By Barry Burbank

BOSTON (CBS) — Despite the snow blitz of 2015, many baby boomers still insist that, overall, we don’t get the harsh bitter cold and deep snowy winters like we did in the good ole days.

A Leominster teen posing with the giant snowman he built. (Photo credit: Mary Roche)

Weather records prove that just isn’t the case and despite the ongoing claims that snows are becoming rare and hurting winter sports, this millennium has been a blessing to snow lovers and winter sports enthusiasts.

NESIS scale (Photo Courtesy: WeatherBell)

Just as the Saffir-Simpson and Fujita Scales were devised to categorize hurricanes and tornadoes, the Northeast Snowfall Impact Scale (NESIS) was created by Paul Kocin and Louis Uccellini of the National Weather Service to rank high-impact Northeast storms. This scale has 5 categories including extreme, crippling, major, significant and notable. In addition to meteorological measurements, the index uses population information which provides an indication of a storm’s impacts on society. The NESIS scores are a function of the amount of snow, the area affected by the snowstorm and the number of people living in the path of the storm. The aerial distribution of snowfall and population information are combined in an equation that calculates a NESIS score which varies from around one for smaller storms to over 10 for extreme storms.

NESIS (Photo Courtesy: WeatherBell)

The last decade stands out like a sore thumb! It has had 29 major impact northeast winter storms with NO previous 10-year period with more than 10 storms! In Boston, 7 out of the last 10 years have produced snowfall above the average 43.7 inches.

2008-09: 65.9″
2009-10: 35.7″
2010-11: 81.0″
2011-12: 9.3″
2012-13: 63.4″
2013-14: 58.9″
2014-15: 110.6″ Greatest On Record Back To 1872
2015-16: 36.1″
2016-17: 47.6″
2017-18: 59.9″

NHEMIS snow (Photo Courtesy: WeatherBell)

Additionally, the trend for fall snow across the northern hemisphere has been increasing, defying the forecasts over the last two decades for snows becoming an increasingly rare event. The 10-year running mean of the Boston area snowfall has skyrocketed to the highest level since snow records were kept and that goes back about 145 years! Fluctuations in the temperature regime and annual snowfalls are a function of about 25 global factors including changing oceanic oscillations mainly sea-surface temperature anomaly locations which impact atmospheric conditions creating certain jet stream configurations plus others such as solar activity and irradiance, geomagnetic activity, volcanism, etc.

STT (Photo Courtesy: WeatherBell)

Interestingly, some scientists have stated that increasing snow is consistent with climate change because warmer air holds more moisture, more water vapor and this can result in more storms with heavy precipitation. The trick, of course, is having sufficient cold air to produce that snow. But note that 93% of the years with more than 60″ of snow in Boston were colder than average years. The reality is cooling, not warming, increases snowfall. Note the graph depicting declining January through March temperatures for 20 years at a rate of 1.5 degrees F. per decade in the Northeast!

Northeast Average Temperature (Photo Courtesy: WeatherBell)

So, what gives? What can we expect going forward in the decades ahead? Are we indeed looking at a new paradigm? There is great uncertainty about the scope and prediction of climate change. Will there be a switch in direction? The Earth has experienced major cooling occurrences five times over the past 1000 years. When will the pendulum swing? Arctic temperatures and arctic ice extent varies in a predictable 60-70 year cycle. The greatest warming has been happening in the Arctic region and that can produce a weaker, less stable jetstream that allows frigid air to dive farther south to mix with the warmer oceans to trigger more potential snow events. It’s all cyclical. Ocean cycles are driven by solar cycles. Above and beyond that, important drivers are the Earth’s orbital cycles being comprised of such variables as the changes of the angle at which the Earth tilts on its axis plus the wobble of Earth on its axis. For now, we can be accurate in saying that the shorter range prediction of seasonal trends is more forecastable.

Barry Burbank

Comments (89)
  1. No one has more faith in their own fraud than self-declared scientists. Religious they are.

  2. Roy Lindberg says:

    Disregarding all the ” MAN MADE global warming” hysteria. A simple look back at geological records, paleoclimatology records etc. would have shown that climate is cyclic for many complex reasons. It’s been warmer and it’s been cooler without man in the equation.


    Everybody says there is this RACE problem. Everybody says this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY white country and ONLY into white countries.

    The Netherlands and Belgium are just as crowded as Japan or Taiwan, but nobody says Japan or Taiwan will solve this RACE problem by bringing in millions of third worlders and quote assimilating unquote with them.

    Everybody says the final solution to this RACE problem is for EVERY white country and ONLY white countries to “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-whites.

    What if I said there was this RACE problem and this RACE problem would be solved only if hundreds of millions of non-blacks were brought into EVERY black country and ONLY into black countries?

    How long would it take anyone to realize I’m not talking about a RACE problem. I am talking about the final solution to the BLACK problem?

    And how long would it take any sane black man to notice this and what kind of psycho black man wouldn’t object to this?

    But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against my race, the white race, Liberals and respectable conservatives agree that I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

    They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-white.

    Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

    1. Chris Weldon says:

      Off topic much?

      1. @Chris Weldon – Hey, yer right!! I thought I just had a brain fart and skipped over a few pages to the loony bin!! [ebil grin]

  4. devindenv says:

    But, but, but, Al Gore……………………..

  5. Mike Kruczaj says:

    It doesn’t make any difference how many days it snows, the number of days which the temperature is below freezing or how much snow there has been during the decade the people which believe man made global warming will NEVER change their minds because they will never admit they were wrong or were that stupid to believe all the Hype to begin with.

  6. Rick Cramer says:

    You’ll have to help me out if you are Bostonian readers here. With the recognition that you are being played by liberal democrat histrionics what to hit the world economy with a $1 trillion cost to stop mythical agw but yet you still vote democrat. Please explain

    1. An investment – whether into a failed stock or a failed ideology – is all but IMPOSSIBLE to discard. The holder of the fantasy will desperately, unflinchingly hold on to his chimera until the bitter, COLD end!

  7. Thomas Holsinger says:

    It’s simple. Global warming causes global cooling. It can do anything.

  8. Bob Johnson says:

    If Climate Change aka Global Warming “Scientist” know how to predict the weather (future flooding for example), and now they claim this COLD WEATHER is part of Global Warming…tell me genius’ WHY DIDN’T YOU SEE THIS COMING?

    I’ll give you time to hobble together your BS answer. Have fun.

  9. Maunder Minimum. No sunspots. Cold to follow. Big yellow thing in daytime sky causes more temperature fluctuations than anything humans can do.

  10. Robert Snyder says:

    Grand solar minimum , little ice age.

  11. the climate change pushers use anything to support their beliefs, but fact is nothing they ever say is going to happen happens.

  12. The article states that the greatest warming has been in the arctic area. But according to the arctic temperature graphs produced daily by the Danish Meteorological Institute current arctic summers have been cooler than the arctic summer in the 1960s. Look for yourselves. Just google danish meteorological arctic temperatures.

  13. Does this mean we don’t have to pay carbon taxes anymore? LOL what a fraud this has all been. Everything is cyclical in nature. The lower output of the sun will head us into a continued cooling period. Even NASA stated this the other day. Crops will fail in many areas and disease cycles will peak. That’s the realconcern, not the CO2 in the atmosphere.

  14. Norman Page says:

    Here is a quote “The empirical temperature data is clear. The previous millennial cycle temperature peak was at about 990. ( see Fig 3 in the link below) The recent temperature Millennial Turning Point was about 2003/4 ( Fig 4 in link below ) which correlates with the solar millennial activity peak at 1991+/.The cycle is asymmetric with a 650 year +/- down-leg and a 350+/- year up-leg. The suns magnetic field strength as reflected in its TSI will generally decline (modulated by other shorter term super-imposed solar activity cycles) until about 2650.
    The temperature increase since about 1650 is clearly chiefly due to the up- leg in the natural solar activity millennial cycle as shown by Lean 2018 “Estimating Solar Irradiance Since 850 AD” Fig 5……….The establishment’s dangerous global warming meme, the associated IPCC series of reports ,the entire UNFCCC circus, the recent hysterical IPCC SR1.5 proposals and Nordhaus’ recent Nobel prize are founded on two basic errors in scientific judgement. First – the sample size is too small. Most IPCC model studies retrofit from the present back for only 100 – 150 years when the currently most important climate controlling, largest amplitude, solar activity cycle is millennial. This means that all climate model temperature outcomes are too hot and likely fall outside of the real future world. (See Kahneman -. Thinking Fast and Slow p 118) Second – the models make the fundamental scientific error of forecasting straight ahead beyond the Millennial Turning Point (MTP) and peak in solar activity which was reached in 1991.These errors are compounded by confirmation bias and academic consensus group think.

  15. Max Stack says:

    The beauty of the theory of “global warming” is that it doesn’t matter what happens with the weather, regardless of what it is, “global warming” is the culprit.

  16. You need to understand that it be global warmin that bringeth forth da global coolin from the depths of unbeliefs. Thou shoudist be ashamed of youself.

  17. I need more taxes to feed my dog who is being cold now cause you not payin up you carbonites taxes.

  18. noseitall says:

    Silly people, that’s why we changed it to ‘Climate Change,’ so no matter what happens, we liberals are right!

  19. David Jhanson says:

    I really hope all of you Trumptards freeze to death.

    1. David, David, David, you seem … triggered. Here, have an ice cream cone, and chill.

  20. Jimmie Meehan says:

    if so if it is cooling we need to do what we can immediately to try to start global warming…with warming life can continue…..get enough of the white stuff reflecting the sun back out….much of the worlds population is going to die…..

  21. Global Cooling is the problem! (during winter.)
    Global Warming is the problem! (during summer.)

    But really, Fraudulent Science is the problem year round. Especially when it is for political gain and not really very scientific.

  22. Mike Storey says:

    But by all means, let’s institute a carbon tax in order to make heating a home more expensive and make it harder to survive brutal winters. Whether you believe carbon emissions raises temps or not, a carbon tax and reduction in the small amount of carbon emissions produced by man will make no difference in the global temps.

  23. lionallnight says:

    I’m surprised no liberals have threatened Barry Burbank’s life yet, since he’s obviously a denier.

  24. Hiram Floss says:

    but if globull warming is (NO SCHITE) a scam, what will the Snivelling Justice Whiners do without this “major crisis” to FEEEEEEL morally superior over? we’re gonna need more crayons, therapy ponies and emergency safe spaces STAT!

  25. Kenneth Hilderbrand says:

    Global warming is a scam, a hoax, a fraud. It is intended to separate us from our money. It has succeeded very well. Witness billions wasted on alcohol in gas, solar panels, wind generators, solar collectors. All of these increase cost and waste energy. And the vast majority of democrats can’t see it happening.

  26. Carl Ball says:

    in the 80’s there was a russian climatologist in siberia that noted they were seeing way more temp drops and heavier snow fall than recorded. he claimed we are in the start of a ice age as the real climate changer is in a cooling phase. with less sunspots! as for a ice age it will take 100’s of generations before it really begins. then the next question will it be a mini one like we saw in the dark ages that lasted just over 200 years or a major one that lasted over 100,000 years when we showed up about 30,000 years ago! the problem with this religion called a science is they think mostly in the present with claims of decades later of which they have no clue about as a tool for money and power! the un is using it to start the transition into what we turned down in 16 a global government run on the euro style! open borders for all and equal wealth for all! where have we heard this utopia before?

  27. Tamas Varhegyi says:

    Let’s make sure that we lay down some ground rules. We might have a severe ice age closing in on us, but nobody should have any doubt that it was caused by Global Warning. Which in turn is the fault of human activity but predominantly by president Trump. That is the way science works these days…

  28. The SMART way to deal with Climate CHANGE, which is the ever changing CLIMATE and has very little to do with the activity of HUMANS and everything to do with volcanoes, forest fires and the activity of the SUN, is to PREPARE for extreme temperatures using HUMAN INGENUITY and tapping into ALL kinds of power sources to allow humans to live in comfort no matter what the CLIMATE throws at us. We have the ability to cool the air and live in buildings that protect us from the extreme temperatures whether they be extreme heat or extreme cold. Instead of turning it into a “blame humans and tax them” “solution” let’s unleash human genius to keep the planet livable using available materials and energy instead of punishing fossil fuel and nuclear energy use!

  29. Quanah Parker says:

    Most Environmental-pseudo”Scientists” are just using our planet’s natural climate variability as a ruse to affect the social change they think is best (Social Collectivism). Maybe people should pay attention to real science. We are experiencing the chill of solar minimum. Baby boomers and poorly educated millennials should bundle up.

  30. David Puddy says:

    “The Earth has a Fever” – Al Gore

  31. Tony Heller says:

    The jet stream pattern was very similar during the bitter cold winters of the 1970s, when Arctic sea ice extent was near the century peak. Blaming the polar vortex and dips in the jet stream on global warming and Arctic amplification is incorrect.

  32. Sherry Gerald says:

    But the entire, brilliant Northeast votes Democrat religiously. It’s hard to have sympathy for any problems cold and snow might give you people.

  33. For centuries, cities were covered with the soot from the burning fires, industrial and manufacturing plants and heating systems, filtering the sunlight hitting the ground. I remember flying back into the US from Europe in 1971, and you could see the dirt in the sky that would block the heat as we approached the US shores. We’ve cleaned up over 98% of that dirt, resulting in the loss of this mitigation factor. What could it mean? More fluctuations in the ground temperature.

  34. Erica Reinhardt says:

    We are in the midst of an Ice Age. The current Ice Age began about 2.5 million years ago and previous ones lasted for from 5 to 10 million years.

    Ice Ages are characterized by glacial periods of extreme cold when northern glaciers expand well into what are currently temperate regions. These cold periods are separated by relatively brief and warmer inter-glacial periods. The last glaciation, ended a little over .12,000 years ago. Before this, for example, the area where Boston and NYC are now was buried under about a half mile of ice.

    What causes Ice Ages and their glacial and inter-glacial periods is not entirely understood. The most important factors affecting the earth’s weather and climate are solar radiation levels and the inclination of the earth’s surface to the sun. This latter is responsible for the variations in weather between summer and winter. There are very long term, long lasting changes in the inclination of the earth called Milankovitch Cycles. These seem to be at least partly responsible for Ice Ages.

    Within Ice Ages, glaciations and inter-glacial periods are most likely due to large variations in the output of solar radiation. During the current inter-glacial period temperatures were much warmer about a thousand years ago, a pleasant period, referred to as the Medieval Climactic Optimum. Since then the earth’s average temperature has been cooling wing with some periods cold enough to seriously impact human life, e.g., the Little Ice Age in the 1600s. Many scientists think this Little Ice Age was associated with a period of very low sun spot activity, called the maunder Minimum, somewhat like that we seem to be experiencing now.

    It’s worth noting that the Little Ice Age was a period of unusual cold and that average temperatures have risen since then. Why these temperatures are rising is an open question. Compared with the effects of variations in solar output and still poorly understood, natural terrestrial cycles, human effects on climate are orders of magnitude smaller. All the variations in weather and climate just discussed occurred independently of and well before current small increases in CO2 and other heat trapping gases, which some choose to associate with human activity. .

    We are fortunate to be in an inter-glacial period which began about 12,000 years age. However, this is around the average length of an inter-glacial period. The last thousand years have been colder than earlier times in this inter-glacial period. They have also been characterized by periods of extreme cold. Despite some rise in average temperature which has occurred since the Little Ice Age we seem likely to be entering another period of low solar activity, which presages colder average temperatures. Even more concerning, geological records suggest that we can expect the onset of another glaciation sometime within the next few thousand years. If and when this occurs it will have a far more deleterious impact on human life and civilization than the putative few degrees rise in temperature hypothesized by the computer models of some climatologists.

    All the above is well established science. Any who doubt this can check the facts against any decent text on geology, meteorology, or climate history.

  35. ddswaterloo says:

    I can’t wait to find out why global warming is causing global cooling.

    Lack of sunspots to bring record cold, warns NASA scientist

  36. Mike Arvand says:

    Cooling, warming. Liberals are still melting down either way.

  37. Donny Dingle says:

    Al Gore invented Man Made Global Warming. He made hundreds of millions of dollars and the American people got raped. There is no man made warming but there is sun cycles that can cause cooling periods that are going to cause many millions to die of starvation. It has been looking like one of those periods is just about upon us and we are not prepared thanks to the likes of Al Gore.

  38. Greg Coe says:

    Apostacy!!! Doesn’t he realize that he is putting grant money in jeopardy?

  39. Ric Werme says:

    I live just north of Concord NH. The 14/15 winter brought me 80″ of snow. More than average, but not what the Boston area got, the storm track was far enough south.

    What we did get was cold, and cold that rivaled February 1934, a month that used to stick out in Concord’s weather data because it was so much colder than any other on record.

    That month also brought near record warmth to Portland OR, so all in all, the nation wasn’t exceptionally cold. But we sure were! I wrote it up at