Polar Vortex Strikes Again 🌬️

Scott Olson / Getty Images

Scott Olson / Getty Images

Literally freeze your butt off

In the second half of this week, the Midwest US will face some of the coldest weather it has ever seen on record thanks to a polar vortex. The temperature in Chicago is expected to fall below -40F with wind chill and as low as -60F elsewhere. 

Questioning global warming

A polar vortex in the states occurs when a large area of cold air, typically contained in the north pole, collapses and falls into North America - bringing frigid arctic air down from the north [more details]. Trump took the opportunity to mock global warming on Twitter - launching another debate about whether it's real or not.


USA Today: Here are the facts: Despite winter storms, global warming is real

Huffington Post: Polar Vortex Is Here Again. Yes, It’s Connected To Global Warming.

The left fires back against Trump for tweeting irresponsibly despite the facts on global warming. They note that the polar vortex is an extreme weather condition that actually proves global warming is happening. Despite this one cold spell, the NOAA (a federal agency) notes that 2015-2018 have been the warmest years in recorded history.


The Daily Caller: Bizarre Theory Linking Global Warming To 'Polar Vortexes' Resurfaces. Scientists Are Pushing Back.

Fox News: Trump warns Midwest about frigid temps, asks global warming to 'please come back fast'

The right mostly ignores Trump's tweet but those who cover it believe that the president is being 'sarcastic' or 'mocking' global warming - implying that we shouldn't take his tweets about it seriously. Some outlets refer to scientists who disagree that global warming is happening and instead focus on the possibility of "climate change".

How exactly is global warming causing a polar vortex?

The temperature difference between the far north (arctic) and areas to the south of it is starting to close as the arctic warms up (due to global warming). This is causing a subsequent drop in pressure difference as well which typically keeps cold air in the north and warmer air in the south. This ultimately results in the cold air in the arctic from seeping out and plunging into the south.

Chicago, think about the silver lining



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