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As Cold In Canada As It Is On Mars

Curiosity

The blast of Arctic cold headed into the American Midwest and East Coast is making it colder in Canada than it is in the U.S., not surprisingly. What is surprising, maybe, is that it reached temperatures equal to those registered on Mars:

Canada is having a cold snap at the moment. This week, in Southern Manitoba, the temperature reached a blisteringly frigid -31 degrees Celsius, or nearly -24 Fahrenheit. (Wind chill values in Winnipeg—in case you were curious and/or in need of some meteorological schadenfreude—dipped to -58 Fahrenheit.) Which is crazy, and which makes for, as Yahoo’s Geekquinox blog puts it, “the coldest afternoon temperatures the area has seen in several years.”

The cold spell also puts Canada into some rarified company. Because you know what other place has recently registered a temperature of -31 degrees Celsius? Mars. Yep, Mars—a planet located an average of 140 million miles farther from the sun than we are. Over on the Red Planet, NASA’s Curiosity rover regularly sends temperature data to us via its REMS (Rover Environmental Monitoring Station) instrument. And over the past month, Yahoo notes, REMS has been reporting daily high temperatures on Mars that range from -25 to -31 degrees Celsius. (Mars seems to be having its own cold spell: The -31 degrees Celsius temperature is the coldest daily high the rover has recorded since it landed on the planet in August 2012.)

As the linked article goes on to note, the area of Mars were Curiosity is located is actually a somewhat warmer climate than other parts of the planet. It terms of latitude, Curiosity is located roughly in an area where Venezuela would be on Earth. Still that’s some pretty cold stuff you’re dealing with there Canada.

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Ben Wolf says:

    Look at the arctic temperatures:

    http://www.accuweather.com/en/arctic-weather

    It’s warmer near the pole than in Canada and parts of the U.S. Cold arctic air has slid to the south and been replaced by our warmer air, reducing Winter ice formation. If this sort of thing keeps up until Spring we’ll have a good shot at a new record low for ice extent in the North.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  2. george says:

    This is pretty much normal up here though. It’s not considered really cold until it hits -40 (which coincidentally is the same in Fahrenheit and Centigrade).

    What gets you isn’t the temperature though, its the wind chill. Minus 30 and a strong wind is a killer. And incredibly, there are still people stupid enough to drive in the countryside wearing just office clothes under those conditions: blowing snow, low visibility, minus 50 with windchill, and office shoes and a light coat – what could go wrong? A few die every year discovering the answer.

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  3. Stonetools says:

    @Ben Wolf:

    Yeah, well, that’s that climate change stuff that most conservatives and libertarians don’t believe in, so don’t expect that angle to be covered.
    Sounds like I won’t be visiting Canada any time soon.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Proof that Mars is undergoing global warming too!

    (beat ‘em to it)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  5. george says:

    @Stonetools:

    Sounds like I won’t be visiting Canada any time soon.

    Come in summer, its nice then (typically in the 80′s F) – arguably nicer than much of the US, where its hot and muggy much of the summer. I’ve always thought that the ideal would be to live down south in winter, up north in summer. Sadly enough, for several years I ended up having to do the reverse – all the cold of Canadian winter, all the heat of southern summer.

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  6. Hal_10000 says:

    Yeah, well, that’s that climate change stuff that most conservatives and libertarians don’t believe in, so don’t expect that angle to be covered.

    Actually, most libertarians accept it and most non-Tea Party conservatives do as well. There’s just a very motivated core of people disputing it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  7. al-Ameda says:

    This week, in Southern Manitoba, the temperature reached a blisteringly frigid -31 degrees Celsius, or nearly -24 Fahrenheit. (Wind chill values in Winnipeg—in case you were curious and/or in need of some meteorological schadenfreude—dipped to -58 Fahrenheit.) Which is crazy, and which makes for, as Yahoo’s Geekquinox blog puts it, “the coldest afternoon temperatures the area has seen in several years.”

    Okay, finally I’m convinced – I’ve cancelled my plans to vacation in Southern Manitoba in the Winter.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  8. Stonetools says:

    @al-Ameda:

    Hey, go ahead. It’s a dry cold….

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  9. Liberal Capitalist says:

    Mars ain’t the kind of place to raise your kids…

    In fact, it’s cold as Hell.

    And there’s no one there to raise them if you did.

    So…. New York is still better, right?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  10. Stonetools says:

    @Hal_10000:

    Dunno man.. The number one libertarian think tank is the Cato Institute, and they are leading the climate change denial charge.
    On the internet, conservatives and libertarians are pretty hard core vs climate change. I’m willing to be persuaded though. Are there any prominent libertarians who accept climate change?

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  11. bill says:

    @Stonetools: climate change and agw are 2 different things to them- they don’t think that this idiotic carbon credit scam is worth it’s weight in dogshit- like most people with a brain.

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  12. Tyrell says:

    Mars has a lot of caves in the mountainous areas. I wonder what the temperature there is.

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  13. grumpy realist says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Actually, the planet that really did have global warming happen is Venus.

    If we were to investigate on the surface, we might find the remains of some previous civilization which did the same dumb thing to its climate that we’re doing at present.

    (Chicago’s hitting -14 F at present. Not fun.)

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