Bill Proenza gone; tropical update

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 8:35 PM GMT on July 09, 2007

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With hurricane season fast approaching and internal strife threatening "the effective functioning of the National Hurricane Center", as stated in a letter signed by 23 of NHC's 49 employees, NOAA did the best thing by reassigning director Bill Proenza this afternoon. Conrad Lautenbacher, the head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, announced Proenza has been placed on leave "until further notice."

The reassignment puts NHC deputy director Ed Rappaport, 49, into the director's hot seat. I greatly respect Dr. Rappaport, who has done a great job as deputy director and is a highly skilled hurricane forecaster. Dr. Rappaport has a Ph.D. in Atmospheric Sciences from Texas Tech. He began work in 1988 at NHC, and served as one NHC's Hurricane Specialists before becoming chief of the Technical Support Branch. He is the best choice for director of NHC. He had wide support to become director last year when Max Mayfield retired, but turned down the job due to family reasons.

Tropical update
There are no threat areas in the tropical Atlantic to discuss, and none of the computer models are forecasting tropical storm formation over the coming week. A cold front is expected to push off the U.S. East Coast by Sunday, and we will have to watch the waters off the North Carolina coast then for development when the front stalls out. In the Pacific, an exceptionally large Category 1 typhoon, Man-Yi, is expected to become a major typhoon, and will threaten Japan late this week.

Jeff Masters

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778. kmanislander
4:39 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
Posted By: randommichael at 4:37 PM GMT on July 10, 2007.

I think the increase in storm activity is from global warming, and natural weather cycles.


Well at least you didn't leave anything out !
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777. Chicklit
4:37 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
Proenza was reassigned. China executed one of their bureaucrats today. Of course, he had done all sorts of nasty things...but here, don't they just hire real expensive attorneys and stay in Club Med style prisons? (Sorry...off topic...but shocking nonetheless.)
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776. bobw999
12:37 PM EDT on July 10, 2007
Same here Ivan. Two hurricanes in 2 weeks was too much for me. Than another in 05.
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775. nash28
4:36 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
*Rolls eyes*
Member Since: July 11, 2005 Posts: 190 Comments: 16972
773. Ivansurvivr
12:33 PM EDT on July 10, 2007
It's not the year or the number but the one that gets you. 1992 is a perfect example. for me its 04.
772. verityBlues
4:33 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
I know why this fella was "reassigned," its obvious. He was a threat to the hypothetical idea of "global warming."

Can't have one of those non-believer's around the "weathermen" of the weather underground.
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771. whirlwind
4:32 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
Rappaport is a knowledgable man. I enjoy watching him and Mayfield talk in interviews much better than lets say Dr. Lyons.

I think that they both have a redneckish kind of accent, even tho there here in Miami. lol.
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770. swlaaggie
11:33 AM CDT on July 10, 2007
Posted By: MichaelSTL at 11:15 AM CDT on July 10, 2007.

This page has a couple animations showing the difference between low shear and high shear on individual thunderstorms.


Thanks very much STL.
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769. kmanislander
4:33 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
" but only 17 years between Gilbert and Wilma "

What about only 10 years between Gilbert and Mitch !
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768. Tazmanian
4:32 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
hello STL
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766. Tazmanian
4:28 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
Embattled Hurricane Center Head on Leave
Tuesday, July 10, 2007 - 03:12 PM

By JESSICA GRESKO
Associated Press Writer


MIAMI
The director of the National Hurricane Center went on leave Monday, government officials said, four days after many of the center´s employees called for his removal because of his comments about an aging weather satellite.

More than 20 of Bill Proenza´s nearly 50 staff members signed a statement last week urging federal officials to dismiss him. They said Proenza had undermined public confidence in the center by exaggerating the forecasting problems scientists would face if the satellite failed.

Anson Franklin, a spokesman for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which oversees the hurricane center, would not say whether Proenza was ordered to take leave or voluntarily left the agency.

He said Proenza is still a NOAA employee, but he would not provide details about Proenza´s status, citing privacy laws.

"Beyond that I would discourage further speculation of any sort," Franklin said, declining to discuss whether Proenza could return as director.

After staff members released their statement Thursday, Proenza insisted his comments were only to ensure that his forecasters had the best tools and adequate support. He did not return a message left on his cell phone by The Associated Press.

Proenza assumed the job in January, replacing longtime Director Max Mayfield. Among other issues, he was vocal about the need to replace the aging QuikScat satellite used by hurricane forecasters. But the center´s staff said Proenza´s comments undermined confidence in their predictions.

"Whether Director Proenza was directly reassigned or simply ´forced out,´ perhaps one day NOAA will present an appropriate justification for their action. However, sounding the alarm on QuikScat is not justification enough," Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La. wrote in a statement.

U.S. Rep. Ron Klein also expressed concern about the timing of the change.

"While it is not my responsibility to get in the middle of personnel issues, losing the head of the National Hurricane Center right in the middle of hurricane season greatly concerns me," Klein wrote.

Landrieu, Klein and other congressional leaders support a replacement for QuikScat.

Proenza´s departure surprised Larry Gispert, an official with the International Association of Emergency Managers, a nonprofit organization of nearly 3,000 emergency professionals that has supported Proenza.

"Not knowing the circumstances, I don´t know whether it´s good, bad or indifferent," Gispert said.

Deputy Director Ed Rappaport was to assume Proenza´s duties on an interim basis, center spokesman Dennis Feltgen said.

"The staff is very focused on the 2007 Atlantic hurricane season and everybody´s ready to move forward," Feltgen said.

Rappaport declined to comment on his appointment. In November, he took himself out of the running to replace Mayfield, saying he could not make the commitment for personal reasons.

Rappaport has been with the hurricane center since 1987. He was appointed deputy director in 2000.

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765. whirlwind
4:23 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
hmmm...2005 and 1933 were good hurricane seasons.

See, you gotta wait about 74 years till you witness another 2005. Once in a lifetime opportunity that we went thru.

Even in 1933 most of the storms hit in August.... 1 more month to go...
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764. Tropicnerd13
4:18 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
alright im gone now. talk later.
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763. nash28
4:20 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
With the upward pulse of MJO now in the Gulf and moving eastward, we will start to see increased activity in the ATL basin soon.
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762. Tropicnerd13
4:15 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
i bet when the chart that shows the ammount of storms per 100 years is updated it will be like 120 ts in august 30 in july and so on. probably about 40 more storms this 100 years than the last.
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761. Ivansurvivr
12:03 PM EDT on July 10, 2007
Land heats much faster than water. That warmer air rises into the cooler air above so storms form more easily over land than water. your average tornado is the result of colder upper level air squeezing the moisture below. thats why most hurricanes come off africa. The seabreeze effect in florida is the same. We get storms every afternon inland when warm air over land rises, cooler air from the ocean comes in and produces inland storms. you'd think wind off the ocean would bring rain but its the opposite.
760. Patrap
11:15 AM CDT on July 10, 2007
me too..LOL
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757. Tropicnerd13
4:07 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
the 1933 season was really weird. the storms went in weird directions to hit the cariolina coast and new york and places like that.
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756. swlaaggie
11:08 AM CDT on July 10, 2007
Posted By: Patrap at 11:08 AM CDT on July 10, 2007.

..clock drift..big time


LOL, that is otherwise known as a senior moment, something I am very familiar with.
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755. swlaaggie
11:05 AM CDT on July 10, 2007
Thanks MichaelSTL. Thought you might know.
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754. Patrap
11:07 AM CDT on July 10, 2007
..clock drift..big time
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753. IKE
11:07 AM CDT on July 10, 2007
I think WU's website is just having some technical issues...

The last post on this blog..."-518 second ago|-518"
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752. bobw999
12:06 PM EDT on July 10, 2007
bobw, up above it says i posted something at 356, then you at 350 then me at 358.

Oh, ok. That is weird.
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751. HurricaneGeek
12:06 PM EDT on July 10, 2007
Second place was 1933
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750. bobw999
11:57 AM EDT on July 10, 2007
gotta go soon. do you guys know what season or seasons were close to as active as 2005?

1933 Atlantic hurricane season
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749. Patrap
11:04 AM CDT on July 10, 2007
1995 was an active year..

Link
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748. Tropicnerd13
4:03 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
bobw, up above it says i posted something at 356, then you at 350 then me at 358.
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747. Ivansurvivr
11:50 AM EDT on July 10, 2007
La-nina typicaly increases trade winds over the Eastern Pacific. Cooler water leads to sinking air,stronger trade winds, hence fewer storms. It seems to have a vacuum effect over the atlantic causing air to rise and seems to enhance the "cape verde" storms. Right now the gulf and carribean are much warmer due to weaker trade winds. The atlantic was cooler than normal but is catching up. Our low in wpb fl this morning was reported to be 86. That means the waters are probably boiling offshore now.
746. Tropicnerd13
4:02 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
i gotta go soon. do you guys know what season or seasons were close to as active as 2005?
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744. Delsol
11:58 AM EDT on July 10, 2007
TY Bob and all, For your input, I thought that article was opposite of what I have read here.
-
I saw the TSR article on a large insurance companie's web site, Maybe some wishcasting on thier part eh?
-
I meant to ask when was the last La Nina year.

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743. bobw999
11:59 AM EDT on July 10, 2007
has anyone noticed the odd timing difference between bobw and me?

What are you talking about?
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742. Tropicnerd13
3:59 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
what season was closest in the ammount of activity to 2005?
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740. Tropicnerd13
3:58 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
has anyone noticed the odd timing difference between bobw and me?
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739. swlaaggie
10:48 AM CDT on July 10, 2007
Thanks SJ. Are there any upper/lower shear limits that might be a prelude to looking for severe land based weather?
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738. nash28
3:57 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
I read the article over again, trying to see if maybe it is a typo, but they were just plain wrong.

Way to give out assbackwards info guys!

Great job TSR!
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737. Tropicnerd13
3:56 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
i think 2006.
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736. bobw999
11:57 AM EDT on July 10, 2007
When was the last El Nino year, 2004?

2006
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735. Tropicnerd13
3:53 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
kman, that sounds feasable. can anyone answer my question above?
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734. Delsol
11:54 AM EDT on July 10, 2007
When was the last El Nino year, 2004?
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733. StormJunkie
3:52 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
Afternoon all.

I have noticed that also laggie, it seems that the shear with pop storms actually enhances them and can add rotation/vorticity to the cells, hence potentially leading to tornados.
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731. Tropicnerd13
3:51 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
nash, i agree 100% it seems we can only guess what will happen ourselves, and judging by the atmospheric conditions, it will be an above active season.
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730. kmanislander
3:39 PM GMT on July 10, 2007
Trade winds blow from E to W. El Nino causes shear due to Westerlies, not easterly trades. My understanding of TSR's conclusion is based on strong Easterlies which would do two things. The first would be to have a cooling effect on the Atl. The second is that the easterly trades determine, in part, the speed of Westward moving systems. A wave moving faster than 20 mph has a real hard time closing off a W wind and thus forming a closed low.

Just my interpretation
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729. swlaaggie
10:45 AM CDT on July 10, 2007
Okay, I am now officially ocnfused but I know some of you might help me out.

Avid reader of local NWS forecast discussions. On more than one occasion, the forecaster has mentioned that he might have to issue severe warnings for the afternoon due to high CAPE and precipitable water readings, both of which I understand. However, what threw me was his inclusion of high shear readings as reasoning for possible severe warnings.

Yet, tropical shear tends to tear away storm tops thus inhibiting tropical formation which makes perfect sense to me. Why wouldn't this be the case for a land based storm?

tia

p.s. please excuse spelling errors - not much of a typer
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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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