Volcanic Winter

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:18 PM GMT on April 24, 2009

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"The sun was dark and its darkness lasted for eighteen months; each day it shone for about four hours; and still this light was only a feeble shadow; the fruits did not ripen and the wine tasted like sour grapes." As this Michael the Syrian quote regarding the weather of 536 A.D. demonstrates, a climate catastrophe that blots out the sun can really spoil your day. Procopius of Caesarea remarked: "During this year [536 A.D.] a most dread portent took place. For the sun gave forth its light without brightness. and it seemed exceedingly like the sun in eclipse, for the beams it shed were not clear." Many documents from 535 - 536 A.D.--the time of King Arthur in Britain--speak of the terrible "dry fog" or cloud of dust that obscured the sun, causing widespread crop failures in Europe, and summer frosts, drought, and famine in China. Tree ring studies in Europe confirm several years of very poor growth around that time, and ice cores from Greenland and Antarctica show highly elevated levels of atmospheric sulfuric acid dust existed.

Though some scientists believe the climate calamity of 535-536 A.D. was due to a comet or asteroid hitting the Earth, it is widely thought that the event was probably caused by the most massive volcanic eruption of the past 1500 years. This eruption threw so much sulfur dioxide (SO2) gas into the stratosphere that a "Volcanic Winter" resulted. Sulfur dioxide reacts with water to form sulfuric acid droplets (aerosol particles), which are highly reflective and reduce the amount of incoming sunlight. The potential eruption that led to the 535 - 536 A.D. climate calamity would have likely been a magnitude 7 event on the Volcanic Explosivity Index (VEI)--a "super colossal" eruption that one can expect to occur only once every 1000 years. The Volcanic Explosivity Index is a logarithmic scale like the Richter scale used to rate earthquakes, so a magnitude 7 eruption would eject ten times more material than the two largest eruptions of the past century--the magnitude 6 eruptions of Mt. Pinatubo in the Philippines (1991) and Novarupta in Alaska (1912).


Figure 1. An 18 km-high volcanic plume from one of a series of explosive eruptions of Mount Pinatubo beginning on 12 June 1991, viewed from Clark Air Base (about 20 km east of the volcano). Three days later, the most powerful eruption produced a plume that rose nearly 40 km, penetrating well into the stratosphere. Pinatubo's sulfur emissions cooled the Earth by about 1°F (0.5°C) for 1 - 2 years. (Photograph by David H. Harlow, USGS.)

Super-colossal eruptions
There has been only one other magnitude 7 "super-colossal" eruption in the past 1500 years--the massive eruption of the Indonesian volcano Tambora in 1815. The sulfur pumped by this eruption into the stratosphere dimmed sunlight so extensively that global temperatures fell by about 2°F (1°C) for 1 - 2 years afterward. This triggered the famed Year Without a Summer in 1816. Killing frosts and snow storms in May and June 1816 in Eastern Canada and New England caused widespread crop failures, and lake and river ice were observed as far south as Pennsylvania in July and August. The Tambora eruption was about 40% smaller than the 535 - 536 A.D. event, as measured by the number of sulfur aerosol particles deposited in Greenland ice cores.

In an article published in 2008 in the American Geophysical Union journal EOS, Dr. Ken Verosub of the University of California, Davis Department of Geology estimated that future eruptions capable of causing "Volcanic Winter" effects severe enough to depress global temperatures by 2°F (1°C) and trigger widespread crop failures for 1 - 2 years afterwards should occur about once every 200 - 300 years. Even a magnitude 6 eruption, such as the 1600 eruption of the Peruvian volcano Huaynaputina, can cause climatic change capable of killing millions of people. The Huaynaputina eruption is blamed for the Russian famine of 1601-1603, which killed over half a million people and led to the overthrow of Tsar Boris Godunov. Thankfully, the climatic impacts of all of these historic magnitude 6 and 7 eruptions have been relatively short-lived. After about two years, the sulfuric acid aerosol particles have settled out of the stratosphere, returning the climate to its former state.

Mega-colossal eruptions
Even more extreme eruptions have occurred in Earth's past--eruptions ten times more powerful than the Tambora eruption, earning a ranking of 8 out of 8 on the Volcanic Explosivity Index (VEI). These "mega-colossal" eruptions occur only about once every 10,000 years, but have much longer-lasting climatic effects and thus are a more significant threat to human civilization. According to the Toba Catastrophe Theory, a mega-colossal eruption at Toba Caldera, Sumatra, about 74,000 years ago, was 3500 times greater than the Tambora eruption. According to model simulations, an eruption this large can pump so much sulfur dioxide gas into the stratosphere that the atmosphere does not have the capacity to oxidize all the SO2 to sulfuric acid aerosol. The atmosphere oxidizes as much SO2 as it can, leaving a huge reservoir of SO2 in the stratosphere. This SO2 gradually reacts to form sulfuric acid as the OH radicals needed for this reaction are gradually produced. The result is a much longer-lasting climate effect than the 1 - 2 years that the magnitude 6 and 7 events of 535, 1600, 1815, and 1991 lasted. A magnitude 8 eruption like the Toba event can cool the globe for 6 - 10 years (Figure 3), which may be long enough to trigger an ice age--if the climate is already on the verge of tipping into an ice age. Rampino and Self (1992) argued that the sulfur aerosol veil from Toba was thick and long-lasting enough to cool the globe by 3 - 5°C (5 - 9°F), pushing the climate--which was already cooling and perhaps headed towards an ice age--into a full-scale ice age. They suggested that the response of Canada to the volcano played a particularly important role, with their model predicting a 12°C (22°F) reduction in summer temperatures in Canada. This would have favored the growth of the Laurentide ice sheet, increasing the reflectivity (albedo) of the Earth, reflecting more sunlight and reducing temperatures further. The controversial Toba Catastrophe Theory asserts that the resulting sudden climate change reduced the Earth's population of humans to 1,000 - 10,000 breeding pairs. More recent research has shed considerable doubt on the idea that the Toba eruption pushed the climate into an ice age, though. Oppenheimer (2002) found evidence supporting only a 2°F (1.1°C) cooling of the globe, for the 1000 years after the Toba eruption. Zielinski et al. (1996) argued that the Toba eruption did not trigger a major ice age--the eruption merely pushed the globe into a cool period that lasted 200 years. Interestingly, a previous super-eruption of Toba, 788,000 years ago, coincided with a transition from an ice age to a warm period.


Figure 2. The 100x30 square kilometer Toba Caldera is situated in north-central Sumatra around 200 km north of the Equator. It is comprised of four overlapping calderas aligned with the Sumatran volcanic chain. Repeated volcanic cataclysms culminated in the stupendous expulsion of the Younger Toba Tuff around 74,000 years ago. The lake area is 100 square kilometers. Samosir Island formed as a result of subsequent uplift above the evacuated magma reservoir. Such resurgent domes are typically seen as the concluding phase of a large eruption. Landsat Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+) browse images for path/row 128/58 (6 September 1999) and 129/58 (21 January 2001) from http://landsat7.usgs.gov/. Copyright USGS. Image source: Oppenheimer, C., 2002, "Limited global change due to the largest known Quaternary eruption, Toba 74 kyr BP?"Quaternary Science Reviews, 21, Issues 14-15, August 2002, Pages 1593-1609.


Figure 3. Total mass of sulfur dioxide and sulfate aerosol in the stratosphere (heavy solid and dotted lines, respectively) modeled for a 6 petagram stratospheric injection of SO2. Observed SO2 and aerosol mass for the 1991 Pinatubo eruption are shown for comparison. The much larger amount of SO2 in the Toba simulation soaks up all available oxidants in the stratosphere leading to a much longer lifetime of SO2 and, in turn, prolonging the manufacture of sulfate aerosol. Data from Read et al. (1993) and Bekki et al. (1996). Image source: Oppenheimer, C., 2002, "Limited global change due to the largest known Quaternary eruption, Toba 74 kyr BP?"Quaternary Science Reviews, 21, Issues 14-15, August 2002, Pages 1593-1609.

When can we expect the next mega-colossal eruption?
Given the observed frequency of one mega-colossal magnitude 8 volcanic eruption every 1.4 million years, the odds of another hitting in the next 100 years is about .014%, according to Mason et al., 2004. This works out to a 1% chance over the next 7200 years. Rampino (2002) puts the average frequency of such eruptions at once every 50,000 years--about double the frequency with which 1-km diameter comets or asteroids capable of causing a similar climatic effect hit the Earth. A likely location for the next mega-colossal eruption would be at the Yellowstone Caldera in Wyoming, which has had magnitude 7 or 8 eruptions as often as every 650,000 years. The last mega-colossal eruption there was about 640,000 years ago. But don't worry, the seismic activity under Yellowstone Lake earlier this year has died down, and the uplift of the ground over the Yellowstone caldera that was as large as 7 cm/yr (2.7 inches/yr) between 2004 - 2006 has now fallen to 4 cm/yr, according to the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory. The USGS states that "the Yellowstone volcanic system shows no signs that it is headed toward such an eruption. The probability of a large caldera-forming eruption within the next few thousand years is exceedingly low".

What would happen if a magnitude 8 mega-colossal eruption were to occur today?
If a mega-colossal eruption were to occur today, it would probably not be able to push Earth into an ice age, according to a modeling study done by Jones et al. (2005). They found that an eruption like Toba would cool the Earth by about 17°F (9.4°C) after the first year (Figure 3), and the temperature would gradually recover to 3°F (1.8°C) below normal ten years after the eruption. They found that the eruption would reduce rainfall by 50% globally for the first two years, and up to 90% over the Amazon, Southeast Asia, and central Africa. This would obviously be very bad for human civilization, with the cold and lack of sunshine causing widespread crop failures and starvation of millions of people. Furthermore, the eruption would lead to a partial loss of Earth's protective ozone layer, allowing highly damaging levels of ultraviolet light to penetrate to the surface.

Not even a mega-colossal eruption of this magnitude would stop global warming, though. The level of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere would not be affected by the volcanic eruption, and warming would resume where it left off once the stratospheric dust settled out in a decade. With civilization crippled by the disaster, greenhouse gas emissions would be substantially reduced, though (small solace!) If we really want to say goodbye to civilization, a repeat of the only magnitude 9 eruption in recorded history should do the trick--the magnitude 9.2 La Garita, Colorado blast of 27.8 million years ago (Mason et al., 2004).


Figure 4. Annual near-surface temperature anomalies for the year following a mega-colossal volcanic eruption like the Toba eruption of 74,000 years ago, if it were to occur today. Most land areas cool by 22°F (12°C) compared to average. Some areas, like Africa, cool by 29°F (16°C). Image credit: Jones, G.S., et al., 2005, "An AOGCM simulation of the climate response to a volcanic super-eruption", Climate Dynamics, 25, Numbers 7-8, pp 725-738, December, 2005.

What would happen if a magnitude 7 super-colossal eruption were to occur today?
An eruption today like the magnitude 7 events of 535 A.D. or 1815 would cause cause wide-spread crop failures for 1 - 2 years after the eruption. With food supplies in the world already stretched thin by rising population, decreased water availability, and conversion of cropland to grow biofuels, a major volcanic eruption would probably create widespread famine, threatening the lives of millions of people. Wars over scarce resources might result. However, society's vulnerability to major volcanic eruptions is less than it was, since the globe has warmed significantly in the past 200 years. The famines from the eruptions of 1600 and 1815 both occurred during the Little Ice Age, when global temperatures were about 1.4°F (0.8°C) cooler than today. Crop failures would not be as wide-spread with today's global temperatures, if a suer-colossal eruption were to occur. Fifty years from now, when global temperatures are expected to be at least 1°C warmer, a magnitude 7 eruption should only be able to cool the climate down to year 2009 levels.

Volcanoes also warm the climate
While volcanoes cool the climate on time scales of 1 - 2 years, they act to warm the climate over longer time scales, since they are an important source of natural CO2 to the atmosphere. Volcanoes add 0.1 - 0.3 gigatons (Gt) of carbon to the atmosphere each year, which is about 1 - 3% of what human carbon emissions to the atmosphere were in 2007, according to the Global Carbon Project. In fact, volcanoes are largely responsible for the natural CO2 in the atmosphere, and helped make life possible on Earth. Why, then, haven't CO2 levels continuously risen over geologic time, turning Earth into a steamy hothouse? In fact, CO2 levels have fallen considerably since the time of the dinosaurs--how can this be? Well, volcano-emitted CO2 is removed from the atmosphere by chemical weathering. This occurs when rain and snow fall on rocks containing silicates. The moisture and silicates react with CO2, pulling it out of the air. The carbon removed from the air is then washed into the sea, where it ends up in ocean sediments that gradually harden into rock. Rates of chemical weathering on Earth have accelerated since the time of the dinosaurs, largely due to the recent uplift of the Himalaya Mountains and Tibetan Plateau. These highlands undergo a tremendous amount of weathering, thanks to their lofty heights and the rains of the Asian Monsoon that they capture. Unfortunately, chemical weathering cannot help us with our current high levels of greenhouse gases, since chemical weathering takes thousands of years to remove significant amounts of CO2 from the atmosphere. It takes about 100,000 years for silicate weathering to remove 63% of the CO2 in the atmosphere. Thus, climate models predict that chemical weathering will solve our greenhouse gas problem in about 100,000 - 200,000 years.

For further information
PBS TV special on the 535-536 A.D. disaster.
Newspaper articles on the 535-536 A.D. disaster.
Volcanic winter article from wikipedia.
Realclimate.org has a nice article that goes into the volcano-climate connection in greater detail.

References
Bekki, S., J.A. Pyle, W. Zhong, R. Toumi, J.D. Haigh and D.M. Pyle, 1996, "The role of microphysical and chemical processes in prolonging the climate forcing of the Toba eruption", Geophysical Research Letters 23 (1996), pp. 2669-2672.

Jones, G.S., et al., 2005, "An AOGCM simulation of the climate response to a volcanic super-eruption", Climate Dynamics, 25, Numbers 7-8, pp 725-738, December, 2005.

Rampino, M.R., and S. Self, 1993, "Climate-volcanism feedback and the Toba eruption of 74,000 years ago", Quaternary Research 40 (1993), pp. 269-280.

Mason, B.G., D.M. Pyle, and C. Oppenheimer, 2004, "The size and frequency of the largest observed explosive eruptions on Earth", Bulletin of Volcanology" 66, Number 8, December 2004, pp 735-748.

Oppenheimer, C., 2002, "Limited global change due to the largest known Quaternary eruption, Toba 74 kyr BP?"Quaternary Science Reviews, 21, Issues 14-15, August 2002, Pages 1593-1609.

Rampino, M.R., 2002, "Supereruptions as a Threat to Civilizations on Earth-like Planets", Icarus, 156, Issue 2, April 2002, Pages 562-569.

Read, W.G., L. Froidevaux and J.W. Waters, 1993, "Microwave Limb Sounder measurements of stratospheric SO2 from the Mt. Pinatubo eruption", Geophysical Research Letters 20 (1993), pp. 1299-1302.

Verosub, K.L., and J. Lippman, 2008, "Global Impacts of the 1600 Eruption of Peru's Huaynaputina Volcano", EOS 89, 15, 8 April 2008, pp 141-142.

Zielinski, G.A. et al., 1996, "Potential Atmospheric Impact of the Toba Mega-Eruption 71,000 Years Ago", Geophysical Research Letters, 23, 8, pp. 837-840, 1996.

Portlight moves to provide relief for South Carolina wildfires
South Carolina's biggest wildfire in more than three decades --a blaze four miles wide--destroyed dozens of homes near Myrtle Beach yesterday. Portlight Strategies, Inc. is preparing to respond to this disaster, focusing on providing drinks and sanitary products to firefighters, particularly to rural volunteer fire departments and other first responders which do not have the same resources as some of the larger paid departments. To help out, visit the Portlight South Carolina fire relief web page. Thanks!

Jeff Masters

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Quoting hurristat:


The point of that is to show that people need to relax about this... that for most people, this is not an issue...


Shakes head side ways while smiling!
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
1530. Maybe the world record holder for asking the most repeated guestions lol
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Quoting TampaSpin:
Looks like a lot of Wishcasters right now and its only April.....OMG what will June 1st be like...LOL


Deep breaths....in....out.
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Quoting TampaSpin:
Amazing people are getting sick and are dying and Jokes are displayed!


The point of that is to show that people need to relax about this... that for most people, this is not an issue...
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1530. HTV
By the way, where's PresidentialElection/JFV, maybe banned?

Well, he is the World Record Holder.
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Just watched the news, over 22,000 acres in Big Cypress and the alley is still closed and expected to close every evening for at least the next 5 days!

By the way, where's PresidentialElection/JFV, maybe banned?
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Looks like a lot of Wishcasters right now and its only April.....OMG what will June 1st be like...LOL
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
1514. DDR 5:42 PM EDT on April 27, 2009
First tropical wave?

NO WAY! No possible!
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
1525. beell


MESOSCALE DISCUSSION 0605
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
0350 PM CDT MON APR 27 2009

AREAS AFFECTED...MIDDLE AND UPPER TX COASTAL PLAIN

CONCERNING...SEVERE POTENTIAL...WATCH POSSIBLE

VALID 272050Z - 272215Z

INCREASE IN CONVECTION WILL LIKELY REQUIRE WW ISSUANCE ACROSS PARTS
OF THE TX COASTAL PLAIN SHORTLY.

LATEST RADAR IMAGERY DEPICTS AN INTENSE/WELL-ORGANIZED STORM OVER
GONZALES/DEWITT/KARNES COUNTIES ATTM...MOVING SLOWLY EWD.
THIS
STORM IS OCCURRING WITHIN A VERY MOIST/MODERATELY-UNSTABLE
AIRMASS...NEAR AN OUTFLOW BOUNDARY ON THE SRN FRINGE OF THE REMNANTS
OF AN EARLIER CENTRAL TX MCS
. LOW-LEVEL VEERING/SHEAR IS MAXIMIZED
INVOF THIS BOUNDARY...AND THUS EXPECT THIS STORM TO REMAIN
SUPERCELLULAR AS IT SHIFTS INTO THE TX COASTAL PLAIN
. WITH THE
POTENTIAL FOR ADDITIONAL CONVECTIVE DEVELOPMENT INVOF THIS BOUNDARY
THIS AFTERNOON...AND GIVEN FAVORABLE THERMODYNAMICS AND PRONOUNCED
LOW-LEVEL VEERING IN THIS AREA...THREAT APPEARS TO WARRANT WW
ISSUANCE.

..GOSS.. 04/27/2009


2041 YORKTOWN DEWITT TX 2898 9750 TORNADO SPOTTED ON HIGHWAY 119 IN YORKTOWN...ONE HOUSE DESTROYED. (EWX)

Good onshore flow meets outflowboundary-instant low level spin. Hard to guess which one to watch of the triplets. Same OFB sparked that big cell in Old Mexico.

Photobucket

Photobucket
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Just watched the news. No rain for me for a good week. UGH! We need some darnit.
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1523. hahaguy
Quoting plywoodstatenative:
We need rain in south florida, freaking brush fire is still out of control and keeping Alligator alley closed. I believe its in the range of 20,000 acres and going.


Well no rain for the next 7 days for us.
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We need rain in south florida, freaking brush fire is still out of control and keeping Alligator alley closed. I believe its in the range of 20,000 acres and going.
Member Since: November 15, 2005 Posts: 16 Comments: 4189
Quoting Drakoen:


That is in a developed cyclone. This one is developing on land.


Some can also develop though that process, but I see your point.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting DDR:
First tropical wave?



I've been monotring the area since it emerged over the Gulf of Guinea on Friday and I want to say it's a tropical wave but I cannot since there is not suffient evidence. However, as I looked at the QuickSCAT pass this evening it showed a partial circulation along the Sub Saharan coast, which is interesting indeed. This isn't to say it will not eventually become one but the trick to indentifying tropical waves is by monitoring them.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
1519. Drakoen
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Taz, now now, lets not unleash the craziness in here
Member Since: November 15, 2005 Posts: 16 Comments: 4189
I don't know where Ike falls or should fall. I just know that I hope to never have to do it again... both living through the storm and the aftermath (which will exist for some time to come). The thoughts make my stomach turn.
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1516. Drakoen
Quoting Weather456:


I agree with that statement but some tropical cyclones due there size is able to sustain convection through evapo-condensation within offshore rainbands. So despite the LLCC over land air still rises within the rainbands. I've seen this in past tropical cyclones such as Hurricane Stan in 2005 at one point. This process also leads to the LLCC (once over land) suddenly shifting offshore due the rising air as with Tropical Storm Cindy also in 2005.


That is in a developed cyclone. This one is developing on land.
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Quoting Drakoen:


What I don't get is how a low pressure system is able to sustain such convection over water when the LLC is overland. I'm not really buying it though i'm sure the MJO pulse and somewhat favorable upper level winds may be able to support a system in the Caribbean. This reminds me of last year when the system ends up in the EPAC. Also not dissimilar to Paloma's formation origins.


I agree with that statement but some tropical cyclones due there size is able to sustain convection through evapo-condensation within offshore rainbands. So despite the LLCC over land air still rises within the rainbands. I've seen this in past tropical cyclones such as Hurricane Stan in 2005 at one point. This process also leads to the LLCC (once over land) suddenly shifting offshore due the rising air as with Tropical Storm Cindy also in 2005.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
1514. DDR
First tropical wave?

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1513. hahaguy
Quoting CybrTeddy:
If I read this right,
Andrew in 1992 caused 29 Billion dollars in damage (92)
Ike caused 32 Billion Dollars in damage (08)

If we didn't state the damage if a Hurricane hit like that again, Ike should be the second most destructive Hurricane to hit the united states.


Ike should be under Katrina from what you said, but WU only has him at 18 billion.
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Look out Louisiana and Arkansas upcoming!

Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
If I read this right,
Andrew in 1992 caused 29 Billion dollars in damage (92)
Ike caused 32 Billion Dollars in damage (08)

If we didn't state the damage if a Hurricane hit like that again, Ike should be the second most destructive Hurricane to hit the united states.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23565
Quoting TXGulfCoast:
The local creeks SE of Houston were flooded on Saturday from Friday's big storms (b/c they were still high from the previous weekend's storms). I can only imagine what it will be like if we get another deluge tonight. Keep your waders handy!


I passed Clear Creek about an hour ago. Was surprised how high it was... if we get more real rain tonight it will be out again.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:
Jesus,
Earthquakes, Flu epidemics, War, Recession/Depression, what else can go wrong?
a cat 3 in nw carb


lol,
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The local creeks SE of Houston were flooded on Saturday from Friday's big storms (b/c they were still high from the previous weekend's storms). I can only imagine what it will be like if we get another deluge tonight. Keep your waders handy!
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1507. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)


warmest day of the year so far
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 169 Comments: 53296
Quoting TampaSpin:


Wasn't you in a drought last year. I told you to watch what you wish for remember!
LOL! Yep! Drought last year - a Tropical Storm and Hurricane. Fun times.

Now it seems the rain won't stop!

LOL after Ike I wish for NOTHING
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Quoting RMM34667:
WHO thinks it's too late for containment:
The group also agreed to focus on mitigating the effects of the outbreak instead of trying to contain it.
“This virus is too widespread to make containment a feasible operation,” Fukuda said. Many experts think it may be impossible to contain a flu virus already spreading in several countries.

The WHO did not recommend closing borders or restricting travel, because it would have little effect, if any, on stemming the spread of infection.


They've raised the alert to level 4 Link


Theres the Level 4. Now watch what happens in Countries and States within! Think its getting Serious Now?
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
Quoting txalwaysprepared:


My poor in-laws have already lost one car, and had their houses flooded 1 week ago. Hoping it doesn't repeat soon. I guess we wait and see... like everything else. I really feel sorry for my all my neighbors who are still trying to fix their homes after Ike and now have to deal with their homes flooding. :(


Wasn't you in a drought last year. I told you to watch what you wish for remember!
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
WHO thinks it's too late for containment:
The group also agreed to focus on mitigating the effects of the outbreak instead of trying to contain it.
“This virus is too widespread to make containment a feasible operation,” Fukuda said. Many experts think it may be impossible to contain a flu virus already spreading in several countries.

The WHO did not recommend closing borders or restricting travel, because it would have little effect, if any, on stemming the spread of infection.


They've raised the alert to level 4 Link
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1502. vortfix
Take care y'all!





Photobucket


URGENT - IMMEDIATE BROADCAST REQUESTED
TORNADO WATCH NUMBER 203
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
400 PM CDT MON APR 27 2009

THE NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER HAS ISSUED A
TORNADO WATCH FOR PORTIONS OF

PARTS OF SOUTH TEXAS
COASTAL WATERS

EFFECTIVE THIS MONDAY AFTERNOON AND EVENING FROM 400 PM UNTIL 900
PM CDT.

TORNADOES...HAIL TO 2 INCHES IN DIAMETER...THUNDERSTORM WIND
GUSTS TO 80 MPH...AND DANGEROUS LIGHTNING ARE POSSIBLE IN THESE
AREAS.

THE TORNADO WATCH AREA IS APPROXIMATELY ALONG AND 45 STATUTE
MILES NORTH AND SOUTH OF A LINE FROM 35 MILES WEST OF VICTORIA
TEXAS TO 30 MILES NORTHEAST OF GALVESTON TEXAS. FOR A COMPLETE
DEPICTION OF THE WATCH SEE THE ASSOCIATED WATCH OUTLINE UPDATE
(WOUS64 KWNS WOU3).

REMEMBER...A TORNADO WATCH MEANS CONDITIONS ARE FAVORABLE FOR
TORNADOES AND SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS IN AND CLOSE TO THE WATCH
AREA. PERSONS IN THESE AREAS SHOULD BE ON THE LOOKOUT FOR
THREATENING WEATHER CONDITIONS AND LISTEN FOR LATER STATEMENTS
AND POSSIBLE WARNINGS.

OTHER WATCH INFORMATION...CONTINUE...WW 201...WW 202...

DISCUSSION...SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS HAVE DEVELOPED ALONG OUTFLOW
BOUNDARY SCENTRAL TX. WITH A VERY UNSTABLE WARM SECTOR AND FAVORABLE
SHEAR PROFILES...SUPERCELLS INCLUDING TORNADOES AND DAMAGING WINDS
WILL CONTINUE TO DEVELOP E/ESEWD ALONG BOUNDARY TOWARD THE COAST
THIS EVENING.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting vortfix:



Yes, I hear ya!
Y'all have had a lot of rain since last week and there are flood watches/warnings posted for a huge area around Houston.

I wish you the best of luck tonight and tomorrow.



My poor in-laws have already lost one car, and had their houses flooded 1 week ago. Hoping it doesn't repeat soon. I guess we wait and see... like everything else. I really feel sorry for my all my neighbors who are still trying to fix their homes after Ike and now have to deal with their homes flooding. :(
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1500. vortfix




MESOSCALE DISCUSSION 0605
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
0350 PM CDT MON APR 27 2009

AREAS AFFECTED...MIDDLE AND UPPER TX COASTAL PLAIN

CONCERNING...SEVERE POTENTIAL...WATCH POSSIBLE

VALID 272050Z - 272215Z

INCREASE IN CONVECTION WILL LIKELY REQUIRE WW ISSUANCE ACROSS PARTS
OF THE TX COASTAL PLAIN SHORTLY.


LATEST RADAR IMAGERY DEPICTS AN INTENSE/WELL-ORGANIZED STORM OVER
GONZALES/DEWITT/KARNES COUNTIES ATTM...MOVING SLOWLY EWD. THIS
STORM IS OCCURRING WITHIN A VERY MOIST/MODERATELY-UNSTABLE
AIRMASS...NEAR AN OUTFLOW BOUNDARY ON THE SRN FRINGE OF THE REMNANTS
OF AN EARLIER CENTRAL TX MCS. LOW-LEVEL VEERING/SHEAR IS MAXIMIZED
INVOF THIS BOUNDARY...AND THUS EXPECT THIS STORM TO REMAIN
SUPERCELLULAR AS IT SHIFTS INTO THE TX COASTAL PLAIN. WITH THE
POTENTIAL FOR ADDITIONAL CONVECTIVE DEVELOPMENT INVOF THIS BOUNDARY
THIS AFTERNOON...AND GIVEN FAVORABLE THERMODYNAMICS AND PRONOUNCED
LOW-LEVEL VEERING IN THIS AREA...THREAT APPEARS TO WARRANT WW
ISSUANCE.

..GOSS.. 04/27/2009
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Quoting Vortex95:
Containing the virus is the most important thing right now. Btw any word if hospitilization helps or it does not matter atm?
Hopefully this goes away like SARS did. That was one ppl feared.


The word from some high official on TV this morning was that if you suspect you have the flu and would have gone to the hospital anyway then go. If you would not have gone to the hospital under normal circumstances then don't go !!.

I am still working that one out LOL
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1497. vortfix
Woops!!!



BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED TORNADO WARNING NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HOUSTON/GALVESTON TX 355 PM CDT MON APR 27 2009 THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN LEAGUE CITY HAS ISSUED A * TORNADO WARNING FOR... NORTHWESTERN AUSTIN COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST TEXAS... SOUTHERN WASHINGTON COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST TEXAS... * UNTIL 430 PM CDT * AT 353 PM CDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO THIS TORNADO WAS LOCATED NEAR SHELBY... MOVING NORTHEAST AT 25 MPH. * LOCATIONS IN THE TORNADO WARNING INCLUDE BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO NEW ULM...INDUSTRY AND BRENHAM.
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Quoting Patrap:
Quoting CybrTeddy:
Jesus,
Earthquakes, Flu epidemics, War, Recession/Depression, what else can go wrong?




That's a fact press...




Don't they say that bad things happen in three's, or something like that?
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1494. vortfix
Quoting txalwaysprepared:


Not sure how much more we can take around here. Rain has been relentless.



Yes, I hear ya!
Y'all have had a lot of rain since last week and there are flood watches/warnings posted for a huge area around Houston.

I wish you the best of luck tonight and tomorrow.

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Quoting TampaSpin:


Vortfix
How do you stop something that has now cure. It continues to spread. This will be very serious in 1-2 Weeks if not sooner. Very serious problem coming IMO!


Even if it seems to level off or decline now. The real problem could be next fall when the seasonal flu picks up. At least that is what happened in 1918..

....a first wave of influenza appeared early in the spring of 1918 in Kansas and in military camps throughout the US. Few noticed the epidemic in the midst of the war. Wilson had just given his 14 point address. There was virtually no response or acknowledgment to the epidemics in March and April in the military camps...... The flu that winter was beyond imagination as millions were infected and thousands died...
Link
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Member Since: December 18, 2006 Posts: 7 Comments: 2685
Remember SARS ?. Everyone thought that was the new universal plague.

Many of the health challenges today are the result of overcrowded cities, rapidly rising population centers, poor sanitation in many third world countries and the global village created by air travel since the 1950s.

It will only get worse, each year or so having some new doomsday health problem to worry about.
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Quoting vortfix:
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HOUSTON/GALVESTON TX
1105 AM CDT MON APR 27 2009


THIS HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK IS FOR PORTIONS OF SOUTHEAST TEXAS.

.DAY ONE...THIS AFTERNOON AND TONIGHT

THERE IS A SLIGHT RISK OF SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS ACROSS SOUTHEAST
TEXAS TODAY. A STRONG UPPER LEVEL DISTURBANCE WILL COMBINE WITH
AN INCREASINGLY MOIST AND UNSTABLE AIRMASS AND AN INCREASINGLY
DIFFLUENT FLOW ALOFT TO GENERATE SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS. THE
POTENTIAL EXISTS FOR A FEW OF THE STORMS TO BECOME SEVERE. THE
PRIMARY SEVERE WEATHER THREATS WILL BE LARGE HAIL AND DAMAGING
WINDS...WITH A LESSER THREAT OF ISOLATED TORNADOES. LOCALLY HEAVY
RAINFALL WILL ALSO BE POSSIBLE IN THE STRONGER AND SLOWER MOVING
STORMS.


Not sure how much more we can take around here. Rain has been relentless.
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1489. Ossqss
There is no vaccine. It has been stated they would need 3-4 or 5 months to develope it. The prior for swine flu is ineffective on this variant. It is public info.

Link
Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8185
Yeah Babcock Ranch, it's a huge wildlife preserve just SE of Port Charlotte or N of Ft. Myers. It went from 18 acres at 4:00 to now almost 100.
Member Since: December 18, 2006 Posts: 7 Comments: 2685
1486. vortfix
Vortfix
How do you stop something that has now cure. It continues to spread. This will be very serious in 1-2 Weeks if not sooner. Very serious problem coming IMO!



I keep hearing conflicting bits of information regarding the strain and the vacine that is available.

As always...the hysteria factor is at work already and it is difficult to sift out the truth.

I do not doubt the potential problem with this...but until I get the facts I will NOT add to the hysteria!

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Quoting Vortex95:
1478. No its one near what his name suggests Char, Fla.


I didn't even realize there was a fire in that area.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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