Science Debate 2008

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 7:06 PM GMT on February 11, 2008

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The issues of global warming and climate change are important to many voters, yet the media has done a poor job asking the U.S. presidential candidates about these topics. In a study quoted by The Boston Globe, in 2007 the major TV networks asked presidential candidates 2,679 questions. Of those questions, only three were about global warming--the same number of questions that were asked about UFOs. With the presidential race narrowed down to four main candidates--Hillary Clinton, Mike Huckabee, John McCain, and Barack Obama--it's time that the candidates' views on climate change be given more attention. To address this need, the four major candidates have been invited to participate in Science Debate 2008, a verbal debate to be held on April 18, 2008, at Philadelphia's Franklin Institute. The debate is cosponsored by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the Council on Competitiveness, the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. Nearly 100 leading American universities and other organizations have signed on to promote the effort, along with many prominent scientists, writers, and members of Congress. The debate is designed to discover the candidates' views on many science-related topics, such as climate change, clean energy, health care, science education and technology in schools, scientific integrity, GM agriculture, transportation infrastructure, the genome, data privacy, intellectual property, pandemic diseases, the health of the oceans, water resources, stem cells, conservation and species loss, population, and the space program.

We need your help to make this debate happen! Contact the campaigns of the candidates to ask them to participate in the debate, sign a petition to approve of the debate, or write a letter to the editor of your local paper. Chris Mooney, who authored the excellent 2007 book, Storm World: Hurricanes, Politics, and the Battle Over Global Warming, is one of the leaders of the initiative, and has posted links one can use to help with these tasks, in his blog, The Intersection. Thanks for helping out!

Jeff Masters

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284. KoritheMan
8:33 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Siegen Lane lost power. Substation blew.

We almost lost power here in Prairieville. But as I said, according to a meteorologist down here, it was severe in Prairieville, even if the power stayed on.
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283. atmoaggie
8:32 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Siegen Lane lost power. Substation blew.

I hope the traffic lights are up. Perkins through I-10, Industriplex, Airline will be very ugly otherwise.
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282. KoritheMan
8:31 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Koritheman, Yea i hear ya, I would have loved to be at home and see it. I bet it was equally bad in Gonzales.

Your right though, usually if power doesnt go out it's not very severe.

It sure did put on a show though!


My aunt that works at Wal Mart down there said the building shook, so it may have been worse down there, believe it or not.
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281. EvilKarkyBR
8:25 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
I had something similar down here in Prairieville, but I had hail with it too. Gusts were probably around 45-50 mph, judging by what I've seen from past tropical storms and hurricanes. The sad thing is, it's not even March or April, the peak of severe weather down here, and yet we had it that bad. Imagine how bad it could get in THOSE months. Also, another sad thing is that it wasn't even a severe thunderstorm, just a strong one. It was close to being severe, but didn't quite make it. If it was severe, my power would've probably been knocked out.


Siegen Lane lost power. Substation blew.
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280. KoritheMan
8:25 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Actually, it may have been a severe storm. The TV meteorologist down here just said that in Prairieville, a chimney was blown over, hail caused damage, and something about a semi (I think), but I didn't catch that part too well.

If that's true, this is the first severe storm (from a meteorological standpoint, although other storms I've been through since then have most certainly been very bad, with one even knocking out the power) I've been through since 2004.
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279. atmoaggie
8:28 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Aggie, if your not already, your about to get raked by a nasty line that just developed quickly! It looks like it's going to sweep the entire north shore.

Watch it close.


Yeah. Wife is a nado-phobe (what is the real term for that?). I am all over it. Getting absolutely nothing done at work.
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278. hondaguy
2:28 PM CST on February 12, 2008
Ok so a bit late with this one. LOL

TORNADO WARNING NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE NEW ORLEANS LA 213 PM CST TUE FEB 12 2008
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN NEW ORLEANS HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR... NORTHERN ST. TAMMANY PARISH IN SOUTHEAST LOUISIANA... EXTREME SOUTH CENTRAL WASHINGTON PARISH IN SOUTHEAST LOUISIANA... NORTHWESTERN HANCOCK COUNTY IN SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI... SOUTHERN PEARL RIVER COUNTY IN SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI... THIS INCLUDES THE CITY OF PICAYUNE...

* UNTIL 245 PM CST

* AT 210 PM CST...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO 7 MILES WEST OF BUSH...OR ABOUT 10 MILES NORTHEAST OF COVINGTON...MOVING EAST AT 50 MPH.

* THE TORNADO WILL BE NEAR... BUSH BY 220 PM CST... PICAYUNE AND 6 MILES SOUTH OF MCNEIL BY 235 PM CST...

THE SAFEST PLACE TO BE DURING A TORNADO IS UNDER A WORKBENCH OR OTHER PIECE OF STURDY FURNITURE. SEEK SHELTER ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF THE BUILDING IN AN INTERIOR HALLWAY OR ROOM SUCH AS A CLOSET. USE BLANKETS OR PILLOWS TO COVER YOUR BODY AND ALWAYS STAY AWAY FROM WINDOWS.

IF IN MOBILE HOMES OR VEHICLES... EVACUATE THEM AND GET INSIDE A SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER. IF NO SHELTER IS AVAILABLE...LIE FLAT IN THE NEAREST DITCH OR OTHER LOW SPOT AND COVER YOUR HEAD WITH YOUR HANDS.

A TORNADO WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 400 PM CST TUESDAY AFTERNOON FOR SOUTHEAST LOUISIANA AND SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI. A TORNADO WATCH ALSO REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 800 PM CST TUESDAY EVENING FOR SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI.

LAT...LON 3068 8939 3046 8941 3052 9009 3070 9008 TIME...MOT...LOC 2013Z 273DEG 46KT 3060 8998

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276. hondaguy
2:25 PM CST on February 12, 2008
Koritheman, Yea i hear ya, I would have loved to be at home and see it. I bet it was equally bad in Gonzales.

Your right though, usually if power doesnt go out it's not very severe.

It sure did put on a show though!
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274. hondaguy
2:23 PM CST on February 12, 2008
256. atmoaggie 2:01 PM CST on February 12, 2008
255. Patrap 7:59 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Thanx for the Baton Rouge update honda. We seeing it heading passed you .Were awaiting that wind shift too


Likewise from St Tammany


Aggie, if your not already, your about to get raked by a nasty line that just developed quickly! It looks like it's going to sweep the entire north shore.

Watch it close.
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273. KoritheMan
8:24 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Good afternoon, W456.
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272. KoritheMan
8:22 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Storms just rolled through Baton Rouge and WOW!

I work on the 3rd floor so had a very nice view. I'd guess winds were near or above 30 - 40 mph with potentially higher gusts.

We have a medium tent on our windows...when the storm started it was so dark outside I had to cuff my hands with my face to the window to look out!

Great storm! Some of the girls up here at the reception desk said they saw something fly by the window (on the 3rd floor), and heard the building release pressure when the wind hit it.

Hope everyone fairs well through the squall line!


I had something similar down here in Prairieville, but I had hail with it too. Gusts were probably around 45-50 mph, judging by what I've seen from past tropical storms and hurricanes. The sad thing is, it's not even March or April, the peak of severe weather down here, and yet we had it that bad. Imagine how bad it could get in THOSE months. Also, another sad thing is that it wasn't even a severe thunderstorm, just a strong one. It was close to being severe, but didn't quite make it. If it was severe, my power would've probably been knocked out.
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271. Weather456
4:22 PM AST on February 12, 2008
Good afternoon to all
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270. GeoffreyWPB
3:19 PM EST on February 12, 2008
Tornado Watch for Palm Beach County
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268. atmoaggie
8:15 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Global Warming is only an unproven theory. This, of course, is not true

What? Proof? Please show me.

Yours truly,
-Not_Religious_Enough_to_Conduct_Science_Based_on_Belief_Alone
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267. hurricane23
3:12 PM EST on February 12, 2008
Exactly those clouds most of the time put a lid or should i say decrease the chances of things getting to ugly down here.We'll see but right now what i see for miami dade and broward counties is on and off rain showers which is very welcomed.
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266. weathermanwannabe
3:09 PM EST on February 12, 2008
Pretty amazing to see the "warm front" lifting up over Florida triggering storms and tornadoes on the East Coast and the "cold" front sweeping across Miss and LA towards the Panhandle with the same type of activity....Don't know what the final result will be as they continue to "meet" but all persons along the Gulf and extreme SE US really need to be on alert over the next 12-18 hours........Thank God that they seem to be quickly moving fronts that will not linger behind the rush of high pressure pushing the western front through........
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9402
265. sunlakedude
8:08 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Regarding Dr Masters call for increased publication of climate change issues in the press, I agree 100%. I don't want this to sound political but the truth is that Conservative elements in our country have bullied the press into minimizing the problems associated with climate change. Indeed, the official line coming out of Conservative circles is that Global Warming is only an unproven theory. This, of course, is not true. If an unusually severe cold spell hits a section of the country they will say "There, you see! There's no 'global warming'" when, in fact, a local incident of unusually cold weather does not disprove that the planet is warming overall. When Conservative pundits mouth such statements on the national news, hardly anyone challenges them. So the disinformation campaign continues while the problem of Global Climate Change continues to grow worse.
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263. Patrap
8:04 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Possible tornado near cocoa Beach in Fla,..KSC area.
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262. Patrap
8:03 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
I see those big uns on the N Shore...hope the line moves thru as showing...schools about to let out here
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261. hurricane23
3:02 PM EST on February 12, 2008
Good afternoon!

I just dont see anything severe shapeing up for southeast florida with this impressive CLOUD-COVER currently over the area.As i stated yesterday it looks like on and off rain the next 2 days.

www.AdriansWeather.com
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260. EvilKarkyBR
8:02 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
I'm in Baton Rouge as well. My cat started to freak out, was howling and wanting to be let inside.

Amazing storm. I could hear things blowing around outside and hitting the side of my apartment.
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259. atmoaggie
8:02 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
258 PM EST TUE FEB 12 2008

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MELBOURNE HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
CENTRAL BREVARD COUNTY IN EAST CENTRAL FLORIDA...
THIS INCLUDES THE CITIES OF...MERRITT ISLAND...PORT CANAVERAL...
CAPE CANAVERAL...PLAYALINDA BEACH...COCOA BEACH...

* UNTIL 330 PM EST

* AT 256 PM EST...THE PUBLIC REPORTED DAMAGE FROM A POSSIBLE TORNADO
IN COCOA BEACH. NICKLE SIZED HAIL HAD BEEN REPORTED AS WELL. THE
STORM WAS MOVING NORTH FROM PORT CANAVERAL AT 20 MPH. AN ADDITIONAL
STORM WAS LOCATED OVER SOUTH MERRITT ISLAND MOVING NORTH AT 20 MPH.
THIS STORM COULD PRODUCE A TORNADO AS WELL.

* OTHER LOCATIONS IN THE WARNING INCLUDE BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO
KENNEDY SPACE CENTER AND MERRITT ISLAND WILDLIFE REFUGE
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258. weathermanwannabe
2:57 PM EST on February 12, 2008
That is one nasty line of T-Storms and Tornado Activity sweeping across the Mid-Gulf......Ike, if you're around in DeFuniak, be careful later today and keep us posted......
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9402
257. atmoaggie
8:01 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Honestly, Pat, it looks like most of the convection is going to stay north of mid-Lake Pont.
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256. atmoaggie
8:00 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
255. Patrap 7:59 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Thanx for the Baton Rouge update honda. We seeing it heading passed you .Were awaiting that wind shift too


Likewise from St Tammany
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255. Patrap
7:57 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Thanx for the Baton Rouge update honda. We seeing it heading passed you .Were awaiting that wind shift too
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254. hondaguy
1:34 PM CST on February 12, 2008
Storms just rolled through Baton Rouge and WOW!

I work on the 3rd floor so had a very nice view. I'd guess winds were near or above 30 - 40 mph with potentially higher gusts.

We have a medium tent on our windows...when the storm started it was so dark outside I had to cuff my hands with my face to the window to look out!

Great storm! Some of the girls up here at the reception desk said they saw something fly by the window (on the 3rd floor), and heard the building release pressure when the wind hit it.

Hope everyone fairs well through the squall line!
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252. scwindsaloft
7:54 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Here we go again!
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251. atmoaggie
7:54 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
154 PM CST TUE FEB 12 2008

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN NEW ORLEANS HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
NORTH CENTRAL WASHINGTON PARISH IN SOUTHEAST LOUISIANA...
SOUTHEASTERN WALTHALL COUNTY IN SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI...

* UNTIL 215 PM CST

* AT 153 PM CST...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO NEAR DEXTER...OR
ABOUT 16 MILES SOUTHWEST OF COLUMBIA...MOVING NORTHEAST AT 50 MPH.

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250. atmoaggie
7:54 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
152 PM CST TUE FEB 12 2008

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN JACKSON HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
MARION COUNTY IN SOUTH CENTRAL MISSISSIPPI...
THIS INCLUDES THE CITIES OF...KOKOMO...COLUMBIA...
NORTHWESTERN LAMAR COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST MISSISSIPPI...

* UNTIL 230 PM CST

* AT 152 PM CST...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE METEOROLOGISTS DETECTED A
TORNADO NEAR KOKOMO...MOVING NORTHEAST AT 50 MPH.

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249. Patrap
7:50 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Really seeing a lot of energy swinging in to Se La... man its muggy here.
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248. atmoaggie
7:47 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
See an interesting bit on Nados and La Nina here. See the part about 1/2 down.
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246. TampaSpin
2:43 PM EST on February 12, 2008
FALLING RAPIDLY........wow
Conditions at 42003 as of
(1:49 pm EST)
1849 GMT on 02/12/2008: Unit of Measure: Wind Direction (WDIR): SE ( 140 deg true )
Wind Speed (WSPD): 15.5 kts
Wind Gust (GST): 19.4 kts
Wave Height (WVHT): 5.6 ft
Dominant Wave Period (DPD): 7 sec
Average Period (APD): 5.8 sec
Mean Wave Direction (MWD): SE ( 132 deg true )
Atmospheric Pressure (PRES): 29.92 in
Pressure Tendency (PTDY): -0.10 in ( Falling Rapidly )
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20448
244. atmoaggie
7:42 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
140 PM CST TUE FEB 12 2008

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN JACKSON HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
NOXUBEE COUNTY IN EAST CENTRAL MISSISSIPPI...
SOUTHEASTERN LOWNDES COUNTY IN NORTHEAST MISSISSIPPI...

* UNTIL 245 PM CST

* AT 140 PM CST...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE METEOROLOGISTS DETECTED A
TORNADO NEAR MACON...OR ABOUT 21 MILES NORTHEAST OF PRESTON...
MOVING NORTHEAST AT 30 MPH.
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243. atmoaggie
7:40 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
140 PM CST TUE FEB 12 2008

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN NEW ORLEANS HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
NORTHWESTERN ST. TAMMANY PARISH IN SOUTHEAST LOUISIANA...
CENTRAL TANGIPAHOA PARISH IN SOUTHEAST LOUISIANA...
SOUTH CENTRAL WASHINGTON PARISH IN SOUTHEAST LOUISIANA...

* UNTIL 215 PM CST

* AT 136 PM CST...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO NEAR
INDEPENDENCE...OR ABOUT 8 MILES SOUTH OF AMITE...MOVING EAST AT 50
MPH.
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241. TheCaneWhisperer
7:38 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Here we go NEwx, tornado's already.
240. TampaSpin
2:36 PM EST on February 12, 2008
I don't want to overplay the setup that is occuring but it seems all 3 features that will be a player THE low in the GOM, the cold front, and the Warm front heading north are all very strong features, maybe stronger that SPC have estimated as of present. JMO.
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20448
238. NEwxguy
7:34 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
STL,I think thats going to apply over most of the midwest and east.We've had more thunderstorm activity here in the Northeast than we had in the summer
Member Since: September 6, 2007 Posts: 888 Comments: 15988
237. TampaSpin
2:32 PM EST on February 12, 2008
It looks like the Warm front from the South heading north is very strong also.....this is not good.
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20448
235. atmoaggie
7:30 PM GMT on February 12, 2008
Aha! See Link.

"In the case of F2 and greater tornadoes, more appear to occur during La Nina months. La Nina seasons are normally associated with warmer than average temperatures in the South, producing a sharper frontal zone between warmer air and the normally cold arctic air to the north. During this time, Deep South weather is more unstable and colliding air masses set the stage for more tornadoes. A study of the top 15 tornadic outbreaks (at least 40 tornadoes) showed that only one outbreak occurred during an El Nino event. Six occurred during a La Nina event, while the remaining eight occurred during neutral ENSO years."
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234. NEwxguy
7:28 PM GMT on February 12, 2008

Tornado Warning

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

TORNADO WARNING
FLC009-122000-
/O.NEW.KMLB.TO.W.0001.080212T1924Z-080212T2000Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MELBOURNE FL
224 PM EST TUE FEB 12 2008

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MELBOURNE HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
NORTHEASTERN BREVARD COUNTY IN EAST CENTRAL FLORIDA...
THIS INCLUDES THE CITIES OF...PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE...MERRITT
ISLAND...PORT CANAVERAL...CAPE CANAVERAL...PLAYALINDA
BEACH...PATRICK AIRFORCE BASE...HAULOVER CANAL...COCOA BEACH...


* UNTIL 300 PM EST

* AT 218 PM EST...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO NEAR PATRICK
AIRFORCE BASE...MOVING NORTH AT 20 MPH.

* THE TORNADO WILL BE NEAR...
CAPE CANAVERAL BY 235 PM EST...
JETTY PARK AND PORT CANAVERAL BY 240 PM EST...
9 MILES EAST OF KENNEDY SPACE CENTER BY 300 PM EST...

HEAVY RAINFALL MAY OBSCURE THIS TORNADO. TAKE COVER NOW! IF YOU WAIT
TO SEE OR HEAR IT COMING...IT MAY BE TOO LATE TO GET TO A SAFE
PLACE. A FUNNEL CLOUD WAS REPORTED EAST OF THE INTERSECTION OF
STATE ROAD 520 AND U.S. 1 OVER THE INTRACOASTAL WATERS.

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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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