Record August Chills In The Balkans; Antarctica Plunges Below -80C (-112F); Heavy Summer Snow Hits Xinjiang, China; + Texas Breaks Low Temperature Records, Including One From 1965

Record August Chills In The Balkans

While the Western half of Europe has witnessed a hot summer, the opposite has been true across the East.

Continuing that trend, the Balkans and also much of Central-Eastern Europe, as well as Southern Italy, have endured very cool and rainy conditions this week.

With a high of just 15.3C (59.5C) on Tuesday, the Slovak capital of Bratislava–serving as just one example–logged its lowest daily high in the month of August since 2010.

Antarctica Plunges Below -80C (-112F)

The fierce and truly historic COLD impacting Antarctica over the past few years should be garnering more attention. I’m not naive, I know full-well why it isn’t — and to briefly recap that ‘inconvenient truth’…

Between April and September 2021, the South Pole averaged -61.1C (-78F) making it the region’s coldest six month spell ever recorded, busting the previous coldest ‘coreless winter‘ on record — the -60.6C (-77F) from 1976 (solar minimum of weak cycle 20).

Also worth noting, the months of June, July, August and September (of 2021) all averaged readings below -60C (-76F) — a phenomenon that has occurred on just three previous occasions, in 1971, 1975 and 1978.

The entire year of 2021 (not just the winter) was also a record-breaker; the South Pole averaged -50.5C (59F) making it the continent’s coldest year since 1987 (solar minimum of cycle 21) and also the third coldest on record in books dating back to 1957.

The first half of 2022 has continued that trend of cold, too; the Antarctic continent has held below the 1979-2000 base (an average used by the Climate Institute at the University of Maine) ALL year, with the most recent months (June and July) also finishing well-below the multidecadal norm.

And now this week, the Antarctic Plateau has plunged to -80.3C (-112.5F)–at the Italian-French station of Concordia–tying the year’s lowest temperature globally which was set at the same site on July 8–the planet’s first sub -80C since 2019.

A colder-than-usual Antarctica + a weak and wavy meridional jet stream flow is a troublesome combination.

This winter, tendrils of polar cold are routinely being whipped-up and sent crashing into Southern Hemisphere land masses.

We see this in South America–where Argentina has been suffering record-breaking cold and snow for months now; we see this in Southern Africa–where Lesotho, for example, is experiencing historic snow at the region’s one and only ski resort; and perhaps most prominently, we see this in Australia–a country enduring one of its coldest winters on record.

Below are the temperature anomalies sweeping the Aussie continent this week, according to the latest GFS run:

GFS 2m Temperature Anomalies (C) Aug 23 – Aug 26 []

While across the Southern Hemisphere as a whole, temperatures today, Aug 24, are forecast to hold -0.4C BELOW the 1979-2000 base, according to the Climate Change Institute at the University of Maine:

I have no doubt that this hemispheric-wide cooling is tied to the historically low solar activity Earth is receiving–the combined lowest in 200 years; but also likely playing a role is Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai’s mesospheric ejection of Jan 15–the highest volcanic eruption ever recorded:

Heavy Summer Snow Hits Xinjiang, China

This past weekend saw a sudden and unexpected blast of heavy snow batter the mountainous regions of Altay Prefecture, NW China, sending the mercury crashing below zero degrees Celsius as it tore through.

More than 10cm (4 inches) of summer snow was reported across Xinjiang prefecture on Saturday in a rarely seen event in summer–and even in early autumn–according to local meteorological authorities.

Texas Breaks Multiple Low Temperature Records, Including One From 1965

This week, daytime highs across the U.S. state of Texas have been struggling.

On Monday, a new record low-max was set in Midland, according to the city’s NWS Twitter account (shown below).

At Midland International Airport, a high of just 79F (26.1C) was achieved, a reading which comfortably usurped the previous record of 81F (27.2C) set back in 1965 (solar minimum of cycle 19).

Similarly in Amarillo, the chill and accompanying rains have been regarded as something of a God send by locals.

Additionally, the state’s unseasonal conditions weren’t just confined to Midland’s and Amarillo, though, as “A little taste of Fall” gripped much of the Texas Panhandle during the first half of the week, according to NWS Amarillo on Twitter:

Looking ahead, the South-Central’s early “Autumn-like temps” are forecast to persist–for the most part.

GFS 2m Temperature Anomalies (C) Aug 21 – Sept 4 []

That could be your summer done with Texas — time to start preparing for that “chilly” winter:

The COLD TIMES are returning, the mid-latitudes are REFREEZING in line with historically low solar activitycloud-nucleating Cosmic Rays, and a meridional jet stream flow (among many other forcings, including the impending release of the Beaufort Gyre).

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