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2010 dealt Canada and Planet Earth record-breaking hot, soggy weather

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 For years Canada has been heating up more rapidly than the earth as a whole. But even so, 2010 was shocking. Environment Canada says our nation smashed the record for hottest year ever: a full 3.0 C hotter than normal. The previous record was 2.5 C warmer. Only two years had ever even broken the 2.0 C warmer mark in Canada before. We have leaped into uncharted territory.

Canadian Hotspots

We can no longer expect that things will soon return to normal, because in a world with a rapidly changing climate system there is no norm to return to.”Lester Brown.

As the map above shows, no corner of our gigantic nation had a “cool” year. A tiny portion of the lower prairies was close to “normal”…whatever “normal” means anymore. But the vast sweep of Canada was overheating big time.

The effects were felt most strongly in our northern areas. Climate scientists have been caught off guard in recent years by the extreme pace of Arctic meltdown. The rapid, sudden melting is happening far faster than anyone predicted or thought possible. Sure enough, last year continued the near free-fall in sea ice volume:

 

Our Hudson Bay melted out a month early in the spring. But that turned out to seem almost “normal”  compared to the unprecedented fact that now, in mid-January, the bay seems to have forgotten that it always freezes over by now. Yet somehow, nearly a third of Hudson Bay area (400,000 sq kilometres) has yet to do what it always does -- turn to ice. Temperatures are running up to 16 C warmer than usual in parts of Hudson Bay and Greenland this winter. An equally huge area of Baffin/Newfoundland sea ice just plain missing as well.

As I reported previously, climate scientists are starting to discover links between the unprecedented warmth in the Hudson Bay and Baffin Island areas and the nasty outpouring of extreme cold Arctic air into Europe, Asia and North America. The jet stream is being pushed into some very unusual shapes these days by our new climate reality.

Definitely uncharted waters.

Planet Earth: Hottest year, hottest decade

Planet Earth joined Canada in the overheating frenzy with 2010 coming in as the hottest year ever recorded, tied with 2005, according to both NASA and NOAA.

 

The ten hottest years ever recorded have all occurred in the last dozen years. If we continue our fossil fuel pollution much longer, we will look back on these years as “cool” and “calm”.

The decade that just ended was the hottest recorded, breaking the record held by the 1990s decade by 0.36F. Decades have been averaging .36F warmer since the 1970s. A relentless march into increasing misery. At least until we drastically cut our fossil fuel pollution that is driving this.

(1) Comments

Eric January 16th 2011 | 6:18 PM

As the climate heats up over 5 million Canadians that presently travel to Florida, Arizona, California, Hawaii and Mexico, etc., will not have to. They will be able to stay home and bronze themselves. The saving in GHG emissions from the gigantic lessening of air travel will be beyond contemplation! Home heating usage and costs will precipitously crash since it will not be needed. The lack of enegy use will probably save the planet.

 

It's all good - especially to be nice and warm.