Saturday, January 7, 2012

Winter 2011-12 Snow Cover



Snow Cover January 6, 2012 vs January 6, 2010.
The current winter stands in stark contrast to the winter of two years ago. As of yesterday afternoon, January 6, 2012, only 14.3% of the lower 48 states were snow covered. Two years ago, January 6, 2010, 56.0% of the lower 48 states were snow covered. This unusual lack of snow cover on the Great Plains has allowed temperatures to soar to record levels lately. Snow reflects much of the incoming solar radiation and a snow free darker surface absorbs much more of the solar radiation allowing surface temperatures to be much warmer.

Snow Cover January 6
(lower 48 states)
2012 14.3%
2011 44.9%
2010 56.0%
2009 41.8%
2008 34.6%
2007 27.7%
2006 26.6%
2005 54.6%
2004 40.3%

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