A thin skim of ice formed on the Bras d'Or Lake this weekend, and the forecast week of bitter cold and light winds promises to deepen and strengthen its wintery cover. Forty years ago, this was an all-but-annual occurrence. In the middle decades of the 20th Century, Victoria County's legendary physician C. Lamont MacMillan routinely crossed the lake in a homemade half-track to reach ill patients in the depths of winter. But as our climate has changed, the frozen lake has become a rarity. Consider this a placeholder for a compilation, coming soon, of the outraged comments that flooded in from...

Scientific American calls bullshit on wind chill: [I]f the air temperature is, say, 15 degrees F, and a 20–mile per hour wind makes the wind chill –2 degrees F, would the temperature of your exposed skin drop to that temperature? No. Your skin temperature cannot drop below the actual air temperature. The coldest your uncovered face could get would be 15 degrees F whether the wind is calm or howling at 40 mph...

In case you missed it, CNN reporter Wolf Blitzer's attempt to enforce the journalistic requirement that survivors of natural disasters must thank God for the miracle of their escape (while avoiding mention of God's responsibility for the deaths and injuries of those who did not) backfired in Moore, Oklahoma, today yesterday, when survivor Rebecca Vitsmun politely declined to follow the script. [video link] Vitsmun had planned to ride out the tornado with her 19-month-old son Anders by huddling in the bathtub of their home, but 10 minutes before the storm hit, she panicked and fled with with the boy in the family...

In response to this, this, this, and many other provocations, a particularly keen-eyed consumer of Contrarian arguments has graciously created the official Contrarian weather page. (Click the image to download a larger version.) H/T:WCR...

Contrarian reader Peter Barss waxes philosophical about the primal draw of radio-storms and weather-porn: It 's exciting to sit in our warm, safe living rooms listening to dire warnings of impending weather doom. It's even more of a thrill to turn on our flat screen TVs and watch weather gals and guys get whipped by wind-driven snow as they stand outside yelling into their microphones so they can be heard over the howling "weather bomb." We live in a society that is soft and luxurious. One of the luxuries we indulge is the illusion that if we just do everything right we...

Most of the listeners who responded to my debate with CBC manager Andrew Cochran about the network's (in my view) inflated coverage of weather are just fine with the CBC's weather treatment. [caption id="attachment_11355" align="alignright" width="300"] Highway conditions at 3:30 pm, February 20, when Cape Breton schools closed early due to forecasts of possible freezing rain that evening: Pavement dry; precipitation nil.[/caption] This doesn't surprise me. Some people like being frightened about weather, just as others like being frightened about crime. Lurid coverage of crime by some media has led to a sharp increase in the public perception of personal risk from...