years ago. The weather in the Arctic has been unusually warm this winter. Some days, temperatures have been 20 degrees Celsius higher than is normal for this time of year. This month, the temperature was above 0°C at least one day.