Hurricane Sandy's huge size: freak of nature or climate change?

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:10 PM GMT on November 13, 2012

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Hurricane Sandy was truly astounding in its size and power. At its peak size, twenty hours before landfall, Sandy had tropical storm-force winds that covered an area nearly one-fifth the area of the contiguous United States. Since detailed records of hurricane size began in 1988, only one tropical storm (Olga of 2001) has had a larger area of tropical storm-force winds, and no hurricanes has. Sandy's area of ocean with twelve-foot seas peaked at 1.4 million square miles--nearly one-half the area of the contiguous United States, or 1% of Earth's total ocean area. Most incredibly, ten hours before landfall (9:30 am EDT October 30), the total energy of Sandy's winds of tropical storm-force and higher peaked at 329 terajoules--the highest value for any Atlantic hurricane since at least 1969. This is 2.7 times higher than Katrina's peak energy, and is equivalent to five Hiroshima-sized atomic bombs. At landfall, Sandy's tropical storm-force winds spanned 943 miles of the the U.S. coast. No hurricane on record has been wider; the previous record holder was Hurricane Igor of 2010, which was 863 miles in diameter. Sandy's huge size prompted high wind warnings to be posted from Chicago to Eastern Maine, and from Michigan's Upper Peninsula to Florida's Lake Okeechobee--an area home to 120 million people. Sandy's winds simultaneously caused damage to buildings on the shores of Lake Michigan at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, and toppled power lines in Nova Scotia, Canada--locations 1200 miles apart!

Largest Atlantic tropical cyclones for area covered by tropical storm-force winds:

Olga, 2001: 780,000 square miles
Sandy, 2012: 560,000 square miles
Lili, 1996: 550,000 square miles
Igor, 2010: 550,000 square miles
Karl, 2004: 430,000 square miles



Figure 1. Hurricane Sandy’s winds (top), on October 28, 2012, when Sandy was a Category 1 hurricane with top winds of 75 mph (this ocean surface wind data is from a radar scatterometer on the Indian Space Research Organization’s (ISRO) Oceansat-2.) Hurricane Katrina’s winds (bottom) on August 28, 2005, when Katrina was a Category 5 hurricane with top winds of 175 mph (data taken by a radar scatterometer on NASA’s defunct QuickSCAT satellite.) In both maps, wind speeds above 65 kilometers (40 miles) per hour are yellow; above 80 kph (50 mph) are orange; and above 95 kph (60 mph) are dark red. The most noticeable difference is the extent of the strong wind fields. For Katrina, winds over 65 kilometers per hour stretched about 500 kilometers (300 miles) from edge to edge. For Sandy, winds of that intensity spanned an region of ocean three times as great--1,500 kilometers (900 miles). Katrina was able to generate a record-height storm surge over a small area of the Mississippi coast. Sandy generated a lower but highly destructive storm surge over a much larger area, due to the storm's weaker winds but much larger size. Image credit: NASA.

How did Sandy get so big?
We understand fairly well what controls the peak strength of a hurricane's winds, but have a poor understanding of why some hurricanes get large and others stay small. A number of factors probably worked together to create a "prefect storm" situation that allowed Sandy to grow so large, and we also must acknowledge that climate change could have played a role. Here are some possible reasons why Sandy grew so large:

1) Initial size of the disturbance that became Sandy was large
Sandy formed from an African tropical wave that interacted with a large area of low pressure that covered most of the Central Caribbean. Rotunno and Emanuel (1987) found that hurricanes that form from large initial tropical disturbances like Sandy did tend to end up large in size.


Figure 2. The initial disturbance that spawned Sandy, seen here on October 20, 2012, was quite large.

2) High relative humidity in Sandy's genesis region
The amount of moisture in the atmosphere may play an important role in how large a hurricane gets (Hill and Lackmann, 2009.) Sandy was spawned in the Caribbean in a region where the relative humidity was near 70%. This is the highest humidity we saw during 2012 during the formation of any Atlantic hurricane.

3) Passage over Cuba
Sandy struck Cuba as an intensifying Category 2 hurricane with 110 mph winds. While the core of the storm was over Cuba, it was cut off from the warm ocean waters surrounding Cuba. Most of Sandy's large circulation was still over the ocean, though, and the energy the storm was able to extract from the ocean went into intensifying the spiral bands over water. When Sandy's core re-emerged over water, the hurricane now had spiral bands with heavier thunderstorm activity as a result of the extra energy pumped into the outer portion of the storm during the eye's passage over land. This extra energy in the outer portions of Sandy may have enabled it to expand in size later.

4) Interaction with a trough of low pressure over the Bahamas
As Sandy passed through the Bahamas on October 25, the storm encountered strong upper-level winds associated with a trough of low pressure to the west. These winds created high wind shear that helped weaken Sandy and destroy the eyewall. However, Sandy compensated by spreading out its tropical storm-force winds over a much wider area. Between 15 and 21 UTC on October 25, Sandy's area of tropical storm-force winds increased by more than a factor of two.

5) Leveraging of the Earth's spin
As storms move towards Earth's poles, they acquire more spin, since Earth's rotation works to put more vertical spin into the atmosphere the closer one gets to the pole. This extra spin helps storms grow larger, and we commonly see hurricanes grow in size as they move northwards.

6) Interaction with a trough of low pressure at landfall
As Sandy approached landfall in New Jersey, it encountered an extratropical low pressure system to its west. This extratropical storm began pumping cold air aloft into the hurricane, which converted Sandy into an extratropical low pressure system, or "Nor'easter". The nature of extratropical storms is to have a much larger area with strong winds than a hurricane does, since extratropical storms derive their energy from the atmosphere along a frontal boundary that is typically many hundreds of miles long. Thus, as Sandy made landfall, the hurricane's strongest winds spread out over a larger area, causing damage from Indiana to Nova Scotia.

Are we likely to see more such storms in the future?
Global warming theory (Emanuel, 2005) predicts that a 2°C (3.6°F) increase in ocean temperatures should cause an increase in the peak winds of the strongest hurricanes of about about 10%. Furthermore, warmer ocean temperatures are expected to cause hurricanes to dump 20% more rain in their cores by the year 2100, according to computer modeling studies (Knutson et al., 2010). However, there has been no published work describing how hurricane size may change with warmer oceans in a future climate. We've seen an unusual number of Atlantic hurricanes with large size in recent years, but we currently have no theoretical or computer modeling simulations that can explain why this is so, or if we might see more storms like this in the future. However, we've seen significant and unprecedented changes to our atmosphere in recent decades, due to our emissions of heat-trapping gases like carbon dioxide. The laws of physics demand that the atmosphere must respond. Atmospheric circulation patterns that control extreme weather events must change, and we should expect extreme storms to change in character, frequency, and intensity as a result--and not always in the ways our computer models may predict. We have pushed our climate system to a fundamentally new, higher-energy state where more heat and moisture is available to power stronger storms, and we should be concerned about the possibility that Hurricane Sandy's freak size and power were partially due to human-caused climate change.

References
Emanuel, K. (2005). Increasing destructiveness of tropical cyclones over the past 30 years. Nature, 436(7051), 686-688.

Hill, Kevin A., and Gary M. Lackmann (2009), "Influence of environmental humidity on tropical cyclone size," Monthly Weather Review 137.10 (2009): 3294-3315.

Knutson, T. R., McBride, J. L., Chan, J., Emanuel, K., Holland, G., Landsea, C., ... & Sugi, M. (2010). Tropical cyclones and climate change. Nature Geoscience, 3(3), 157-163.

Rotunno, R., & Emanuel, K. A. (1987). An air–sea interaction theory for tropical cyclones. Part II: Evolutionary study using a nonhydrostatic axisymmetric numerical model. J. Atmos. Sci, 44(3), 542-561.

The Atlantic is quiet, but a Nor'easter expected next week
The Atlantic is quiet, with no threat areas to discuss. An area of low pressure is predicted to develop just north of Bermuda on Wednesday, and the GFS model predicts that this low could become a subtropical cyclone as moves north-northeastwards out to sea late in the week.

The long-range models are in increasing agreement that a Nor'easter will develop near the North Carolina coast on Sunday, then move north to northeastwards early next week. High winds, heavy rain, and coastal flooding could affect the mid-Atlantic coast and New England coasts next Monday and Tuesday due to this storm, but it appears likely that the Nor'easter will stay farther out to sea than the last Nor'easter and have less of an impact on the region devastated by Sandy. Ocean temperatures off the coast of North Carolina were cooled by about 4°F (2.2°C) due to the churning action of Hurricane Sandy's winds, but are still warm enough at 22 - 24°C to potentially allow the Nor'easter to acquire some subtropical characteristics. I doubt the storm would be able to become a named subtropical storm, but it could have an unusual amount of heavy rain if it does become partially tropical. The Nor'easter is still a long ways in the future, and there is still a lot of uncertainty on where the storm might go.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting AGWcreationists:
That's funny, this thread was started by Dr. Master's discussion of an individual storm. So now a contrarian opinion cannot be offered? I guess you want the rules rigged in favor of one point of view.

Please re-read Dr. Masters' post. Those that have read and absorbed it can see that although the main discussion point is a single storm, the connection of that single storm to climate is not made very strong. In fact, Dr. Masters even pointed out the lack of evidence at present to suggest an increase in storm size due to climate, by the following statement:
"However, there has been no published work describing how hurricane size may change with warmer oceans in a future climate. We've seen an unusual number of Atlantic hurricanes with large size in recent years, but we currently have no theoretical or computer modeling simulations that can explain why this is so, or if we might see more storms like this in the future."

After that statement, he talked in generalities about strong storms (as you might recall, that would be climate, not weather), by saying "[we] should expect extreme storms to change in character, frequency, and intensity as a result--and not always in the ways our computer models may predict."

As has been stated by numerous scientists numerous times, it is virtually impossible to show that any one event is caused by climate change, although current weather events can be consistent with observed climatic changes. The intensity or frequency of events may also change when averaged over climatic timescales (hint, this is not a single event or weather). Dr. Masters summed up this consensus of climate science nicely:
"we should be concerned about the possibility that Hurricane Sandy's freak size and power were partially due to human-caused climate change."
Reason to be concerned for a partial influence, but we are not certain at this time.

There really isn't much point in discussing this topic with you further if you are not actual going to fully read the topic we are discussing.
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84 hours out. This low forecast to be over Northern Alabama will be the Nor,Easter.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
For anybody that cares...Texas' petition to succeed from the United States has reached 70,000 signatures. It only takes 25,000 to warrant an official response from the Obama administration.

Louisiana has also reached the 25,000 threshold, and Florida is not far behind.

Anyways, it must really suck living in the Northeast. First a historic hurricane/nor'easter combo, then a significant winter storm, and now yet another storm capable of producing gusty winds and very heavy rainfall.

This is the pattern for the winter, it appears. People hoping for snow in the Northeast...you'll probably get it.



This is just some neo-cons over reacting.

Secession of a state would cause an unbelievable uprising, not to mention border crossing issues, interstate highway disputes, riots, probably at least 2 or 3 way civil war, who knows what else.

Who gets control of the nukes and air bases and other military installations and research facilities in each state? You think the Federal Government would just hand all that over?

Even if Louisiana was stupid enough to leave the U.S. I'd leave here and go somewhere else.
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107. bwi
Quoting AGWcreationists:
This is disingenuous, given that Sandy is being used as a political rallying point for legislative action to combat CO2 releases. And BTW, even though I am a skeptic on AGW, I take transit and then walk a couple miles each way for my communte and walk to stores and haven't driven my car in over a year, and also live in a very modestly-sized dwelling space. I would venture my personal carbon footprint is a lot smaller than many of the posters here bemoaning the ever-increasing CO2 levels in the atmosphere.

I simply believe that those who can conserve should, and I am in a position where I can - but what of the soccer mom who has to shuttle kids around and go get the groceries? That is the greatest impediment to reducing carbon output - to change it will require massive structural shifts away from a suburbuan/exurban lifestyle that the strong majority of Americans favor. And IPCC bureaucrats flying halfway around the world to assemble questionable reports won't change that.


Kudos for your actions, but the main reason lots of people favor the suburban/exurban lifestyle is that it is heavily subsidized by the government! We allow farmland to be turned into car-dependent tract housing and strip malls, and then when traffic on the rural roads gets bad, we use enormous amounts of tax dollars to widen them. And we use enormous amounts of tax dollars to facilitate car commuting from these suburban/exurban areas to urban areas, often cutting highway through established neighborhoods and semi-urban areas to their detriment. Dang socialist road builders! If we only taxed suburbanites for their own roads, and put tolls on suburban commuter highways in proportion to the externalities they cause -- including CO2 as well as neighborhood destruction in urban and near-urban areas -- there would be a lot less suburban and exurban development in the first place. Those developments are currently free riding on our future.
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Quoting BioChemist:
How has Dr. Masters, in just a couple years gone from saying that you cannot blame single events on global warming (with an emphasis on saying that you cannot use cold snaps to disprove it) to now actually blaming "Hurricane Sandy" on GLobal warming?

Since the Hurricane became so large because it interacted with the trough and became a Nor'easter. All the reasons he gave had nothing to do with the climate and everything to do with the presence of other systems and the physics of the Earth's Rotation?

His views are becoming more and more radical all the time.

If you cant use a cold snap to disprove GW, then how can you use a Hurricane to prove it? It seems a little disjointed?



Not at all. There are all sorts of parameters out there, such as the regular occurance of 100 year events, more warm records than cold records set annually by a huge margin, never seen before weather events, etc etc, that, taken together from a meta-analytic perspective, absolutely insist on an interpretation that includes the concept of climate change. The alternative hypothesis, that it is some vast left wing conspiracy to make you like bad art, drink flouride, and teach your children communism, is patently insupportable: Lefties are well known to be as un-herdable as cats. Cats in season, even.
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12z GFS at 252 hours..................
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AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE WILMINGTON NC
1219 PM EST TUE NOV 13 2012

.SYNOPSIS...
A STRONG COLD FRONT WILL PUSH OFFSHORE THIS AFTERNOON...FOLLOWED BY
CHILLY CANADIAN AIR. HIGH PRESSURE WILL BUILD TO OUR NORTH THIS
WEEK...EXTENDING INTO THE CAROLINAS. A WEAK LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM WILL
DEVELOP OFFSHORE THURSDAY AND MOVE NORTHEAST. ANOTHER LOW WILL
DEVELOP OFFSHORE THIS WEEKEND WITH INCREASING CHANCES FOR RAIN.

&&

.NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/...
AS OF 1215 PM TUESDAY...THE COLD FRONT HAS BEEN LOCATED BY RADAR AND
SURFACE OBSERVATIONS ON THE PENDER COUNTY COASTLINE...EXTENDING
SOUTHWEST THROUGH WILMINGTON AND TO ABOUT 5 MILES WEST OF NORTH
MYRTLE BEACH. THE FRONT SHOULD CONTINUE MOVING STEADILY OFF THE
COAST THIS AFTERNOON. A HEALTHY CLUSTER OF SURFACE-BASED CONVECTION
(SHOWERS) WILL MOVE ACROSS WILMINGTON WITHIN THE NEXT HOUR...WITH
LIGHTER SHOWERS FROM ELEVATED INSTABILITY CONTINUING INLAND
ESPECIALLY IN THE LUMBERTON AND DILLON VICINITY. TEMPERATURES HAVE
PEAKED AT ALL LOCATIONS AND STEADY TO SLOWLY FALLING TEMPERATURES
ARE EXPECTED DUE TO COLD ADVECTION THROUGH THE AFTERNOON. PREVIOUS
DISCUSSION FROM 10 AM FOLLOWS...

THE SURFACE COLD FRONT EXTENDS FROM NEAR ELIZABETHTOWN TO
WHITEVILLE...ACROSS THE WESTERN PORTIONS OF HORRY COUNTY TO NEAR
KINGSTREE IN SOUTH CAROLINA. THE 11Z HRRR WAS ABOUT ONE HOUR FAST
WITH THE FRONT BUT OTHERWISE LOOKED TO BE A GOOD FIT FOR THE SHAPE
AND FORWARD SPEED OF THE BOUNDARY...PRESSING IT OFFSHORE BY 18-19Z
IN ALL AREAS.

VISIBLE SATELLITE SHOWS A NARROW ZONE OF MAINLY CLEAR SKIES JUST IN
ADVANCE OF THE FRONT WITH TEMPERATURES RISING INTO THE LOWER 70S
ALONG THE SC COAST. THESE WARMER TEMPERATURES MAY EXTEND INTO
EXTREME SE NORTH CAROLINA IN THE NEXT 1-2 HOURS BEFORE THE FRONT
SWEEPS THROUGH AND MUCH COLDER AIR BUILDS IN. HIGH TEMPERATURES HAVE
ALREADY BEEN RECORDED INLAND AND STEADY TEMPERATURES ARE ANTICIPATED
FOR THE REMAINDER OF THE DAY NEAR AND WEST OF I-95.

RADAR SHOWS ONE BATCH OF SHOWERS NEAR AND EAST OF CAPE FEAR
ASSOCIATED WITH UNSTABLE AIR ADVECTING NORTH FROM THE WESTERN EDGE
OF THE GULF STREAM. SHOWERS ACROSS THE CENTRAL CAROLINAS APPEAR TO
BE LINKED TO SMALL ELEVATED INSTABILITY IN THE 900-700 MB LAYER
ASSISTED BY SYNOPTIC-SCALE LIFT FROM THE RIGHT-ENTRANCE REGION OF A
FAVORABLY POSITIONED 300 MB JET ACROSS THE MID-ATLANTIC AND EASTERN
GREAT LAKES. THIS REGION OF ENHANCED SHOWER ACTIVITY SHOULD ADVECT
SLOWLY NORTHEASTWARD THROUGH THE AFTERNOON.

&&
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Wow, this is pretty pathetic arguing over climate changes or global warming...
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Quoting HurricaneDean07:

They have done it before, of course they failed miserably, but they've come to better terms about how to steady the economy. Rick perry on the other hand just doesn't want to be caught in a bad spot, which is why he's denying he want secession.
when thinking about seperation..take a good hard look at eastern europe after the soviets left..now each was on their own..how do they look..after all these years?..sorry but we are NOT going to break up the union of states no matter how loud the tea party shouts to conservatives..the people spoke on election day..now live with Their decision..and lets kill off this politics here ok..please folks?
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Thank goodness we have all you wonderful internet commenters here to tell us why the vast majority of scientists are wrong about global warming
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Quoting Xandra:

Mitt Romney mentioned the rise of the oceans at the Republican National Convention.





........

Is it just me or was he acting like a little boy?

"Obama promises this, LOL, I promise that :D."

And is it wrong to feel incredibly angry after watching this...

Politicians acting as if this were a huge game.

Eh, I think I just got a reality-check.
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Quoting rmbjoe1954:


Could you imagine relocating/rebuilding New York/ New Jersey infrastructure away from the coast? That certainly would be cost prohibitive!


It will become necessary by 2100 or so even with the average predicted sea level rise. By the time you factor in the average sea level rise PLUS the increased maximum intensity of hurricanes due to the hot water, you could expect average and maximum storm surges to increase by a total of 6 to 10 feet above today's average in the same region.

Plus 3 feet for mean sea level rise.

Plus another 3 to 7 feet or so because the storm is a half category to a category stronger.

Gives a total of perhaps 6 to 10 feet above average and maximum storms in today's conditions.

I doubt many/any people reading this will be alive in 2100, but that's irrelevant.
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Quoting Naga5000:


It's arguable since the 10th amendment allows states or the people to assume powers not directly delegated to the federal government (secession is not one of these powers). This discussion is all hypothetical, but I think the states could make a valid constitutional argument if they really wanted to.


The constitutional argument did not work in 1861.
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Quoting goosegirl1:

Did anyone notice that the President, and his opponent, did not mention climate change during the campaign?

Mitt Romney mentioned the rise of the oceans at the Republican National Convention.


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Quoting HurricaneDean07:

Texas has the one of the only great economies left in the US. They're trying to ditch the Titanic in the last life raft left... Let them leave, see what happens, they're better off then these welfare states that beg for the federal government to give them money...
Not to get into politics--it's widely off-topic--but you should know that Texas leads the nation in the number of people receiving food stamps. It also leads the nation in agricultural subisides. It also leads the nation in oil subsidies. And so on.

Now, sorry for the interruption. You were saying?
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Quoting Naga5000:


The economic numbers may ad up at the moment, but wait until international tariffs and trade deficits start adding up over time. On of the reasons the U.S. works well is because we are very diverse due to the specialization of states. I find it hard to believe one state, despite the size or relative well being of their economy, can do it on their own in the long run.

They have done it before, of course they failed miserably, but they've come to better terms about how to steady the economy. Rick perry on the other hand just doesn't want to be caught in a bad spot, which is why he's denying he want secession.
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Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:


In our history it took a war to confirm it, but there is no succession clause in the US Constitution.


It's arguable since the 10th amendment allows states or the people to assume powers not directly delegated to the federal government (secession is not one of these powers). This discussion is all hypothetical, but I think the states could make a valid constitutional argument if they really wanted to.
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Quoting Some1Has2BtheRookie:


The first quest must be to show the public the deceptions of the denial industry. The truth is that the denial industry has been very efficient in spreading doubts and confusion among the masses. The denial industry does not do this through the use of sound, peer reviewed science but, rather, through disinformation and the creation of doubt among the masses. When you look at the denial industry's portrayal of the AGWT, in the U.S. assuredly, you see a political party's leadership that is bent towards helping the denial industry create doubts about the theory itself. This has not been done in the manner a true skeptic would approach a scientific theory, but as an ideological pursuit. Until the public becomes aware of the most likely consequences of AGW and the denial industry's false claims concerning the AGWT, then a small group of citizens standing on the steps of Congress will be ignored, at best, or attacked. Sadly, the first quest remains in the exposure of the denial industry for what it truly is. Until the public becomes more aware of the deceptions of the denial industry, then the public will not be willing to support the changes that need to be made. This is true no matter who delivers the message before our political leadership. ... Step 1 has been and still remains the exposure of the denial industry for what it truly is. Step 2, not matter what it is, cannot be successfully made until step 1 has been completed or at least made considerably less of an issue.The denial industry is keenly aware that they will ultimately lose the "war". Their only quest is to win all the battles they can before the "war" is lost to all.


Good post. What amazes me is that the PR industries that spread the anti-science nonsense employ well educated people to blog all day long distorting reality and their blogs will eventually hasten the demise of their kids and grand kids. Some people will do anything for a buck.
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Quoting Naga5000:


The states can't secede without a vote of some sort. The petition site is basically "Ask the government a question, we will respond if you get 25,000 signatures". Which is cool as far as allowing the people to ask questions, but means nothing as far as any action taken by the federal government. This is just a very small number of people being upset, which is their right. :)


In our history it took a war to confirm it, but there is no succession clause in the US Constitution.
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Only ONE mention of climate changes will start the debate on climate changes and global warming on this blog... of course this is Dr. Masters' blog, so he can type whatever he want to.
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Quoting Neapolitan:
Of course, people with adequate reading comprehension skills will realize that at no point in today's blog entry did Dr. Masters "blame" Sandy on global warming. He merely noted--quite correctly--that "...the laws of physics demand that the atmosphere must respond" to the "...significant and unprecedented changes to our atmosphere in recent decades, due to our emissions of heat-trapping gases like carbon dioxide." Any argument that fails to address those well-established scientific facts is simply desperate hand-waving.



you are side stepping the point.....
Member Since: August 25, 2010 Posts: 7 Comments: 2344
Quoting HurricaneDean07:

Lmao watch the number of signatures by the December deadline to be 500,000


Still only 1.95. I will start to take this seriously if they hit 2.5 million (The 10% mark).
Member Since: June 1, 2010 Posts: 4 Comments: 3482
Quoting HurricaneDean07:

Texas has the one of the only great economies left in the US. They're trying to ditch the Titanic in the last life raft left... Let them leave, see what happens, they're better off then these welfare states that beg for the federal government to give them money...


The economic numbers may ad up at the moment, but wait until international tariffs and trade deficits start adding up over time. On of the reasons the U.S. works well is because we are very diverse due to the specialization of states. I find it hard to believe one state, despite the size or relative well being of their economy, can do it on their own in the long run.
Member Since: June 1, 2010 Posts: 4 Comments: 3482
Quoting Matthias1967:


Floodgates like the Dutch have on the Schelde river should be placed on Arthur Kill, Verrazano Narrows, and the East River, sea walls on the lower parts of Staten Island and Long Island. Add some protection against beach erosion and many is done. Invest five to ten billion Dollar and after ten years of work most of New York City would be protected.

However the New Jersey shore and the West End of the Long Island Sound are issues from much larger magnitude.



5 to 10 billion? get a grip. That wont touch construction of just earthern structures...check the Corps website for work going on regarding Katrina
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Quoting goosegirl1:



This begs the question- just what will this petition accomplish? The election results are not in dispute. President Obama will still be inaugurated in January. He has to sign off and agree to allow a state to secede, and I don't think that will happen. The president will make a formal response, but it won't be what they want to hear.

Maybe a continental congress would work, but as to how those opposing the election would choose to amend the Constitution, I can't guess.



The states can't secede without a vote of some sort. The petition site is basically "Ask the government a question, we will respond if you get 25,000 signatures". Which is cool as far as allowing the people to ask questions, but means nothing as far as any action taken by the federal government. This is just a very small number of people being upset, which is their right. :)
Member Since: June 1, 2010 Posts: 4 Comments: 3482
Quoting Naga5000:


The petition site is not official (legally), and there are a couple interesting things to point out. First 70,000 people is still only .3% of Texas' population, and that 70,000 number also includes signatures not from Texas as it is an open online form. This is a very small amount of people over reacting. Secession of any state would ultimately destroy the state's economy as most of those states signing the petition receive more federal dollars than they pay in. This would force some states to raise or institute new income taxes. (Note: Texas receives $.94 for every dollar paid in)

Texas has the one of the only great economies left in the US. They're trying to ditch the Titanic in the last life raft left... Let them leave, see what happens, they're better off then these welfare states that beg for the federal government to give them money...
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
For anybody that cares...Texas' petition to succeed from the United States has reached 70,000 signatures. It only takes 25,000 to warrant an official response from the Obama administration.

Louisiana has also reached the 25,000 threshold, and Florida is not far behind.

Anyways, it must really suck living in the Northeast. First a historic hurricane/nor'easter combo, then a significant winter storm, and now yet another storm capable of producing gusty winds and very heavy rainfall.

This is the pattern for the winter, it appears. People hoping for snow in the Northeast...you'll probably get it.



This begs the question- just what will this petition accomplish? The election results are not in dispute. President Obama will still be inaugurated in January. He has to sign off and agree to allow a state to secede, and I don't think that will happen. The president will make a formal response, but it won't be what they want to hear.

Maybe a continental congress would work, but as to how those opposing the election would choose to amend the Constitution, I can't guess.

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Quoting Neapolitan:
Of course, people with adequate reading comprehension skills will realize that at no point in today's blog entry did Dr. Masters "blame" Sandy on global warming. He merely noted--quite correctly--that "...the laws of physics demand that the atmosphere must respond" to the "...significant and unprecedented changes to our atmosphere in recent decades, due to our emissions of heat-trapping gases like carbon dioxide." Any argument that fails to address those well-established scientific facts is simply desperate hand-waving.
This is disingenuous, given that Sandy is being used as a political rallying point for legislative action to combat CO2 releases. And BTW, even though I am a skeptic on AGW, I take transit and then walk a couple miles each way for my communte and walk to stores and haven't driven my car in over a year, and also live in a very modestly-sized dwelling space. I would venture my personal carbon footprint is a lot smaller than many of the posters here bemoaning the ever-increasing CO2 levels in the atmosphere.

I simply believe that those who can conserve should, and I am in a position where I can - but what of the soccer mom who has to shuttle kids around and go get the groceries? That is the greatest impediment to reducing carbon output - to change it will require massive structural shifts away from a suburbuan/exurban lifestyle that the strong majority of Americans favor. And IPCC bureaucrats flying halfway around the world to assemble questionable reports won't change that.
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Can someone with more knowledge of reading weather maps please explain how bad this next storm might be for the NY/NJ area? Any idea how gusty the winds might be? Nothing like Sandy's, I hope!
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
For anybody that cares...Texas' petition to succeed from the United States has reached 70,000 signatures. It only takes 25,000 to warrant an official response from the Obama administration.

Louisiana has also reached the 25,000 threshold, and Florida is not far behind.

Anyways, it must really suck living in the Northeast. First a historic hurricane/nor'easter combo, then a significant winter storm, and now yet another storm capable of producing gusty winds and very heavy rainfall.

This is the pattern for the winter, it appears. People hoping for snow in the Northeast...you'll probably get it.


The petition site is not official (legally), and there are a couple interesting things to point out. First 70,000 people is still only .3% of Texas' population, and that 70,000 number also includes signatures not from Texas as it is an open online form. This is a very small amount of people over reacting. Secession of any state would ultimately destroy the state's economy as most of those states signing the petition receive more federal dollars than they pay in. This would force some states to raise or institute new income taxes. (Note: Texas receives $.94 for every dollar paid in)
Member Since: June 1, 2010 Posts: 4 Comments: 3482
Quoting ScottLincoln:


It actually does no such thing. Comparing one event to another event does not really compare climate. I'm sure anyone can find numerous anecdotes of lung cancer in cultures that did not smoke, yet we still know that smoking causes cancer.
You might also wish to refresh yourself on the definition of climate, and how it contrasts from weather... hint: Dr. Masters' discussion of intensity and frequency of storms overall, but little discussion of individual storms.
That's funny, this thread was started by Dr. Master's discussion of an individual storm. So now a contrarian opinion cannot be offered? I guess you want the rules rigged in favor of one point of view.
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Quoting Naga5000:


This is from Dr. Master's blog " we should be concerned about the possibility that Hurricane Sandy's freak size and power were partially due to human-caused climate change." Note the words possibility and partially due to. No one is using Sandy to prove anything, but instead saying it is possible that Sandy was influenced by GW. That is a very important distinction, especially in science.


Some people have just reached the point that they want to complain about Dr. Masters just to do it. And they already get their mind made up that they want to complain about climate science before they've even fully read Dr. Masters' post on it.
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Quoting SteveDa1:


I understand your point, but it is rather irrational. You do not take into consideration the tremendous amount of CO2 that is in our atmosphere today and the undeniable affect it has on the overall physics of the atmosphere.

Obviously, a perfect storm could occur, given the right setup, 300 years ago, or 1000 years ago, or 1 million years ago...

No one said you need Global Warming to have a powerful storm.

What we are questioning is: are humans responsible for the storms we are experiencing today? Without much data, no one can say for sure. Although, one can easily correlate that the radically different composition of the atmosphere today has an obvious influence on storms.
Rather irrational? We had an apparently worse storm than Sandy over 300 years ago on the same calandar day in the same region. And obvious? Sorry, the fact that the storm in question happened without the elevated levels of CO2 means this is NOT obvious. In fact, there is ample history of many really bad hurricanes in the region during colonial times. It all really depends upon your point of reference, and if you are looking at climatalogical history with scientific measurements, that point of reference is extremely short - and we have no such records for events such as the 1693 storm where it can only be compared to Sandy by the scope of geographical changes to the impacted region.
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Quoting AGWcreationists:
This hit on the same calander day as Sandy and sounds much more severe.

It also hit a long, long time before the onset of the industrial revolution.

So IMO that makes the argument that Sandy was triggered or affected by global warming harder to make. When you have a precendent from outside the era of human-added CO2, hitting at exactly the same time of year in the same region, it shows that natural forces alone are capable of triggering such an event.


It actually does no such thing. Comparing one event to another event does not really compare climate. I'm sure anyone can find numerous anecdotes of lung cancer in cultures that did not smoke, yet we still know that smoking causes cancer.
You might also wish to refresh yourself on the definition of climate, and how it contrasts from weather... hint: Dr. Masters' discussion of intensity and frequency of storms overall, but little discussion of individual storms.
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For anybody that cares...Texas' petition to succeed from the United States has reached 70,000 signatures. It only takes 25,000 to warrant an official response from the Obama administration.

Louisiana has also reached the 25,000 threshold, and Florida is not far behind.

Anyways, it must really suck living in the Northeast. First a historic hurricane/nor'easter combo, then a significant winter storm, and now yet another storm capable of producing gusty winds and very heavy rainfall.

This is the pattern for the winter, it appears. People hoping for snow in the Northeast...you'll probably get it.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32277
Quoting bappit:

The logical place to push is at the ballot box, but when it is political suicide for a candidate to offer a choice on the matter, work has to continue on educating the public as well as exposing corruption and hypocrisy.


+1000

Did anyone notice that the President, and his opponent, did not mention climate change during the campaign? But as soon as the election results were in... Link

Political suicide, indeed.
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Quoting AGWcreationists:
A question, from a historical perspective. From the wunderground Weather History blog:

The Great Storm of October 29, 1693: Virginia to Long Island

A tremendous storm, possibly tropical in origin, changed the course of rivers and modified the coastline from the Delmarva Peninsula to Long Island. It is believed that Fire Island (just east of New York City) was bisected by the storm. The same apparently occurred to many coastal portions of the Delmarva Peninsula and region around Chesapeake Bay.

----------

This hit on the same calander day as Sandy and sounds much more severe.

It also hit a long, long time before the onset of the industrial revolution.

So IMO that makes the argument that Sandy was triggered or affected by global warming harder to make. When you have a precendent from outside the era of human-added CO2, hitting at exactly the same time of year in the same region, it shows that natural forces alone are capable of triggering such an event.


Obviously, a perfect storm could occur, given the right setup, 300 years ago, or 1000 years ago, or 1 million years ago...

You don't need Global Warming to have a powerful storm.

Are humans responsible, in some part, for the storms we are experiencing today? One can easily correlate that the radically different composition of the atmosphere today has an obvious influence on storms.

Natural forces alone are capable of producing such storms, yes. But, the atmosphere is much different now. It is not far-fetched at all to think that every storm today is different than what would have occurred if humans hadn't poured CO2 into the atmosphere.
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Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:



Choices for Deficit Reduction - NOVEMBER 2012

Excerpt:


It is possible to keep tax revenues at their historical average percentage of GDP—but only by making substantial cuts, relative to current policies, in the large benefit programs that aid a broad group of people at some point in their lives.
Alternatively, it is possible to keep the policies for those large benefit programs unchanged—but only by raising taxes substantially, relative to current policies, for a broad segment of the population.
well things are going to change for the worst, I think all can agree on that..at some point in time. the piper will need to be paid..hope im gone by then
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Quoting hydrus:
There are things we can do to decrease expenses overseas and increase programs here at home that are not only beneficial, but would serve our country and its infrastructure in a positive way. We have already spent enormous amounts on war and the fight against terrorism. I should mention it isnt cheap bringing military installations back home, but it will happen..jmo
I hope so,courage is needed now and I hope our leaders in congress have it,yet I guess they protect their own special interests and wont..im glad im in the older generation, 20-30 years from now its going to be horrible, people coping with the drastic changes coming, life as WE knew it years ago..wont be around anymore..just a matter of when the crash comes..
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Quoting rmbjoe1954:
Governor Cuomo of New York seems to agree that future storms will be bigger and will cause multi billion dollars in damages. So, who will get to pay for a future sea wall protecting the entire New York Harbor area?


Floodgates like the Dutch have on the Schelde river should be placed on Arthur Kill, Verrazano Narrows, and the East River, sea walls on the lower parts of Staten Island and Long Island. Add some protection against beach erosion and many is done. Invest five to ten billion Dollar and after ten years of work most of New York City would be protected.

However the New Jersey shore and the West End of the Long Island Sound are issues from much larger magnitude.
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Quoting LargoFl:
I have a huge question..im asking with the fed govt 14 trillion dollars in the hole or more..WHERE is THIS money going to come from?.............Governor Cuomo To Seek $30 Billion In Federal Aid To Rebuild New York After Superstorm Sandy



Choices for Deficit Reduction - NOVEMBER 2012

Excerpt:


It is possible to keep tax revenues at their historical average percentage of GDP—but only by making substantial cuts, relative to current policies, in the large benefit programs that aid a broad group of people at some point in their lives.
Alternatively, it is possible to keep the policies for those large benefit programs unchanged—but only by raising taxes substantially, relative to current policies, for a broad segment of the population.
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Quoting SFLWeatherman:
192HR CMC


Thanks! I am in a wait and see mode regarding Thanksgiving company... I am at the Jersey shore and "lurking" among you incredibly knowledgeable weathernistas. WUnderground is my #1 source, since 2007 :-)
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Quoting BioChemist:
How has Dr. Masters, in just a couple years gone from saying that you cannot blame single events on global warming (with an emphasis on saying that you cannot use cold snaps to disprove it) to now actually blaming "Hurricane Sandy" on GLobal warming?

Since the Hurricane became so large because it interacted with the trough and became a Nor'easter. All the reasons he gave had nothing to do with the climate and everything to do with the presence of other systems and the physics of the Earth's Rotation?

His views are becoming more and more radical all the time.

If you cant use a cold snap to disprove GW, then how can you use a Hurricane to prove it? It seems a little disjointed?

Of course, people with adequate reading comprehension skills will realize that at no point in today's blog entry did Dr. Masters "blame" Sandy on global warming. He merely noted--quite correctly--that "...the laws of physics demand that the atmosphere must respond" to the "...significant and unprecedented changes to our atmosphere in recent decades, due to our emissions of heat-trapping gases like carbon dioxide." Any argument that fails to address those well-established scientific facts is simply desperate hand-waving.
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WPB!:)
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Quoting AussieStorm:

Why are you not pushing your local/state/federal govt to do something about changing from gas to something more environmentally friendly. You seem to know what your talking about. Instead of just talking about it here, why not kick it up a notch and get pushing.


The first quest must be to show the public the deceptions of the denial industry. The truth is that the denial industry has been very efficient in spreading doubts and confusion among the masses. The denial industry does not do this through the use of sound, peer reviewed science but, rather, through disinformation and the creation of doubt among the masses. When you look at the denial industry's portrayal of the AGWT, in the U.S. assuredly, you see a political party's leadership that is bent towards helping the denial industry create doubts about the theory itself. This has not been done in the manner a true skeptic would approach a scientific theory, but as an ideological pursuit. Until the public becomes aware of the most likely consequences of AGW and the denial industry's false claims concerning the AGWT, then a small group of citizens standing on the steps of Congress will be ignored, at best, or attacked. Sadly, the first quest remains in the exposure of the denial industry for what it truly is. Until the public becomes more aware of the deceptions of the denial industry, then the public will not be willing to support the changes that need to be made. This is true no matter who delivers the message before our political leadership. ... Step 1 has been and still remains the exposure of the denial industry for what it truly is. Step 2, not matter what it is, cannot be successfully made until step 1 has been completed or at least made considerably less of an issue.The denial industry is keenly aware that they will ultimately lose the "war". Their only quest is to win all the battles they can before the "war" is lost to all.
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Quoting BioChemist:
How has Dr. Masters, in just a couple years gone from saying that you cannot blame single events on global warming (with an emphasis on saying that you cannot use cold snaps to disprove it) to now actually blaming "Hurricane Sandy" on GLobal warming?

Since the Hurricane became so large because it interacted with the trough and became a Nor'easter. All the reasons he gave had nothing to do with the climate and everything to do with the presence of other systems and the physics of the Earth's Rotation?

His views are becoming more and more radical all the time.

If you cant use a cold snap to disprove GW, then how can you use a Hurricane to prove it? It seems a little disjointed?



This is from Dr. Master's blog " we should be concerned about the possibility that Hurricane Sandy's freak size and power were partially due to human-caused climate change." Note the words possibility and partially due to. No one is using Sandy to prove anything, but instead saying it is possible that Sandy was influenced by GW. That is a very important distinction, especially in science.
Member Since: June 1, 2010 Posts: 4 Comments: 3482

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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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