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FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell said Sunday that extreme weather events — like the tornadoes that touched down in Midwest and Southern states Friday — are "going to be our new normal, and the effects that we're seeing from climate change are the crisis of our generation."

What she's saying: It is "incredibly unusual" to see such powerful tornadoes this late in the year, Criswell told Jake Tapper on CNN's "State of the Union."

  • "We do see tornadoes in December, that part is not unusual. But at this magnitude, I don't think we've seen one this late in the year," Criswell said. "But it's also historic, even the severity and the amount of time these tornadoes spent on the ground is unprecedented."
"We're taking a lot of efforts at FEMA to work with communities to reduce impacts we're seeing from the severe weather events and help to develop system-wide projects that can help protect communities. ... We're also prepared to respond to any community that gets impacted by one of these severe events."
— FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell

Catch up fast: More than two dozen tornadoes tore through six Midwest and Southern states on Friday, leaving widespread destruction in their wake. A weather station on the ground near Mayfield, Kentucky, recorded a wind gust of 107 mph at the time the tornado struck.

  • The death toll in Kentucky may exceed 100, Gov. Andy Beshear said, adding that it is "the worst, most devastating, most deadly tornado event" in the state's history.

Go deeper: Fatalities and property destruction states slammed by tornadoes

Go deeper

Jan 3, 2022 - Axios Denver

What we know — and don't — about the Marshall Fire

Laurie Silver takes in what remains of her cousin's Louisville condo in the aftermath of the Marshall Fire. Photo: Marc Piscotty/Getty Images

The ashes of the Marshall Fire are revealing a new reality — but many questions remain.

What we know: Despite early reports that no one was missing in the fire, a man from Marshall and a woman from Superior are now reported as missing and presumed dead, emergency officials said Sunday. A third man who was initially unaccounted for was found "alive and well."

14 mins ago - World

Biden will move U.S. troops to Eastern Europe "in the near term"

President Biden boards Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews on Jan. 28. Photo: SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

President Biden said on Friday he plans to move U.S. troops to Eastern European and NATO countries “in the near term.”

Driving the news: “Not too many” U.S. troops, Biden added in remarks to reporters at Joint Base Andrew upon returning from a trip to Pennsylvania. 

Updated 38 mins ago - Energy & Environment

Bomb cyclone prompts blizzard warnings from Virginia to Maine

Computer model projection showing the intense storm off of Cape Cod on Jan 29, 2022, with heavy snow and strong winds lashing the coastline. (Weatherbell.com)

Blizzard warnings are in effect for 11 million people from coastal Virginia to eastern Maine as a potentially historic winter storm is set to slam the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast beginning Friday.

Why it matters: The storm will bring hazards ranging from zero visibility amid hurricane force wind gusts and heavy snow, to coastal flooding that will erode vulnerable beaches and threaten property from the Jersey shore to coastal Massachusetts.