Fourth warmest May on record

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 12:25 PM GMT on June 25, 2007

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The tropical Atlantic remains quiet. None of the computer models are showing any tropical development over the next week. The best chance of a new threat area to watch may not occur until July 1, when a strong cold front pushes off the U.S. East Coast.

The Middle East will see their second tropical cyclone of the month on Tuesday. Tropical Cyclone 3B crossed India, killing at least 140, and re-formed in the Arabian Sea, and is poised to hit Iran or Pakistan tomorrow. The View From the Surface blog is following this storm. We may looking at hundreds of years since the last time the Middle East was hit by two tropical cyclones in the same month. Tropical Cyclone Gonu pounded Oman and Iran earlier this month.

Fourth Warmest May on record
May 2007 was the fourth warmest May for the globe on record, and the period January - May of 2007 was tied with 1998 for the warmest such period ever, according to statistics released by the National Climatic Data Center. The global average temperature for May was +0.53�C (+0.95�F) above the 20th century mean. Over land, May global temperatures were the warmest ever measured, the second straight month that has happened. Ocean temperatures were a bit cooler (ninth warmest on record), thanks to the cooling associated with the disappearance of the winter El Ni�o event. The global temperature record goes back 128 years.

May temperatures were particularly warm across Russia. Moscow recorded its highest May temperature since record keeping began 128 years ago--32.9�C (91.2�F). The heat forced Russia's energy administrator to restrict the use of non-residential energy for the first time in summer. In India, a heat wave during mid-May produced temperatures as high as 45-50�C (113-122�F) resulting in at least 128 fatalities. Dr. Ricky Rood's Climate Change blog has more on the India heat wave. Although record heat was more prevalent across the globe, Argentina experienced its coldest May in twenty years, and at least 23 fatalities were reported as a result of cold weather during the last week of May.

11th warmest May on record in the U.S.
In the U.S., May 2007 ranked as the 11th warmest since record keeping began in 1895. The period January through May was the 20th warmest such period on record. Spring (March - May) was 5th warmest on record in the continental U.S. The past six months (Dec-May) were the driest on record for the Southeast U.S. Portions of Alabama, Mississippi, and Tennessee are experiencing exceptional drought. However, the drought has eased some since late May over the Florida Peninsula.


Figure 1. Temperature departure from average for May 2007. Image credit: National Climatic Data Center.

Sea ice extent
Sea ice extent in the Arctic for May was the third lowest on record, a modest recovery from the lowest ever sea ice coverage observed in April. Arctic sea ice coverage in May has declined by about 8% since measurements began in 1979 (Figure 2).


Figure 2. Arctic sea ice extent for May, for the years 1979-2007. May 2007 had the third lowest Arctic sea ice extent since satellite measurements began in 1979. May sea ice coverage has declined about 8% since 1979. Image credit: National Snow and Ice Data Center.

I'll have a new blog on Tuesday.
Jeff Masters

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432. MichaelSTL
8:43 PM CDT on June 25, 2007
This is the most incredible hail report that I have ever seen (link):

PRELIMINARY LOCAL STORM REPORT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HASTINGS NE
1035 PM CDT SUN JUN 22 2003

TIME(CDT) .....CITY LOCATION..... STATE ...EVENT/REMARKS...
....COUNTY LOCATION....

0955 PM AURORA NE VOLLEYBALL SIZE HAIL
06/22/03 HAMILTON REPORTED BY STORM
SPOTTER. HOLES IN
NEIGHBORS ROOF BIG
ENOUGH TO CRAWL THROUGH
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430. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
1:42 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
never heard of grapefruit size hail before...
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429. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
1:40 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
That would be TD 4 since Tropical Depression Three-E was early last week.
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428. MichaelSTL
8:41 PM CDT on June 25, 2007
And yes; that is current. Link
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427. MichaelSTL
8:39 PM CDT on June 25, 2007
Grapefruit? 4 inch hail? That happens all the time... there was softball size hail yesterday (4.25 inches, listed as 425 on the SPC page).
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426. texascanecaster1
1:38 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Many thanks micheal!
425. texascanecaster1
1:35 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Michel: WTF?!?!?!?!?!
That has to be a FREAKING record. GRAPFRUITE HALE?!?!? Thats big enough for that new skylight you know someone was planning to have installed: lol not funny at all actually. That is terrible is this a current warning? Hello cone new here? Micheal are u messing around?
424. MichaelSTL
8:34 PM CDT on June 25, 2007
To get to the North Atlantic page, click on the link where you see this, right above the table that has the different model runs (here is the direct link):

Select Region: [North America] [Western North Atlantic] [North Pacific] [Eastern Pacific] [Polar Ice Drift]

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423. texascanecaster1
1:33 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Its offical now. 93E is up for the epac. I imagine if the system can get some intense convection going tommorrow we will se td 3 and then the epac c storm.
422. ConeofUncertainty
1:33 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
whats up all
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421. MichaelSTL
8:32 PM CDT on June 25, 2007
This is not something that you want to get:

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE RAPID CITY SD
716 PM MDT MON JUN 25 2007

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN RAPID CITY HAS ISSUED A

* SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING FOR...
CENTRAL BUTTE COUNTY IN NORTHWESTERN SOUTH DAKOTA...

* UNTIL 815 PM MDT

* AT 714 PM MDT...DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM
WITH DAMAGING HAIL UP TO GRAPEFRUIT SIZE. THIS STORM WAS LOCATED
22 MILES WEST OF BELLE FOURCHE RESERVOIR...OR ABOUT 19 MILES
NORTHWEST OF BELLE FOURCHE...MOVING EAST AT 35 MPH.

* THE SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WILL BE NEAR...
BELLE FOURCHE RESERVOIR BY 750 PM MDT...

GRAPEFRUIT SIZE HAIL WAS REPORTED IN COLONY AT 715 PM MDT.

IF YOU ARE IN THE PATH OF THIS STORM...TAKE SHELTER IN A STURDY
BUILDING AWAY FROM WINDOWS.
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420. texascanecaster1
1:30 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Don't leave me here all alone guys!!!

lol just kidding have a nice night all.
419. texascanecaster1
1:30 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
listen to this!:AARON C. DAVIS, Associated Press Writer
2 hours, 40 minutes ago



MEYERS, Calif. - A wildfire raged out of control near Lake Tahoe on Monday, forcing hundreds of residents to flee towering flames that destroyed more than 200 buildings, turned the sky orange and fouled the lake's famously clear waters with falling ash.



Many hotels offered free rooms as families clung to one bit of good news: Despite the destruction, there were no reports of injuries.

"All the memories are gone," said Matt Laster, a legal assistant forced to flee his rented home of five years with his wife, two young children and cat. He showed up at a recreation center looking for clothes and a sleeping bag.

The blaze, which authorities believe was caused by some kind of human activity, had scorched almost 2,500 acres nearly 4 square miles and was about 5 percent contained. About 1,000 people had evacuated from the path of the flames, and authorities feared up to 500 other houses could be threatened in this resort area along the California-Nevada state line.

More than 700 firefighters were on hand, but plans to send up airborne tankers and helicopters to drop water and retardant over the heavily wooded, parched terrain were scrapped because of low visibility from the thick smoke.

Firefighters hoped to bring the blaze under control ahead of high winds and low humidity forecast for the middle of the week. Dozens took up defensive positions around South Lake Tahoe High School as flames came within a quarter mile of the 1,500-student school.

"We have a window right now where we're really trying to aggressively attack this fire," said Daniel Berlant, a spokesman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection in Sacramento.

El Dorado County Sheriff's Lt. Kevin House said there were no reports of missing persons, but "the truth is we haven't really been able to get in there and see."

Along the lake's southern shore, a layer of black, mushy ash lapped along boat docks, raising fears the fire also could have disastrous long-term economic consequences for a community heavily dependent on the lake's recreational tourism.

California officials declared a state of emergency, meaning the state would cover all firefighting costs. The National Weather Service issued a dense smoke advisory warning people from South Lake Tahoe to Carson City, Nev., that heavy ash was making it difficult to see and breathe.

The fire began Sunday afternoon on a ridge separating the resort community of South Lake Tahoe from Fallen Leaf Lake, a recreation area where a U.S. Forest Service campground was evacuated.

Firefighters were aided Monday by winds that had slowed to 12 mph after gusting to about 35 mph the day before. Forecasters warned that if high winds and low humidity returned, the fire could threaten more than 500 homes bordering the lake.

By early afternoon Monday, 173 homes had been lost to flames and many others were damaged, along with dozens of outbuildings, authorities said. All that remained of entire neighborhoods in Meyers were the smoldering silhouettes of stone and concrete chimneys.

In other areas, the fire seemed to randomly skip some homes, but downed power lines, trees and debris made clear that life would not return to normal anytime soon, even for those whose homes were spared.

The burned neighborhoods were a hodgepodge of million-dollar vacation homes, cabins and modest houses strung along the east side of the ridge. At least three members of the local fire department were believed to have lost their homes.

Steve Yingling, sports editor for the Tahoe Tribune newspaper, had little hope that his house survived. He was leaving for work Sunday afternoon when he heard the sirens.

"I looked back and saw the huge plume of smoke," he said Monday. "That's when I really started to get scared because I know the danger alert that we've had in this area. Especially this year with the mild winter that we had."

State and federal fire officials had warned of a potentially active wildfire season in the Sierra Nevada following an unusually dry winter. The annual May 1 snow survey found the Tahoe-area snowpack at just 29 percent of normal levels, the lowest since 1988.

Fire restrictions have been in effect in the Tahoe National Forest since June 11. The most common cause of blazes in the area is abandoned campfires, according to the U.S. Forest Service.

Anxious residents barred from returning to the fire-damaged area jammed the lobby of Lake Tahoe Community College in South Lake Tahoe, hoping to get word from authorities on whether their homes were still standing. Some left in tears; others were thankful to have escaped the worst.

Cathy Martin of South Lake Tahoe e-mailed her son, a Marine serving in Iraq, to tell him about the fire.

"We're very lucky that we are safe," said Martin, whose home was not damaged. "But I'm telling you this is awful for this community."

In Alaska, damp, cooler weather helped slow a wildfire in a popular recreation area on the Kenai Peninsula south of Anchorage that had destroyed about 70 homes and cabins and was threatening hundreds more.

The Kenai blaze, reported on June 19, had spread across nearly 90 square miles and was only about 10 percent contained Monday, fire officials said.

___

Associated Press Writers Brendan Riley and Amanda Fehd contributed to this report.


418. PBG00
1:28 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
I'm out too. Thanks for the chat everyone. Pottery, another time perhaps. Enjoy your night everyone!
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417. texascanecaster1
1:26 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
See ya nash.
416. texascanecaster1
1:24 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Adrian how do you get atlantic tropicl model runs from the ncep website instead of north america ones? Couldn't figure out where on that site to go.
415. PBG00
1:25 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Night Nash!
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414. Gatorxgrrrl
1:25 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Night Nash...time for me to go too...it was a pleasure chatting with my old buddies and meeting some new ones. G'nite:)
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413. Gatorxgrrrl
1:24 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Yes all is great:) Thank you Pottery!
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412. nash28
1:23 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Ok everyone. Time for me to get to bed.

Nice talking with you all. See you tomorrow.
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411. pottery2
9:15 PM AST on June 25, 2007
PBGOO, hang on a sec......

Gator, I'm doing well. Still in the clay ! Looking out for storms that always seem to pass me by, so I gues I'm blessed. Trust you are fantastic ?
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410. texascanecaster1
1:16 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Evening all.
409. PBG00
1:20 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
I should have known..you're a good guy.
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408. Gatorxgrrrl
1:20 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
nash28 at 1:18 AM GMT on June 26, 2007.

Yes, and I am your host Andy Cantore:-)


Only with nice hair!! LOL
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407. PBG00
1:19 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
jp..we had the fire going and the beer flowing. It was actually kind of fun!
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406. MarcKeys
1:18 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
It appears to be a record high temperature June thus far in South Florida also.
Key Largo Fishing
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405. Gatorxgrrrl
1:18 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Yea the back end was actually worse because when it moved into the Atlantic, it stalled a little bit and strengthened so those back end feeder bands were Cat1 and here I thought the worst was over! We saw water being lifted out of our pool like a scoop!
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404. nash28
1:19 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
I was part of one for Frances and Jeanne.
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403. PBG00
1:17 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Ya know nash..we have a watch group here that goes and checks before and after the storm on those that are living alone..If you have any in your neighborhood it is greatly appreciated here..
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401. nash28
1:16 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Yes, and I am your host Andy Cantore:-)
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400. PBG00
1:16 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
I just had weagle on my 5 inch battery t.v. tellin me it was gonna be a bumpy ride.
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399. Gatorxgrrrl
1:15 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
This blog sounds like "Storm Stories" LOL
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398. nash28
1:12 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
That is the sobering thought that I think about often during the season. The elderly population in Pinnelas county is staggering.
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397. Gatorxgrrrl
1:14 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Yes we got slapped on the back end by Wilma too.
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396. PBG00
1:14 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Our neighborhood flooded big time..no one thought to clear the drains..Now we have a commitee for that.LOL
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395. PBG00
1:12 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
I actually had surgery the week before Jeanne. I never thought I would be standing in Home Depot 5 days later preparing for another storm.
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393. PBG00
1:12 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Hello pottery..I don't believe we have met.
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392. Gatorxgrrrl
1:10 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
nash28 at 1:08 AM GMT on June 26, 2007.

Frances was the storm that psychologically got into our heads. It NEVER ENDED! Over 20 hrs of those conditions can really wear on you


The thing that was awful for us, was deciding if we were going to stay or leave for the second one Jeanne, we just could not believe that that hurricane did the loop de loop and headed back to us. It was really a mind boggling thing. We have lots of senior citizens and they were just wore out after that season.
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391. PBG00
1:09 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
How big was that eye? It seems everyone in Palm Beach and Martin was in it. I know we were cause I just waited for the reprive..When it came we walked the dogs cause it was a long haul for them. The backside wasn't that bad..not like Wilma where the 2nd half was just nasty! We lost our linai screen and the kids swing set in Frances..Jeanne finished them off for good.
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389. Gatorxgrrrl
1:09 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Pottery!!!! How are you!!
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388. nash28
1:08 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
I hope it isn't a sign of things to come Adrian. We have had a ton of very healthy strong waves already this season well before they can form, which is why they have died shortly after seperating from the ITCZ.
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387. Gatorxgrrrl
1:07 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Vero Beach - about 10 miles on the north side of the eye for Frances and about 6 miles north side of the eye for Jeanne. Boatloads of rain from Frances, but Jeanne did the worst in wind damage.
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386. pottery2
9:01 PM AST on June 25, 2007
Good evening all.
Gator, how are you? Long time.......
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385. nash28
1:07 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Frances was the storm that psychologically got into our heads. It NEVER ENDED! Over 20 hrs of those conditions can really wear on you.
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384. groundman
1:04 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
About 5 mi N of Biloxi, wind rocking large heavy camper and thundering like the devil.
Hope this is the worst of it, they almost opened the clubhouse (storm shelter) last night also, no warnings now.
383. hurricane23
9:06 PM EDT on June 25, 2007
Anyway got to get early for work but i was looking at the 18z GFS model run and it showing some intresting stuff of the african coast with possibility of our first capeverde system.

Long range and will probably change in the next run but found it interesting.Take care adrian

wave
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382. PBG00
1:02 AM GMT on June 26, 2007
Gator..Where are you located? Fran and Jeanne were just so inconvenient..Frances just pounded us forever! The cold showers were hard..My youngest was 1 at the time and he was covered in a heat rash that was just aweful.It was hard to get him in the bath. We have gas but to boil all those pots and take them up the stairs was no fun!Sleeping was rough too.. I must admit I was one ill prepared person for the first one. I would have never imagined being out of power for 10 days.Thank god I did have enough food.The county was not prepared either. It was a mess.
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About

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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