July 2012: Earth's 4th warmest; update on 94L--a threat to the Antilles

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 7:19 PM GMT on August 18, 2012

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July 2012 was the globe's 4th warmest July on record, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). NASA rated it the 12th warmest. July 2012 global land temperatures were the 3rd warmest on record, breaking a streak of three months (April, May, and June) when global land temperatures were the warmest on record. July 2012 global ocean temperatures were the 7th warmest on record, and it was the 329th consecutive month with global temperatures warmer than the 20th century average. The last time global temperatures were below average was February 1985. Global satellite-measured temperatures in July for the lowest 8 km of the atmosphere were 7th or 5th warmest in the 34-year record, according to Remote Sensing Systems and the University of Alabama Huntsville (UAH). Wunderground's weather historian, Christopher C. Burt, has a comprehensive post on the notable weather events of July in his July 2012 Global Weather Extremes Summary.



Figure 1. Departure of temperature from average for July 2012. Most areas of the world experienced much higher-than-average monthly temperatures, including most of the United States and Canada. Meanwhile, Australia, northern and western Europe, eastern Russia, Alaska, and southern South America were notably cooler than average. Image credit: National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) .

El Niño watch continues
Sea surface temperatures increased to 0.8°C above average as of August 13 in the equatorial Pacific off the coast of South America. Ocean temperatures have been near or above the 0.5°C above average threshold needed for a weak El Niño event since the beginning of July. However, winds, pressures, and cloud cover over the region have not responded in the fashion typically associated with an El Niño, and NOAA's Climate Prediction Center (CPC) said that "The lack of a clear atmospheric response to the positive oceanic anomalies indicates ongoing ENSO-neutral conditions," in their August 9 El Niño discussion. They have issued an El Niño watch, and give a 71% chance that an El Niño event will be in place by September. El Niño conditions tend to decrease Atlantic hurricane activity, by increasing wind shear over the tropical Atlantic. Wind shear has been close to average over the tropical Atlantic since the beginning of hurricane season in June, though.


Figure 2. Arctic sea ice extent in 2012 (black line) compared to the previous record low year of 2007 (blue line) shows that 2012 is fast approaching all-time record territory. A big Arctic storm with a central pressure of 963 mb affected the ice during the first two weeks of August, causing a temporary downward spike in sea ice extent. Image credit: Danish Meteorological Institute.


Figure 3. View of the North Pole on August 17, 2012 from the North Pole Environmental Observatory shows plenty of melt water pools from the warm summer the North Pole has had.

Arctic sea ice falls to 2nd lowest extent in July, nears all-time record low during August
July 2012 Arctic sea ice extent reached its 2nd lowest July extent in the 35-year satellite record, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC). During the first half of August, sea ice has undergone a spectacular decline, and we are on pace to break the all-time lowest sea ice extent record set in September 2007. As of August 17, the University of Bremen was showing that sea ice extent has already broken the all-time record; the Danish Meteorological Institute put the ice loss in 2nd place behind September 2007; and the National Snow and Ice Data Center put Arctic ice loss in 3rd place behind September of 2007 and 2011.

Update on 94L
A large tropical wave (Invest 94L) located a few hundred miles southwest of the Cape Verde Islands off the coast of Africa is headed west at 15 - 20 mph. This storm is a threat to develop into a tropical storm that will affect the Lesser Antilles Islands as early as Wednesday. The storm is under moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots, and is over waters of 28°C. A large area of dry air lies just to the north of 94L, as seen on the latest Saharan Air Layer (SAL) analysis. Satellite loops show that 94L has increased in organization this afternoon, with a growing amount of heavy thunderstorm activity and spin at middle levels of the atmosphere.


Figure 4. Afternoon satellite image of Invest 94L.

Forecast for 94L
The latest 2 pm EDT run of the SHIPS model predicts that wind shear will be low, 5 - 10 knots, and ocean temperatures will fluctuate around 28°C over the next five days, as 94L tracks westwards towards the Lesser Antilles. As is typical with storms making the crossing from Africa to the Antilles, dry air to the north will likely interfere with development, and the SHIPS model predicts increased dry air as 94L approaches the Lesser Antilles. However, with shear expected to be low, dry air may be less of an issue for 94L than it was for Ernesto or TD 7. The storm should maintain a nearly due west track through Monday night, to a point near 50°W, about 700 miles east of the Lesser Antilles. At that point, a trough of low pressure passing to the north of 94L may be able to pull the storm to the northwest well to the northeast of the Lesser Antilles, as suggested by the latest 12Z (8 am EDT) run of the NOGAPS model. The 12Z UKMET model shows a more west-northwesterly motion resulting in a near miss of the Lesser Antilles on Thursday. Our two best performing models--the GFS and ECMWF--have both been taking 94L through the Lesser Antilles with every run for the past 24 hours, though. The latest 12Z run of both models now agree on the timing, with 94L arriving Wednesday night or Thursday morning. The BAMM model, which performed as well as the ECMWF and GFS at 5-day forecasts in 2011, is also showing a track through the Lesser Antilles. Given this agreement among our top three models for long-range forecasts, I give a 60% chance that 94L will pass through the Lesser Antilles. In their 2 pm EDT Tropical Weather Outlook, NHC gave 94L a 50% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Monday afternoon.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting JLPR2:


I'll go with a more conservative 60%. :P


How about a more liberal 80% :P
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting LargoFl:
.whew dont go swimming around south texas then

Its definately not a "refreshing" swim, to say the least.
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Quoting LargoFl:
What is the Boiling point for water?....check out just off the coast of houston tx..getting closer to it


212f or 100c or 273.2K
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
Quoting trHUrrIXC5MMX:


?


Don't worry, I see insane in there too.

Little bit worried for the Azoreans and the people vacationing there.
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Quoting HurricaneDean07:

Notice Joyce and Kirk, Behind Isaac.


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Quoting JLPR2:


Yep, already doing so since yesterday.
Me too.
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Quoting Felix2007:


94 DEGREES!!!
.whew dont go swimming around south texas then
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39025
Quoting Felix2007:


This is NOT Earl part 2



Notice Joyce and Kirk, Behind Isaac.
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Quoting LargoFl:
What is the Boiling point for water?....check out just off the coast of houston tx..getting closer to it


94 DEGREES!!!
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What is the Boiling point for water?....check out just off the coast of corpus christi tx..getting closer to it
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39025
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Any guesses for the next TWO? I say 70%.

80%
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Quoting CaribBoy:
94L is earl part II.Looks too far north to make it to the caribbean


This is NOT Earl part 2


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243. JLPR2
Well now, I'll post the large view and go do other stuff.



Be back later.
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Quoting MaryMichell46:
Is it just me or does it seem like whenever things are heating up in the Tropics lately Master's comes and starts a new blog incorporating some type of earth is hot - ice is melting stuff. Oh well at least this time he still mentions 94L. After all it his TWC's site and he works for them now. They must like that stuff....
No most of us like that stuff as you call it,, is call Gloval warming.If you don't like the sufject,well, don't read it. There are many of us that are concern about the future of the planet and don't look at this as a "right" or "left " political issue. We appreciate all the scientific inputs since climate changes is directly connected with weather, or no? Thanks to the good Doc that keep us updated in his blog...yes is "His",,blog....
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Any guesses for the next TWO? I say 70%.



I'll bite. 70% @ 8pm, 90% @ 2am and depression by
6AM depending on what an oscat pass may reveal if we get one.
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Two observations 1) 94L is one big bad Mama Jama, hope it's goes north or Katy bar the door.2 Gordon looks to be on a mission,tighten up Azores.
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Quoting JLPR2:


Yep, already doing so since yesterday.


Same here.
Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 14306
Quoting CaribBoy:


Levi is not, and i trust him on this one.



so you are going too turst Levi and not the mode runs



i feel sorry for you has when 94L is knocking on the door and you have not got in any thing ready
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237. JLPR2
Quoting Tazmanian:





if any one lives in PR you need too keep a close tabs on 94L




Yep, already doing so since yesterday.
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236. JLPR2
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Any guesses for the next TWO? I say 70%.



I'll go with a more conservative 60%. :P
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Any guesses for the next TWO? I say 70%.

..sure looks good right now
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39025
Quoting aspectre:
31 trHUrrIXC5MMX: So cat 3? Doubt the NHC is gonna go that far.
36 Hurricanes4life: According to this, doubt they will actually take these numbers though, very conservative NHC today!
38 trHUrrIXC5MMX: I'll say ALWAYS conservative ALL THE TIME
43 Hurricanes101: Really? Because yesterday there were some saying they name a lot more things than they used to because of Helene. Does not sound conservative to me.

The some who say that are AnthropogenicGlobalWarming denialists. Basicly they believe that anyone who notices extreme weather is part of the GrandConspiracy to deprive them of their manhood.
So ifn the NationalHurricaneCenter reports an increase in the number, intensity, duration, and/or total expended energy of TropicalCyclones, it must mean that the NHC is part of the conspiracy.
Hence their need to cast aspersions on the NHC's reputation by casting doubt on their methodology.

The NHC is a part of the Department of Commerce... which means that they operate under the mandate of disrupting business as little as possible. Hence they're very conservative inre their forecasts:
lest businesses let their workers off unnecessarily or a wee bit too early to prepare for evacuation or hunkering down;
lest businesses lose customers cuz the tourists leave early, cancel bookings, or won't come at all.

About the only time the NHC gets ahead of the curve is when a massively DESTRUCTIVE TropicalCyclone or tropical rain system is imminently about to make its PRESENSE felt.


?
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Any guesses for the next TWO? I say 70%.

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Quoting Tazmanian:



too far N?


sorry but the mode runs says the caribbean






Levi is not, and i trust him on this one.
Member Since: October 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6226
Looks like they called Gordon 105mph officially.

What a storm!
Member Since: January 25, 2012 Posts: 33 Comments: 1520
Quoting CaribBoy:
94L is earl part II.Looks too far north to make it to the caribbean



too far N?


sorry but the mode runs says the caribbean




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for those folks traveling to Tampa early for the convention..here is the 7day forecast for the Tampa Bay area..............
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39025
Quoting Dakster:
Where is the 'recurve' or 'curve' on that run Gro?

There isn't one, it was a previous error caused by wishful predictors.
Some of us always thought it would carry on in a straight line about the 35th parallel.
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Wow! Gordon got to 105 mph and 969 mb! RI much?
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12z GFS ENSEMBLES are coming out now they go out to 96HR
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You miss the difference between weather and climate. an historic snowstorm in october no more dismisses global warming than a rainstorm in a desert means it's no longer a desert. you gotta look longer term than one day, one week, or any one weather event. profoundly anomalous events are indicative of climate change (whether anomalously hot or cold, wet or dry) because we're messing with the whole system.

as to the heat island effect, our pal dr. masters wrote about that already:
Link

Quoting Gorty:


That is a nice trend that shows over the years, a lot bigger populations a lot more roads and everything else which can make things hotter. But I do believe global cooling will come someday. I mean, to have a historic snowstorm in October in these days cannot possibly mean we have global warming.

From year to year, its all about what the pattern want folks! And it seems like the pattern wants there to be more warmer days more often these days.
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94L is earl part II.Looks too far north to make it to the caribbean
Member Since: October 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6226
31 trHUrrIXC5MMX: So cat 3? Doubt the NHC is gonna go that far.
36 Hurricanes4life: According to this, doubt they will actually take these numbers though, very conservative NHC today!
38 trHUrrIXC5MMX: I'll say ALWAYS conservative ALL THE TIME
43 Hurricanes101: Really? Because yesterday there were some saying they name a lot more things than they used to because of Helene. Does not sound conservative to me.

The some who say that are AnthropogenicGlobalWarming denialists. Basicly they believe that anyone who notices extreme weather is part of the GrandConspiracy to deprive them of their manhood.
So ifn the NationalHurricaneCenter reports an increase in the number, intensity, duration, and/or total expended energy of TropicalCyclones, it must mean that the NHC is part of the conspiracy.
Hence their need to cast aspersions upon the NHC's reputation by slandering their methodology.

The NHC is a part of the Department of Commerce... which means that they operate under the mandate of disrupting business as little as possible. Hence they're very conservative inre their forecasts:
lest businesses let their workers off unnecessarily or a wee bit too early to prepare for evacuation or hunkering down;
lest businesses lose customers cuz the tourists leave early, cancel bookings, or won't come at all.

The only time the NHC gets ahead of the curve is when a massively DESTRUCTIVE TropicalCyclone or tropical rain system is imminently about to make its PRESENSE felt.
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Quoting AtHomeInTX:
This run looks like Galveston for whatever that is and I think 94l is missing the islands.


Where do you think Helene is headed??
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Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39025
Quoting MaryMichell46:
WOW. I knew it had been hot here but did not realize this.

NWSHouston @NWSHouston
GLS has recorded only one morning this month with a temp under 80 degrees. Currently ranks as 2nd warmest August on record. #txwx #houwx
about 18 hours ago
yes this summer we are breaking records all over the place
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39025
Quoting Grothar:


no they aren't, 3 other models have been saying the same thing. It could be ex-Helene or just a remnant low that they are watching carefully. That trough is supposed to be quite strong.
..well i think we can count on some kind of Low, sitting off the gulf coast mid next week..waters there are very high 80's..we'll see what happens..in any event its more rain for the northern gulf coast area's
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39025
Quoting aislinnpaps:


Ack, Taz, that's not good.





if any one lives in PR you need too keep a close tabs on 94L


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Quoting Tazmanian:




94L is no longer forcast too recurve out too sea sorry


Ack, Taz, that's not good.
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Quoting AtHomeInTX:
Hmmm...maybe the CMC and FIM(S) aren't off their rockers.

MARINE WEATHER DISCUSSION
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
230 PM EDT SAT AUG 18 2012

MARINE WEATHER DISCUSSION FOR THE GULF OF MEXICO...CARIBBEAN SEA
AND TROPICAL N ATLC...AND SOUTHWEST NORTH ATLC S OF 31N W OF 55W.

GULF OF MEXICO...
WESTERN EXTENSION OF ATLC RIDGE ALONG 27N REACHES FROM CENTRAL
FLORIDA TO SOUTHERN TEXAS. LIGHT TO MODERATE ANTICYCLONIC FLOW
PREVAILS ACROSS MOST OF THE GULF. TROPICAL DEPRESSION HELENE
CONTINUES TO WEAKEN OVER SOUTHERN MEXICO...WITH SCATTERED SHOWERS
AND TSTMS LOCATED E OF THE CENTER OVER THE SW GULF. A WEAK COLD
FRONT WILL ENTER THE NW GULF MON...AND DRIFT SLOWLY EASTWARD
ACROSS THE NORTHERN GULF THROUGH WED. A BLEND OF THE GFS AND
ECMWF WAS USED FOR THE FRONTAL POSITION. A BROAD AREA OF LOW
PRES IS EXPECTED TO PERSIST OVER THE NW GULF MON THROUGH THU.


and...

FOLLOWED BY A
STRONGER AREA OF LOW PRES ASSOCIATED WITH A TROPICAL WAVE ALONG
27W EXPECTED TO INTENSIFY...AND COULD BE A TROPICAL CYCLONE AS
IT REACHES THE TROPICAL N ATLC WED AND APPROACHES THE WINDWARD
ISLANDS ON THU. THE GFS IS VERY AGGRESSIVE DEVELOPING THE SECOND
WAVE NEAR 27W WHILE THE ECMWF MODEL IS MUCH WEAKER...MAINTAINING
THE SYSTEM AS A STRONG WAVE. THE UKMET IS THE PREFERRED SOLUTION
IN BOTH INTENSITY AND LOCATION...BETWEEN THE OTHER TWO EXTREMES.


no they aren't, 3 other models have been saying the same thing. It could be ex-Helene or just a remnant low that they are watching carefully. That trough is supposed to be quite strong.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26410
Quoting aislinnpaps:
I'm with Dak, where's the recurve?


Nevermind, saw your answer.
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Quoting aislinnpaps:
I'm with Dak, where's the recurve?




94L is no longer forcast too recurve out too sea sorry
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FLOOD ADVISORY
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MIAMI FL
430 PM EDT SAT AUG 18 2012

FLC011-099-182230-
/O.NEW.KMFL.FA.Y.0054.120818T2030Z-120818T2230Z/
/00000.N.ER.000000T0000Z.000000T0000Z.000000T0000 Z.OO/
430 PM EDT SAT AUG 18 2012

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MIAMI HAS ISSUED AN

* URBAN FLOOD ADVISORY FOR...
NORTHEASTERN BROWARD COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST FLORIDA...
THIS INCLUDES THE CITY OF DEERFIELD BEACH...
SOUTHEASTERN PALM BEACH COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST FLORIDA...
THIS INCLUDES THE CITIES OF...DELRAY BEACH...BOYNTON BEACH...BOCA
RATON...

* UNTIL 630 PM EDT

* AT 429 PM EDT, MINOR FLOODING WAS REPORTED AT GLADES ROAD AND THE
FLORIDA TURNPIKE.

HEAVY RAINFALL WILL CAUSE PONDING OF WATER IN URBAN AREAS, HIGHWAYS,
STREETS AND UNDERPASSES AS WELL AS OTHER POOR DRAINAGE AREAS AND LOW
LYING SPOTS. RUNOFF WILL ALSO CAUSE ELEVATED WATERS LEVELS IN CANALS
AND DITCHES.
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39025
Curious to see what happens if potential Isaac storm passes thru Eastern Hebert Box as a major hurricane. Statistically that would be significant.

HebertBox
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Quoting Grothar:


Just to the east of Puerto Rico. However, even though I have been in the camp of a strong recurvature (that I wrote in my blog 3 days ago) many models are insisting on a further westward track for a little longer. I simply do not know at this point.


The model run consistency for alonger westward track is somewhat concerning. As usual, a wait and see approach will be taken.

At least until the models get better at track prediction greater than 5-days out.

Although, I hear the NHC is working on a 7-day forecast product - once they get the track errors reasonable it will become public.
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I'm with Dak, where's the recurve?
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Quoting ncstorm:


LOL!!..

well..before the islands??


Nag, nag, nag. I will leave it at this. I will retract my prior statement and as of this point I have no idea on what the intensity may be. :) And yes, I will buy the lottery tickets and take out the garbage.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26410


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Quoting Grothar:


Just to the east of Puerto Rico. However, even though I have been in the camp of a strong recurvature (that I wrote in my blog 3 days ago) many models are insisting on a further westward track for a little longer. I simply do not know at this point.


That's why they say "just watch it." :)
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Quoting washingtonian115:
Remember Taz when you said Gordon was dissipating yesterday?.



Gordon has likey peaked
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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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