Tag archives for Weather
Saturday, February 2, is Groundhog Day! According to legend, if a groundhog sees his shadow, we can expect six more weeks of wintery weather. If there’s no shadow, spring is on the way! The most famous groundhog is Pennsylvania’s Punxatawney Phil. There are other weather-predicting groundhogs too, such as Raleigh, North Carolina’s Sir Walter Wally (pictured above) and Washington, D.C.’s “National Groundhog” Potomac Phil.
What is your prediction? Will we have six more weeks of winter?
This past weekend, Hurricane Irene swept up the East Coast of the U.S. The Category 1 hurricane first touched land in North Carolina. People living in Virginia to New York experienced flooding and downed trees. By the time it reached New York City and New England, Irene was downgraded to a tropical storm.
Hurricanes get weaker after they pass over land. Irene did slow down, but it remained large and destructive much longer than most hurricanes as it moved north through Vermont.
Photograph by Hyunsoo Leo Kim, The Virginian-Pilot/AP
Snowmelt and heavy rainfall in Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota have swollen the Mississippi River to near-record levels. Flooding has occurred in Illinois, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Louisiana. Some rural areas have been flooded by opening spillways on the river. Doing this might help keep flood water out of big cities.
Photograph by Patrick Semansky, AP
Planet Earth has gotten windier over the last 20 years, according to a new study. Scientists looked at satellite wind measurements going back to 1985 and learned that winds have increased by about 5 percent. Very strong winds caused by storms have increased by 10 percent during the same time period. Study leader Ian Young says that it is not yet clear if our windier world is a result of global warming, or if it is a result of a cyclical pattern.
Photograph by Norbert Rosing, National Geographic