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  • It could finally be time for shorts. At least that’s what Damian Cortes of Wheeling thought as he headed to class at Harper College in Palatine.

    Back to the 80s. But are warm temps here to stay?May 8, 2014 12:00 AM
    A 35-degree wind chill Tuesday morning. A mid-80s forecast today. A 50-degree swing isn’t that unusual for spring in Chicago, but the warm weather doesn’t necessarily mean we’ve broken out of our cool pattern yet — with some fallout for spring planting, seasonal allergies and maybe even general health and well-being, experts say.

     
  • A tornado hit Vilonia, Ark., earlier this week, the second time it was hit in three years. Four people were killed in a 2011 storm. Until this late April 2014 outbreak, the U.S. as a whole had by far the quietest start of the year for tornadoes. Longer trends show more tornado clusters recently.

    Tornado seasons lately have been boom or bustApr 30, 2014 12:00 AM
    Something strange is happening with tornadoes lately in the United States and it’s baffling meteorologists. It’s either unusually quiet or deadly active. Until this weekend’s outbreak, the U.S. had by far the quietest start of the year for tornadoes. By the beginning of last week, there had been only 20 significant tornadoes and none of them that big.

     
  • Storm sweeping through suburbsApr 29, 2014 12:00 AM

     
  • A dangerous multiple-day severe weather outbreak will begin this weekend over the South Central states and will include the potential for nighttime tornadoes in parts of Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska.

    Severe weather outbreak forecast for South Central statesApr 25, 2014 12:00 AM
    A dangerous multiple-day severe weather outbreak will begin this weekend over the South Central states and will include the potential for nighttime tornadoes in parts of Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska. A storm will move slowly across the United States over the next seven to 10 days.

     
  • The Earth’s shadow renders the moon in a crimson hue during a total lunar eclipse behind the illuminated steeple of St. Olaf Lutheran Church in the town of Ashippun, Wis. Tuesday, April 15, 2014.

    Images: Total Lunar EclipseApr 15, 2014 12:00 AM
    The moon glowed a red hue early Tuesday morning during a total lunar eclipse The eclipse is the first of four total lunar eclipses that will take place between 2014 to 2015.

     
  • Snow could make roads slick this morningApr 14, 2014 12:00 AM
    Snow that slowed Monday night’s commute accumulated up to 2 inches in some areas, but it won’t stay long, meteorologists say. Roads could remain slick going into Tuesday morning’s commute, with temperatures overnight expecting to dip into the 20s. They’ll begin an upward climb into the 40s Tuesday, the 50s Wednesday and near 60s for the next week or so, Ratzer said.

     
  • In this July 4, 2005 file photo Marc Olefs, left, and Andrea Fischer, researchers from the Innsbruck University check a field covered with white polyethylene against the backdrop of majestic jagged peaks at Eisgrat (Ice Spine) skiing station on Stubai glacier near the village of Neustift im Stubaital in the alpine Austrian province of Tyrol.

    Artificial cooling tricky topic for climate panelApr 13, 2014 12:00 AM
    It’s Plan B in the fight against climate change: cooling the planet by sucking heat-trapping CO2 from the air or reflecting sunlight back into space. Called geoengineering, it’s considered mad science by opponents. Supporters say it would be foolish to ignore it.

     
  • Hail the size of golf balls blanketed some parts of Algonquin Saturday morning.

    Golf ball sized hail reported throughout suburbsApr 12, 2014 12:00 AM
    Hail as big as golf balls blanketed roads and lawns as severe thunderstorms rolled through the suburbs Saturday. A Barrington car dealership reported windows on some vehicles were smashed by the hail. An Algonquin resident called it "one of the largest hail storms" she's ever seen.

     
  • The odds are increasing that an El Nino is in the works for 2014 — and recent forecasts show it might be a big one. But the most important thing about El Nino is that it is predictable, sometimes six months to a year in advance.

    El Nino could grow into a monster, data showApr 12, 2014 12:00 AM
    The odds are increasing that an El Nino is in the works for 2014 — and recent forecasts show it might be a big one. But the most important thing about El Nino is that it is predictable, sometimes six months to a year in advance.

     
  • Firefighter Rusty Murphy wades through floodwaters in a mobile home park in Pelham, Ala., Monday. Police and firefighters rescued about a dozen people who were trapped by muddy, fast-moving water after storms dumped torrential rains in central Alabama.

    Storms sock the Southeast; 1 killed in GeorgiaApr 7, 2014 12:00 AM
    Severe thunderstorms dumped heavy rains across the Southeast on Monday and caused flash flooding in central Alabama, where crews in small boats and military trucks had to rescue dozens of people from their homes and cars.

     
  • The economic and financial impact of global warming is complex and not well understood. In some scenarios there would be economic benefits for countries that get warmer and wetter and consequently more fertile agriculturally. Drier weather in some regions would result in sharply lower crop yields.

    Costs of climate change steep but tough to tallyApr 6, 2014 12:00 AM
    The economic and financial impact of global warming is complex and not well understood. Overall, changes in climate are expected to cause significant disruptions that also exact an economic toll. Here's an explanation of how, according to a 49-page summary from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change which met in Yokohama near Tokyo this week.

     
  • The annual Tornado and Severe Storms Seminar drew an overflow crowd Saturday who had to watch WGN Chief Meteorologist Tom Skilling’s presentation outside a Fermilab auditorium.

    Fermi hosts annual seminar on severe weather, climate changeApr 5, 2014 12:00 AM
    The enthusiasm to hear bad weather news was so great at Saturday's Tornado and Severe Storms seminar, an overflow crowd had to watch a televised version of WGN Chief Meteorologist Tom Skilling’s presentation outside Ramsey Auditorium. Lombard resident Jim Leyland and his grandson, Josh McGregor of North Aurora, were among the lucky ones who got a seat. “We want to learn about tornadoes and climate change,” said Leyland, who referred to Skilling as “Mr. Weather.”

     
  • Judson University sophomore Spencer Thomas and freshman Bethany Cooper finally get to enjoy some spring temperatures Monday as they relax near Tyler Creek between classes in Elgin. Both originally from Rockford, Thomas is a biology and pre-med student. Cooper is majoring in music performance.

    Monday weather provides preview of what’s aheadMar 31, 2014 12:00 AM
    Students are Judson University were finally able to enjoy some spring temperatures on campus Monday, and even a bit of time to relax by Tyler Creek while soaking up some sunshine between classes.

     
  • A trickle of water left in the Rio Grande is pushed downstream by the wind near the chile growing community of Hatch, N.M. Top climate scientists are gathering in Japan this week to finish up a report on the impact of global warming. And they say if you think climate change is only faced by some far-off polar bear decades from now, well, you’re mistaken. They say the dangers of a warming Earth are immediate and human. While it doesn’t say these events were caused by climate change, the report mentions droughts in northern Mexico and south-central United States, as showing how vulnerable people are to these weather extremes.

    Big climate report: Warming is big risk for peopleMar 24, 2014 12:00 AM
    If you think of climate change as a hazard for some far-off polar bears years from now, you’re mistaken. That’s the message from top climate scientists gathering in Japan this week to assess the impact of global warming. In fact, they will say, the dangers of a warming Earth are immediate and very human.

     
  • Visitors from around the world and the state made their way to the hill covered in a variety of daffodils in Amador County, Calif.

    Spring forecast: Cool in North, still dry in WestMar 20, 2014 12:00 AM
    The first day of spring? Some people in Maine were shoveling 6 inches of new snow. And in Michigan, college students couldn’t even burn a snowman. Ok, so it was a fake snowman. But it was real snow that got in the way. For many Americans, it feels like winter is hanging on like a bad cold.

     
  • Small but making a big statement, these blooms on a witch-hazel tree Wednesday are one of the traditional first signs of spring for Doris Taylor, manager of the plant clinic at Morton Arboretum in Lisle.

    Officially, winter gives way to spring todayMar 20, 2014 12:00 AM
    “Come, gentle Spring! Ethereal mildness, come,” poet James Thompson of Scotland wrote in 1728. But the kilt-friendly, Scottish winter of 1727-28 was nothing compared to our long-underwear-required suburban winter of discontent in 2013-14.

     
  • U.S. Housing and Urban Development announced Monday it will provide nearly $64 million in additional disaster relief to help suburban Cook and DuPage County communities still recovering from last spring’s record storms that flooded areas across the region, including a portion of downtown Des Plaines.

    HUD awards Cook, DuPage counties another $64 million in flood reliefMar 17, 2014 12:00 AM
    Suburban Cook and DuPage counties will receive nearly $64 million in additional federal disaster relief to assist local communities still recovering from last spring’s record storms and flooding, U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Shaun Donovan announced Monday.

     
  • Palatine man dies in massive Ohio pileup crashMar 13, 2014 12:00 AM
    A Palatine man was one of three people who died Wednesday in a winter weather-related chain-reaction crash on the Ohio Turnpike, authorities said Thursday. Grzegorz A. Piwowarczyk, 42, was driving a commercial vehicle involved in the crash with as many as 16 vehicles in Sandusky County, according to the Ohio State Highway Patrol.

     
  • College of DuPage students Ashley Stelmack of LaGrange Park and Corey Petric of Naperville forgoing wearing jackets or even long sleeves for Stelmack as the temperatures rise into the low 50s Monday.

    Enjoy warm while you can; snow is coming backMar 10, 2014 12:00 AM
    Don’t put away those snowblowers yet. We hate to cast a cloud over today’s balmy temperatures in the suburbs, but another snowstorm is headed our way. But take heart. It could be worse: The record low for March was -12 in 1873.

     
  • A jogger is seen Monday in Lafayette Park in front of the White House in Washington. The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning for the greater Washington Metropolitan region, prompting area schools and the federal government to close for the wintry weather.

    Walloped again: Another storm hits much of USMar 3, 2014 12:00 AM
    On the latest snow day in a winter full of them, residents of parts of the South, Mid-Atlantic and Northeast were coping with several inches of snow on top of a layer of slush. With accumulations of 4-to-6 inches in Washington, Monday’s storm would have been the largest in the nation’s capital in all of last year. But in the seemingly endless winter of 2013-2014, it came 2 ½ weeks after a much bigger storm, and the region settled into a familiar routine of hunkering down.

     
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