ATLANTA (AP) — Fountains froze over, a 200-foot Ferris wheel in Atlanta shut down, and Southerners had to dig out winter coats, hats and gloves they almost never have to use.
The record-breaking polar air that has made the Midwest shiver over the past few days spread to the East and South on Tuesday, sending the mercury plunging into the single digits and teens from Boston and New York to Atlanta, Birmingham, Nashville and Little Rock — places where many people don't know the first thing about extreme cold.
The morning weather map for the eastern half of the U.S. looked like an algebra worksheet: lots of small, negative numbers. In fact, the Midwest and the East were colder than much of Antarctica.
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Frigid air that snapped decades-old records will make venturing outside dangerous for a second straight day, this time spreading to southern and eastern parts of the U.S. and keeping many schools and businesses shuttered. Meanwhile, residents driven from their homes by power outages in the Midwest worried about burst pipes.
Monday's subzero temperatures broke records in Chicago, which set a record for the date at minus 16, and Fort Wayne, Ind., where the mercury fell to 13 below. Records also fell in Oklahoma and Texas, and wind chills across the region were 40 below and colder. Officials in states like Indiana already struggling with high winds and more than a foot of snow urged residents to stay home if they could.
"The cold is the real killer here," Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard said Monday as he asked schools and businesses to remain closed another day. "In 10 minutes you could be dead without the proper clothes."
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Frigid, dense air swirled across much of the U.S. on Monday, forcing some cities and their residents into hibernation while others layered up and carried on despite a dangerous cold that broke decades-old records.
Wind chill warnings stretched from Montana to Alabama. For a big chunk of the Midwest, the subzero temperatures moved in behind another winter wallop: more than a foot of snow and high winds that made traveling treacherous. Officials closed schools in cities including Chicago, St. Louis and Milwaukee and warned residents to stay indoors and avoid the frigid cold altogether.
The forecast is extreme: Wind chills were expected to drop as low as negative 55 Monday night in International Falls, Minn., and rebound to minus 25 to minus 35 on Tuesday. Farther south, the wind chill is expected to hit negative 50 in Chicago and minus 35 in Detroit.
The long-term drought drying up the Colorado River, which may result in unprecedented water rationing measures, is presenting states in the Southwest with critical challenges, The New York Times reports.
CHICAGO (AP) — Icy, snow-covered roads and high winds made travel treacherous Sunday from the Dakotas and Michigan to Missouri as much of the nation braced for the next winter wallop: a dangerous cold that could break records.
A whirlpool of frigid, dense air known as a "polar vortex" was expected to suppress temperatures in more than half of the continental U.S. starting into Monday and Tuesday, with wind chill warnings stretching from Montana to Alabama.
It was 5 degrees at kickoff Sunday afternoon inside sold-out Lambeau Field for a playoff game between the Green Bay Packers and the San Francisco 49ers, one of the coldest ever played.
Agreements the White House has secured with major companies -- ranging from Coca-Cola to DuPont -- to limit and phase out their use of hydrofluorocarbons, or HFCs, will save the equivalent of 700 million metric tons of carbon dioxide through 2025, The New York Times reports.
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power reported that electrical usage peaked at nearly 6,400 megawatts Tuesday, straining the region’s power grid, as a relentless heat wave continued to grip, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Libya’s move to shut its Shahara oilfield after a rocket attack on a linked refinery sent oil prices higher again Wednesday. West Texas Intermediate crude for October delivery was up 2 cents to $94.90 a barrel in electronic trading on the Nymex, while in London November Brent gained 45 cents to $99.50, Bloomberg reports.
Shell envisions years worth of exploratory Arctic drilling, with up to six wells on separate blocks in the Chukchi Sea, according to the company’s blueprint released to the public by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, FuelFix reports.
Two members of the California Energy Commission have recommended that the first phase of the Palen Solar Electric Generating System be approved despite continuing concerns of environmentalists worried about the project’s impact on the Joshua Tree National Park and the welfare of migrating birds, E&E reports.
After the Bureau of Land Management rejected his request to put a hold on leasing coal rights on federal land, Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass., says he will craft legislation to halt further leases until reforms to the program are initiated, The Hill reports.
Motivated by the shale gas boom, Texas A&M, which already has a campus in the Gulf state of Qatar, has gotten approval from authorities there to add a Gas and Fuels Research Center, with the goal of pressing ahead with new technologies for gas extraction, FuelFix reports.
Taking advantage of cheap natural gas prices, operations like NG Advantage LLC offer clients the option of converting to natural gas heating without pipelines, by bringing the fuel to them in big rigs in a "virtual pipeline," E&E reports.