Be Thankful for Your Heater This Thanksgiving Because You're Going to Need It

Drive safe, folks!
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If you live in the Northeast, you better put some mittens on your turkey this Thanksgiving. Because temperatures are gonna’ drop—and not like it’s hot.

In fact, this holiday might summon some of the coldest temperatures the region’s ever seen for the month of November. It’s normal for cold Arctic to drift down from Canada this time of year, and with winter almost upon us, snow isn’t necessarily so surprising. But let me tell you: Snow is a’coming.


Snow is forecast to drop from Pittsburgh to Albany to Portland, Maine starting Thanksgiving Eve, per AccuWeather. The weather service is warning drivers to be wary of slippery roads and sudden white-outs. And apparently, that cold Arctic air is doing Too Much this month, because along with snow temperatures are set to drop 20 to 30 degrees below normal.

Boston, for example, is set to see a high of 22 degrees Fahrenheit, a potential record-breaker for the city on Thanksgiving, according to the Washington Post. New York City, where I’m at, could see temperatures hover around 27 degrees Fahrenheit. The last time we spent a Thanksgiving this cold was in 1882, according to the National Weather Service. Farther up north in Burlington, Vermont—an already cold AF city—cold temperatures may break records by dipping to 16 degrees Fahrenheit. When you factor in wind chill, the temperatures are even more frightening.


Anyway, you get the point: Winter is coming.

As Weather Underground meteorologist Bob Henson explained to Earther, this is all about the jet stream, which is currently in a “highly amplified state” over North America. That’s pushing warm equatorial air north in the West and cold air from the far north south in the East.


It’s no reason to joke about global warming, though. While our planet’s overall temperature is increasing, that doesn’t mean that temperatures are going to increase everywhere all the time.

“Climate change is one of many influences on weather,” Henson told Earther via email. “It doesn’t tend to directly cause a particular weather feature so much as it increases the odds of some events more than others.”


As our Earth grows warmer, Thanksgivings are trending warmer on average, according to Climate Central. That won’t always mean you can wear dresses for your favorite holiday. But, at least you’ll have a big plate of food to warm you up this time around.

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About the author

Yessenia Funes

I mostly write about how environmental policy and climate change intersect with race and class though I occasionally write about animals, science, and art, too. We all need an escape, right?

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