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 PresidentialElection:


994mb, that's a moderate cane, isn't it, 456?


moderate TS

Anything between 989-970 is typically a moderate cane
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Quoting SevereHurricane:


994 mb isn't a Moderate Cane!!!
Thats probaly a 65-70 mph TS.

True, but once it gets into the GOM, it could intensify to a hurricane (cat. 1 is about 989 mb).
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Quoting PresidentialElection:


994mb, that's a moderate cane, isn't it, 456?


994 mb isn't a Moderate Cane!!!
Thats probaly a 65-70 mph TS.
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Quoting SevereHurricane:
The 06z GFS makes me wonder if its signs that we may have a HAHS?

Umm...NO! Lol.
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Quoting futuremet:


lol, I said somewhat low

Nice graphic; can I get a link?


sure..
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Quoting AstroHurricane001:

Uhh...where's the link?


Link
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Quoting futuremet:


lol, I said somewhat low

Nice graphic; can I get a link?


It looks like Accupro Futuremet.
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So, anyway, the GFS seems to want to produce a tropical storm by May 9! If it enters the Gulf, it could develop into a hurricane before it gets sheared. Early-season record, anyone? :P
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Quoting Weather456:



LINK


lol, I said somewhat low

Nice graphic; can I get a link?
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The 06z GFS makes me wonder if its signs that we may have a HAHS?
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Quoting futuremet:


Shear is expected to be somewhat low

Link

Uhh...where's the link?
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Quoting futuremet:


Shear is expected to be somewhat low

Link



LINK
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Standard for avoiding cold and flu:
Wash hands frequently
Do NOT touch eyes, rub nose (entrance point for virus) - in fact just keep your hands off your face
Any one know of any other normal everyday precautions?
Guess we should add avoid air flight and airports if possible ; )
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Quoting Weather456:
I saw a second system just to the northeast of the Leewards but that system is sheared by 25 knot westerly winds.


Shear is expected to be somewhat low

Link
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From CNN this morning:
The 25 students and teachers at Auckland's Rangitoto College returned to New Zealand via Los Angeles on Saturday.

Fourteen have shown flu-like symptoms, with four "more unwell than others," said Dr. Julia Peters, clinical director of Auckland Regional Public Health Service.

Health Minister Tony Ryall said 10 students tested positive for influenza A. The specimens will be sent to WHO to determine whether it is H1N1 swine influenza. H1N1 influenza is a subset of influenza A.


I'd say with those 10 students hanging out of LAX there is probably a good chance they infected people getting on planes to other destinations!
Member Since: September 7, 2006 Posts: 5 Comments: 912
I saw a second system just to the northeast of the Leewards but that system is sheared by 25 knot westerly winds.
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Quoting AstroHurricane001:
An update on the Mexican flu outbreak: the virus has caused 81 deaths, and has been confirmed or suspected in 5 US states and 7 countries.


Tricky thing is the incubation period. If it is a traditional 5-14 days or so, it could be global already, just not showing yet. Your right 812, time will tell. They are still at alert level 3 of 6. If that goes up today, that would not be good. It appears to have reacted to Tamiflu, so you can expect a run on that happening.
Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8186
I hope I'm correct too, Ossqss. Just mindful of all the hysteria that has been created before of the next suspected pandemic.

SARs, Avian Flu, Bubonic Plague...

All of them and more have been mooted over the years. Yes, there will be another in time, it's inevitable - as inevitable as Yellowstone blowing its top again.

But yes it's terrible for Mexico - especially as the tourist season begins to kick in, with economic issues all around the world, this is hardly something they need.

Still early days, we'll find out in the coming weeks. Same with these GFS runs.

Time reveals all things.

35 days to go.
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An update on the Mexican flu outbreak: the virus has caused 81 deaths, and has been confirmed or suspected in 5 US states and 7 countries.
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The 06z GFS showed very low vertical wind shear values in the GOM.
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Quoting KEHCharleston:
804. TampaSpin
I have projected a 31% increase over the average Means for the Atlantic Season CURRENTLY!

AVERAGE NAMED STORMS 9.6
12.5 PROJECTED NAMED STORMS
Since we need the rain, we will gladly take that half of a storm (.5) The Atlantic can have the other 12.
. I hear ya , I wouldn't mind a weak tropical storm to give us rain
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Tampa, logged in and could not change your sheet. No go bro.
Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8186
765
I think this might become the East Pacific's first storm, when was the last time they had a pre-season storm?
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804. TampaSpin
I have projected a 31% increase over the average Means for the Atlantic Season CURRENTLY!

AVERAGE NAMED STORMS 9.6
12.5 PROJECTED NAMED STORMS
Since we need the rain, we will gladly take that half of a storm (.5) The Atlantic can have the other 12.
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13,9,4 and 2 cat 5 - fish and Yukatan - December holds all truths.
Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8186
I have projected a 31% increase over the average Means for the Atlantic Season CURRENTLY!

AVERAGE NAMED STORMS 9.6
12.5 PROJECTED NAMED STORMS


AVERAGE HURRICANES 5.9
7.7 PROJECTED HURRICANES

AVERAGE MAJOR HURRICANES 2.3
3.0 PROJECTED MAJOR HURRICANES

This is based on my Model input on my WebSite if anyone would like to join in with any input.

http://tampaspinsweather.webs.com/apps/forums/topics/show/659989-tropical-outlook-
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20448
Quoting TampaSpin:


Mexico has had several cases!


Several thousand! Gotta love airplanes

Cotillion, you are kinda right, the difference it this is spreading from human to human with no pig in the mix. That just does not sound right, but here is the WHO's description.

H1N1 influenza is a subset of influenza A that is a combination of bird, pig and human viruses, according to the WHO

The virus is usually contracted through direct contact with pigs, but Joseph Domenech, chief of animal health service at U.N. Food and Agriculture Agency in Rome, said all indications were that the virus is being spread through human-to-human transmission.

Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8186
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Quoting Ossqss:
Google it Cotillian, its appears to be neither. Its said to be a hybrid of 3 not seen prior. I am hopeful you are correct. I am not saying this to create fear, just informing. These things have an incubation period and by virture of the velocity of news, it has spread quite a distance in short order.

Link


Mexico has had several cases!
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20448
Quoting KoritheMan:


Doesn't Florida's rainy season typically start around this time?


depends what part of FL your talking about,for SOFLA usually end of may,for the rest of FL usually mid-june!!!!
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Google it Cotillian, its appears to be neither. Its said to be a hybrid of 3 not seen prior. I am hopeful you are correct. I am not saying this to create fear, just informing. These things have an incubation period and by virture of the velocity of news, it has spread quite a distance in short order.

Link
Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8186
Quoting StormW:


Morning Cat!

Yeah, just thought I'd check out the CFS forecast for the A/B High. If it's correct, don't like what I'm seein' come Aug and Sep.


same as last years setup????,w/a higher potential for more landfalling US hurricanes come late summer!!!!
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central fl really needs that 250 hr system to cross over the state. now that would be happy weather
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Quoting Ossqss:
This Flu is a combo of, swine, bird, and human flu, at least that is what they said. The reason the World Health Organization is so concerned is quoted below.

Most of the dead were aged 25 to 45, a worrying sign because a hallmark of past pandemics has been high fatalities among healthy young adults.



Yes... The avian flu strain is H5N1, I believe. If I recall correctly, the swine flu strain is H1N1... similar to the Spanish Flu pandemic in 1918-19. But also, similar to every other strain of flu, heh.

What I heard off a report, anyways.

Nothing to really worry about yet.
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This Flu is a combo of, swine, bird, and human flu, at least that is what they said. The reason the World Health Organization is so concerned is quoted below.

Most of the dead were aged 25 to 45, a worrying sign because a hallmark of past pandemics has been high fatalities among healthy young adults.

Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8186
2009 Hurricane Season FAQ
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This will tend to hold things back as the SST just is not very warm YET! But this could change very quick in 30 days if that High stays parked.

Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20448
Quoting Ossqss:
Hey all, heads up on the health weather front. Lets hope for the best. Google it and you will see increased velocity of news coming out.
NY, seems to be a new hotbed with 100's possibly affected in schools. No jokes folks.
Like we need a swine flu problem ! World-on-alert-as-flu-epidemic-fear-grows"


THIS IS A MUCH LARGER THREAT THAN IN STORM SYSTEM NOW! SWINE FLU COULD BE REALLY BAD!
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20448
788 & 789 Indeed....
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Actually the Bermuda High/Azores High is already in place where it should be in August. Seldom do you see such a strong high in place this early. Early season coming if it stays in that position.
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20448
GFS picked up on Bertha and Arthur first WAY out if you guys remember. If it gets model support and gets under 168 hours, then we should pay attention. Right now though, its of no threat.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24471
Good morning colleagues!!!... hehe.

Well... I see you guys are already aware of consistency GFS has been pointing towards a W to NW Caribbean TS development. Also FL rain season might be starting right on time or a bit sooner this year.

Of course is a bit too early teo tell.. but if it verifies... then it seems this year wants to start with early in a hurry.

If it verifies... the E GOM states should be watching this one closely as the W extend of the Bermuda High will be right around the area.

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Hey all, heads up on the health weather front. Lets hope for the best. Google it and you will see increased velocity of news coming out.
NY, seems to be a new hotbed with 100's possibly affected in schools. No jokes folks.
Like we need a swine flu problem ! World-on-alert-as-flu-epidemic-fear-grows"
Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8186
Morning all,

The 06Z GFS is showing a stronger system than on previous runs, perhaps the strongest yet. The reason for the lack of model support is that the GFS is the only model that goes that far out. Right now this system remains in watching mode until it enters the 168 hr (1 week) time frame, but for now it remains unlikely.

What is expected to occur is that the MJO is expected enhance convection across the Tropical Eastern pacific and Caribbean in the next 1-2 weeks. An upper level high will them shift north over the Caribbean and its resultant flow on its western flank will help draw moisture from the ITCZ northward across the Western Caribbean. Total Cloud Cover and 1000-500 mb moisture show very expansive clouds and possible rain stretching from Central America, across Cuba and to the Floirda Keys and Bahamas. This scenario is without the presence of the TC.

Now should the TC develop and become embedded within the moisture surge is yet to be seen but could enhance precipitation by more than 5 inches across some parts.

The GFS at 216 hrs

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GFS 06Z; A hurricane and a Tropical Storm.....

Today will be crazy in this blog lol

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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.