Canada Logs Coldest Temperatures in Years as Polar Vortex Arrives

Canada recorded its coldest temperature in years on Sunday as the remnants of a polar vortex entered the country.

According to Environment Canada’s weather conditions report, Wekweeti in the Northwest Territories confirmed a -51.9 C reading, which the agency says is Canada’s coldest temperature in nearly four years.

Environment Canada meteorologist Terri Lang told CTVNews.ca on Monday that the last time a temperature that cold was recorded in Canada was in March 2017, when the mercury plunged to -54.7 C in Mould Bay, N.W.T.

With the Arctic air moving down into Western Canada, Lang said the vortex is pushing warmer air north. Environment Canada reported that some areas in eastern Nunavut experienced relatively mild temperatures on Sunday, with warm air pushing the reading up to 2 C.

Lang said the remnants of the polar vortex will remain situated between Alberta and Manitoba for the week, and also move into some regions of British Columbia as the wind chill adds to the cold.

Lang said long-range forecasts are predicting that the cold weather will remain until next weekend. While it won’t feel like -60 every day, Lang said colder temperature records can be expected across the Prairies in the meantime.

While Western Canada deals with the remnants of a polar vortex, a major winter storm blasted Atlantic Canada overnight on Sunday, leaving parts of the Maritimes covered in snow. According to Environment Canada, that weather system is expected to push into Newfoundland and Labrador bringing whiteout conditions to certain regions.

In Ontario, the agency says cold temperatures and strong winds whipping across the Great Lakes have caused snow squalls to batter the southern region of the province, while parts of Quebec continue to dig out from last week’s winter storm.

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