Colin arrives; extreme heat records fall for Ukraine and 5 U.S. cities

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 12:16 PM GMT on August 03, 2010

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Tropical Storm Colin has made its debut over the Atlantic, but does not appear to be a threat to any land areas over the next five days. Satellite imagery shows that Colin is intensifying, as both the intensity and areal extent of heavy thunderstorms has increased over the past few hours. A respectable low-level spiral band is developing to the north of the center, and upper-level outflow is beginning to appear on all sides of the storm. Colin is a very small storm, and its tropical storm force winds extend out just 30 miles from the center. Colin passed about 50 miles south of Buoy 41041 early this morning, and generated top sustained winds of 27 mph at the buoy. There is some dry air associated with the Saharan Air Layer (SAL) to the northwest of Colin, but this dry air is not getting entrained into Colin at present. Wind shear is a low 5 - 10 knots and sea surface temperatures are a very warm 28 - 29°C, so continued development is likely today. The main negative for development appears to be the storm's small size, which makes it vulnerable to modest increases in wind shear or dry air entrainment. The first flight of the Hurricane Hunters into Colin is scheduled for Wednesday morning.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of Tropical Storm Colin.

Forecast for Colin
The latest 6Z (2am EDT) models are fairly unified taking Colin to the west-northwest at 20 - 25 mph for the next three days. This would bring squalls from the storm's outer rainbands to the northern Lesser Antilles Islands, such as Antigua and Barbuda, by Wednesday afternoon. The center of Colin should pass to the northeast of the islands, and the storm is small enough that the islands are unlikely to experience tropical storm force winds. As Colin makes its closest approach to the Lesser Antilles on Wednesday night, the storm will begin to encounter strong upper-level westerly winds associated with the counter-clockwise flow of air around an upper-level low pressure system centered between Bermuda and Puerto Rico. The latest SHIPS model forecast predicts that these winds will cause wind shear to rise to the moderate level, 10 - 20 knots, by Wednesday morning, and to the high level, 20 - 30 knots, by Thursday. There is considerable dry air associated with the upper level low that should cause problems for Colin, as well. The high wind shear and dry air should weaken Colin. NHC is giving Colin a 25% chance of attaining hurricane status this week.

A trough of low pressure is expected to move off the U.S. East Coast on Friday, and this trough will pull Colin to the northwest and cause it to slow down on Wednesday. By Friday, Colin will be moving at half of its current speed. It is unclear if the trough of low pressure will be strong enough to fully recurve Colin out to sea late this week. Some of the models predict Colin will not recurve out to sea, and that high pressure will build back in this weekend, forcing Colin towards the U.S. East Coast. A second trough of low pressure is predicted to move off the U.S. East Coast next Monday, so Colin will have a second opportunity to recurve out to sea then. It is possible that Colin could make landfall along the U.S. East Coast or in the Canadian Maritime provinces 7 - 10 days from now, though it is still too early to assess the risk of this happening, nor how strong Colin might be.

Ukraine ties its record for hottest temperature in history
On August 1, Ukraine tied its record for hottest temperature in its history when the mercury hit 41.3°C (106.3°F) at Lukhansk. The Ukraine also reached 41.3°C on July 20 and 21, 2007, at Voznesensk. Sixteen of 225 nations on Earth have set extreme highest temperature in history records this year, the most of any year. The year 2007 is in second place, with fifteen such records.

Five major U.S. cities record their warmest month in history during July
July 2010 was the warmest month in history for five U.S. cities:

Las Vegas, NV: 96.2°F (old record: 95.3°F, July 2005).
Atlantic City, NJ: 79.8°F (old record: 78.7°F, July 1983)
Washington, D.C.: 83.1°F (tied with July 1993)
Baltimore, MD: 81.5°F (tied with July 1995)
Trenton, NJ: 80.5°F (tied with July 1955)

Also, in June, Miami, FL recorded its warmest month in history: 85.6°F (old record: 85.4°F in June 1998.)

Commentary
None of the 303 major U.S. cities listed in the records section of Chris Burt's book Extreme Weather has set a coldest month in history record since 1994 (these 303 cites were selected to represent a broad spectrum of U.S. climate zones, are not all big cities, have a good range of elevations, and in most cases have data going back to the 1880s.) There were just three such records (1% of the 303 major U.S. cities) set in the past twenty years, 1991 - 2010. In contrast, 97 out of 303 major U.S. cities (32%) set records for their warmest month in history during the past twenty years. It is much harder to set a coldest month in history record than a coldest day in history record in a warming climate, since it requires cold for an extended period of time--not just a sudden extreme cold snap.

Are the pattern of U.S. temperature records due to the Urban Heat Island effect?
Is the huge disparity between extreme heat records and extreme cold records in the U.S. due to global warming, or the Urban Heat Island effect? The Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect occurs when development of former natural areas into pavement and buildings allows more heat to be trapped in cities, particularly at night. During the day, the UHI effect often leads to a slight cooling, since it can increase the amount of turbulence, allowing cooler air to get mixed down to the surface. For example, Moreno-Garcia (1994) found that Barcelona, Spain was 0.2°C cooler for daily maxima and 2.9°C warmer for minima than a nearby rural station.

However, temperature records are typically taken in parks and airports removed from the main heat-trapping areas of cities, and are not as strongly affected as one might expect. There are several reasons for this. One is that when tall buildings are present, they tend to block the view to the sky, meaning that not as much heat can escape upwards. In addition, the presence of moist vegetation keeps the atmosphere moister in park-like areas (which include the grassy fields near airports where temperature measurements are taken). This extra moisture helps cool the atmosphere on a local scale of tens of meters, due to latent heat effects (the energy required to convert liquid water to water vapor). Peterson (2003) found that "Contrary to generally accepted wisdom, no statistically significant impact of urbanization could be found in annual temperatures." The study used satellite-based night-light detection to identify urban areas. Recent research by Spronken-Smith and Oke (1998) concluded that there was a marked park cool island effect within the Urban Heat Island. They found that parks in typical cities in the U.S. have temperatures 1 - 2°C cooler than the surrounding city--and sometimes more than 5°C cooler. While the Urban Heat Island effect probably has contributed to some of the reduction in record low temperatures in the U.S. in the past decade, research by Parker (2004, 2006) and Peterson (2003) theorizes that Urban Heat Island effect is a factor ten or more less important than rising temperatures due to global warming.

Chris Burt wrote me yesterday about Las Vegas' all-time warmest month record set in July. He noted that none of the sites nearby Las Vegas' McCarran Airport (where the official obs are kept) came close to setting a warmest month in history record. McCarran Airport has set new warmest month in history records in 2003, 2005, and now 2010. These two facts make us suspect that in the case of Las Vegas, an urban heat island effect may be contributing to the spate of recent warmest month in history records there. The heat records for Atlantic City, Washington D.C., Baltimore, and Trenton do not appear to have as much of a UHI influence, since record highs were set over such a large area of the mid-Atlantic in July.

Is the Urban Heat Island effect partially responsible for global warming?
Global warming is affecting the entire Earth, including rural areas far from cities, and the 70% of the world covered by ocean. Thus, the Urban Heat Island effect--if not corrected for--can cause only a small impact on the global temperature figures. Since the Urban Heat Island is corrected for, the impact on the observed global warming signal should be negligible. For instance, NASA uses satellite-derived night light observations to classify stations as rural and urban and corrects the urban stations so that they match the trends from the rural stations before gridding the data. Other techniques (such as correcting for population growth) have also been used. Despite these corrections, and the fact that the Urban Heat Island effect impacts only a relatively small portion of the globe, global warming skeptics have persistently used the Urban Heat Island effect to attack the validity of global warming. There are no published peer-reviewed scientific studies that support these attacks.

References
Parker, D.E., 2004, "Large-Scale Warming is not Urban", Nature 432, 290, doi:10.1038/432290a, 2004.

Parker, D.E., 2006, "A Demonstration that Large-Scale Warming is not Urban", J. Climate 19, pp2882-2986, 2006.

Peterson, T.C., "Assessment of urban versus rural in situ surface temperatures in the contiguous United States: No difference found", Journal of Climate, 16, 2941-2959, 2003.

Spronken-Smith, R. A., and T. R. Oke, 1998: "The thermal regime of urban parks in two cities with different summer climates. Int. J. Remote Sens., 19, 20852104.

The surface temperature record and the urban heat island, realclimate.org post, 2004.

Next update
I have a series of meetings today that will probably keep me from making another post, and keep me from doing my weekly Internet radio show, Hurricane Haven. I'll be back Wednesday morning, at the latest, with a new post.

Jeff Masters

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2875. Becca36
Good morning all! Just stopping in before I go to the gym hitting F5 over and over at the NHC site...
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Quoting islandmountain:
Morning all. Beautiful morning in Dominica. First morning for weeks that the rain has not been falling up in the mountains. Looks as if that may change as ex Colin moves a little closer. We may catch the very S tip later today.
Morning. I was looking at the IR earlier this a.m. and thinking whether u guys get something is going to depend on how badly x-Colin is impacted by the shear to the north and by D-min.
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SHOWER ACTIVITY ASSOCIATED WITH THE REMNANTS OF TROPICAL STORM
COLIN...LOCATED ABOUT 150 MILES EAST-NORTHEAST OF THE LEEWARD
ISLANDS...HAS BECOME A LITTLE BETTER ORGANIZED THIS MORNING.
HOWEVER...ANY ADDITIONAL DEVELOPMENT IS EXPECTED TO BE SLOW TO DUE
TO UNFAVORABLE UPPER-LEVEL WINDS. THERE IS A LOW CHANCE...20
PERCENT...OF THIS SYSTEM BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE AGAIN DURING
THE NEXT 48 HOURS AS IT MOVES WEST-NORTHWESTWARD AT 20 TO 25 MPH.
REGARDLESS OF DEVELOPMENT...LOCALLY HEAVY RAINS AND STRONG GUSTY
WINDS ARE POSSIBLE OVER PORTIONS OF THE LEEWARD AND VIRGIN ISLANDS
ISLANDS TODAY AND TONIGHT. AN AIR FORCE RESERVE HURRICANE HUNTER
AIRCRAFT IS SCHEDULED TO INVESTIGATE THIS SYSTEM LATER TODAY.
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2872. tkeith
The mornings here is the best time to get real, coherent information about what's goin on in the tropics. Kudos to the early risers :)
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Quoting FLdewey:
Jeff must be sleeping in...

Still Morning here.
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Yeah, they are Baha. Calling the monsta still on Afrika a ridge. Sorry bout that. Based on what we've seen in the past week, it's safe to say they will all become one in the next day or so though, don't you think?
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Quoting FLdewey:
Jeff must be sleeping in...

Cool graphic!!
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NHC as admitted that ex Colin has become better organized as of 8 AM
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00
ABNT20 KNHC 041157
TWOAT
TROPICAL WEATHER OUTLOOK
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
800 AM EDT WED AUG 4 2010

FOR THE NORTH ATLANTIC...CARIBBEAN SEA AND THE GULF OF MEXICO...

SHOWER ACTIVITY ASSOCIATED WITH THE REMNANTS OF TROPICAL STORM
COLIN...LOCATED ABOUT 150 MILES EAST-NORTHEAST OF THE LEEWARD
ISLANDS...HAS BECOME A LITTLE BETTER ORGANIZED THIS MORNING.
HOWEVER...ANY ADDITIONAL DEVELOPMENT IS EXPECTED TO BE SLOW TO DUE
TO UNFAVORABLE UPPER-LEVEL WINDS. THERE IS A LOW CHANCE...20
PERCENT...OF THIS SYSTEM BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE AGAIN DURING
THE NEXT 48 HOURS AS IT MOVES WEST-NORTHWESTWARD AT 20 TO 25 MPH.

REGARDLESS OF DEVELOPMENT...LOCALLY HEAVY RAINS AND STRONG GUSTY
WINDS ARE POSSIBLE OVER PORTIONS OF THE LEEWARD AND VIRGIN ISLANDS
ISLANDS TODAY AND TONIGHT. AN AIR FORCE RESERVE HURRICANE HUNTER
AIRCRAFT IS SCHEDULED TO INVESTIGATE THIS SYSTEM LATER TODAY.

CLOUDINESS...SHOWERS...AND THUNDERSTORMS OVER THE CENTRAL AND
SOUTHWESTERN CARIBBEAN SEA ARE ASSOCIATED WITH A TROPICAL WAVE.
SOME SLOW DEVELOPMENT OF THIS DISTURBANCE IS POSSIBLE OVER THE NEXT
FEW DAYS AS IT MOVES GENERALLY WESTWARD AT 15 TO 20 MPH. THERE IS
A LOW CHANCE...20 PERCENT...OF THIS SYSTEM BECOMING A TROPICAL
CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.

ELSEWHERE...TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION IS NOT EXPECTED DURING THE
NEXT 48 HOURS.

$$
FORECASTER BEVEN

Member Since: August 22, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 1455
ex-Colin up to 20%.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24039
Quoting Chicklit:
Morning All, I see they are mentioning the wave still on the continent in the Discussion this morning.

TROPICAL WEATHER DISCUSSION
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
805 AM EDT WED AUG 04 2010

BASED ON 0600 UTC SURFACE ANALYSIS AND SATELLITE IMAGERY THROUGH
1115 UTC.

...TROPICAL WAVES...
TROPICAL WAVE IN THE E ATLC IS FROM 18N24W TO 10N29W MOVING W AT 10-15 KT. WAVE IS TO THE SW OF AN UPPER RIDGE ANCHORED INLAND OVER W AFRICA AND IS EMBEDDED WITHIN THE ITCZ. CONVECTION IS ASSOCIATED WITH THE ITCZ.
Morning Chick. They are??? I thought the referenced wave is the one just south of the CVs....
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Morning all. Beautiful morning in Dominica. First morning for weeks that the rain has not been falling up in the mountains. Looks as if that may change as ex Colin moves a little closer. We may catch the very S tip later today.
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Tropical Update Aug. 4th. 2010...Video Blog
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Quoting BahaHurican:
I wouldn't think it was strong enough to do that... but there is an ULH in the area that might be doing the job.

Uh.... u might want to go get another cuppa, compadre.... lol.... it's only the 3rd of August, not the 3rd of November... lol


Thanks Baha! makes since! I just woke up and need one of StormW military strength Coffee.. known to us civilians as cappuccino.
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Quoting psuweathernewbie:
NHC is a little late with the TWO.
Prolly arguing which crayon to put on x-Colin....
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Morning All, I see they are mentioning the wave still on the continent in the Discussion this morning.

TROPICAL WEATHER DISCUSSION
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
805 AM EDT WED AUG 04 2010

BASED ON 0600 UTC SURFACE ANALYSIS AND SATELLITE IMAGERY THROUGH
1115 UTC.

...TROPICAL WAVES...
TROPICAL WAVE IN THE E ATLC IS FROM 18N24W TO 10N29W MOVING W AT 10-15 KT. WAVE IS TO THE SW OF AN UPPER RIDGE ANCHORED INLAND OVER W AFRICA AND IS EMBEDDED WITHIN THE ITCZ. CONVECTION IS ASSOCIATED WITH THE ITCZ.
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NHC is a little late with the TWO.
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Quoting earthlydragonfly:


Is X Colin putting pressure on the ULL and squashing it??
I wouldn't think it was strong enough to do that... but there is an ULH in the area that might be doing the job.

Quoting coffeecrusader:
Bonnie and Colin were the 2 most pathetic storms I have ever seen. This season shaping up to be a real bust. Too many TUTTs,ULLs,SAL, etc. La Nina and record SST's not enough to save this season.
Uh.... u might want to go get another cuppa, compadre.... lol.... it's only the 4th of August, not the 4th of November... lol
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Only other interesting comment in the Discussion, IMO:

A SURFACE TROUGH...REMNANTS OF
TROPICAL CYCLONE COLIN...IS E OF THE LESSER ANTILLES EXTENDING
FROM 20N56W TO 13N58W GENERATING SCATTERED MODERATE/STRONG
CONVECTION FROM 15N-21N BETWEEN 56W-61W.
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Colin


92L
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24039
Quoting coffeecrusader:
Bonnie and Colin were the 2 most pathetic storms I have ever seen. This season shaping up to be a real bust. Too many TUTTs,ULLs,SAL, etc. La Nina and record SST's not enough to save this season.


I would hold off on that statement until we get to around Sept 20th......Things will probably change in just a period of a few days, in a few weeks, and become very favorable.
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And here is the 8. a.m. on the CAR...

CARIBBEAN SEA...
AN UPPER LOW IS IN THE NW CARIBBEAN CENTERED JUST W OF THE
CAYMAN ISLANDS COVERING THE AREA N OF 14N W OF 77W AND
GENERATING CLUSTERS OF SCATTERED SHOWERS/ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS
WITHIN 90/120 NM OF LINE FROM NICARAGUA NEAR 14N84W ACROSS
JAMAICA TO HAITI NEAR 19N73W...WITHIN 45/60 NM OF LINE FROM
21N81W TO 19N85W...AND FROM 16N-18N W OF 85W TO INLAND OVER
BELIZE. AN UPPER RIDGE COVERS THE REMAINDER OF THE CARIBBEAN
ANCHORED NEAR 15N69W PROVIDING DIFFLUENCE ALOFT TO ENHANCING THE
ACTIVITY ASSOCIATED WITH THE TROPICAL WAVE. THE ITCZ EXTENDS
ACROSS THE S CARIBBEAN GENERATING SCATTERED SHOWERS/ISOLATED
THUNDERSTORMS S OF LINE FROM 15N74W TO 12N80W TO THE COAST OF
COLOMBIA AND PANAMA. THE LESSER ANTILLES CURRENTLY REMAIN UNDER
MOSTLY CLEAR SKIES THIS MORNING BUT CONDITIONS COULD DETERIORATE
LATER TODAY AS THE ACTIVITY ASSOCIATED WITH A SURFACE TROUGH
JUST E OF THE LESSER ANTILLES APPROACHES THE LEEWARD AND VIRGIN
ISLANDS.


So I was correct yesterday in thinking the corner would get some effects from ex-Colin.
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Wow. I just got a "maximum posts" comment!....

...TROPICAL WAVES...
TROPICAL WAVE IN THE E ATLC IS FROM 18N24W TO 10N29W MOVING W AT
10-15 KT. WAVE IS TO THE SW OF AN UPPER RIDGE ANCHORED INLAND
OVER W AFRICA AND IS EMBEDDED WITHIN THE ITCZ. CONVECTION IS
ASSOCIATED WITH THE ITCZ.

TROPICAL WAVE IN THE CENTRAL CARIBBEAN IS ALONG 71W/72W S OF 16N
MOVING W 15-20 KT. WAVE IS ON THE W SIDE OF AN UPPER RIDGE WHICH
IS ENHANCING SCATTERED SHOWERS/THUNDERSTORMS FROM 12N-18N
BETWEEN 67W-74W.

...ITCZ...
ITCZ AXIS IS ANALYZED ALONG 15N16W 13N24W 8N37W 10N46W 9N50W
INTO THE SE CARIBBEAN ALONG 12N62W 13N73W THEN ACROSS PANAMA/
COSTA RICA INTO THE PACIFIC REGION NEAR 9N83W. CLUSTERS OF
SCATTERED MODERATE/STRONG CONVECTION ARE WITHIN 200 NM OF THE
ITCZ FROM 20W-47W. CLUSTERS OF SCATTERED MODERATE CONVECTION ARE
FROM 3N-8N BETWEEN 42W-53W.

I don't see anything about a Twave near 40W.... must be just ITCZ convection.
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Bonnie and Colin were the 2 most pathetic storms I have ever seen. This season shaping up to be a real bust. Too many TUTTs,ULLs,SAL, etc. La Nina and record SST's not enough to save this season.
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Quoting BahaHurican:
I think that ULL is forecasted to head west into the GOM over the next 2-3 days. Right now it looks as entrenched as the one N of PR [though that's starting to look a bit squashed on the WV imagery...].


Is X Colin putting pressure on the ULL and squashing it??
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92L is producing deep consolidated convection now, could begin to organize soon.
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Quoting P451:
Good Morning. The ULL's have been persistent this year and very damaging to any system.

12HR WV ending 645AMET



You got that right............ :)
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2845. pottery
Quoting BahaHurican:

Hi Baha.
That shows the situation pretty well.....
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Quoting gator23:

The lack of evidence isnt the evidence of absence -Don Rumsfeld

lol
LOL...
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Quoting earthlydragonfly:


Ty Baha... So Shields to the GOM and pretty much the US are up from what it looks like to me!
I think that ULL is forecasted to head west into the GOM over the next 2-3 days. Right now it looks as entrenched as the one N of PR [though that's starting to look a bit squashed on the WV imagery...].
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Storm. once the MJO is in a favorable mode what will be the likey track for a CV type storm in the Northern Antilles? Recurvature? or a more W to WNW track?
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Quoting StormW:


Good morning!


Morning Senior Chief... Hows that coffee this fine morning?
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Quoting BahaHurican:
Morning EDF.... yep it is...


Ty Baha... So Shields to the GOM and pretty much the US are up from what it looks like to me!
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2834. pottery
Quoting DDR:
Morning all
Its raining heavily again in Trinidad.

Morning,
Not good for all the people that are still in flooded areas across the South and Central of the Island.
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Quoting ho77yw00d:



Good morning
: )
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Quoting BahaHurican:
If they go down, it'll likely be no more than 2/1/1/. Still too many positive indicators out there.


16/9/4 would still be a very respectable season total. The ACE might still be very high if you get the trough type steering. Some of the highest ACE storms have just been Cape Verde trackers that meander in the Central Atlantic for a fortnight.

Could end up with similar figures to 07 if the current trends continue, though I do not believe there'll be any Cat 5s (they seem to come in cycles somehow).
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Quoting earthlydragonfly:
Good Morning Everyone!!!!



Good morning
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CARIBBEAN SEA...
AN UPPER LOW IS IN THE NW CARIBBEAN CENTERED JUST W OF THE
CAYMAN ISLANDS COVERING THE AREA N OF 15N W OF 77W AND
GENERATING SCATTERED SHOWERS/ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS WITHIN 120
NM OF 79W N OF 15N TO THE COAST OF CUBA.
AN UPPER RIDGE COVERS
THE REMAINDER OF THE CARIBBEAN ANCHORED NEAR 14N67W PROVIDING
DIFFLUENCE ALOFT TO ENHANCING THE ACTIVITY ASSOCIATED WITH THE
TROPICAL WAVE. THE ITCZ EXTENDS ACROSS COLOMBIA AND PANAMA INTO
THE E PACIFIC REGION AND IS GENERATING SCATTERED SHOWERS/
ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS S OF 13N TO INLAND OVER COLOMBIA BETWEEN
73W-78W. THE LESSER ANTILLES ARE UNDER MOSTLY CLEAR SKIES
TONIGHT.

That ULL hasn't moved much since 2 a.m. my time...
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Quoting earthlydragonfly:
At 82.5w and 18n.... Is that an ULL?
Morning EDF.... yep it is...
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Meanwhile, it looks like things are picking up worldwide....

2010 Storms
Active


Atlantic
92L.INVEST
04L.COLIN

East Pacific
97E.INVEST

Central Pacific

West Pacific
97W.INVEST
96W.INVEST

Indian Ocean
90B.INVEST
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2826. 606
Quoting poknsnok:
Bonni and Colin werent much in the way of systems to recognize. only Alex after getting in the gulf took off. something is missing in the TATL to get things going. To much dry air? Jet too far south? Regardless of the ocean heat content, La Nina, etc. ther is an inhibiting factor at this time in the Tropical Atlantic.


The main factor is God. He is holding back the winds of strive.
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Good Morning Everyone!!!!
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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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