Damage losses and climate change

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 10:58 PM GMT on January 03, 2012

Share this Blog
35
+

During 2011, a series of violent tornado outbreaks hit the Plains and Southeast U.S., bringing an astonishing six billion-dollar disasters in a three-month period. The epic tornado onslaught killed 552 people and brought three of the five largest tornado outbreaks on record in a six-week period, including the largest and most expensive tornado outbreak in U.S. history--the April 25 - 28 Super Outbreak, which did $10.2 billion dollars in damage. Insured losses due to thunderstorms and tornadoes in the U.S. were at least $25 billion in 2011, more than double the previous record set in 2010. Damages from thunderstorms and tornadoes since 1980 have shown a clear increase since 1980 (Figure 2.) Disaster losses world-wide from weather-related natural disasters have also shown a significant increase in recent years, as has the number of these disasters. But how much of this is due to a change in the climate, and how much might be due to increases in population, wealth, and other factors?


Figure 1. Damage in Tuscaloosa, Alabama after the April 27, 2011 EF-4 tornado. Image credit: NOAA.


Not enough evidence to judge if climate change is affecting tornadoes
As I discussed last week in my post, 2011: Year of the Tornado, as far as we can tell, the number of damaging tornadoes has not increased in recent years, though the quality of the data set is to poor to know for sure. This is largely due to the fact that we never directly measure a tornado's winds--a tornado has to run over a building before we can make an EF-scale strength estimate, based on the damage. As tornado researcher Chuck Doswell said in a 2007 paper, "I see no near-term solution to the problem of detecting detailed spatial and temporal trends in the occurrence of tornadoes by using the observed data in its current form or in any form likely to evolve in the near future." My 2008 post, Are tornadoes getting stronger and more frequent?, discussed how a better way to assess how climate change may be affecting tornadoes is to look at how the large-scale environmental conditions favorable for tornado formation have changed through time. The most important ingredients for tornado formation are usually high atmospheric instability (as measured by the Convective Available Potential Energy, or CAPE), and high amounts of wind shear between the surface and 6 km altitude. Not enough work has been done on the subject to judge whether or not climate change is affecting severe thunderstorms and tornadoes, though.


Figure 2. Insured losses due to thunderstorms and tornadoes in the U.S. in 2011 dollars. Data taken from Property Claims Service MR NatCatSERVICE. Image credit: Munich Re.

Are the number of weather-related disasters increasing?
At a talk given last month at the American Geophysical Union meeting in San Francisco, Mark Bove of Munich Re insurance company examined trends in both damages and number of natural disasters since 1980. These numbers have shown significant increases since 1980. After we take out the increase in disasters reported due to an increasing population, greater wealth, and more advanced communications, is there a trend due to climate change? One way to check is to compare natural disasters due to geophysical events--earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions--to weather-related disasters. Geophysical disasters should remain relatively constant in number in a changing climate (unless sea level rise is occurring so rapidly that it is causing significant changes in stress on earthquake faults, something that is theoretically possible, but has not yet been observed.) If we then look at trends in the number of geophysical disasters versus weather-related disasters reported, it should give us an idea of how much of the recent increase in weather-related disasters may be due to climate change. Between 1980 and 2010, geophysical disasters increased by about a factor of 1.5, while weather-related disasters increased by a factor of 2.7 to 3.5 (Figure 3.) Bove stated that he thought weather-related disasters were likely subject to a higher increase in reporting rate than geophysical disasters, but not enough to account for the huge difference. Climate change was the likely reason for a large portion of the increase in weather-related disasters in recent years, he argued. His talk concluded, "there is quite some probability that natural catastrophe losses are driven already by human-caused climate change."


Figure 3. The number of natural disasters reported has increased markedly worldwide since 1980, particularly for weather-related disasters. Image credit: Munich Re.

However, this conclusion is controversial. A 2010 paper in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society by Netherlands researcher Laurens Bouwer titled, "Have disaster losses increased due to anthropogenic climate change?", looked at 22 disaster loss studies world-wide, published between 2001 and 2010. All of the studies showed an increase in damages from weather-related disasters in recent decades. Fourteen of the 22 studies concluded that there were no trends in damage after correcting for increases in wealth and population, while eight of the studies did find upward trends even after such corrections, bringing up the question whether or not climate change could be responsible for the increased disaster losses. However, Bouwer found that "studies that did find increases after normalization did not fully correct for wealth and population increases, or they identified other sources of exposure increases or vulnerability changes or changing environmental conditions." In all 22 studies, increases in wealth and population were the "most important drivers for growing disaster losses." He concluded that human-caused climate change "so far has not had a significant impact on losses from natural disasters."

Using storm surge to evaluate damage normalization studies
Damage from landfalling storms can be used to estimate if hurricanes are growing stronger with time, but damage estimates must first be corrected to account for changes in wealth and population over time. A 2008 study by Pielke et al. found that although hurricane damages had been doubling every ten years in recent decades, there were no increases in normalized hurricane damages in the U.S. from 1900 - 2005. They used census and economic data to adjust for how increases in populations and wealth may have affected hurricane damages over time. However, Grinsted et al. (2012) questioned whether or not this was done correctly. They found that storm surge heights of U.S. hurricanes and tropical storms correlated very well with metrics that looked at storm intensity, when looking at many decades of data to see long-term trends. However, the researchers found that while short-term trends in normalized hurricane damage estimated by Pielke et al. (2008) did correlate well historical storm surges, these normalized damages had poor correlation with the storm surge record, when looking at decades-long time scales. This implies that the corrections were biased. Dr. Stephan Lewandowsky of the University of Western Australia makes the case that efforts such as the one done by Pielke et al. (2008) to normalize disaster losses are probably biased too low, since they only look at factors that tend to increase disaster losses with time, but ignore factors that tend to decrease disaster losses. These ignored factors include improvements in building codes, better weather forecasts allowing more preparation time, and improved fire-fighting ability. He writes, "Most normalization research to date has not accounted for those variables because they are extremely difficult to quantify. (And most researchers have been at pains to point that out; e.g., Neumayer & Barthel, 2011, pp. 23-24.) In effect, normalization research to date largely rests on the oddly inconsistent pair of assumptions that (a) we have built up enormous wealth during the 20th century but (b) did so without any technological advance whatsoever." For example, during a severe October 2013 windstorm that did over $1 billion in damage to France, England, Germany, the Netherlands, and Denmark, "The insured losses for the St. Jude's Day storm would have been significantly higher but for the accuracy in weather forecasting several days ahead of the storm's formation", said financial information services company Fitch Services, since "policyholders have more time to protect their property from potential damage, while government agencies, utility firms and transport companies can make logistical arrangements to minimize disruption to power supplies and transport networks."

Conclusion
Studies showing no increase in normalized damage from storms have high uncertainty, and it is possible that higher economic damages due to stronger storms is indeed occurring, though the current research does not show this. Looking at disasters losses to make an argument that climate change is affecting our weather is difficult, due to the rarity of extreme events, and the changes in wealth and population that also affect disaster losses. We are better off looking at how the atmosphere, oceans, and glaciers are changing to find evidence of climate change--and there is plenty of evidence there.

References
Tornado researcher Dr. Harold Brooks has a May 2012 op-ed in New Scientist that discusses the difficulty in predicting how climate change will impact tornadoes.

Bouwer, L, 2010, "Have disaster losses increased due to anthropogenic climate change?", BAMS, January 2011, DOI:10.1175/2010BAMS3092.1

Doswell, C.A., 2007, "Small Sample Size and Data Quality Issues Illustrated Using Tornado Occurrence Data", E-Journal of Severe Storms Meteorology Vol 2, No. 5 (2007).

Del Genio, A.D., M-S Yao, and J. Jonas, 2007,
Will moist convection be stronger in a warmer climate?, Geophysical Research Letters, 34, L16703, doi: 10.1029/2007GL030525.

Grinsted, A., J. C. Moore, and S. Jevrejeva, 2012, "A homogeneous record of Atlantic hurricane surge threat since 1923," PNAS 2012, doi:10.1073/pnas.1209542109

Marsh, P.T., H.E. Brooks, and D.J. Karoly, 2007, Assessment of the severe weather environment in North America simulated by a global climate model, Atmospheric Science Letters, 8, 100-106, doi: 10.1002/asl.159.

Neumayer, E. & Barthel, F. (2011). Normalizing economic loss from natural disasters: A global analysis Global Environmental Change, 21, 13-24.

Pielke et al., 2008, "Normalized Hurricane Damage in the United States: 1900–2005", Natural Hazards Review, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp. 29-42.

Riemann-Campe, K., Fraedrich, K., and F. Lunkeit, 2009, Global climatology of Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and Convective Inhibition (CIN) in ERA-40 reanalysis, Atmospheric Research Volume 93, Issues 1-3, July 2009, Pages 534-545, 4th European Conference on Severe Storms.

Trapp, R.J., N.S. Diffenbaugh, H.E. Brooks, M.E. Baldwin, E.D. Robinson, and J.S. Pal, 2007, Severe thunderstorm environment frequency during the 21st century caused by anthropogenically enhanced global radiative forcing, PNAS 104 no. 50, 19719-19723, Dec. 11, 2007.

Jeff Masters

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 190 - 140

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12Blog Index

Quoting Jedkins01:



And what solution is there for overpopulation? Kill the "ignorant masses" in favor of superior minds? Overpopulation is a elitist myth, don't buy into it.

Ridicule me if you like but its a load of crap. Population is an issue because so many people adhere to greed and selfishness and don't care about their poor brother.

Overpopulation is an issue. It occurs all around us in the natural world and is happening right now with humans.

The best way to manage this problem is certainly up for debate, and outright killing people is definitely not the way to go, but to say it is a myth is ridiculous. Our planet was not meant to hold an infinite amount of organisms - resources are finite.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 19 Comments: 4358
Quoting WxGeekVA:


Yep.

Link
..hhhhmmmmmm.Severe weather,
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21409
Quoting WxGeekVA:


Yep.

Link
Thank you W.G.A...
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21409
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

Made it to 39 °F after a morning low of 15 °F.

There's a warm-up coming. :(


lol my cold day was yesterday. we ddint go past 34, and the only one happy about it was the chocolate lab running around the backyard xD
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4486
Quoting hydrus:
Is the new GFS out.?


Yep.

Link
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting SPLbeater:
i think the thermometer today topped out at 43 or 44 today at my house

Made it to 39 °F after a morning low of 15 °F.

There's a warm-up coming. :(
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32255
Quoting bappit:
Houston-Galveston forecast discussion:

GFS/ECMWF DIVERGE SATURDAY WITH A MORE NORTHERN TRACK AND FASTER FOR THE GFS SLOWER AND MORE CUTOFF FOR THE ECMWF. WILL TREND THE FORECAST IN FAVOR OF THE ECMWF WHICH WILL HAVE BIG DIFFERENCES IN THE TEMPERATURES AND POPS FOR SUNDAY NIGHT THROUGH MONDAY. WILL BE GOING WITH MUCH WARMER TEMPERATURES DUE TO THE MORE PERSISTENT WAA AND SLOWER FROPA. THEN FROPA TUESDAY AFTERNOON. THUNDERSTORMS A DECENT POSSIBILITY AND MAY NEED TO WATCH AS CAPE MAY BE RATHER ABUNDANT FOR JANUARY.
Is the new GFS out.?
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21409
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:


A cut-off low drops onto Texas, rides up the Eastern Seaboard and converges with an incoming trough from Canada...

BAM!!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
i think the thermometer today topped out at 43 or 44 today at my house
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4486
Quoting charlottefl:


Forecast low here was 25, it was 27 this morning. Not too bad. It's hard to pinpoint an exact temperature. We had readings in this city ranging from 27-33. There can be a lot of variation in temperature, even over very short distances.


which is why i must explain to my parents that if the NWS misses a high temp by 1 or 2 degrees, ITS NOTHING lol.
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 46 Comments: 4486
Houston-Galveston forecast discussion:

GFS/ECMWF DIVERGE SATURDAY WITH A MORE NORTHERN TRACK AND FASTER FOR THE GFS SLOWER AND MORE CUTOFF FOR THE ECMWF. WILL TREND THE FORECAST IN FAVOR OF THE ECMWF WHICH WILL HAVE BIG DIFFERENCES IN THE TEMPERATURES AND POPS FOR SUNDAY NIGHT THROUGH MONDAY. WILL BE GOING WITH MUCH WARMER TEMPERATURES DUE TO THE MORE PERSISTENT WAA AND SLOWER FROPA. THEN FROPA TUESDAY AFTERNOON. THUNDERSTORMS A DECENT POSSIBILITY AND MAY NEED TO WATCH AS CAPE MAY BE RATHER ABUNDANT FOR JANUARY.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Boy Texas is in for quite a soaking and this is only out to Monday Night.

Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
Quoting Jedkins01:
We had a low of 37 this morning, just a tad warmer than the 29 predicted with a supposed "hard freeze" here for Pinellas. I knew we weren't gonna get that cold because winds were blowing strong into the night and remained strong into the morning.

Dew points have fallen into the single digits now though and winds will become light or calm tonight. That being said even though there is no freeze warning in Pinellas and numbers are forecast to be warmer I expect tonight to be a colder night in turns of numbers in Pinellas and the Tampa Bay area away from urban centers and the beaches


Unlike last night into this morning, I believe radiational cooling will be achieved in at least parts of the Tampa Bay area. The warmer Urban Centers closer to the water like Tampa Clearwater may still be held warmer but I believe there will be areas of freezing temps in Pinellas.


Forecast low here was 25, it was 27 this morning. Not too bad. It's hard to pinpoint an exact temperature. We had readings in this city ranging from 27-33. There can be a lot of variation in temperature, even over very short distances.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Jedkins01:



And what solution is there for overpopulation? Kill the "ignorant masses" in favor of superior minds? Overpopulation is a elitist myth, don't buy into it.

Ridicule me if you like but its a load of crap. Population is an issue because so many people adhere to greed and selfishness and don't care about their poor brother.



When the world population was 6B, you could fit everyone inside Duval County (Jacksonville, FL) 2X shoulder to shoulder....
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Here it comes! This is the system here over Utah in 78 hours.

Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
As KEEPEROFTHEGATE said first the cold then the storm. This seems to happen every year around this time almost as if the cold wx (Outbreak) pattern sets up the pattern change.
Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
The storm early next week could be followed by other big storms. We really need to see how this evolves as we could be dealing with a pretty significant severe potential across the eastern Gulf Coast states come Tuesday and Wednesday. I'm telling you Dr. jeff spoke to soon yesterday especially with so many models pointing to this scenario.

Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 173 Comments: 54283
first the cold then the storm
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 173 Comments: 54283
Levi's blog has great insight on the upcoming pattern change
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32255
Quoting Pipejazz:


LOL, thanks for pointing out the members of the 'handful' in this quote of the year: The public, and especially the political class, cherry-picks its science. If a scientist finds a promising treatment for AIDS or cancer, then he is a hero; if he warns about overpopulation, climate change, or toxic contamination of the environment, then he risks either being ignored or, worse, being subjected to ridicule. Such negative incentives reduce to a handful the number of scientists who are willing to speak out.%u2014John Terborgh in a review of Tim Flannery%u2019s book Here on Earth: A Natural History of the Planet (NY Review of Books, Oct 13, 2011.



And what solution is there for overpopulation? Kill the "ignorant masses" in favor of superior minds? Overpopulation is a elitist myth, don't buy into it.

Ridicule me if you like but its a load of crap. Population is an issue because so many people adhere to greed and selfishness and don't care about their poor brother.

Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7560
Quoting StormTracker2K:
If we get a bad storm early next week then we can blame DR.Jeff Masters for saying it is going to be quiet for the next 10 days. Ha...
We can only blame him if he goes on vacation first [or during]....
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22307
Quoting Neapolitan:

Definitely not! The global warming trend that's been going on over the past 130 years has clearly come to a screeching halt; last night's record low temperatures in Florida prove it! It's clear that scientists have been...wait, what's this?! Edmunds, SD, reached a high yesterday of 55, breaking the old record of 48 set in 1898?! Why, that's a 114-year-old record! How can this be?!?!?!

;-)

For the first three days of this month, record high temperatures across the US have outnumbered record lows by 274 to 4, or nearly 69-to-1. Last night's Southeastern plunge, along with the cold expected to linger through today and tomorrow, will certainly go a long way toward balancing out that ratio. But in the bigger picture, it's interesting to note that the overall record-high-to-record-low ratio across the US last year was 2.8-to-1, adding to a multidecadal trend in overall heating.


LOL, thanks for pointing out the members of the 'handful' in this quote of the year: The public, and especially the political class, cherry-picks its science. If a scientist finds a promising treatment for AIDS or cancer, then he is a hero; if he warns about overpopulation, climate change, or toxic contamination of the environment, then he risks either being ignored or, worse, being subjected to ridicule. Such negative incentives reduce to a handful the number of scientists who are willing to speak out.—John Terborgh in a review of Tim Flannery’s book Here on Earth: A Natural History of the Planet (NY Review of Books, Oct 13, 2011.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Neapolitan:

He talked about the November data here. The December US climate rankings won't be out until the end of the second week of January. (For the globe as a whole, however, the December UAH satellite-based lower atmosphere temperature rose 0.1C from November [as November itself rose 0.1C from October].)


Many thanks!

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
temps rebounding nicly

Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 173 Comments: 54283
#164 good points--though perhaps you should tell the people in Turkey, China or Haiti (just three that come to mind) about the improved construction techniques.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Comparing meteorological disasters to geophysical disasters to make a point is iffy at best in terms of science--the mechanics for each are for the most part unrelated, and those that are similar are not exactly alike. Tornadoes occur primarily in tornado season and in particular areas; hurricanes occur during hurricane season, but there is no year to year pattern as to what areas are impacted on a regular basis. Earthquakes tend to occur in particular regions (and occasionally outside those regions), but there is no "earthquake season." The recurrence interval for any given fault in earthquake country can be anywhere from 20 years to over 500, with no discernible pattern to predict when the next one will hit.

Also, in terms of progress, earthquake-resistant construction in many parts of the world (Japan, Alaska, California, for starters) has advanced dramatically, while, as far as I can see, there really is no way to build a completely tornado-resistant home or office building above ground, or to build a building along the coast that will withstand a huge storm surge (or tsunami, for that matter). For example, an EF-5 tornado roars through a cornfield outside of, say, Wichita in 1940 would do virtually no damage, as there were no structures to destroy, while that same tornado goes through that same field in 2012, which is now covered by a housing development would cause a major disaster. Now--let's compare that with a repeat of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, magnitude 7.8. In 1906, over 3000 people were killed and a good portion of San Francisco and surrounding cities were destroyed. Though the area has grown in population significantly since then, it is doubtful that there will be over 3000 casualties, even though the total population affected is so much greater--even the worst case scenario put forward by the state of California places casualties only around 1000.

Thus the gap between the increase in weather-related disasters and geophysical disasters can be explained fairly easily--increase in population has definitely increased the chances of damages and casualties, but modern construction techniques have mitigated the earthquake issues to a large degree. As for tsunamis--well, early warning can eliminate deaths, but as we saw in Japan, even sea walls couldn't stop the waves.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TampaSpin:




Just a great example of the skewing of Temperatures by PLACEMENT Of instruments.


I know it may seem that way, but keep in mind, the NWS locations we have access to do NOT account for the only official observations the NWS has to work with!

If you have ever read through a page the NWS will post on say weather events, such as severe weather or record temperatures, they have a much broader list of recording stations that also include more rural areas and smaller towns not effected by the urban heat island. Which is why the NWS continued with the hard freeze last night in Hillsborough and Pinellas because they have gauges in parts of northern Pinellas and parts of Hillsborough that did experience the hard freeze.

Its not like meteorologists are somehow blinded by the urban heat island effect. They certainly aren't strategically placing recording stations in warmer areas to back global warming, if you know anyone personally who is a science fanatic especially with weather like me. One of the biggest goals of science freaks is to obsessively seek out what is really going on in the entire area not just urban centers. Meteorologists are very well aware that there can be as much as a 10 degree or more difference over just 5 miles on such cold nights like last night and tonight between urban areas and rural ones.

That being said using that as evidence against GW really doesn't work.


However I do agree there are some who are obsessively biased in trying to prove AGW and they could feasibly just use data collected at growing urban heat island effects. However the NWS has a much broader recording station network than what you see, and the majority of scientists aren't bent on trying to fabricate GW. Most scientists are bent on finding what is really happening.



Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7560
We had a low of 37 this morning, just a tad warmer than the 29 predicted with a supposed "hard freeze" here for Pinellas. I knew we weren't gonna get that cold because winds were blowing strong into the night and remained strong into the morning.

Dew points have fallen into the single digits now though and winds will become light or calm tonight. That being said even though there is no freeze warning in Pinellas and numbers are forecast to be warmer I expect tonight to be a colder night in turns of numbers in Pinellas and the Tampa Bay area away from urban centers and the beaches


Unlike last night into this morning, I believe radiational cooling will be achieved in at least parts of the Tampa Bay area. The warmer Urban Centers closer to the water like Tampa Clearwater may still be held warmer but I believe there will be areas of freezing temps in Pinellas.
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7560

Hi, wundergrounder! "Andrea", the windstorm, is going to visit us this night and tomorrow in Germany. Follow our fate; maybe it's gonna get quite ugly... Barb.
http://www.sat24.com/de/eu
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting yqt1001:


Its been out for a few days now. :P So has Calvin's.
uhhhhh sorry until now i see it
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting allancalderini:
Philippe TCR is out


Its been out for a few days now. :P So has Calvin's.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Philippe TCR is out
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: Posts: Comments:


Volcanic activity is causing the earth to rise in Oregon, scientists have found.

Though whether such uplift is a sign of an imminent eruption remains uncertain.

January 4, 2011 – OREGON – Volcanic activity is causing the earth to rise in Oregon, scientists have found. Though whether such uplift is a sign of an imminent eruption remains uncertain. As early as the summer of 1996, a 230-square-mile (600-square-kilometer) patch of ground in Oregon began to rise. The area lies just west of the South Sister Volcano, which with the North and Middle Sisters form the Three Sisters volcanoes, the most prominent peaks in the central Oregon stretch of the Cascade Mountains. Although this region has not seen an eruption in at least 1,200 years............Link
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
This is a good link for models...Link
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21409
154. Skyepony (Mod)
I thought OrlMichael's point of the heat island is right on. I've watched that effect grow over the years. Certainly something to keep in mind making forecasts around here as it's effects carry down wind even.

But to blame all of climate change on it is a huge reach. Studies have been completed where the trends were looked at in non-populated areas only, well enough away from the heat island effect & the trend remains.

For those that haven't had a college chem class or just isn't getting this... We know the exact amount of heat different molecules of gas trap (GWP)..it's a repeatable science experiment..just like how different solids hold different amount of heat when exposed to the same sunshine. During a summer day would you rather walk barefoot over the black parking lot, a piece of wood, sand or grass? Which will last longer? Just like we would expect the parking lot to be hottest & the sand to last the longest..On the gas spectrum CH4 (methane) holds near 72 times more heat over 20 years than CO2 (Carbon Dioxide) & lasts much longer. The same is true for liquids..different types of liquids hold different amounts of heat..just because something gets turned to gas doesn't mean it still can't trap heat..or steam would not have the potential to burn you.. Awe..a NYE Steam flashback:). Soot & land use have affects too. It's not just one type of AGW that's driving it.


My freeze was over before midnight here, not even 3 hrs. Much of my fall garden is alive & well:)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
The EURO has it taking a western track. The trough over Texas is the area of interest..
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21409
Quoting ILwthrfan:


Did Dr. M ever post anything on where the U.S. ranked in temperatures both for November and December?

He talked about the November data here. The December US climate rankings won't be out until the end of the second week of January. (For the globe as a whole, however, the December UAH satellite-based lower atmosphere temperature rose 0.1C from November [as November itself rose 0.1C from October].)
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13549
Quoting StormTracker2K:


I wouldn't go that far. LOL! Intense though. It'll be a shock to some as this would be the first Nor-Easter of the season.
We are due for one here on N.C. coast!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Xyrus2000:


Looks like it will pretty much be just wind and rain. The temps will be to warm to snow according to the GFS.
GFS continues to intensify the low over the S.E.U.S.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21409
Quoting StormTracker2K:
Ouch!! 2012 starting with a BANG folks!


Looks like it will pretty much be just wind and rain. The temps will be to warm to snow according to the GFS.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TampaSpin:




Just a great example of the skewing of Temperatures by PLACEMENT Of instruments.


Well, if you think the urban heat island effect is dominant in all urban areas, you're going to have to take a look at the broader picture. For example, at the moment downtown Baltimore is a few degrees colder than it is where I am (far outside the city). That's why when regional or global averages are calculated, they use standard statistical techniques using multiple data points, removing likely errors (outliers), etc. to get a more accurate picture. Keep in mind, there are far more sensors in non-city areas than within cities. A study by NOAA even went so far as to remove all city based stations and the warming trend remained practically unaffected.

However, even if you wish to throw out ALL of the surface station data ( silly, but for the sake of argument), the satellite data shows the same global warming trends. Even if you throw out all land based temperatures, the SSTs show the same warming trend.

Scientists don't just use one data set, the use multiple data set to get a better view of what's going on.

Quoting TampaSpin:
If i recall last year all the snow and precip was blamed on Global Warming. Is the lack of snow and precip this year blamed on Global Warming also? I believe its a fair question! Yes i know LaNina is in place!


No, it is not a fair question since you're original statement is incorrect. Some scientists speculated that the increased global temperatures resulted in increase moisture capacity, which COULD have facilitated the record snows. The news stations once again got carried away and tried to turn that into some sort of attribution.

There are not any peer-reviewed science articles I'm aware of attributing the record snows of last year (or the lack of snow this year) to climate change, nor would I expect there to be one. As I've stated before, direct attribution studies are incredibly difficult to do in climate science. Climate change influences weather, but it doesn't determine the weather. Thus, you'll find studies on the severity or frequency of events, but you are unlikely to find studies that link a particular event directly to climate change.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
If we get a bad storm early next week then we can blame DR.Jeff Masters for saying it is going to be quiet for the next 10 days. Ha...
Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
Quoting overwash12:
Storm Of The Century?


I wouldn't go that far. LOL! Intense though. It'll be a shock to some as this would be the first Nor-Easter of the season.
Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
Quoting StormTracker2K:


This system starts bombing over the SE US then goes crazy as the system rides up the eastern seaboard.
Storm Of The Century?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting ILwthrfan:


Did Dr. M ever post anything on where the U.S. ranked in temperatures both for November and December?
I do believe he did. I would link it for you , but I am swamped.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21409
Quoting SPLbeater:
GFS forecast for my area



This system starts bombing over the SE US then goes crazy as the system rides up the eastern seaboard.
Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651
Quoting StormTracker2K:
1st Billion dollar disaster of 2012?



It's the infamous Black Box of AmericanWX...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Global Climate Change: Vital Sign's of the Planet
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128630
1st Billion dollar disaster of 2012?

Member Since: October 26, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2651

Viewing: 190 - 140

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12Blog Index

Top of Page

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.