Intriguing Tipping Points TV Series Begins Airing Saturday at 9pm EDT

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 12:09 PM GMT on October 18, 2013

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How does one tell the most important story of our time--the emergence of our great Climate Disruption--without boring one's audience to tears, but at the same time, not resorting to over-hyped spinning of the science? “Tipping Points”, a landmark 6-part TV series that begins airing at 9 pm EDT Saturday, October 19 on The Weather Channel, aims to do just that. "Tipping Points" follows a group of preeminent scientists as they venture off the grid to explore the perilous tipping points making our weather systems more extreme and unpredictable.

The phenomena of “tipping points” follows the concept that, at a particular moment in time, a small change can have a large, long-term consequence on a fragile climate system already in a state of flux. Localized ecological systems are known to shift abruptly and irreversibly from one state to another when they are forced across critical thresholds. Further, when the situation is pushed past the “tipping point,” it will potentially lead to a chain reaction, putting other ecosystems around the globe in peril. “Tipping Points” will feature several of the most critical examples, including the collapse of the Greenland ice sheet, total melting of the Himalayan icecap glaciers, die-back of the Amazon rainforest, shutdown of the Atlantic Thermohaline Circulation, and the rapid melt of the permafrost in Siberia. "Tipping Points" will not only show how climate changes affect local communities in exotic and distant locales like the Amazon or Siberia, but how it impacts and is relevant to people from Australia and Asia to Europe, South America to Canada and every community in between. The series explores what is happening at the most dramatic tipping points and looks to find answers to understand what can be done to stem the tide of change before we do irreparable damage, and ultimately put our own lives at risk.



The series is hosted by polar explorer and climate journalist Bernice Notenboom, the first woman to climb Mt. Everest and walk to the North and South Poles. She is joined by a number of leading international environmental scientists in each episode, such as Dr. Jason Box, Dr. Matthew England, Professor Peter Cox, and more. In each episode, Notenboom heads off to a far corner of the world to find scientists in the field undertaking vital climate research to try to understand how the climate system is changing and how long we have to make significant changes before we reach a tipping point--a point of no return when our climate system will be changed irreversibly.



The first episode at 9 pm EDT/8 pm CDT this Saturday will be "Amazon Rainforest Risks". "Tipping Points" host Bernice Notenboom will join Peter Cox, Professor of Climate System Dynamics at the University of Exeter, on an expedition across the vast Amazon Rainforest to explore the mega droughts and tree deaths occurring that threaten the forest's survival this century. The Amazon stores CO2 in its soils and biomass equivalent to about fifteen years of human-caused emissions, so a massive die-back of the forest could greatly accelerate global warming. Photosynthesis in the world's largest rainforest keeps the Earth cooler by taking about 2 billion tons of carbon dioxide out of the air each year. However, exceptional droughts in both 2005 and 2010 reversed this process. The Amazon emitted 3 billion tons of CO2 to the atmosphere in 2005, causing a net 5 billion ton increase in CO2 to the atmosphere--roughly equivalent to 19% of the total CO2 emissions to the atmosphere from burning fossil fuels that year. A 2013 NASA-led study found that an area of the Amazon rainforest twice the size of California continues to suffer from the effects of the 2005 mega drought. A 2008 paper by Professor Cox warned that their climate model predicted a rapidly increasing risk of 2005-like droughts from 1-in-20 years in the present climate to 1-in-2 years by 2025, if we continue emitting CO2 at our current "business-as-usual" pace. A 2013 study by Fu et al. found that the dry season length has grown by about seven days per decade in the southern part of the rainforest. If this trend continues in coming decades at half of that rate, the fire season that contributed to the 2005 drought would become the new norm by the late 21st century. The leader of the study, Rong Fu, explained: "The dry season over the southern Amazon is already a marginal for maintaining rainforest. At some point, if it becomes too long, the rainforest will reach a tipping point."



Typhoon Francisco headed towards Japan
Category 4 Typhoon Francisco continues to intensify over the warm waters of the Western Pacific about 200 miles west of Guam. Even though the eye of Francisco passed more than 150 miles west of Guam Friday morning, the huge storm brought sustained winds of 37 mph, gusting to 46 mph, to the island, along with 6.75" of rain. Satellite loops show that Francisco is well-organized with an impressive area of heavy thunderstorms and a prominent eye. With warm waters that extend to great depth and low wind shear, continued strengthening is likely, and Francisco is forecast to become a super typhoon with 150 mph winds by Saturday as it heads northwest towards Japan. The European model now shows that Francisco will miss Japan, but the GFS model predicts that Francisco will hit Japan on Thursday next week. There is very high uncertainty in the storm's track that far into the future, since the timing of Francisco's turn the northeast is difficult to predict.

The Atlantic is quiet
None of the reliable computer models for forecasting tropical cyclone genesis is predicting development over the next five days.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting 546. Jedkins01:


Yeah that's my point, yet I've seen/heard tornadoes referred to as "storms" an awful lot, lol.



LOL. Yeah, I'm like "I think it needs to be bigger and independent to be called a storm" a lot when I hear that.
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Quoting 468. CybrTeddy:


11,000 comments is still is a fair amount. That averages to about 1,571 a year, 130 a month, and 4 a day. It takes about 1 minute to right a decent post, so I guess you could say you average about 4 minutes of time writing and posting.

However, I have 22,485 comments over the course of 8 years. That averages to about 2,810 posts a year, 234 a month, and about 8 a day. That yields about 8 minutes of time per day just writing. That being said, I know I spend one heck of a lot more time on here during hurricane season and I spend very little time on here during post-season. When there's a major storm out there, I'm probably averaging 20-30 posts a day, and I bet you're not terribly far off having joined a year later than me.
Sounds about right. When it's busy I may post 30 times a day. I prolly post more here in the off season than you do, Teddy, but then I also go for days at a time without any posts at all.

I think of blogging as part of my life, like going to a coffee shop and meeting up with friends, only with wx benefits... lol...
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Quoting 542. FunnelVortex:


Tornadoes themselves are not even storms. They are just a part of a supercell.


Yeah that's my point, yet I've seen/heard tornadoes referred to as "storms" an awful lot, lol.

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Invest 96E appears destined to develop into the strongest tropical cyclone of the 2013 Pacific hurricane season.

SHEAR (KT) 9 8 7 4 3 10 4 5 1 5 7 5 5
SST (C) 29.2 29.2 29.2 29.2 29.2 29.1 29.1 29.1 29.1 29.1 29.1 28.9 28.8
700-500 MB RH 74 75 76 76 75 77 75 74 70 67 62 60 62
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31466
Quoting 543. yoboi:


some have predicted that will happen by 2018 we shall see how the prediction turns out.......


If the SSTs ever rise high enough for a hypercane, we would see it in the WPAC first.
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543. yoboi
Quoting 534. MiamiHeat305:


i read sea surface temps would need to be 122 F for it to happen though


some have predicted that will happen by 2018 we shall see how the prediction turns out.......
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Quoting 536. Jedkins01:


LOL I feel your pain.

One of my favorite lines is "tornadoes are the strongest storms on Earth" which I've heard/seen too many times.

After a statement like that, what do they do when they are confronted with talking about thunderstorms that produce the tornadoes? lol


Tornadoes themselves are not even storms. They are just a part of a supercell.
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Quoting 464. CaribBoy:








Strange weather
Are you going to sucker punch me again by making me think you will actually get some rain?

;o)

It does look like some low clouds, but wouldn't that just mean it's going to rain? I'm not sure what's strange bout it otherwise.

Weather's been great here today... considerably less humid than at the beginning of the week.
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540. whitewabit (Mod)
Franscisco


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Quoting 173. Patrap:
Its Friday, I'm in Love
That sounds like the "CURE"
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I know the attention has to be to Supertyphoon Francisco,but let's have some love to 96E in EPAC that may develop into a strong system as conditions appear favorable.

Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 14014
Quoting 485. JrWeathermanFL:
I hate watching weather shows in which half the information is wrong...
Like, "Andrew is the largest natural disaster in America" and "Hurricanes pack winds UP TO 150mph"

Later in the show they said Allen had 190mph and the 1900 Galveston was the largest natural disaster in America, therefore contradicting themselves..


LOL I feel your pain.

One of my favorite lines is "tornadoes are the strongest storms on Earth" which I've heard/seen too many times.

After a statement like that, what do they do when they are confronted with talking about thunderstorms that produce the tornadoes? lol
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Quoting 530. FunnelVortex:


A hypercane would be 500 MPH.


i read sea surface temps would need to be 122 F for it to happen though
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Quoting 531. MiamiHeat305:


wonder if its even possible lol probably not in the ATL


The Atlantic can produce some monsters. But I don't think a hypercane is likely on Planet Earth, that is unless a meteor hit the ocean or there was an underwater supervolcanic eruption.
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The Climate Prediction Center's forecast for the next three months calls for above normal temps across a wide, diagonal swath of the Continental US, with no areas expected to see overall below-normal temperatures.

cpc
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13459
Quoting 530. FunnelVortex:


A hypercane would be 500 MPH.


wonder if its even possible lol probably not in the ATL
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Quoting 529. MiamiHeat305:


hypercane..


A hypercane would be 500 MPH.
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Quoting 524. VR46L:


That's Doom if I ever read doom ,Cat8 35 miles south of Galveston LOL as if ....I think the Florida Panhandle has more chance !


hypercane..
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2009?
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Quoting 524. VR46L:


That's Doom if I ever read doom ,Cat8 35 miles south of Galveston LOL as if ....I think the Florida Panhandle has more chance !


And holds hurricane status hundreds of miles inland and it's remnants causing a huge tornado outbreak. Lol.
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526. txjac
Quoting 523. hurricanes2018:
cooler weather in the northeast by sunday


Looking pretty fallish all over
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Happy 87th to the man in my avatar, the Grandfather of Rock n Roll, Chuck Berry!

Hoping our relatively dry air (42 dew point) will hold off the clouds and rain long enough to at least see the Hunter's Moon rise. Eclipse view would be nice too, though not sure it will be up soon enough here. Will settle for a dry NLCS and a Bday win for Chuck!
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524. VR46L
Quoting 495. nwobilderburg:
Link

Found this online... thought u guys would like it


That's Doom if I ever read doom ,Cat8 35 miles south of Galveston LOL as if ....I think the Florida Panhandle has more chance !
Member Since: March 1, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 6834
cooler weather in the northeast by sunday
Member Since: March 12, 2013 Posts: 8 Comments: 13443
As Francisco turns North near or at Okinawa, the intensity graph from 12Z shows it tailing off.



Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127566
Quoting 515. RTLSNK:


spaceweather.com said it was 7:30 PM EDT


Thanks
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The SST West Pac Loop shows the Temps fall off fast above 28N.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127566
519. yoboi
Quoting 503. VR46L:


NO chance... weather not cooperating




yes...
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Quoting 511. Patrap:
.."its only words, and words are all I have, to take your Heart away"..

That is an amazing display of natures power..I never second guessed why I am fascinated by the Earths weather..Or anything that is science...I truly dig the stuff.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 20507
Quoting 503. VR46L:


NO chance... weather not cooperating



France may have a shot. It's just a penumbral eclipse though. Not total. So it won't be as spectacular. Next total lunar eclipse is in April next year I think.
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TCHP Loop

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127566
Quoting 505. Hurricane614:


I plan to. Great viewing conditions around here. Do you know what time it peaks?


spaceweather.com said it was 7:30 PM EDT
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The sea surface temperature ahead of Francisco is below normal. From Wipha upwelling? Whether that's the reason or not it may help limit Francisco's strength.

I posted a new blog and want to know what y'all think about what you see there.

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Quoting 495. nwobilderburg:
Link

Found this online... thought u guys would like it


ROFL!
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Quoting 508. skycycle:


Was lucky enough to see the 1999 total solar eclipse in one of the best locations for it, on the Black Sea coast in my beloved homeland of Bulgaria - the greatest eclipse point was in Southeastern Romania, at 2 min 22 sec, I saw it from Golden Sands in Bulgaria, for 2+ minutes :) Was 12 at the time, yet it is something I will never forget - and last I checked the upcoming eclipses for Europe in the 21st century - something that I might not see again on this continent :)
I believe they said 2 minutes and 12 seconds for us...Here at me house.!..All I will have to do is put my favorite chair on the porch..:)
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 20507
.."its only words, and words are all I have, to take your Heart away"..

Viz coming up on Fnansisco, a Powerlful Typhoon heading toward Okinawa in the West Pacific

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127566
510. auburn (Mod)
Quoting 442. ncstorm:


Now Nea, for the first time I will say you are absolutely right but the flag system doesnt seem to be working as comments are still visible and not removed..



It takes 10(I believe its 10)flags on a post to remove it..until that number is reached it will still be visible to everyone(even the bloggers who flagged it)
Member Since: August 27, 2006 Posts: 546 Comments: 50532


Facts I've learned from this blog:

J. Masters is pro-GW... Can't understand why there is fight on the subject between bloggers, after any post he makes.... Why not present any denialyst facts or complaints to J. Masters?

As a meterorological scientist he has no problems with the Weather Channel....
Some bloggers here do...

Amen
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Quoting 502. hydrus:
I have seen so many, there not exiting to me anymore. We here in Mid TN will be in for a total solar eclipse in August 2017. I have only seen partial solar eclipse, and am truly exited to see this event.


Was lucky enough to see the 1999 total solar eclipse in one of the best locations for it, on the Black Sea coast in my beloved homeland of Bulgaria - the greatest eclipse point was in Southeastern Romania, at 2 min 22 sec, I saw it from Golden Sands in Bulgaria, for 2+ minutes :) Was 12 at the time, yet it is something I will never forget - and last I checked the upcoming eclipses for Europe in the 21st century - something that I might not see again on this continent :)
Member Since: August 26, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 189
Quoting 442. ncstorm:


Now Nea, for the first time I will say you are absolutely right but the flag system doesnt seem to be working as comments are still visible and not removed..
Mine have been going...

Sounds like the blog is glitchy this afternoon....

Hey, ever'body... it's FRIDAY!!!! WhooHoo!!!!

lol...

Glad to be able to sit back with a drink and relax a bit...

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Quoting 500. skycycle:
Does anyone from the East Coast or Europe plan to take photos of the moon eclipse later tonight?

On another note, Francisco has now apparently reached Super Typhoon Status, looks set to bring more misery and devastation to Japan, where 24 are now confirmed dead and 26 missing from Wipha, most of them in the island of Oshima :/
I am actually scared for those people and I know not one person there...I pray that storm misses.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 20507
Quoting 500. skycycle:
Does anyone from the East Coast or Europe plan to take photos of the moon eclipse later tonight?

On another note, Francisco has now apparently reached Super Typhoon Status, looks set to bring more misery and devastation to Japan, where 24 are now confirmed dead and 26 missing from Wipha, most of them in the island of Oshima :/


I plan to. Great viewing conditions around here. Do you know what time it peaks?
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Quoting 496. Patrap:
Vostok, Antarctica wu page
2:50 AM VOST on October 19, 2013 (GMT +0600)Elev: 11220 ft Lon: 106.9° ELat: 78.4° S


Temperature
-60 °F
Feels Like -60 °F
.No way...u puttin us on...now i need Fresca..
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 20507
503. VR46L
Quoting 500. skycycle:
Does anyone from the East Coast or Europe plan to take photos of the moon eclipse later tonight?

On another note, Francisco has now apparently reached Super Typhoon Status, looks set to bring more misery and devastation to Japan, where 24 are now confirmed dead and 26 missing from Wipha, most of them in the island of Oshima :/


NO chance... weather not cooperating

Member Since: March 1, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 6834
Quoting 500. skycycle:
Does anyone from the East Coast or Europe plan to take photos of the moon eclipse later tonight?

On another note, Francisco has now apparently reached Super Typhoon Status, looks set to bring more misery and devastation to Japan, where 24 are now confirmed dead and 26 missing from Wipha, most of them in the island of Oshima :/
I have seen so many, there not exiting to me anymore. We here in Mid TN will be in for a total solar eclipse in August 2017. I have only seen partial solar eclipse, and am truly exited to see this event.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 20507
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 20507
Does anyone from the East Coast or Europe plan to take photos of the moon eclipse later tonight?

On another note, Francisco has now apparently reached Super Typhoon Status, looks set to bring more misery and devastation to Japan, where 24 are now confirmed dead and 26 missing from Wipha, most of them in the island of Oshima :/
Member Since: August 26, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 189
Quoting 479. HeinrichFrogswatter:


How long does it take to wrong, or perhaps left, a decent post?


Judging by the posts I see sometimes, quicker than the mind can react and process.
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Quoting 495. nwobilderburg:
Link

Found this online... thought u guys would like it


This is good stuff.
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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.