Unusually cold spring in Europe and the Southeast U.S. due to the Arctic Oscillation

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:52 PM GMT on April 25, 2013

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During March 2013, residents of Europe and the Southeast U.S. must have wondered what happened to global warming. Repeated bitter blasts of bitter cold air invaded from the Arctic, bringing one of the coldest and snowiest Marches on record for much of northern Europe. In the U.K., only one March since 1910 was colder (1962), and parts of Eastern Europe had their coldest March since 1952. A series of exceptional snowstorms struck many European locations, including the remarkable blizzard of March 11 - 12, which dumped up to 25 cm (10”) of snow on the Channel Islands of Guernsey and Jersey in the U.K., and in the northern French provinces of Manche and Calvados. The entire Southeast U.S. experienced a top-ten coldest March on record, with several states experiencing a colder month than in January 2013. Despite all these remarkable cold weather events, global temperatures during March 2013 were the 9th warmest since 1880, said NASA. How, then, did such cold extremes occur in a month that was in the top 8% of warmest Marches in Earth's recorded history? The answer lies in the behavior of the jet stream. This band of strong high-altitude winds marks the boundary between cold, polar air and warm, subtropical air. The jet stream, on average, blows west to east. But there are always large ripples in the jet, called planetary waves (or Rossby waves.) In the Northern Hemisphere, cold air from the polar regions spills southward into the U-shaped troughs of these ripples, and warm air is drawn northwards into the upside-down U-shaped ridges. If these ripples attain unusually high amplitude, a large amount of cold polar air will spill southwards into the mid-latitudes, causing unusual cold extremes. This was the case in Europe and the Eastern U.S. in March 2013. These cold extremes were offset by unusually warm conditions where the jet stream bulged northwards--over the Atlantic, the Western U.S., and in China during March 2013. In fact, the amplitude of the ripples in the jet stream reached their most extreme value ever recorded in any March during 2013, as measured by an index called the Arctic Oscillation (AO).


Figure 1. The monthly Arctic Oscillation (AO) index from 1950 - March 2013 shows that three of the six most extreme negative cases have occurred since 2009. Note that all of the six most negative AO indices on record were associated with historic cold waves and blizzards over Europe or the Eastern U.S. Image created using data from NOAA's Climate Prediction Center.

Measuring the jet stream's contortions: the Arctic Oscillation (AO)
One measure of how extreme the ripples in the jet stream are is by measuring the difference in pressure between the Icelandic Low and the Azores High. An index based in this pressure difference is called the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). When this index is strongly negative, it means that the pressure difference between the Icelandic Low and the Azores High is low. This results in a weaker jet stream, allowing it to take large, meandering loops. These loops allow cold air to spill far to the south from the Arctic into the mid-latitudes. A more general index that looks at pressure patterns over the entire Arctic, not just the North Atlantic, is called the Arctic Oscillation (AO). The AO and NAO are closely related about 90% of the time. According to a 2010 paper by L'Heureux et al., a strongly negative AO pattern that allows cold air to spill southwards into the mid-latitudes does nothing to the average temperature of the planet. Fluctuations in the jet stream as measured by the AO simply act to redistribute heat. It's kind of like turning off your refrigerator and leaving the refrigerator door open--the cold air from the refrigerator spills out into the room, but is replaced inside the refrigerator by warm room air. No net change in heat occurs. During March 2013, the AO index hit -3.2. Not only was this the most extreme negative March value of the AO since record keeping began in 1950, it was also the sixth lowest AO index ever measured. It was also the first time the AO index had been that extremely negative in a non-winter month (because the circulation patterns are stronger in the winter, we tend to see more extreme values of the AO index in December, January, and February.) This unusual contortion of the jet stream in March 2013 allowed Europe to have exceptional cold weather in a month when the global average temperature was among the warmest 8% of Marches on record. Why did the AO index get so extreme in March 2013? Part of the blame goes to the sudden stratospheric warming event that began in January (wunderblogger Lee Grenci has a detailed post on this event.) Sudden stratospheric warming events tend to push the atmosphere into a more negative AO configuration. Another major factor was the very active Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO), a pattern of increased thunderstorm activity near the Equator that moves around the globe in 30 - 60 days. When the area of increased thunderstorms associated with the MJO is located in the Pacific Ocean, as occurred during much of March 2013, this tends to create negative AO conditions. Finally, wintertime Arctic sea ice loss has been tied to more negative AO patterns, and sea ice was well blow average again during March.


Figure 2. The Arctic Oscillation (AO) is a pattern of varying pressure and winds over the Northern Hemisphere that can strongly influence mid-latitude weather patterns. When the AO is in its positive phase, jet stream winds are strong and the jet stream tends to blow mostly west to east, with low-amplitude waves (troughs and ridges.) Since the jet stream marks the boundary between cold Arctic air to the north and warm subtropical air to the south, cold air stays bottled up in the Arctic. When the AO is in its negative phase, the winds of the jet stream slow down, allowing the jet to take on more wavy pattern with high-amplitude troughs and ridges. High amplitude troughs typically set up over the Eastern U.S. and Western Europe during negative AO episodes, allowing cold air to spill southwards in those regions and create unusually cold weather.

Are jet stream patterns getting more extreme?
We've had some wildly variable jet stream patterns in recent years in the Northern Hemisphere. Just last year, we had a strongly positive AO in March, when our ridiculous "Summer in March" heat wave brought the warmest March on record to the U.S. The first day of spring in Chicago, IL on March 20, 2013 had a high temperature of just 25°F--a 60 degree difference from last year's high of 85°F on March 20! During the past five years, we've set new monthly records for extreme negative AO index for six of the twelve months of the year:

-4.3: February 2010
-3.4: December 2009
-3.2: March 2013
-1.5: October 2009, 2012
-1.4: June 2009
-1.4: July 2009

Note that four of these months with an extremely negative AO occurred in one year--2009. This unusual event was "unprecedented in the 60-year record", according to L'Heureux et al. (2010.) Despite the unusually large negative AO in 2009, the authors found that the AO index between 1950 - 2009 had actually trended to be more positive, in both the winter and annual mean. This is in agreement with what many climate models predict: the AO index should get increasingly positive, due to increasing levels of CO2 in the atmosphere, since this tends to make the stratosphere cool and increase the strength of high altitude winds over the Arctic. However, a number of papers have been published since 2009 theorizing that the record loss of Arctic sea ice in recent years may be significantly altering Northern Hemisphere jet stream patterns (I list eleven of these papers below.) Many of these studies show a link between Arctic sea ice loss and an increasingly negative AO and NAO index in winter. Dr. Jennifer Francis of Rutgers has authored several of these papers, and wrote a very readable explanation of the theory linking Arctic sea ice loss to extreme weather in the mid-latitudes for our Earth Day 2013 microsite. Her post was called, "The Changing Face of Mother Nature." The most recent technical paper connecting Arctic sea ice loss to extreme weather was a March 2013 paper by Tang et al., "Cold winter extremes in northern continents linked to Arctic sea ice loss". The paper argued that unusual jet stream contortions in winter have become increasingly common in recent years. The scientists found a mathematical relationship between wintertime Arctic sea ice loss and the increase in unusual jet stream patterns capable of bringing cold, snowy weather to the Eastern U.S., Western Europe, and East Asia, typical of what one sees during a strongly negative Arctic Oscillation. They theorized that sea ice loss in the Arctic promotes more evaporation, resulting in earlier snowfall in Siberia and other Arctic lands. The earlier snow insulates the soil, allowing the land to cool more rapidly. This results in a southwards shift of the jet stream and builds higher atmospheric pressures farther to the south, which increases the odds of cold spells and blocking high pressure systems that can cause extended periods of unusually cold and snowy weather in the mid-latitudes. The research linking climate change impacts in the Arctic to more extreme jet stream patterns is still very new, and we need several more years of data and additional research before we can be confident that this is occurring. But if the new research is correct, the crazy winter weather we've been seeing since 2009 may be the new normal in a world with rapid warming occurring in the Arctic.


Video 1. Using jet stream animations created by NOAA's Visualiation Laboratory, Dr. Jennifer Francis of Rutgers explains why the jet stream exists, and how the warming of the Arctic may be changing it.

Related posts
"The Changing Face of Mother Nature" by Dr. Jennifer Francis of Rutgers, April 22, 2013.
Why was the start to spring 2013 so cold? by the UK Met Office, April 2013.
Extreme jet stream causing record warmth in the east, record cold in the west (January 2013)
Arctic sea ice loss tied to unusual jet stream patterns (April 2012)
Our extreme weather: Arctic changes to blame? (December 2011)
Florida shivers; Hot Arctic-Cold Continents pattern is back (December 2010)
Jet stream moved northwards 270 miles in 22 years; climate change to blame? (June 2008)
Linking Weird Weather to Rapid Warming of the Arctic by Dr. Jennifer Francis of Rutgers University (March 2012)
From Heat Wave to Snowstorms, March Goes to Extremes by Andrew Freedman of Climate Central (March 2013)

References
L'Heureux, M., A. Butler, B. Jha, A. Kumar, and W. Wang (2010), Unusual extremes in the negative phase of the Arctic Oscillation during 2009, Geophys. Res. Lett., 37, L10704, doi:10.1029/2010GL043338.

Papers published since 2009 that link Arctic sea ice loss to an increase in negative AO or NAO conditions
Deser, C., R. Tomas, M. Alexander, and D. Lawrence (2010), "The seasonal atmospheric response to projected Arctic sea ice loss in the late 21st century," J. Clim., 23, 333–351, doi:10.1175/2009JCLI3053.1.

Francis, J.A., and S.J. Vavrus (2012), "Evidence linking Arctic amplification to extreme weather in mid-latitudes," Geophysical Research Letters, 21 February, 2012.

Francis, J. A., W. Chan, D. J. Leathers, J. R. Miller, and D. E. Veron, 2009, "Winter northern hemisphere weather patterns remember summer Arctic sea-ice extent," Geophys. Res. Lett., 36, L07503, doi:10.1029/2009GL037274.

Honda, M., J. Inoue, and S. Yamane, 2009, "Influence of low Arctic sea-ice minima on anomalously cold Eurasian winters," Geophys. Res. Lett., 36, L08707, doi:10.1029/2008GL037079.

Jaiser, R., K. Dethloff, D. Handorf, A. Rinke, J. Cohen (2012), "Impact of sea ice cover changes on the Northern Hemisphere atmospheric winter circulation", Tellus A 2012, 64, 11595, DOI: 10.3402/tellusa.v64i0.11595

Liu et al. (2012), "Impact of declining Arctic sea ice on winter snowfall", Proc. Natl. Academy of Sciences, Published online before print February 27, 2012, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1114910109

Overland, J. E., and M. Wang, 2010, "Large-scale atmospheric circulation changes associated with the recent loss of Arctic sea ice," Tellus, 62A, 1.9.

Petoukhov, V., and V. Semenov, 2010, "A link between reduced Barents-Kara sea ice and cold winter extremes over northern continents," J. Geophys. Res.-Atmos., ISSN 0148-0227.

Seager, R., Y. Kushnir, J. Nakamura, M. Ting, and N. Naik (2010), "Northern Hemisphere winter snow anomalies: ENSO, NAO and the winter of 2009/10," Geophys. Res. Lett., 37, L14703, doi:10.1029/2010GL043830.

Seierstad, I. A., and J. Bader (2009), "Impact of a projected future Arctic Sea Ice reduction on extratropical storminess and the NAO," Clim. Dyn., 33, 937-943, doi:10.1007/s00382-008-0463-x.

Tang et al., "Cold winter extremes in northern continents linked to Arctic sea ice loss," Environ. Res. Lett. 8 014036 doi:10.1088/1748-9326/8/1/014036

Jeff Masters

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Quoting yoboi:


That pic reminds me of the new fad with people buying diesel trucks they modify the exaust pipes and install these large smoke stacks and black smoke pours out when they drive.


Yeah its so stupid, most of them do it to be intentionally to be "anti-environmental".

The problem is, this attitude is a major part of our culture, you can add that to a long list of many things which together compose an ogre mentality where the ideal is to be a person who just destroys things and the "I don't care" attitude.
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Quoting SouthernIllinois:

Looks much like the pattern last month in March...


Yeah, this pattern doesn't want to break. Could be the coldest spring on record across the Plains this year. Greenland looks mighty warm due to anomaless ridging going on across SE Canada & Greenland while cold air continues to pour into the Central US.



Member Since: February 28, 2013 Posts: 13 Comments: 7209
Don't hold your breath.

Quoting MrMixon:


How about this - if you provide a comprehensive and sourced response to post #93 I'll get back to you with a similarly researched response to your own question.
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Quoting yoboi:


I hope they are in great shape US tax dollars bailed them out.......


What are you talking about "bailed them out"?

The US government loaned money to US companies in order to improve the US economy and create jobs. That is something that we've been doing for a long, long time.

Not every loan gets paid back, a few companies go under. But overall the program is very successful and helps make us the strong country we are.

You'd rather let other countries push us to the sidelines?
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Central US looks locked into a cold pattern the next couple of weeks.

Member Since: February 28, 2013 Posts: 13 Comments: 7209
130. yoboi
Quoting yonzabam:
The AGW deniers on here are like zombies. No matter how often they're dealt what, to any other creature, would be a fatal blow, they just keep on coming. It creeps me out.


Zombies were created by AGW???????
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Quoting yoboi:


Who prevented them from going bankrupt?


How about this - if you provide a comprehensive and sourced response to post #93 I'll get back to you with a similarly researched response to your own question.
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Quoting SouthernIllinois:

These are great graphics, Levi. Are these readily available at your website for each CMC model run?


Very much so! Along with the GFS, NAVGEM (formerly NOGAPS), NAM, and more to come. Model page
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125. yoboi
Quoting Jedkins01:
Most green companies aren't going bankrupt, however, even if they were, it isn't because they don't have solutions, its just that the generally public isn't accepting them enough yet, which is for a number of reasons.

Some of it is ignorance, some of it is fear to change, and some of it is intentional attitudes composed of stupid crap like this:




We still have a LONG way to go in America... Phasing out coal will be a tough bet when millions of Americans have that kind of thinking.


That pic reminds me of the new fad with people buying diesel trucks they modify the exaust pipes and install these large smoke stacks and black smoke pours out when they drive.
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124. VR46L
Quoting Levi32:
12z CMC accumulated rainfall next 10 days approaches 20 inches in the Carolinas:



That should ensure pretty much the eastern half of the US is out of drought in 2 weeks.. sadly not the other half though

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DEFLECTION! is that your only tactic?

cite a source, you clown.

besides, I'm totally ok with "using" taxpayer money to create R&D to help improve the environment, but I am most certainly not ok with "wasting" taxpayer money to prop up the most profitable businesses in the history of humanity (oil companies).

Quoting yoboi:


Who prevented them from going bankrupt?


Quoting yoboi:


you know very well US tax dollars were used.....end of story. Spin it all you like.
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hey guys well ain't this interesting NHC got this Tropical Wave looking trough and has it moving W toward the Caribbean this could be our first Tropical Wave
look at the right half of these map

24


48


72
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Quoting SouthernIllinois:

These are great graphics, Levi. Are these readily available at your website for each CMC model run?


Here you go!

http://meteocentre.com/models/models.php?run=12&m ap=na&mod=gemglb&lang=en
Member Since: February 28, 2013 Posts: 13 Comments: 7209
Quoting Levi32:
12z CMC accumulated rainfall next 10 days approaches 20 inches in the Carolinas:



could be a serious flood threat setting up somewhere across the SE US. FL to the Carolina's really need to take heed of this situation as we get into next week.

Member Since: February 28, 2013 Posts: 13 Comments: 7209
It's just a round number, but it's nevertheless a milestone: CO2 this week rose above 400 ppm at Mauna Loa for the first time (well, the first time in thousands of years, anyway):

co2

CO2 generally peaks in May, after which time Northern Hemisphere plants begin their annual cycle of pulling some of it from the air. Since that peak is roughly three weeks away, look for a sustained (several days) period above 400 ppm before it starts dropping back toward the autumn seasonal minimum...

co2

Currently: 398.36 ppm
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117. yoboi
Quoting MrMixon:
The list of successful renewable energy companies linked below is much longer than yoboi's list of failed companies (too long to list here):

List here

(Nevermind the fact that Yoboi's list includes, for example, Johnson Controls... which is very much still in business... yes, even their solar applications branch).

Quite simply - the statement that "most green energy companies are going bankrupt" is provably false. Whoever told you that was lying or misinformed.


Who prevented them from going bankrupt?
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12z CMC accumulated rainfall next 10 days approaches 20 inches in the Carolinas:

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
The AGW deniers on here are like zombies. No matter how often they're dealt what, to any other creature, would be a fatal blow, they just keep on coming. It creeps me out.
Member Since: July 20, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3210
Most green companies aren't going bankrupt, however, even if they were, it isn't because they don't have solutions, its just that the generally public isn't accepting them enough yet, which is for a number of reasons.

Some of it is ignorance, some of it is fear to change, and some of it is intentional attitudes composed of stupid crap like this:




We still have a LONG way to go in America... Phasing out coal will be a tough bet when millions of Americans have that kind of thinking.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Here's some more accurate information on "green" companies going bankrupt/out of business.

Among solar panel manufacturers, many are. Perhaps the majority of solar panel manufacturers are going out of business. Greentech Media estimates that out of about 350 only about 100 will survive.

And that's not a bad thing.

What is happening is typical of a new industry when it reaches this stage of maturity. Some manufactures figure out how to produce for the best price and the less efficient companies drop out.

When per watt profits were quite high a lot of companies go into the business. Production grew to the point at which supply exceeded demand, prices fell, the less efficient can't produce at a lower cost and they go away.

We'll be left with far more manufactures than the minimum we need to maintain good competition. (That number is estimated to be roughly 30.)

The remaining manufacturers will need to increase their research departments in order to keep improving the efficiency/quality of their product.

Simply based on the fact that they will be producing in much higher volumes they will have many more resources to put into research and new equipment.

We're having a short plateau in panel prices as failing companies dump their product on the market. And then prices should start dropping again in a year or so.

The auto industry went through this type of shake-up early in its history. The computer industry has gone through this process with over 150 US computer manufacturers going under.

Cars and computers keep getting better and cheaper.
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112. yoboi
Quoting evilpenguinshan:
wait, they're in great shape, or they're bankrupt?
no wonder you didn't cite your sources, you can't even decide what they say.



you know very well US tax dollars were used.....end of story. Spin it all you like.
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The list of successful renewable energy companies linked below is much longer than yoboi's list of failed companies (too long to list here):

List here

(Nevermind the fact that Yoboi's list includes, for example, Johnson Controls... which is very much still in business... yes, even their solar applications branch).

Quite simply - the statement that "most green energy companies are going bankrupt" is provably false. Whoever told you that was lying or misinformed.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting JRRP:




Interesting area of convection down there that is sending moisture to the Windwards.
Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 15499
wait, they're in great shape, or they're bankrupt?
no wonder you didn't cite your sources, you can't even decide what they say.

Quoting yoboi:


I hope they are in great shape US tax dollars bailed them out.......
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108. yoboi
Quoting BobChecks:


I believe you are presenting false information.

First Solar, for example, is in great shape. Their stock prices are soaring.

Johnson Controls is in great shape.

I've seen this list before. It originated as a slam list by a right wing organization (the Heritage Foundation, IIRC). Some time back they made a list of failing companies and ones which might be struggling. Someone else took that list and published it as "failed companies". It's BS.


I hope they are in great shape US tax dollars bailed them out.......
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I wasn't even going to give him the benefit of the doubt on that one - my guess is the asterisks are loan guarantees (which may or may not have been paid back), but if he cites his source I can get into some real nit-picking lol
but at least two of the companies on that "list" are clearly not bankrupt.

Embracing the sun: First Solar surges to new high
"April 24, 2013: Shares of First Solar (FSLR) soared nearly 11% to a new 52-week high early Wednesday, and other solar stock were quick to follow. Shares of SunPower (SPWR), LDK Solar (LDK), SolarCity (SCTY) and Canadian Solar (CSIQ) were all shining pretty brightly."

Quoting BobChecks:


I believe you are presenting false information.

First Solar, for example, is in great shape. Their stock prices are soaring.

Johnson Controls is in great shape.

I've seen this list before. It originated as a slam list by a right wing organization (the Heritage Foundation, IIRC). Some time back they made a list of failing companies and ones which might be struggling. Someone else took that list and published it as "failed companies". It's BS.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting JRRP:


Member Since: Posts: Comments:
CMC is painting an ugly picture for the SE US. Looks like next week will be quite a ride.




Member Since: February 28, 2013 Posts: 13 Comments: 7209
Quoting yoboi:



Evergreen Solar ($25 million)*
SpectraWatt ($500,000)*
Solyndra ($535 million)*
Beacon Power ($43 million)*
Nevada Geothermal ($98.5 million)
SunPower ($1.2 billion)
First Solar ($1.46 billion)
Babcock and Brown ($178 million)
EnerDel’s subsidiary Ener1 ($118.5 million)*
Amonix ($5.9 million)
Fisker Automotive ($529 million)
Abound Solar ($400 million)*
A123 Systems ($279 million)*
Willard and Kelsey Solar Group ($700,981)*
Johnson Controls ($299 million)
Schneider Electric ($86 million)
Brightsource ($1.6 billion)
ECOtality ($126.2 million)
Raser Technologies ($33 million)*
Energy Conversion Devices ($13.3 million)*
Mountain Plaza, Inc. ($2 million)*
Olsen’s Crop Service and Olsen’s Mills Acquisition Company ($10 million)*
Range Fuels ($80 million)*
Thompson River Power ($6.5 million)*
Stirling Energy Systems ($7 million)*
Azure Dynamics ($5.4 million)*
GreenVolts ($500,000)
Vestas ($50 million)
LG Chem’s subsidiary Compact Power ($151 million)
Nordic Windpower ($16 million)*
Navistar ($39 million)
Satcon ($3 million)*
Konarka Technologies Inc. ($20 million)*
Mascoma Corp. ($100 million)





I believe you are presenting false information.

First Solar, for example, is in great shape. Their stock prices are soaring.

Johnson Controls is in great shape.

I've seen this list before. It originated as a slam list by a right wing organization (the Heritage Foundation, IIRC). Some time back they made a list of failing companies and ones which might be struggling. Someone else took that list and published it as "failed companies". It's BS.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
103. JRRP


Member Since: August 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6374
lol c'mon man, cite your sources. what's with the asterisks, anyway?

besides, total all that up, and it's still chump change compared to the 10-50 BILLION (with a B) that we provide to oil companies. Estimates vary based on what counts - i.e. does protecting the persian gulf shipping lanes count? if so, you appraoch the higher end very rapidly.

source: Price of Oil

Quoting yoboi:



Evergreen Solar ($25 million)*
SpectraWatt ($500,000)*
Solyndra ($535 million)*
Beacon Power ($43 million)*
Nevada Geothermal ($98.5 million)
SunPower ($1.2 billion)
First Solar ($1.46 billion)
Babcock and Brown ($178 million)
EnerDel’s subsidiary Ener1 ($118.5 million)*
Amonix ($5.9 million)
Fisker Automotive ($529 million)
Abound Solar ($400 million)*
A123 Systems ($279 million)*
Willard and Kelsey Solar Group ($700,981)*
Johnson Controls ($299 million)
Schneider Electric ($86 million)
Brightsource ($1.6 billion)
ECOtality ($126.2 million)
Raser Technologies ($33 million)*
Energy Conversion Devices ($13.3 million)*
Mountain Plaza, Inc. ($2 million)*
Olsen’s Crop Service and Olsen’s Mills Acquisition Company ($10 million)*
Range Fuels ($80 million)*
Thompson River Power ($6.5 million)*
Stirling Energy Systems ($7 million)*
Azure Dynamics ($5.4 million)*
GreenVolts ($500,000)
Vestas ($50 million)
LG Chem’s subsidiary Compact Power ($151 million)
Nordic Windpower ($16 million)*
Navistar ($39 million)
Satcon ($3 million)*
Konarka Technologies Inc. ($20 million)*
Mascoma Corp. ($100 million)



Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting bjrabbit:
Very interesting article.

However, I saw no reconciliation between March of 2012 and 2013. I assume that Arctic sea ice was materially the same each year. If that is the case, then the two March's should have been the same. Correct?


In a way, they actually were similar, and consistent with the hypothesis. In both cases, we were stuck in a pattern. As mentioned by Dr. Masters, the hypothesis is that reduced temperature contrast could lead to a slower jet stream, which would have larger meanders that are favored to remain in place for a longer period. This could increase the likelihood of both prolonged cool periods and prolonged warm periods, with the trend being toward a northward-moving jet and increasing warmth.
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Quoting yoboi:



Then why are most of the green companys going bankrupt?????


The simple answer is that they are not.

Do need more than that?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:



Evergreen Solar ($25 million)*
SpectraWatt ($500,000)*
Solyndra ($535 million)*
Beacon Power ($43 million)*
Nevada Geothermal ($98.5 million)
SunPower ($1.2 billion)
First Solar ($1.46 billion)
Babcock and Brown ($178 million)
EnerDel’s subsidiary Ener1 ($118.5 million)*
Amonix ($5.9 million)
Fisker Automotive ($529 million)
Abound Solar ($400 million)*
A123 Systems ($279 million)*
Willard and Kelsey Solar Group ($700,981)*
Johnson Controls ($299 million)
Schneider Electric ($86 million)
Brightsource ($1.6 billion)
ECOtality ($126.2 million)
Raser Technologies ($33 million)*
Energy Conversion Devices ($13.3 million)*
Mountain Plaza, Inc. ($2 million)*
Olsen’s Crop Service and Olsen’s Mills Acquisition Company ($10 million)*
Range Fuels ($80 million)*
Thompson River Power ($6.5 million)*
Stirling Energy Systems ($7 million)*
Azure Dynamics ($5.4 million)*
GreenVolts ($500,000)
Vestas ($50 million)
LG Chem’s subsidiary Compact Power ($151 million)
Nordic Windpower ($16 million)*
Navistar ($39 million)
Satcon ($3 million)*
Konarka Technologies Inc. ($20 million)*
Mascoma Corp. ($100 million)



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Quoting Neapolitan:
3) You're correct in stating that the difference between Arctic sea ice extent and the long-term average in March is at it lowest (same with area). But that would actually bolster Dr. Masters' claim, would it not? That is, showing that even the month with the lowest anomaly is still well below average highlights just how serious the polar situation has become.

Yes, absolutely. This is similar to the discussion on "percentiles" vs. "anomaly" that was brought up yesterday. In many ways, the percentiles are more meaningful because they show the anomaly in the context of historical observations. The sea ice extent plot is similar, such that it shows you 2 sigma bounds and helps you understand how anomalous sea ice extent is for that particular day.
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Quoting OracleDeAtlantis:
Regarding the "tornado drought" being touted here, as I recall, this doesn't usually bode well for a quiet hurricane season.

I've speculated that the spring tornado season can be a leading indicator of future shear over parts of the MDR, but this is just a casual observation.

My forecast for the upcoming hurricane season is later this year than for the past two. I haven't been given anything to publish yet. I haven't even seen my first hummingbird this year, and I'm wondering where they are hiding.


I think tornadoes will spin up in June.
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Quoting BobChecks:





Most people would consider two standard deviations below the mean as "way below".

You don't? Where does way below kick in for you?

Assuming a normal distribution of data, 2 sigma (standard deviations) would mean that ~95.4% lies within, and ~4.6% lies outside.
Using NOAA/NCDC's definitions of below/above/normal, the Arctic ice extent would certainly be below normal, and likely considered much below normal. Their definition uses terciles, such that the bottom 33% is below, middle 33% is near normal, and the upper 33% is above. The bottom and top 10% are used for "much" categories. If sea ice extent was in the bottom 10%, that would mean much below average.

With this information, it also makes be curious what criteria jonger uses for "way below."
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yes - please also include taxpayer dollars wasted on oil company subsidies, so we can all see where the wasted money really goes.

Quoting yoboi:


ok i will post and i will also show how much taxpayer dollars was wasted also......anything else you would like me to add??????
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Quoting Neapolitan:
That's not how it works. As I've patiently explained before, the person making the accusation of wrongdoing has to provide proof of that wrongdoing. Otherwise, people realize the accuser has nothing on which to stand, and that accuser is swiftly--and rightfully--ignored.


ok i will post and i will also show how much taxpayer dollars was wasted also......anything else you would like me to add??????
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Quoting yoboi:


google failed green companys there are hundreds that filed for bankruptcy.


Google "oil exploration company bankruptcy" and you'll find hundreds of exploration companies that have filed for bankruptcy. By your logic, that means oil exploration is not a profitable venture. We know this to be false.

Finding examples of companies going bankrupt does does not mean the whole industry is unprofitable.

Here's a list of profitable solar power companies: LINK

Some people just don't know how to run a profitable company... that's not the industry's fault.
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Quoting yoboi:


google failed green companys there are hundreds that filed for bankruptcy.
That's not how it works. As I've patiently explained before, the person making the accusation of wrongdoing has to provide proof of that wrongdoing. Otherwise, people realize the accuser has nothing on which to stand, and that accuser is swiftly--and rightfully--ignored.
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Quoting jonger1150:
BTW, Sea Ice extent in March was not "Way below Average".

It was below the 30 year average, but the extent difference in March is nearly the smallest of the year, Dr Masters knows this, but he hopes you don't.
Let me help you.

1) Dr. Masters said nothing about extent, nor did he say "way below"; he wrote, "...sea ice was well below average again during March." That could mean either sea ice volume, or extent, or area. But it ultimately doesn't matter, for all three measurements were below the long-term average.

2) For March 2013, Arctic sea ice volume--the truest measure--was 20,891 cubic kilometers. The 1979-2012 average volume was 27,288 cubic kilometers. So, yes, I'd consider that "well below average". "Way below average", too, for that matter.

3) You're correct in stating that the difference between Arctic sea ice extent and the long-term average in March is at it lowest (same with area). But that would actually bolster Dr. Masters' claim, would it not? That is, showing that even the month with the lowest anomaly is still well below average highlights just how serious the polar situation has become.

Anyway, as we've seen with this year's deep outbreaks of cold, the disappearance of Arctic sea ice is not without its consequences--and it's only going to get worse.

sea
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Regarding the "tornado drought" being touted here, as I recall, this doesn't usually bode well for a quiet hurricane season.

I've speculated that the spring tornado season can be a leading indicator of future shear over parts of the MDR, but this is just a casual observation.

My forecast for the upcoming hurricane season is later this year than for the past two. I haven't been given anything to publish yet. I haven't even seen my first hummingbird this year, and I'm wondering where they are hiding.
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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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