Seems like every day in the month of February we have had to deal with an Extreme Cold Warning from Environment Canada. That has not been the case but we have been much colder than normal this month.
According to Brian Proctor, Meteorologist from Environment Canada we have only been over -10 a couple of times this month. "Looking back over the mean temperatures for the month of February, we've been definitely colder. We've only seen a couple of days when its been above -10 for a mean temperature. The average mean temperature for the month so far has been -20.1, so it's been a very chilly month."
There have been many days that have had Extreme Cold Warnings. Proctor explains how Environment Canada determines to put in place the warning. "Criteria for much of Alberta is -40 degrees, either the wind chill equivalent temperature or the actual temperature of -40, so whenever sort of values reaches, at or below those levels, we put out an extreme cold warning."
Many are wondering how much longer will this cold snap continue? "Long-range models we've got right now are indicating cold weather continuing right through the month of March into April but that's just a relative concept if you want to put it that way. As we warm getting further towards spring, we start to warm up anyway. While it's remaining cold it should start to moderate a little bit. What we're looking at really we are going to get into the second to third week of March before things really start to warm up significantly," states Proctor.
For many, it cannot end soon enough as the cold has seemed to have had a stranglehold on our area for a significant amount of time.