Opinion polls of climate change

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:04 PM GMT on January 28, 2009

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According to a 2007 Newsweek poll, 42% of Americans believe that "there is a lot of disagreement among climate scientists about whether human activities are a major cause" of global warming". I posed the same question to members of the wunderground community on Monday, and even higher 56% of them thought so. However, the results of a poll that appears in this week's edition of the journal EOS, Transactions, American Geophysical Union, reveals that the public is misinformed on this issue. Fully 97% of the climate scientists who regularly publish on climate change agreed with the statement, "human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures".



Figure 1. Response to the question, "Do you think human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures?" The general public data come from a 2008 Gallup poll (see http://www.gallup.com/poll/1615/Environment.aspx). Image credit: EOS, Transactions, American Geophysical Union.

The anonymous poll was performed in late 2008 by Peter Doran, University of Illinois at Chicago associate professor of earth and environmental sciences, along with former graduate student Maggie Kendall Zimmerman. Doran and Kendall Zimmerman sought the opinion of the most complete list of earth scientists they could find, contacting more than 10,200 experts at universities and government labs around the world listed in the 2007 edition of the American Geological Institute's Directory of Geoscience Departments. The 2-minute, two-question poll had 3146 responses (30.7% of those polled). Approximately 90% of the scientists who responded were from the U.S., and about 90% held a Ph.D. degree. Of these scientists, 5% were climate scientists who published more than 50% of all their peer-reviewed publications in the past five years on the subject of climate change. The authors noted that the survey included participants with well-documented dissenting opinions on global warming theory. Question #1 was, When compared with pre-1800s levels, do you think that mean global temperatures have generally risen, fallen, or remained relatively constant?" About 90% of all the scientists and 97% of the climate scientists said temperatures had risen. Question #2 was, "Do you think human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures?" About 82% of all the scientists agreed, and 97% (75 of 77) climate scientists agreed. This contrasts with the results of a recent Gallup poll that suggests only 58% of the general public would answer yes. Interestingly, petroleum geologists and meteorologists were among the biggest doubters in the new EOS poll, with only 47 and 64 percent, respectively, believing in human involvement.

In a press release on the study, author Peter Doran commented, "The petroleum geologist response is not too surprising, but the meteorologists' is very interesting," he said. "Most members of the public think meteorologists know climate, but most of them actually study very short-term phenomenon." He was not surprised, however, by the near-unanimous agreement by climate scientists. "They're the ones who study and publish on climate science. So I guess the take-home message is, the more you know about the field of climate science, the more you're likely to believe in global warming and humankind's contribution to it." Doran and Kendall Zimmerman conclude that "the debate on the authenticity of global warming and the role played by human activity is largely nonexistent among those who understand the nuances and scientific basis of long-term climate processes. The challenge, rather, appears to be how to effectively communicate this fact to policy makers and to a public that continues to mistakenly perceive debate among scientists."

Commentary
The scientists most involved in assessing the current state of the climate are the most likely to have the "pulse of the planet"--a deep understanding of how the climate works and where we are headed. If 97% of these scientists believe in significant human impact on the climate, then it is probably so. Why is there such a disparity, then, between what they believe, and what the public and other scientists, such as petroleum geologists, believe? Dr. Ricky Rood has some excellent commentary on this issue in his latest wunderground Climate Change blog, and I offer these three reasons:

1) There are a few good climate scientists (3%) that believe humans are not significantly impacting the climate. One tends to hear the beliefs of this tiny minority a disproportionate amount. This is primarily because the fossil fuel industry pumps millions of dollars into PR campaigns to make sure you hear these dissenting views. That's not to say that these scientists are paid lackeys of the fossil fuel industry--that is not the case. These scientists' point of view happens to coincide with arguments that would protect the profits of the fossil fuel industry, so naturally the industry spends a lot of money making sure you hear these points of view. The fossil fuel industry PR campaigns also emphasize the contrarian views of a handful of non-publishing scientists working for private think tanks, who provide a distorted, non-objective view of climate change science (e.g., the attempt to hide summertime Arctic sea ice loss by quoting irrelevant statistics about wintertime global sea ice). These efforts have been highly successful in casting doubt on what is an overwhelming (though not unanimous) consensus among climate scientists. The fossil fuel industry PR campaigns are similar to the ones run by the cigarette industry to cast doubt on the harmfulness of smoking. "Doubt is our product," a cigarette executive once observed, "since it is the best means of competing with the 'body of fact' that exists in the minds of the general public. It is also the means of establishing a controversy." I recommend a reading of the 2008 book, "Doubt is Their Product", which discusses the many efforts by industry over the years to cast doubt on established scientific facts in order to protect industry profits.

2) The media contributes to the disproportionate coverage of the dissenting views, since one can make a news story more compelling by dramatizing conflict and giving equal weight to both sides.

3) Many people have a deep-seated belief in the relative insignificance of humans on a planetary scale. Geologists, who take the long view of time over geologic history, are particularly prone to this. Indeed, the planet is vast, and we are but tiny ants crawling upon its surface during a brief moment in geologic time. However, when one works regularly with the data, it becomes apparent that human activities are beginning to substantially impact weather and climate. When presented with facts contrary to ones beliefs, a good scientist will check the facts extra thoroughly to verify their validity, but then abandon those beliefs that don't fit the facts. The facts as accepted by 97% of our top climate scientists are that atmosphere is but a relatively thin, fragile layer of volatile gases beginning to show unmistakable changes due to the geometric explosion in human population over recent centuries. Those effects are only now beginning to be detectable, which is why human-caused global warming is so controversial in the public's eye. I predict that twenty years from now, climate change will be so obvious that the controversy regarding human responsibility will be gone.


Figure 2. The atmosphere viewed edge on from space. Tall thunderstorm clouds can be seen on the right side of the image, silhouetted against an orange layer of lower atmospheric gases (the troposphere) back-lit by the sun, just below the horizon. Above this layer is the clear blue of the stratosphere and the blackness of space. Seen from space, one can appreciate the thinness and potential vulnerability of the layer of gases that make up our atmosphere. Image credit: NASA Space Shuttle Flight 6 on 4 April 1983.

How representative is this poll?
The findings of another, more in-depth poll of scientists done in 2007 pretty much agreed with this week's Doran/Zimmerman poll, but were much more interesting. The 2007 poll, conducted by Fergus Brown, Roger Pielke, Sr., and James Annan, attempted to assess whether "a significant set of climate scientists agree or disagree with the perspective of the role of humans within the climate system as reported by the 2007 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report". Out of the 1807 scientists in 53 countries who were contacted, 140 responded. Almost all respondents (at least 97%) concluded that the "human addition of CO2 into the atmosphere is an important component of the climate system and has contributed to some extent in recent observed global average warming". Among the other findings:

1) No scientists were willing to admit to the statement that global warming is a fabrication and that human activity is not having any significant effect on climate [0%].

2) The largest group of respondents (45-50%) agreed with the 2007 IPCC report.

3) A significant minority (15-20%) concluded that the IPCC overstated the role of the human role in affecting the climate.

4) A significant minority (15-20%) concluded that the IPCC understated the seriousness of the threat from human additions of CO2. Ten of the 140 respondents (7%) took the most pessimistic view that we are "seriously damaging the climate" and face "devastating consequences".

Here's the full text of the poll, which I've also put up on my latest wunderpoll to vote on, if you're a Weather Underground member:

Which one statement most nearly matches your personal opinion about the physical science basis of global warming, as exemplified by the 2007 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report, Working Group 1 (WG1)? [If your personal opinion falls between two adjacent statements, please mark both]

1. There is no warming; it is a fabrication based on inaccurate/inappropriate measurement. Human activity is not having any significant effect on Climate. The data on which such assumptions are made is so compromised as to be worthless. The physical science basis of Anthropogenic Global Warming theory is founded on a false hypothesis.

2. Any recent warming is most likely natural. Human input of CO2 has very little to do with it. Solar, naturally varying water vapor, and similar variables can explain most or all of the climate changes. Projections based on Global Climate Models are unreliable because these are based on too many assumptions and unreliable data sets.

3. There are changes in the atmosphere, including added CO2 from human activities, but significant climate effects are likely to be all within natural limits. The 'scares' are exaggerations with a political motive. The undue emphasis on CO2 diverts attention away from other, important research on climate variability and change.

4. There is warming and the human addition of CO2 causes some of it, but the science is too uncertain to be confident about current attributions of the precise role of CO2 with respect to other climate forcings. The IPCC WG1 overestimates the role of CO2 relative to other forcings, including a diverse variety of human climate forcings.

5. The scientific basis for human impacts on climate is well represented by the IPCC WG1 report. The lead scientists know what they are doing. We are warming the planet, with CO2 as the main culprit. At least some of the forecast consequences of this change are based on robust evidence.

6. The IPCC WG1 is compromised by political intervention; I agree with those scientists who say that the IPCC WG1 is underestimating the problem. Action to reduce human emissions of CO2 in order to mitigate against serious consequences is more urgent than the report suggests. This should be done irrespective of other climate and environmental considerations.

7. The IPCC WG1 seriously understates the human influence on climate. I agree with those scientists who say that major mitigation responses are needed immediately to prevent catastrophic serious warming and other impacts projected to result from human emissions of CO2. We are seriously damaging the Earth's climate, and will continue to face devastating consequences for many years.



Figure 3. Results of the 2007 opinion poll by Fergus Brown, Roger Pielke, Sr., and James Annan of climate scientists, organized by question number (one to seven). In the USA, the mean response was 4.8, compared to 5.2 in all other countries, and 5.6 in EU countries.

Commentary
The majority of climate scientists polled believe the 2007 IPCC reports essentially "gets it right", which is in part why I like to refer to the IPCC report as representing "the official word" on climate. This report concluded that there was a greater than 90% chance that most of the observed global warming in the past 50 years was due to emission of greenhouse gases by human activity. However, there are substantial minorities that believe the IPCC underestimates or overestimates the potential impacts, and these voices need to be respected, as well.

Dr. Ricky Rood talks in greater depth on this issue in his latest wunderground Climate Change blog: "There are many thousands of scientists, and while large groups of individuals often share many like-minded values and beliefs, they are never in lockstep on the details of all aspects of their beliefs. It is not expected that in a community of thousands of scientists that there is a uniform chant of doctrine. This is especially true given the very nature of scientific investigation of an enormously complex system."

Other voices on climate scientist polls
Dr. James Annan's blog
Planet Gore
Realclimate.org.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:
Our official forecast as yet does not show much!Link


It won't yet.....it won't hit you until about Thursday it appears....
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I have always believed that there are weather cycles that have occurred on the earth that we do not understand. Take ice core sample data for example.

When Mt. St. Helens blew up, experts said it would be a moonscape for 100 years. Nature proved that accessment very wrong.

Political agendas and press bias are driving the fears of global warming among the general populace. I firmly believe that there is much data lacking to be able to confirm that global warming is a fact.

Years ago it was proposed that humans were like a virus on the face of the earth. The current tactics are far more subtle. Playing on people's ignorance is scare tactics. As for me I withhold judgment until there is more evidence.
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Rich/Mike,

Agreed!

You know when you see 'Storm of the century' referenced by the HPC something big is coming. This will be the first storm like this in many years.

The December ice storm up here actually had a similar track but this one is expected to be much stronger. The Mt.Holly folks said they looked at data back to 2000 and couldn't find one instance of a similar situation occurring. In other words, we're severely overdue. The law of averages might finally come back to bite us in the rear.
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A major Volcano could be about to erupt in Alaska........

Redoubt Volcano Latest Observations
2009-01-29 08:01:58

Seismicity remains above background levels and appears to have increased slightly over the last few hours.

AVO is currently staffed 24 hours per day to monitor Redoubt Volcano. The Aviation Color Code remains at ORANGE and the Volcano Alert Level remains at WATCH.
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Hi surfmom.

How goes it? How's Gabriel doing?
Member Since: September 9, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 3418
Good afternoon, Jeff!

The blog is buzzing about the nor'easter coming on Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday. I was joking about how they might be standing in the middle of a raging blizzard with a foot of snow on the ground. I'm also wondering how they'll get Phil out of his hole! I'm also wondering (implying it's cloudy and snowing) how they would be able to explain the groundhog DIDN'T see his shadow and spring is forthwith! That's a tough one being that they'd be making that Philcast during a major snowstorm.
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Quoting TampaSpin:


Go to my blog and look at the models......this is shaping up being a very powerful storm as a Low develops in the GOM and moves up the Eastern Coast .......could be very destructive.
Tampa -- what do you see as far as rain in SWFL - Lots and Lots????? we're in a tinderbox situation at the Polo Grounds -- frost beat the heck out of the pastures and now....*POOF* potential... plus I'd love a few days of easy work.
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Quoting Ossqss:
Hi all, any word on the potential next storm of the century that has been discussed recently and expected next week? Being on the West coast of FL, and being in the 1993 version , I am very interested. Thanks


Go to my blog and look at the models......this is shaping up being a very powerful storm as a Low develops in the GOM and moves up the Eastern Coast .......could be very destructive.
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In the summer, we're cursing the added 4%. I'm still waiting for it to kick in for us now. This is mostly virga here so far. Really, you can't even see it. Still, it might be %? heavier virga... Looks like some actual rain in there somewhere.
Oh, here there's no "submit" with Firefox/3.0.5.

It was rain. 1/2"
Member Since: October 13, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 2156
I'm curious about this too, thanks Seastep!!
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Ok.... figured it out.

I was looking in the wrong place. My page is re-sized to a larger size and centered for the narrative - so I missed the poll at the right of the blog under 'About Jeff Masters'. I was trying to use the list from the narrative.
(Bangs her head against the desk)
I was afraid it would be something embarrassing.

Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 2490
Quoting Seastep:
457. Ossqss

Plenty of discussion on sully's blog.

Link


THanks, I will jump there after lunch.
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457. Ossqss

Plenty of discussion on sully's blog.

Link
Member Since: September 9, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 3418
Quoting AussieStorm:

When you select an answer a submit button appears right at the bottom after the last answer. I have firefox.

Thanks Aussie,

I must have something set on my firefox that is keeping this from working. Does not let me select an answer, so I never see the submit button. I'll check my settings and see what needs to tweaked. I have had 2 cups of coffee, so I should be able to figure this out. Anyone else with Firefox 3.0.5 having problems. Aarrggghhh... I feel like I am missing something obvious, and will be quite embarrassed later - well will not be the first time.
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 2490
Hi all, any word on the potential next storm of the century that has been discussed recently and expected next week? Being on the West coast of FL, and being in the 1993 version , I am very interested. Thanks
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Quoting KEHCharleston:
I am using Firefox 3.0.5 - still do not see the submit button. Maybe I am overlooking it. Could someone tell me exactly where you see the button?

Thanking you in advance

GO CARDINALS
KEEPING IT LOCAL SAVES FUEL

When you select an answer a submit button appears right at the bottom after the last answer. I have firefox.
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Quoting FloridaoldfxxtThe global warming myth has become so pervasive thanks to loudly espoused political leanings and the assemblage of massive amounts of money from groups that stand to profit handsomely from global warming initiatives--damn be the real facts.

The reasons for the poll results is that the agendas of the vast majority of these "scientists" are intimately tied with the global warming myth through grants from global warming groups, personal political leanings, the desire to prop up their own prior erroneous observations and hypotheses, personal interests in future or present global warming business ventures, etc.

Sorry, I don't buy it.


The consequences of this down the road are pretty peculiar if you think about it. The implication is that the more expert someone is on a subject, the less attention you should pay to their views, on the basis that because they are professional experts they benefit from attention being paid to the subject. Could say the same of cancer specialists, criminologists, and any number of other sciences - and the more they have an immediate practical application, maybe to the benefit of mankind, the more you have to downplay what they say. That way we surely end up relying entirely on the wisdom of the crowd, and running scientists of of town on rails (or maybe burning them at the stake - used to do a lot of that to women who knew a bit about using herbs as medicines...) AGW may have its weaknesses as an explanation of what's going on, but I'm not sure this is the best way to find them.

And given the wealth the petrochemical industry could put into following up any leads that might undermine it, I'm not sure the financial benefit lies on the side of playing UP AGW - I suspect your average climatologist interesting in maximising returns might do better to offer their services to undermine the concept. And I suspect we'd have heard even more about their findings.
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I am using Firefox 3.0.5 - still do not see the submit button. Maybe I am overlooking it. Could someone tell me exactly where you see the button?

Thanking you in advance

GO CARDINALS
KEEPING IT LOCAL SAVES FUEL
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 2490
453. JeffMasters (Admin)
Quoting hdw:
To JeffMasters: I thought I had missed something! You posted; "...this week's edition of the journal EOS Trans, AGU" but I see it refers to Vol. 90, No. 3, 20 Jan 2009" which I haven't received yet. My 'current' issue of EOS Trans, AGU, features "Record 2007 Greenland Ice Sheet Surface Melt Extent and Runoff" by S.H. Mernold et al which rather startled me. I am not a blogger, so probably missed blog topics, such as the net loss of glacier-bound water, the warming of Antartica (see this month's issue of Scientific American), etc. The number of people in denial about the effects of climate change is dismaying.
From: oceandr (if I must assign myself a name)


I haven't written about the summer 2008 data from Greenland yet. Summer 2008 was cooler than 2007, which set numberous melting records in Greenland. Nevertheless, 2008 did set some melting records in Greenland, which I'll try to summarize in forthcoming post, along with the latest info on Antarctica. My next post will probably be Monday, when I'll discuss whether the groundhog saw his shadow or not. We might have a major 'Noreaster Tuesday, which I may discuss as well. My next climate related blog post will be to discuss recent claims that the globe has been cooling since 1998, and how often we should expect to be breaking the record for warmest year ever, if global warming theory is on track with IPCC forecasts.

BTW, the submit button is missing on the latest wunderpoll using Internet Explorer, but works using other browsers, such as Firefox. I've asked our tech guy to fix it, but he's got other things on his plate.

Jeff Masters
Quoting biff4ugo:
Please fix the wunderpol with this blog so there is a submission or send button.
I don't think it works properly without one.

When you select an answer a submit button appears. I have firefox.
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TAMPA SPIN-Tropospheric receptions?Then the team moniker is appropriate.
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Please fix the wunderpol with this blog so there is a submission or send button.
I don't think it works properly without one.
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how about pizza
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Record Temperatures for Victoria and Tasmania
Thursday January 29, 2009 - 17:47 EDT

The heatwave scorching the southeast of the country is reaching unprecedented levels with temperatures lingering around the mid 40C'S(104F-112F) for a third day in a row over many locations.

Yesterday, Adelaide had its hottest day in 70 years and today Melbourne reached a whopping 44.3C(111F) (18 above average) at 4:45 pm. This is the highest temperature recorded in Melbourne since 1939 (69 years) and the third highest since records started in 1856 (112 years).

Essendon at 44.8(112F), had its hottest day since 1968 and second highest on record, while Geelong at 45.3C(112F) (21 above average) had its hottest day since at least 1984. Most of Victoria was today at least 10 above average with Wilsons Promontory and Port Fairy 21 degrees above average.

Across the Bass Strait, Flinders Island reached 41C(105F) degrees, the highest since records started back in 1943. Fingal, with 41C(105F) also had its hottest day since at least 1987 and Launceston at 37C(98F) had its hottest day since at least 1981.

Unfortunately, temperatures are expected to remain in the lower to mid 40s(104F-111F) till Saturday, when a weak front will bring temperature down but just slightly.

Max Gonzalez
Weatherzone
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Quoting TampaSpin:
Anyone have any good Super Bowl receipes or foods they are cooking.......


Gumbo, Sauteed Gator, Shrimp Grits, Garlic Bread and cold beer.
That should keep away that white stuff you were talking about.
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438
Nah.
Just reinforcing my vow of silence

100 times on the blackboard.
Penitence for misbehaving.
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Anyone have any good Super Bowl receipes or foods they are cooking.......
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Quoting hydrus:
TAMPA SPIN-Good morning,who do you think will win the super bowl?


I just posted this on my blog......LOL
16. TampaSpin 9:45 AM EST on January 29, 2009
Quoting KEHCharleston:


Cardinals can really jump up and grab that ball out of the troposphere, so I was going for the yards.
You are probably right though.
Defense may rule the day.




Gotta love the smack talk.....but, i think Arizona will put some points up against the Steel curtain....their Secondary is beat up and also don't forget....Arizona beat Pitt last year during the regular season the one coach from Arizona came from Pittsburg.....HUM....do your work boys and girls.....
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TAMPA SPIN-Good morning,who do you think will win the super bowl?
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The stated statistic that 97% of the climate scientists who regularly publish on climate change agreed with the statement, "human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures" I'm sure is correct. The operative phrase is "..who regularly publish...".

The global warming myth has become so pervasive thanks to loudly espoused political leanings and the assemblage of massive amounts of money from groups that stand to profit handsomely from global warming initiatives--damn be the real facts.

The reasons for the poll results is that the agendas of the vast majority of these "scientists" are intimately tied with the global warming myth through grants from global warming groups, personal political leanings, the desire to prop up their own prior erroneous observations and hypotheses, personal interests in future or present global warming business ventures, etc.

Sorry, I don't buy it.
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Redoubt Volcano Latest Observations
2009-01-29 03:28:24

Seismicity remains above background and largely unchanged with several volcanic earthquakes occurring every hour.
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Super Bowl Picks so far......Get your picks in......

SuperBowl Picks

Name of Bloger
Team Picked
Total Points Combined
Winning Team Points

(1) KEHCharleston
Team Picked--Cardinals
Total Points Combined--52
Winning Team Points--32

(2) tkeith
Team Picked--Cardinals
Total Points Combined--27
Winning Team Points--17
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Quoting TampaSpin:
I tell ya what i think there is a chance the Panhandle of Florida might get some snow flakes flying........


Happy Dance Happy Dance.
BF needs the cold air and snow to help with her fever.
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Quoting theshepherd:


I will not club baby seals today.
I will not club baby seals today.
I will not club baby seals today...


I liked your other song.. Waltzing Matilda
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Quoting MisterPerfect:
Are we scientists or are we just journalists, capturing time to rush to conclusions?

And are we perfect?


Remember, there was a period in all of human civilization when it was LAW that the Sun revolved around the Earth in an Imperfect orbit.

And it was thwarted by sea fairing sailors..

To the dismay of popular religious consent...

Sounds like a parody to AGW if you ask me..




I will not club baby seals today.
I will not club baby seals today.
I will not club baby seals today...
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Quoting surfmom:
Cold Front Surf to book-end Super Bowl Weekend. One foot southy to come up for Thursday, maybe ridable at some point in the knee high plus range. My guess would be later Thursday as the rain moves in. Friday will have surf building from the NW(322 deg) waist to chest at the best c-front spots in the afternoon with 20mph NNW winds. Saturday morning will awake to frigid leftovers in the waist high range down South with offshore winds(NE at 15). By late Saturday the surf is going flat. Low pressure is now forecast to form in the gulf on Sunday/Monday pushing up a quick S swell for Monday pm. That swell will go NW by Tuesday and bump up some stronger surf. Cleaning up for next Wednesday. Lots of surf on the way. Water temp is hovering near 60 so your going to want as much rubber as possible.

The waves are here...but so is work --- this is torture...... this situation needs some creative time management think...... I wanna get wet


east coast should start seeing swell in a couple of days, but cold water is no fun. hopefully tonight we can see the snook bite turn on ahead of the the front with the barometrical changes ahead.
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Quoting TampaSpin:
My family in Southern Indiana is in a mess....over an inch of freezing rain underneath nearly a foot of Snow.....most with no Power......big time problems....if some of those homes don't keep their water running they will have a major plumbing problem with no heat.....
I have family in central Kentucky suffering with the ice and snow storm with another one expected to move in soon. My sister has been without power for 2 days now and power company expects it to be another 2-3 weeks. She is relying on a kerosene heater and seems like they are rationing kerosene now. I told her she needs to take a trip to the Cayman Islands where the coldest it has gotten is 68.
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Cold Front Surf to book-end Super Bowl Weekend. One foot southy to come up for Thursday, maybe ridable at some point in the knee high plus range. My guess would be later Thursday as the rain moves in. Friday will have surf building from the NW(322 deg) waist to chest at the best c-front spots in the afternoon with 20mph NNW winds. Saturday morning will awake to frigid leftovers in the waist high range down South with offshore winds(NE at 15). By late Saturday the surf is going flat. Low pressure is now forecast to form in the gulf on Sunday/Monday pushing up a quick S swell for Monday pm. That swell will go NW by Tuesday and bump up some stronger surf. Cleaning up for next Wednesday. Lots of surf on the way. Water temp is hovering near 60 so your going to want as much rubber as possible.

The waves are here...but so is work --- this is torture...... this situation needs some creative time management think...... I wanna get wet
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Morning all, from wintry Bahamas. At 72 degrees, we're practically sweltering here LOL. Makes a cozy contrast to last week's low 60s . .. .

Have a great day wherever you are!
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Early Bird From SWFL - Good Morning All - beautiful breeze all night - air temp is a most lovely 64 degrees. Potential surf following w/these winds and cold front .. more on that in a bit!!

MissNadia - want to be the first to say Good MORNING -- yes, the coffee is working this morning!!
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As long as it's not Yellowstone. ;)

Hopefully everyone can get away safely.
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428. Tazmanian 1:07 AM EST on January 29, 2009

Taz that is pretty heavy duty stuff....WOW...
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here whats we may see



Alaska Volcano Observatory
Information Statement
Wednesday, January 28, 2009 4:19 PM AKST (16:19 UTC)


Redoubt Volcano
60°29'7" N 152°44'38" W, Summit Elevation 10197 ft (3108 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: WATCH
Current Aviation Color Code: ORANGE

Summary of Current Unrest



Since last fall, the Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO) has detected increasing volcanic unrest at Redoubt Volcano. Starting on Friday, January 23, the level of seismic activity increased markedly, and on Sunday AVO raised the Aviation Color Code to ORANGE and the Volcano Alert Level to WATCH. On the basis of all available monitoring data AVO regards that an eruption similar to or smaller than the one that occurred in 1989-90 is the most probable outcome. We expect such an eruption to occur within days to weeks.



In response to the current increase in activity, AVO has deployed a web camera approximately 7.5 miles north-northwest of the summit and will install additional seismic equipment at the volcano as weather permits. A second web camera also is pointed at Redoubt from a platform within Cook Inlet. The observatory in Anchorage is currently staffed 24 hours a day. We plan continued visual surveillance of the volcano's summit region, frequent airborne measurements of gas output, and frequent analysis of satellite and weather-radar data.



Observations and Background



Beginning in September 2008, AVO received reports of a strong hydrogen sulfide (H2S) odor downwind of Redoubt. During an observation flight on September 26, a melt hole was observed in the upper Drift glacier, down slope from the location of historical eruptive vents. Gas-measurements flights in October and November detected elevated levels of sulfur dioxide (SO2), carbon dioxide (CO2), and H2S. Through the fall, melt holes increased in size, and several points of steaming and gas emissions were observed in the area of the lava domes extruded during the 1989-90 and 1966-68 eruptions.



Concurrent with visual observations and gas data, a subtle increase in seismic activity was also detected beneath the volcano. Seismicity took the form of episodic, very weak volcanic tremor, consistent with the movement of fluids and gases within the volcano. AVO also located deep (30 km, or 19 miles, below sea level) long-period earthquakes, which were few in number but possibly indicative of magma recharge deep within Redoubt’s plumbing system.



Beginning on the evening of Friday, January 23, 2009, seismic activity increased at stations closest to Redoubt’s summit. The seismicity consists of a combination of discrete, relatively small earthquakes and periods of more continuous volcanic tremor. This activity intensified early Sunday morning, January 25, at which time AVO raised the Aviation Color Code to ORANGE and the Volcano Alert Level to WATCH. Since Sunday, seismicity has waxed and waned but has remained well above background levels. The seismic unrest observed over the past few days is unusual for Redoubt and has not been seen since just prior to the 1989-90 eruption. Overflights on January 26 and 27 documented continued production of water vapor and volcanic gas plumes from the summit crater; increased melting has produced small flows of debris at the north base of the volcano.



The most recent eruptions of Redoubt, in 1966-68 and 1989-90, were characterized by large explosions that produced ash clouds reaching as high as 40,000 ft asl. During the 1989-90 eruption, the largest ash fall from a single event in Kenai was 5 millimeters (0.2 inches), but ash fall was widespread and noted as far away as Fairbanks, along the Richardson Highway, and the Yukon Territory border. Other ash-producing events during the 1989-90 eruption deposited several millimeters of ash on the Kenai Peninsula and trace amounts of ash in Anchorage and more distant locations over several months. The 1989-90 eruption also several disrupted air traffic operations in and out of Anchorage. Other hazards from past and likely future eruptions include hot pyroclastic flows that may travel several miles from the volcano, especially to the north, and volcanic mudflows, or lahars, that travel many miles from their source. Lahars form as hot pyroclastic flows, often caused by collapse of a growing lava dome, swiftly melt large volumes of snow and ice downslope of the summit crater. In 1989-90, lahars flowed east down the Drift River, at least three of which reached Cook Inlet and one of which partially flooded the Drift River Oil Terminal facility. Lahars produced by eruptions of Redoubt Volcano may range from dense, gravel-rich flows to watery, sediment-laden floods. All such flows can transport boulder-size particles, and water within these flows temporarily may be at boiling temperatures. It could take a typical lahar 1-2 hours to travel from the base of the volcano to the mouth of the Drift River.



Interpretation and Hazards



Based on our current understanding of Redoubt's past eruptions, both historical and from the geologic record, and our analysis of the current episode of unrest, AVO considers the following future scenarios as possible:



1) Failed Eruption: No eruption occurs because magma does not reach the surface. Earthquake activity, gas output, and steaming slowly decrease over several weeks or months. Continued heat flux may cause continued, modest melting of snow and ice on the edifice and subsequent increased, but not hazardous outflow into the Drift River.



2) Eruption similar to or smaller than 1989-90: Unrest continues to escalate culminating in an eruption that is similar to or smaller than the one that occurred in 1989-90. An eruption such as this would likely spread volcanic ash throughout Cook Inlet and other parts of south-central Alaska depending upon the prevailing winds. Communities around the volcano, especially to the east, northeast, and southeast, would likely experience trace to several millimeters (less than 0.4 inches) of ash fall as a result of discrete explosive events. Such events could also generate pyroclastic flows that swiftly melt snow and ice to form mudflows, or lahars, that would likely travel east down Drift River, possibly reaching and flowing into Cook Inlet. If summit lava domes form, as they did in 1989-90, they may repeatedly collapse and generate pyroclastic flows that would likely travel north from the summit crater and form lahars. Smaller lahars could also form in other drainages if hot debris accumulated on other flanks of the volcano. An eruption consisting of multiple explosive events, episodic lava-dome growth and collapse, and lahars may last weeks to months.



3) Larger Explosive Eruption: A significantly larger eruption could occur, perhaps similar to eruptions that are thought to have taken place prehistorically. Such an eruption might involve the production of larger ash clouds, pyroclastic flows on several flanks of the volcano, and larger lahars more frequently reaching Cook Inlet down Drift River and affecting other drainages around the volcano as well.



4) Flank Collapse: The intruding magma or other processes could destabilize a portion of the Redoubt edifice that could result in a large volcanic landslide. At least twice in the last 10,000 years, debris flows generated by such landslides have reached Cook Inlet. It is also likely that a landslide of this type would be accompanied by an eruption. Because of the scarcity of these events in the geologic record, a flank collapse and eruption is considered very unlikely. A flank collapse may be accompanied by visible deformation of the edifice and AVO will be looking for such signs.



Based on all available monitoring data and AVOs knowledge of the volcano, scenario number two, an eruption similar to or smaller than that of 1989-90, appears to be the most probable outcome at this time. We consider one and three to be somewhat less likely, and scenario four to be much less likely.



Comparing the time frame of pre-eruptive activity in 1989-90 (the only other eruption for which seismic data were available) with the current unrest, we would expect such an eruption to begin within the next few days or weeks. It is likely that the onset of an explosive eruption would be preceded by a further increase in seismicity. An explosive eruption would be accompanied by a sharp increase in seismicity. Should earthquake activity or other monitoring data suggest that an eruption is expected within hours, or is underway, AVO would move Redoubt from its current Aviation Color Code ORANGE to RED, and Alert Level WATCH to WARNING.
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Scientists Fear Volcano Could Bury Anchorage in Ash
Tuesday, January 27, 2009


E-Mail Print Share ANCHORAGE, Alaska — It's been nearly 20 years since Alaska's Mount Redoubt erupted, but that time of tranquility might end.

Recent seismic activity could be a prelude to an eruption, "perhaps within hours to days," said geologists from the Alaska Volcano Observatory.

The 10,197-foot peak sits about 50 miles west of Kenai and 100 miles southwest of Anchorage. It last erupted during a five-month stretch beginning December, 1989.

Recent activity began around 1 a.m. Sunday, then it eased about five hours later.

• Click here to visit FOXNews.com's Natural Science Center.

It was still well above normal "background" tremor levels, said Dave Schneider, a volcanologist from the observatory.

An observatory crew flew over Redoubt, and it ruled there had been no eruption.

"There was steaming through pre-existing holes, but there were no new holes. ... and there was no ash on the snow cover," he said.

But during the flyover, crew members smelled sulfur, so observatory staff will be monitoring activity and satellite images that identify temperature changes round the clock, Schneider said.

Observers will also look to weather radar scanners near the Kenai airport for help. Those scanners send data in six-minute intervals.

These scanners will be able to detect an ash plume should one appear, Schneider said.

Twenty years ago, an eruption forced mud flows from Redoubt into the Drift River drainage. The flows also caused partial flooding of the Drift River Oil Terminal facility.

Additionally, the ash plume disrupted international air traffic and a thin ash layer coated Anchorage and surrounding communities.

Sunday's volcanic activity came on the heels of a magnitude 5.7 earthquake at the mouth of Cook Inlet.

However, Schneider said that does not necessarily mean the earthquake stirred the volcanic activity. With the two events being more than 100 miles apart, it's even more unlikely, he said
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