Long range oil spill forecast

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:02 PM GMT on June 04, 2010

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Onshore winds out of the south, southwest, or west are expected to blow over the northern Gulf of Mexico over through Tuesday, resulting in a continued threat of landfalling oil to Alabama, Mississippi, and the Florida Panhandle, according to the latest trajectory forecasts from NOAA and the State of Louisiana. The latest ocean current forecasts from the NOAA HYCOM model show that these winds will generate a 0.5 mph current flowing from west to east along the Florida Panhandle coast Sunday through Tuesday. If this current develops as predicted, it will be capable of bringing light amounts of oil as far east as Panama City, Florida, by Wednesday. Long range surface wind forecasts from the GFS model for the period 8 - 14 days from now predict a return to a southeasterly wind regime, which would bring the oil back over Louisiana by mid-June. If you spot oil, send in your report to http://www.gulfcoastspill.com/, whose mission is to help the Gulf Coast recovery by creating a daily record of the oil spill.

Long range oil spill outlook
The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) issued a press release yesterday showing 4-month model runs (Figure 1) of where the Deepwater Horizon oil spill might go. The model runs show that given typical ocean currents in the Gulf of Mexico, we can expect the oil to eventually affect most of the Florida Panhandle, Keys, and Florida East Coast, as well as coastal areas of South Carolina and North Carolina. Very little oil makes it to the West Florida "Forbidden Zone", where offshore-moving surface currents dominate. The oil may eventually affect three foreign countries: Mexico along the northern tip of the Yucatan Peninsula, Cuba near Havana, and the Bahamas in the Bimini Islands and along the western side of Grand Bahama Island. Once oil does get into the Loop Current, it will probably reach the coasts of France, Spain, and Portugal in about a year. The oil will be too dilute by then to be noticeable, though.

The present ocean current configuration in the Gulf features a newly formed Loop Current Eddy (dubbed "Franklin"), which will tend to capture the majority of oil that flows southwards from the Deepwater Horizon spill site. A plot of drifting buoys (drifters) launched into the Gulf May 19 - 24 (Figure 2) reveals how this clockwise-rotating eddy has been capturing southward-moving surface water. Eddy Franklin will move slowly west-southwest at 2 - 3 mph in the coming weeks. By August or September, the eddy will have moved far enough west that the Loop Current will be able to push northwards towards the spill location again, increasing the chances of oil getting into the Loop Current and being advected through the Florida Straits and up the U.S. Southeast Coast. Between now and mid-August, I doubt that a significant amount of oil will get into the Loop Current, unless a hurricane or tropical storm goes through the Gulf of Mexico. I put the odds of this happening by mid-August at 50%. The odds of a named storm in the Gulf of Mexico will increase sharply after mid-August, when the peak portion of hurricane season arrives. Past history shows a 95% chance of getting two or more named storms in the Gulf of Mexico during hurricane seasons with above-normal activity.


Figure 1. Animation from the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) showing one scenario of how oil released at the location of the Deepwater Horizon disaster on April 20 in the Gulf of Mexico may move in the upper 65 feet of the ocean.


Figure 2. During the R/V Bellows 19-24 May 2010 Cruise into the Loop Current, drifters were dropped on the eastern edge of the Loop Current. These drifters have all been caught in Loop Current Eddy "Franklin", and are orbiting the central Gulf of Mexico in clockwise loops. Additional drifters deployed by the Coast Guard over the past few weeks (orange colors) are also shown. The colored balloons show the starting location of the drifters. Image credit: University of South Florida.

Oil spill resources
My post, What a hurricane would do the Deepwater Horizon oil spill
My post on the Southwest Florida "Forbidden Zone" where surface oil will rarely go
My post on what oil might do to a hurricane
Oil trajectory forecasts from NOAA
Gulf Oil Blog from the UGA Department of Marine Sciences
Oil Spill Academic Task Force
University of South Florida Ocean Circulation Group oil spill forecasts
ROFFS Deepwater Horizon page
Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) imagery from the University of Miami


Figure 2. Visible satellite image of Tropical Cyclone Phet on Friday, June 4, 2010.

Tropical Cyclone Phet unleashes heavy rains on Oman
Tropical Cyclone Phet hit the northern tip of Oman yesterday as a Category 2 storm, bringing torrential rains and killing at least two people. Masirah, Oman recorded sustained winds of 74 mph yesterday, and Sur, Oman on the northeast coast has received 3.25 inches of rain so far. Phet was the 2nd strongest tropical cyclone ever recorded in the Arabian Sea, when it peaked at Category 4 strength with 145 mph. Only Category 5 Cyclone Gonu of 2007, which devastated Oman, was stronger. Phet has emerged from the coast of Oman this morning, but is likely to weaken over the next day due to increased wind shear. Phet should hit Pakistan as a tropical storm on Saturday, bringing heavy rain and serious flooding.

Next update
I'll probably have one update over the weekend. The tropical Atlantic is quiet right now, with no models predicting tropical cyclone development over the next seven days.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting MrstormX:
Imm seeing a tornado on radar in Maine, does anyone know if this storm is warned.


Yes it is.

TORNADO WARNING
MEC001-017-052200-
/O.NEW.KGYX.TO.W.0001.100605T2116Z-100605T2200Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GRAY ME
516 PM EDT SAT JUN 5 2010

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN GRAY MAINE HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
CENTRAL ANDROSCOGGIN COUNTY IN SOUTHWEST MAINE...
EASTERN OXFORD COUNTY IN WESTERN MAINE...

* UNTIL 600 PM EDT

* AT 510 PM EDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO NEAR
PARIS...MOVING EAST AT 35 MPH.

* OTHER LOCATIONS IN THE WARNING INCLUDE BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO
HEBRON AND GREENE.

OXFORD COUNTY SHERIFF REPORTS SIGHTING A FUNNEL CLOUD WITH THIS
STORM AND VERY LARGE HAIL...NEAR THE SIZE OF GOLFBALLS. THIS IS A
VERY DANGEROUS STORM. IF YOU LIVE IN PARIS...OR IN A LOCATION OVER
SOUTHERN PORTIONS OF BUCKFIELD AND NORTHERN PORTIONS OF
HEBRON...TAKE COVER IMMEDIATELY!

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

THE SAFEST PLACE TO BE DURING A TORNADO IS IN A BASEMENT. GET UNDER A
WORKBENCH OR OTHER PIECE OF STURDY FURNITURE. IF NO BASEMENT IS
AVAILABLE...SEEK SHELTER ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF THE BUILDING IN AN
INTERIOR HALLWAY OR ROOM SUCH AS A CLOSET. USE BLANKETS OR PILLOWS TO
COVER YOUR BODY AND ALWAYS STAY AWAY FROM WINDOWS.

IF IN MOBILE HOMES OR VEHICLES...EVACUATE THEM AND GET INSIDE A
SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER. IF NO SHELTER IS AVAILABLE...LIE FLAT IN THE
NEAREST DITCH OR OTHER LOW SPOT AND COVER YOUR HEAD WITH YOUR HANDS.

PLEASE REPORT A TORNADO...HAIL OR STRONG WINDS TO THE NATIONAL
WEATHER SERVICE BY CALLING TOLL FREE...1-877-633-6772...WHEN YOU CAN
DO SO SAFELY.

A TORNADO WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 1000 PM EDT SATURDAY EVENING
FOR SOUTHWESTERN MAINE AND NEW HAMPSHIRE.

&&

LAT...LON 4422 7007 4409 7013 4423 7057 4427 7053
TIME...MOT...LOC 2114Z 286DEG 34KT 4424 7048

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I saw some light pinks in there, that is some HEAVY stuff.
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What break has Florida had?

Fay ruined many peoples lives in 2008 as well.

After seasons like 2004 and 2005, the states affected need a long break, like 10 to 20 years to get things back to the way they were before the storms and even then they will never be the same


Your reaction to that makes me sick, how you cold want a storm to hit is beyond me

Then again I am not surprised considering who you are and all.
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Jesus guys, look at that hook and rotation. Amazing!
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4436
Imm seeing a tornado on radar in Maine, does anyone know if this storm is warned.

Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4436
2050. xcool
:0
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Hmmm quiet blog all of the sudden....
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4436
2045. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
India Meteorological Department
Tropical Cyclone Advisory Number FORTY-TWO
DEEP DEPRESSION, FORMER PHET (ARB02-2010)
22:30 PM IST June 6 2010
=======================================

At 18:00 PM UTC, Cyclonic Storm Phet over northwest Arabian Sea off Makaran coast weakened into a deep depression and moved further eastward. Deep Depression, Former Phet lays centered near 24.5N 62.5E or 100 kms southeast of Jiwani, Pakistan, 450 kms west southwest of Karachi, Pakistan, and 650 kms west northwest of Naliya.

3 minute sustained winds near the center is 30 knots with a central pressure of 998 hPa. The state of the sea is very rough around the system's center.

Satellite imagery shows broken intense convection over southwest Pakistan adjoining Iran and Arabian Sea north of 23.0N and east of 64.5E. The lowest cloud top temperature due to convection is -65C in association with the system.

Vertical wind shear of horizontal wind over the region is moderate to high as the system is under the influence of mid latitude westerlies. The system lies to north of upper tropospheric ridge, which roughly runs along 23.0N over the region.

The system would weaken gradually and move east northeastward and cross Pakistan coast near 66.0E between 15:00 - 18:00 PM UTC, tomorrow.

Gale winds of 30-35 knots with gusts of 40 knots would occur along and off Makaran coast during the next 6 hours and reduce to 25-30 knots thereafter. Sea conditions will be very rough along and off this coast during the next 6 hours and very rough thereafter.
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Big Blowup in the EPAC

Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4436
Quoting IKE:


:)



Not voluntarily anyway...:-)
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Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4436


Since everyone else is posting these.. lol
Some nasty storms to our south.
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hey buds how many storms could possible strike florida this saeson? :)
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Quoting ElConando:


It will not be anything.


Probably
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4436
Quoting MrstormX:
AOI - Still pretty convection-less, but cloud cover expanding some.


It will not be anything.
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Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4436
2030. IKE
Very heavy rain moving into Fort Walton Beach...

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SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
GAC093-153-193-052130-
/O.NEW.KFFC.SV.W.0107.100605T2041Z-100605T2130Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE PEACHTREE CITY GA
441 PM EDT SAT JUN 5 2010

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN PEACHTREE CITY HAS ISSUED A

* SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING FOR...
NORTHWESTERN DOOLY COUNTY IN CENTRAL GEORGIA
SOUTHWESTERN HOUSTON COUNTY IN CENTRAL GEORGIA
EAST CENTRAL MACON COUNTY IN WEST CENTRAL GEORGIA

* UNTIL 530 PM EDT

* AT 435 PM EDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING QUARTER SIZED HAIL...AND
DAMAGING WINDS UP TO 60 MPH. THIS STORM WAS LOCATED NEAR
DOOLING...MOVING NORTHEAST AT 20 MPH.

* OTHER LOCATIONS IN THE WARNING INCLUDE BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO
UNADILLA AND PERRY.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

IN ADDITION TO LARGE HAIL AND DAMAGING WINDS...CONTINUOUS CLOUD TO
GROUND LIGHTNING IS OCCURRING WITH THIS STORM. MOVE INDOORS
IMMEDIATELY! LIGHTNING IS ONE OF NATURES NUMBER ONE KILLERS.
REMEMBER...IF YOU CAN HEAR THUNDER...YOU ARE CLOSE ENOUGH TO BE
STRUCK BY LIGHTNING.

IF YOU SEE WIND DAMAGE...LARGE HAIL OR SIGNIFICANT FLOODING...WAIT
UNTIL THE STORM HAS PASSED...AND THEN CALL THE NATIONAL WEATHER
SERVICE TOLL FREE AT 1 8 6 6 7 6 3 4 4 6 6.

&&

LAT...LON 3213 8389 3228 8402 3250 8371 3234 8357
3229 8362 3229 8361
TIME...MOT...LOC 2041Z 234DEG 17KT 3227 8386

$$
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AOI - Still pretty convection-less, but cloud cover expanding some.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4436
Im back, good to see a healthy amount of people here.
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2024. xcool
nice africa wave ..
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Its 96 here but Humidity is 57% not getting anything till maybe near sundown.
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Hi, Pensacola here, checked weather bug and Myrtle Grove Elem, which is about 2 miles from my house has had 2.95 inches, and about half an inch of that fell in about 10 minutes. My yard looks like a lake. Dark clouds off to the west, sun starting to shine here.
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2021. IKE
Quoting CaneWarning:
Wow, it's too hot to be outside. I think I'm done with the beach until the sun goes down! I'm going to take a nice cold shower.


I burnt dead branches this morning. It was as humid as I've seen all year. Like a sponge bath outside.
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Given the amount of time that some of us have watched the ROV video,
I found it interesting to see some pictures of the operators control stations:





Operators co-pilot an ROV as the "Top Hat" containment dome is lowered

Download high resolution image (jpg, 938KB)




ROV (remote operated vehicle) control room onboard the Transocean Discoverer Enterprise as it looks at the site of the leak before an attempt to place the LMRP 4 in place on June 2, 2010

Download high resolution image (jpg, 7336KB)

More images at:

http://www.bp.com/sectiongenericarticle.do?categoryId=9033571&contentId=7061708
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Quoting IKE:


I looked at the Pensacola airport and NAS...their totals are under a half-inch. Obviously not up to date for today.


Yeah, no way that's right. Might not be 5", but quite a bit more than 1/2".
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I understand that forecasting or future casting is all about the best educated guess and I don’t know that area. I hear words like Long-range weather patterns etc.

Is there any Logical reason to think that the Fl is at any greater risk this year than any other year?
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Wow, it's too hot to be outside. I think I'm done with the beach until the sun goes down! I'm going to take a nice cold shower.
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2016. IKE
Quoting 850Realtor:
Finally stopped. Doesn't show much on rainfall totals, but boy it was coming down.

Ike, not sure where you are, but if it's coming your way plan on being inside for a while :)


I looked at the Pensacola airport and NAS...their totals are under a half-inch. Obviously not up to date for today.
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Quoting atmoaggie:


??? Even the max for the map say 1.2 inches (upper left corner).
where are you seeing that?



Oh, nevermind. Really shows only on the Mobile radar:
Member Since: August 16, 2007 Posts: 6 Comments: 12461
What are the CAP values for S Fla?
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2013. IKE
Looks like it dries out here in the Florida panhandle starting Tuesday...then the heat...

Tuesday
Partly cloudy. Highs 93 to 96.
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Quoting GBguy88:


If you zoom in to the area just around Pensacola, it shows an area to the southwest that's coming up on 5 inches. But that's a decent ways out from here.


I am in Southwest Pensacola.
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Quoting GBguy88:


If you zoom in to the area just around Pensacola, it shows an area to the southwest that's coming up on 5 inches. But that's a decent ways out from here.

??? Even the max for the map say 1.2 inches (upper left corner).
where are you seeing that?
Member Since: August 16, 2007 Posts: 6 Comments: 12461
Finally stopped. Doesn't show much on rainfall totals, but boy it was coming down.

Ike, not sure where you are, but if it's coming your way plan on being inside for a while :)
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2009. IKE
Quoting Autistic2:
1989

Nice song, never had much use for music but that one is pretty cool. I thought he sang about tropical drinks and beaches? Now I got to go google him!


He does. Most of those songs have been played so much, I'm sick of hearing them.
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2008. GBguy88
Quoting atmoaggie:

???
Not all that much...yet.

Unless you are in a valley, or something...



If you zoom in to the area just around Pensacola, it shows an area to the southwest that's coming up on 5 inches. But that's a decent ways out from here.
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2007. xcool
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2006. IKE
Quoting 850Realtor:


Pensacola


That heavy rain is edging closer to Ft. Walton and Niceville. Hope it goes somewhere else but here.

FLOOD ADVISORY
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MOBILE AL
336 PM CDT SAT JUN 5 2010

FLC033-113-052230-
/O.NEW.KMOB.FA.Y.0027.100605T2036Z-100605T2230Z/
/00000.N.ER.000000T0000Z.000000T0000Z.000000T0000Z.OO/
ESCAMBIA FL-SANTA ROSA FL-
336 PM CDT SAT JUN 5 2010

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MOBILE HAS ISSUED AN

* URBAN AND SMALL STREAM FLOOD ADVISORY FOR MINOR FLOODING OF POOR
DRAINAGE AREAS IN...
SOUTHERN ESCAMBIA COUNTY IN NORTHWEST FLORIDA...
THIS INCLUDES THE CITY OF PENSACOLA...
SOUTHERN SANTA ROSA COUNTY IN NORTHWEST FLORIDA...
THIS INCLUDES THE CITY OF NAVARRE...

* UNTIL 530 PM CDT

* AT 330 PM CDT...RADAR RAINFALL ESTIMATES OF ONE TO TWO AND A
HALF INCHES HAVE FALLEN RECENTLY...WITH NUMEROUS SHOWERS AND
THUNDERSTORMS EXPECTED TO PERSIST ACROSS THE SOUTHERN PORTIONS OF
ESCAMBIA AND SANTA ROSA COUNTIES THROUGH 430 PM CDT.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

ADDITIONAL LOCALIZED RAINFALL AMOUNTS OF 2 TO 3 INCHES OF RAINFALL
ARE POSSIBLE IN THE ADVISORY AREA.

MOST FLOOD DEATHS OCCUR IN AUTOMOBILES. NEVER DRIVE YOUR VEHICLE INTO
AREAS WHERE THE WATER COVERS THE ROADWAY. FLOOD WATERS ARE USUALLY
DEEPER THAN THEY APPEAR. JUST ONE FOOT OF FLOWING WATER IS POWERFUL
ENOUGH TO SWEEP VEHICLES OFF THE ROAD. WHEN ENCOUNTERING FLOODED
ROADS MAKE THE SMART CHOICE...TURN AROUND...DONT DROWN.

TO REPORT FLOODING TO YOUR NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE...CALL TOLL FREE
AT 1 8 7 7 6 3 3 6 7 7 2.

&&

LAT...LON 3036 8741 3036 8742 3052 8734 3054 8719
3052 8714 3042 8716 3038 8725 3034 8726
3034 8721 3039 8718 3046 8693 3051 8703
3055 8701 3045 8709 3055 8714 3055 8713
3062 8678 3040 8680 3028 8753
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About

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.