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Forecasters predict extreme cold winter for Chicago

(Reuters) – Private forecaster Accuweather.com said on Wednesday that heavy snow and extreme cold should be expected in the north central United States, especially in the Chicago area, in the coming winter. The East Coast faces average to slightly above average snowfall during the winter of 2011-2012 as a Pacific…

NASA bids farewell to frozen Spirit rover on Mars

WASHINGTON (AFP) – The US space agency said it is giving up on trying to contact its Spirit rover on Mars, saying the robot explorer likely froze to death in the Red Planet’s harsh winter. “NASA is ending attempts to regain contact with the long-lived Mars Exploration Rover Spirit, which…

Ozone depletion over Arctic at record level: WMO

GENEVA (AFP) – Depletion of the ozone layer over the Arctic has reached record levels, the UN weather agency WMO said Tuesday, blaming harmful substances in the atmosphere and a very cold winter. The Arctic ozone layer suffered a loss of about 40 percent from the beginning of winter to…

US Midwest braces for new round of snow

CHICAGO – A large swathe of the US South and Midwest still digging out from last week’s huge snowfall faced more wintry weather Wednesday as the fifth major storm of the season forced several states to close schools and kept many residents homebound. The powerful winter storm began coating parts…

Epic winter storm hits central US

CHICAGO – The central United States was caught in the grip of a historic winter storm Wednesday, buried by drifting snow and sleet that ground air and road travel to a halt. The storm — one of the largest winter storms since the 1950s, according to NASA — stretched for…

Storm threatens 100 million in US with snow, ice, cold

CHICAGO – A mammoth storm threatens to dump mounds of fresh snow, sleet and ice on about 100 million already winter-weary people from the US heartland to the east coast, forecasters said Monday. Blizzard, winter storm and freezing rain warnings were issued for more than 25 states, from North Dakota…

Northeast storm to bring heavy snow

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A storm system moving up the East Coast is expected to bring areas of heavy snow and winds to New England on Friday, spreading into Maine late into the night. Highs in the Northeast will be colder than average, ranging from the teens in the interior…

Winter storms threaten Southern states, weather service warns

WASHINGTON – Severe winter storm warnings were posted by the National Weather Service on Sunday for a belt of states ranging from Texas and Oklahoma in the west across the south to Georgia and the Carolinas in the east. The National Weather Service also warned of a winter ice storm…

US sends 1,400 more Marines to Afghanistan

WASHINGTON — The United States has ordered an additional 1,400 Marines to southern Afghanistan to preempt a Taliban spring offensive, despite a planned troop drawdown starting in July, the Pentagon said Thursday. Defense Secretary Robert Gates on Wednesday “approved additional Marine forces to southern Afghanistan to exploit and consolidate gains…

Biting winters driven by global warming: scientists

PARIS — Counter-intuitive but true, say scientists: a string of freezing European winters scattered over the last decade has been driven in large part by global warming. The culprit, according to a new study, is the Arctic’s receding surface ice, which at current rates of decline could to disappear entirely…

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