Tracking El Niño: Summertime Update

By: Dr. Ricky Rood , 10:49 PM GMT on August 01, 2014

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Tracking El Niño: Summertime Update

Back in May 2014, I wrote a couple of blogs about El Niño predictions for this year (Tracking El Niño and Underlying Models). For those who need it, there are links to basic information such as definitions of terms in those blogs. This entry is an update.

One quote I want to bring forward from the May 20, 2014 entry, “Note, none of these centers are predicting, yet, strong, super or monster. I’m not as smart as those others [predicting the super and the monster], so right now I am steering away from “monster,” and looking forward to what we learn about prediction, the climate as a whole and, of course, how we communicate our science.”

I had three reasons to avoid going along with the “super” and the “monster.” First, reading the dispassionate words of several forecast centers, there was little suggestion of an extraordinarily strong event. Second, it’s usually not wise to predict extraordinary extremes without a lot of evidence, because extremes are rare. Finally, as was the case in my cranky response to the return of the polar vortex, the increasing exaggeration and personification of weather events and their implications for climate change are distinctly negative contributions. Of course, it probably costs me readers.

I’m not very good with search engines and analytics, so forgive my shortcomings in actually providing meaningful numbers. I used the Search Tools in Google and looked at the last three months. I’m just going to take a few titles and links from the first page of the results.

May 2014:

El Niño is coming: Epic event ahead? - The Weather Network

We Are heading for the Most Powerful Super El Niño Event

Are We Heading for a Worrying Super El Niño?

Real Climate: El Niño or Bust (thank goodness)

June 2014:

Odds Against Formation of a 'Super El Niño,' Experts Say

Looks like yet another false alarm. Probably no super monster El Niño coming this year

El Niño 2014: Early strength fades

Warmist Year Of Disappointment? Likelihood Of “Super El Niño” Rapidly Fading…Arctic Set For Impressive Rebound

July 2014:

El Niño plays coy with forecasters in 2014

While a 'super' El Niño looks to be off the table, what does develop this year might not deliver what many Canadians are hoping for

The 2014 El Niño is looking more and more like a bust



What’s the three month arc there? From super and monster to yet another false alarm and bust. What was the evidentiary information for super and monster as adjectives back in May? How did super and monster enter into and flash to the top of headlines? Worth studying and thinking about.

In my entry from May 29, 2014 I wrote, “even a moderate El Niño this year is likely to lead to the hottest year on record.” My rationale for this statement is that we are living in the hottest decade since we have had easily defended direct temperature measurements. We have remained warm, globally, despite relatively cool temperatures in the eastern Pacific. Given the importance of the eastern Pacific to the global picture, even a small break in the cool pattern is likely to lead to globally historic highs. Though too early to declare 2014 as warmest, as summarized in Jeff Master’s July 24, 2014 entry, June 2014 was the warmest June since modern temperature records began in 1880, May 2014 the warmest May, April 2014 the warmest April.

OK what’s happening with El Niño? I want to trace this through the prediction centers and the last three months. Also it’s an exercise in the organization and usability of web-based information.

From the Climate Prediction Center

May 8, 2014, Diagnostic Discussion (and my blog)

“Chance of El Niño increases during the remainder of the year, exceeding 65% during summer.”

June 5, 2014, Diagnostic Discussion

“The chance of El Niño is 70% during the Northern Hemisphere summer and reaches 80% during the fall and winter.”

July 10, 2014, Diagnostic Discussion

“The chance of El Niño is about 70% during the Northern Hemisphere summer and is close to 80% during the fall and early winter.”

July 28, 2014 (Update)

“ENSO-neutral conditions continue. // Sea surface temperatures (SST) are above-average in the eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean. // Tropical rainfall is slightly enhanced over Indonesia and in the western equatorial Pacific. // Chance of El Niño is about 70% during the Northern Hemisphere summer and is close to 80% during the fall and winter.”

From the Japanese Meteorological Agency

May, 2014, El Niño Outlook (from my blog, can’t find archive on JMA page)

“It is likely that El Niño conditions will develop during the northern hemisphere summer and will continue to autumn.”

July 10, 2014, El Niño Outlook

“El Niño conditions did not form in June, though the NINO.3 SST deviation from normal increased from May to June. // The possibility of development of El Niño conditions in this summer is lower than previous forecasts. // It is likely that El Niño conditions will develop during the northern hemisphere autumn.”

From the Australian Bureau of Meteorology

May 6, 2014, ENSO Wrap-Up (and my blog)
“Climate models surveyed by the Bureau suggest El Niño development is possible as early as July. These factors indicate that while El Niño in 2014 cannot be guaranteed, the likelihood of an event developing remains at least 70% and we are at El Niño ALERT level.”

June 3 2014, ENSO Wrap-Up

“The tropical Pacific Ocean remains on track for El Niño in 2014, with just over half of the climate models surveyed by the Bureau suggesting El Niño will become established by August. An El Niño ALERT remains in place, indicating at least a 70% chance of an El Niño developing in 2014.”

July 1, 2014, ENSO Wrap-Up

“While the tropical Pacific Ocean surface temperature is currently at levels typically El Niño ALERT associated with a weak El Niño, waters below the surface have cooled and atmospheric patterns continue to remain neutral.

However, over the past fortnight changes have occurred in the atmosphere that may be a response to the warm surface waters–the Southern Oscillation Index has dropped by over 10 points, and weakened trade winds have re-appeared.

These changes would need to persist for several weeks in order for an El Niño to be considered established, and it remains possible they are simply related to shorter term weather variability.

Climate models surveyed by the Bureau continue to indicate that El Niño is likely to develop by spring 2014. The Bureau's ENSO Tracker remains at El Niño ALERT, indicating at least a 70% chance of El Niño developing in 2014.”

July 29, 2014, ENSO Wrap-Up

“Despite the tropical Pacific Ocean being primed for an El Niño during much of the first half of 2014, the atmosphere above has largely failed to respond, and hence the ocean and atmosphere have not reinforced each other. As a result, some cooling has now taken place in the central and eastern tropical Pacific Ocean, with most of the key NINO regions returning to neutral values.

While the chance of an El Niño in 2014 has clearly eased, warmer-than-average waters persist in parts of the tropical Pacific, and the (slight) majority of climate models suggest El Niño remains likely for spring. Hence the establishment of El Niño before year's end cannot be ruled out. If an El Niño were to occur, it is increasingly unlikely to be a strong event.”

From the International Research Institute,

2014 May Quick Look (and my blog)

“During April through mid-May the observed ENSO conditions moved from warm-neutral to the borderline of a weak El Niño condition. Most of the ENSO prediction models indicate a continued warming trend, with a transition to sustained El Niño conditions by the early northern summer.”

2014 June Quick Look

“During May through mid-June the observed ENSO conditions remained near the borderline of a weak El Niño condition in the ocean, but the atmosphere so far has shown little involvement. Most of the ENSO prediction models indicate more warming coming in the months ahead, leading to sustained El Niño conditions by the middle of northern summer.”

2014 July Quick Look (There are some confused links on IRI page, that I will need to fix in the future.)

“During June through early-July the observed ENSO conditions remained near the borderline of a weak El Niño condition in the ocean, but the atmosphere so far has shown little involvement. Most of the ENSO prediction models indicate more warming coming in the months ahead, leading to sustained El Niño conditions by the middle or late portion of northern summer.”


Returning here to some of the details in the Climate Prediction Center’s Diagnostic Discussion.

“Over the last month, no significant change was evident in the model forecasts of ENSO, with the majority of models indicating El Niño onset within June-August and continuing into early 2015. The chance of a strong El Niño is not favored in any of the ensemble averages for Niño-3.4. At this time, the forecasters anticipate El Niño will peak at weak-to-moderate strength during the late fall and early winter (3-month values of the Niño-3.4 index between 0.5oC and 1.4oC). The chance of El Niño is about 70% during the Northern Hemisphere summer and is close to 80% during the fall and early winter.”

Analysis at the end of a blog

The forecast summaries from these four centers are consistent in the sense that none of them are calling for a strong El Niño, much less a super or monster El Niño. It is also true, that the forecast centers summaries NEVER called for a strong El Niño in their public releases of information.

All of the centers are maintaining that it is more likely than not that the criteria for an El Niño will be met. The onset, originally predicted for the middle of northern hemisphere summer, keeps moving into the future. The strength of predicted El Niño is projected to be from weak to moderate.

Looking at the press and blogs reports, I would be interested to see in the blog comments how people think “super” and “monster” entered into the discussion. There is a burst of the adjectives in the press and blogs in May, followed quite quickly in June by people distancing themselves from the extreme description. Accompanying this distancing is the growth of commentary in the press and blogs about exaggerated claims and failed models. I point out explicitly, there is no language of exaggeration in the summaries from the prediction centers, which should be viewed as the basic knowledge-based information. Therefore, there is no foundation to say these models have failed in any fundamental sense.

Looking more deeply at the discussions that are only summarized above, the models originally anticipated an atmospheric response to the changes in the sea surface temperature. These responses are not being realized, which is summarized a couple of places above as “atmosphere so far has shown little involvement.” This does, to perhaps only me, raise the question about the state of the atmosphere going into the beginning of the El Niño event. As noted in my previous blogs, there are a couple of documented and persistent extremes, the changes in the Arctic and the very strong trade winds in the eastern Pacific. This brings me back to my conjecture “From the point of view of predicting El Niño, during this prediction cycle we have levels of sea ice that are far lower than in previous El Niño cycles. This changes the heat exchange between the atmosphere and ocean in the Arctic. This is outside of the range of previous variability, which intrinsically increases the uncertainty in the forecast.” Might be a good idea for a proposal.

I close with a mention of NOAA’s ENSO Blog. Michelle L’Heureux wrote an entry on July 25, 2014 entitled What’s the hold up, El Niño? Michelle L’Heureux also wrote Real Climate: El Niño or Bust, where I put the “thank goodness” above. Perhaps that’s the name to look for El Niño news this summer.


r

I like the effort from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology to summarize the criteria for El Niño and La Niña watches, alerts and existence, in addition to the neutral phase.



Figure 1: ENSO Tracker indicating an El Niño WATCH (left) and El Niño ALERT (right). Far more details from Australian Bureau of Meteorology. In the July 29, 2014 update, the Australian Bureau of Meteorology shifted from Alert to Watch

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271. WunderAlertBot (Admin)
8:35 PM GMT on August 14, 2014
RickyRood has created a new entry.
270. barbamz
7:11 PM GMT on August 14, 2014
Group therapy tackles climate change anxiety
Deutsche Welle English, August 14,2014
Psychotherapist Rosemary Randall counsels people on their feelings of powerlessness and anxiety around climate change issues. In this interview with DW, she explains how this can contribute to a neccesary transformation.
Climate change can be overwhelming - a person often ends up feeling disengaged and helpless, or even anxious about the issue of climate change. This can lead to a vicious cycle, where a person doesn't take action because they feel powerless, which in turn prevents transformative change from taking place.
In the United Kingdom, psychotherapist Rosemary Randall has set up a special kind of therapy to tackle "climate anxiety." She's set up workshops called Carbon Conversations, which focus on climate change communication and community engagement. DW spoke with her about this work. ...
Member Since: October 25, 2008 Posts: 58 Comments: 6249
269. Xulonn
6:48 PM GMT on August 14, 2014
Quoting 267. yonzabam:

If the methane in the Siberian hole was mixed with air and exploded (and how else would it create such a crater?), then it wouldn't be methane when it emerged. It would be oxidised to CO2 and H2O.
I think it was more likely a burp - or like a champagne cork popping - and not a combustion-based "explosion"..

It is interesting, since methane is about half as dense as air, that they would find concentrations of nearly 10% at the bottom of the holes according based on recent measurements by Russian scientists. I would expect methane to rise and mix out, although I am unfamiliar with the relevant fluid dynamics. This bit of evidence does seem to indicate that there is rapid seeping of methane into the holes from the permafrost walls.
Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1490
268. JohnLonergan
6:42 PM GMT on August 14, 2014
Science And Journalism Groups Accuse EPA Of Stopping Science Advisers From Talking To Press
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been criticised for instructing scientists to avoid interacting with journalists direcly. All enquiries should be diverted through the EPA's press office and "appropriately managed", an EPA memorandum sent in April said. Scientific and journalistic organisations have criticised the instruction for giving the impression the EPA is prioritising message-management over informing the public.

Read more at Climate Progress ...
Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3452
267. yonzabam
6:19 PM GMT on August 14, 2014
If the methane in the Siberian hole was mixed with air and exploded (and how else would it create such a crater?), then it wouldn't be methane when it emerged. It would be oxidised to CO2 and H2O.
Member Since: July 20, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 2955
266. JohnLonergan
6:18 PM GMT on August 14, 2014
Quoting 265. Xulonn:

I saw the correct formatting in the RC linked page, but it was an opportunity to have fun with numbers and units.

I figured you'd check the original,unlike some we know, but I felt like taking a gratuitous swipe @ @#**& blog software
Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3452
265. Xulonn
6:06 PM GMT on August 14, 2014
Quoting 264. JohnLonergan:
Yup, there's an error, the @#**& blog software can't handle simple concepts like 10 superscript 15 as it was written in the RC post.
I saw the correct formatting in the RC linked page, but it was an opportunity to have fun with numbers and units.
Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1490
264. JohnLonergan
5:30 PM GMT on August 14, 2014
Quoting 262. Xulonn:

Since 1015 grams equals 2.24 pounds, that of course, translates into

1 gigaton = 2.24 pounds! Huh? Say what?

Methinks there is an error - A gigatonne actually is 10^15 grams (1,000,000,000,000,000 grams)

Or 2,204,622,621,850 pounds

Of course, since the slug is a proper British unit of mass, a gigatonne equals 68,521,765,562 slugs.

And that many slugs equals 5,710,147,130 blobs.

So one gigatonne = 5,710,147,130 blobs.

(The blob is the inch version of the slug (1 blob = 1 lb. s2/in = 12 slugs) or equivalent to 175.126 kg. This unit is also called slinch (a portmanteau of the words slug and inch). Slang terms include slugette, and a snail.)

However you measure it, that's a lot of methane!


Yup, there's an error, the @#**& blog software can't handle simple concepts like 10 superscript 15 as it was written in the RC post.
Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3452
263. indianrivguy
3:49 PM GMT on August 14, 2014
Quoting 262. Xulonn:

Since 1015 grams equals 2.24 pounds, that of course, translates into

1 gigaton = 2.24 pounds! Huh? Say what?

Methinks there is an error - A gigatonne actually is 10^15 grams (1,000,000,000,000,000 grams)

Or 2,204,622,621,850 pounds

Of course, since the slug is a proper British unit of mass, a gigatonne equals 68,521,765,562 slugs.

And that many slugs equals 5,710,147,130 blobs.

So one gigatonne = 5,710,147,130 blobs.

(The blob is the inch version of the slug (1 blob = 1 lb. s2/in = 12 slugs) or equivalent to 175.126 kg. This unit is also called slinch (a portmanteau of the words slug and inch). Slang terms include slugette, and a snail.)

However you measure it, that's a lot of methane!


never had to think in terms of quadrillion... extraordinary number..
Member Since: September 23, 2006 Posts: 1 Comments: 2585
262. Xulonn
3:31 PM GMT on August 14, 2014
Quoting 261. JohnLonergan:
(a gigaton is 1015 grams)
Since 1015 grams equals 2.24 pounds, that of course, translates into

1 gigaton = 2.24 pounds! Huh? Say what?

Methinks there is an error - A gigatonne actually is 10^15 grams (1,000,000,000,000,000 grams)

Or 2,204,622,621,850 pounds

Of course, since the slug is a proper British unit of mass, a gigatonne equals 68,521,765,562 slugs.

And that many slugs equals 5,710,147,130 blobs.

So one gigatonne = 5,710,147,130 blobs.

(The blob is the inch version of the slug (1 blob = 1 lb. s2/in = 12 slugs) or equivalent to 175.126 kg. This unit is also called slinch (a portmanteau of the words slug and inch). Slang terms include slugette, and a snail.)

However you measure it, that's a lot of methane!
Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1490
261. JohnLonergan
11:59 AM GMT on August 14, 2014
How much methane came out of that hole in Siberia?

Siberia has explosion holes in it that smell like methane, and there are newly found bubbles of methane in the Arctic Ocean. As a result, journalists are contacting me assuming that the Arctic Methane Apocalypse has begun. However, as a climate scientist I remain much more concerned about the fossil fuel industry than I am about Arctic methane. Short answer: It would take about 20,000,000 such eruptions within a few years to generate the standard Arctic Methane Apocalypse that people have been talking about. Here’s where that statement comes from:

How much methane emission is “a lot”? The yardstick here comes from Natalie Shakhova, an Arctic methane oceanographer and modeler at the University of Fairbanks. She proposed that 50 Gton of methane (a gigaton is 1015 grams) might erupt from the Arctic on a short time scale Shakhova (2010). Let’s call this a “Shakhova” event. There would be significant short-term climate disruption from a Shakhova event, with economic consequences explored by Whiteman et al Whiteman et al (2013). The radiative forcing right after the release would be similar to that from fossil fuel CO2 by the end of the century, but subsiding quickly rather than continuing to grow as business-as-usual CO2 does.

I and others have been skeptical of the possibility that so much methane could escape from the Arctic so quickly, given the century to millennial time scale of warming the permafrost and ocean sediments, and point out that if the carbon is released slowly, the climate impacts will be small. But now that explosion holes are being found in Siberia, the question is

How much methane came out of that hole in Siberia? The hole is about 80 meters in diameter and 60-100 meters deep.

It’s hard to say exactly how much methane did this, because perhaps the crater allowed methane to be released from the surrounding soil. There may be emissions in the future from permafrost melting laterally from the sides of the hole. But for a start let’s assume that the volume of the hole is the same as the volume of the original, now escaped, bubble. Gases are compressible, so we need to know what its pressure was. The deeper in the Earth it was, the higher the pressure, but if we are concerned about gas whose release might be triggered by climate warming, we should look for pockets that come close to the surface. Deep pockets might take thousands of years for surface warming to reach. The mass of a solid cap ten meters thick would increase the pressure underneath it to about four atmospheres, plus there may have been some overpressure. Let’s assume a pressure of ten atmospheres (enough to hold up the atmosphere plus about 30 meters of rock).

If the bubble was pure methane, it would have contained about … wait for it … 0.000003 Gtons of methane. In other words, building a Shakhova event from these explosions would take approximately 20,000,000 explosions, all within a few years, or else the climate impact of the methane would be muted by the lifetime effect.

What about the bubbles of methane they just found in the Arctic ocean? There were reports this summer of a new expedition to the Siberian margin, documenting vast plumes of methane bubbles rising from sediments ~500 meters water depth.



It is certainly believable that warming ocean waters could trigger an increase in methane emissions to the atmosphere, and that the time scale for changing ocean temperatures can be fast due to circulation changes (we are seeing the same thing in the Antarctic). But the time scale for heat to diffuse into the sediment, where methane hydrate can be found, should be slow, like that for permafrost on land or slower. More importantly, the atmospheric methane flux from the Arctic Ocean is really small (extrapolating estimates from Kort et al 2012), even compared with emissions from the Arctic land surface, which is itself only a few percent of global emissions (dominated by human sources and tropical wetlands).

In conclusion, despite recent explosions suggesting the contrary, I still feel that the future of Earth’s climate in this century and beyond will be determined mostly by the fossil fuel industry, and not by Arctic methane. We should keep our eyes on the ball.

Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3452
260. LowerCal
10:52 PM GMT on August 13, 2014
259. JohnLonergan
8:44 PM GMT on August 13, 2014
Upper-tropospheric moistening in response to anthropogenic warming

Significance

The fact that water vapor is the most dominant greenhouse gas underscores the need for an accurate understanding of the changes in its distribution over space and time. Although satellite observations have revealed a moistening trend in the upper troposphere, it has been unclear whether the observed moistening is a facet of natural variability or a direct result of human activities. Here, we use a set of coordinated model experiments to confirm that the satellite-observed increase in upper-tropospheric water vapor over the last three decades is primarily attributable to human activities. This attribution has significant implications for climate sciences because it corroborates the presence of the largest positive feedback in the climate system.

Abstract

Water vapor in the upper troposphere strongly regulates the strength of water-vapor feedback, which is the primary process for amplifying the response of the climate system to external radiative forcings. Monitoring changes in upper-tropospheric water vapor and scrutinizing the causes of such changes are therefore of great importance for establishing the credibility of model projections of past and future climates. Here, we use coupled ocean–atmosphere model simulations under different climate-forcing scenarios to investigate satellite-observed changes in global-mean upper-tropospheric water vapor. Our analysis demonstrates that the upper-tropospheric moistening observed over the period 1979–2005 cannot be explained by natural causes and results principally from an anthropogenic warming of the climate. By attributing the observed increase directly to human activities, this study verifies the presence of the largest known feedback mechanism for amplifying anthropogenic climate change.

Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3452
258. Neapolitan
4:45 PM GMT on August 13, 2014
Quoting 255. ColoradoBob1:

The melt season is far from over. There are 2 months left, remember summer is growing , winter is shrinking.


To clarify. so far as extent and area are concerned, there are between about 3.5 and 5.5 weeks left in this year's melt season. Volume bottoms out in about 6-8 weeks.
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13603
257. Xulonn
4:24 PM GMT on August 13, 2014
While searching for a graph for my last post on smoke, soot, albedo, and ice melt. (which was more of a short essay rather than a comment), I came across a great resource.

I plan to scan/read this e-textbook, and recommend it for anyone who wants to learn - or revisit - the subject of physical geography. The website was created by Dr. Michael Pidwirny & Scott Jones of the University of British Columbia at Okanagan.

I highly recommend this resource for anyone here who wants to improve their foundation for understanding AGW/CC by learning more about the earth's physical systems and dynamics.

LINK to PhysicalGeography.net

FUNDAMENTALS OF PHYSICAL GEOGRAPHY (2nd Edition)

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction to Physical Geography

Chapter 2: Maps, Remote Sensing, and GIS

Chapter 3: The Science of Physical Geography

Chapter 4: Introduction to Systems Theory

Chapter 5: The Universe, Earth, Natural Spheres, and Gaia

Chapter 6: Energy and Matter

Chapter 7: Introduction to the Atmosphere

Chapter 8: Introduction to the Hydrosphere

Chapter 9: Introduction to the Biosphere

Chapter 10: Introduction to the Lithosphere
Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1490
256. Xulonn
4:13 PM GMT on August 13, 2014
Quoting 255. ColoradoBob1:

254. Xulonn

Thanks, ............... the sun could show up , and melt ice like we've never seen . It's all covered with dust and soot. The melt season is far from over. There are 2 months left, remember summer is growing , winter is shrinking.

Sweden is on fire , the NWT is on fire , East Siberia is on fire , they show no signs of laying down . Remember summer is growing , winter is shrinking.

As far the ASiB , they never watch what is going on around the Arctic. For them the ASI lives in a fairy tale. I've been poking them, but they are so fixed on what they know. They never look beyond the beach, and that is their flaw.
We are nearly two months past the summer solstice, the days in the Arctic are getting shorter, and daily solar irradiance is decreasing in the Arctic.

(The below graph is from the University of British Columbia's "Fundamentals pf Physical Geography" online e-book at PhysicalGeography.net



I don't see evidence of an effect on Arctic sea ice that could be attributed to this year's massive burn area and the quantity of smoke and soot from high latitude wildfires. Smoke and soot are mentioned occasionally at the ASIB as potentially having an effect, but there has not been a significant soot-related decrease in Arctic sea ice albedo this year. This is probably because the winds have not carried the smoke and soot to the sea ice. The sun did indeed show up this year, and although it put the ice into terrible condition, the wind and current factors have not been favorable for massive melting.

We are still technically in the "peak" period of annual melting for Arctic sea ice, but unless there is a massive uptick in daily melt due to unusual conditions (even for this AGW/CC era) over the next few weeks, 2014 will not even be in the top five years of minimum area and extent.

Glaciers and ice sheets are locations where soot is really a problem, because once you get through the seasonal high-albedo snow, the soot stays on top and doesn't disappear. Soot-caused darkening (albedo reduction) can increase as annual layers of soot melt down to earlier years accumulation of dark material that does not run off. This retention of soot makes many glaciers dark gray and ugly as each melt season evolves. As glaciers and ice sheets melt, their surface retreats downward to ice that can be up to thousands of years old - with soot accumulating on the top where melting is greatest. However, on the nearly horizontal surfaces of some of the flatter ice sheets such as in Greenland, some of the soot could dissolve in melt ponds, and be flushed away via moulins and surface and bottom meltwater streams.

On sea ice, the soot simply goes into ocean waters when the ice melts, and is not present in the vast area of FYI (first year ice) the next melt season, so there is no cumulative impact of soot on albedo. However, retained soot could be a factor with MYI (multi-year ice.

When you apply a bit of critical thinking, even a layperson can see the variations of the effect of soot on the melting of high latitude/altitude ice of different types. (Although I did have a bit of training in basic natural process observation and analysis as an ecology and conservation undergraduate student at U.S. Berkeley many years ago.)

Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1490
255. ColoradoBob1
2:36 AM GMT on August 13, 2014
254. Xulonn

Thanks, ............... the sun could show up , and melt ice like we've never seen . It's all covered with dust and soot. The melt season is far from over. There are 2 months left, remember summer is growing , winter is shrinking.

Sweden is on fire , the NWT is on fire , East Siberia is on fire , they show no signs of laying down . Remember summer is growing , winter is shrinking.

As far the ASiB , they never watch what is going on around the Arctic. For them the ASI lives in a fairy tale. I've been poking them, but they are so fixed on what they know. They never look beyond the beach, and that is their flaw.
Member Since: August 13, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 2727
254. Xulonn
1:32 AM GMT on August 13, 2014
Quoting 252. ColoradoBob1:

I quote myself because I go and find more information, more background. Usually a link to pictures
Explanation understood - thanks for understanding my curiosity and not taking offense.

The 2014 Arctic Melt Season thread at the Arctic Sea Ice Forum has been interesting to follow this season as we head into our last few weeks of melt. Temperatures and sunlight were conducive to melting this year, but winds were light and currents not favorable for mixing and melting the ice, and transport south out of the Arctic via the Fram on the east side of Greenland, so area and extent are in 8th and 6th place respectively at this point in time. There is currently one last medium range forecast for favorable melt conditions, but its beginning to look like 2014 will go down as a stable year for the ice with no major growth or melt.

The ice is currently in terrible condition, but without favorable winds and currents for melting, it will simply refreeze next month and continue freezing throughout the winter.
Member Since: June 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 1490
253. ColoradoBob1
1:01 AM GMT on August 13, 2014
247. Xulonn

B-17's daughters still sail in the Southern Ocean. 14 years later. Each and every one would sink any ship that meet them.
Member Since: August 13, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 2727
252. ColoradoBob1
12:51 AM GMT on August 13, 2014
247. Xulonn

It's pretty simple, I find something and post it ( Heavy fires destroy forests in Russian Far East ), and then do some more digging , and link that to it, for context.

For example, the last post was all tied to the Russian fires :

Aqua/MODIS
2014/224
08/12/2014
02:25 UTC

Smoke over eastern Russia
What does one see ? A long rooster tail of smoke flowing North onto the ice pack.

If one clicks the 250 meter resolution , and looks closely at the sea ice to the Northeast , you can see it is grey, lots of soot on the ice pack. And if one looks closely at the coast line, huge amounts of sediment flooding into the sea. Not caused by flooding from rains, but permafrost thawing, The rivers look like coffee with milk.

If one reads the Russian "news" , it always helps to see what the Lance MODIS images are seeing.

I quote myself because I go and find more information , more background. Usually a link to pictures.

By the way, this area is where Igor Semiletov, found his kilometer wide methane plumes. Seeing all that grey ice & thawed mud flow into the East Siberian Sea , doesn't make me happy.

247. Xulonn
Thanks for reading what I post, I have learned more here than any site I have ever visited. And I have been watching this stuff ever since B-17 calved from Antarctica . It was the size of Delaware, it was the first thing I ever followed on the web.
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251. JohnLonergan
10:30 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
'Climate Connections' Radio Series to Begin Airing on August 18

ale Climate Connections — formerly The Yale Forum on Climate Change & The Media — in mid-August begins radio and online distribution of a new daily 90-second radio series, "Climate Connections." The broadcasts will be provided at no cost to public, university, community, and alternative radio stations and others interested in regularly airing it.
Initial broadcasts and website access to the individual stories are to begin August 18.
"Climate Connections" aims to help radio listeners understand how climate change is impacting our lives and what diverse people and organizations are doing to reduce the associated risks. The series "connects the dots" between climate change and energy, extreme weather, public health, food and water, jobs and the economy, national security, the creative arts, and religious and moral values, among other themes.
Many of the broadcasts will include the voice of an individual affected by or helping to solve the challenges posed by a changing climate: the voice of a farmer or rancher describing the impacts of the Great Plains drought on their livelihood; a homeowner describing the benefits of rooftop solar; or a rabbi explaining how the concept of tikkun olam ("repairing the world") applies to climate change. Consistent with the scientific evidence, each of these and many other voices will help translate climate change from an abstract and psychologically distant problem into a concrete story about how climate change is affecting our lives.
Two sample "Climate Connections" broadcasts are available here and here.
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250. JohnLonergan
10:23 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
From the BOM:

El Niño still a possibility for 2014



The Pacific Ocean has shown some renewed signs of El Niño development. Some warming has occurred in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean in the recent fortnight, due to a weakening of the trade winds. If the trade winds remain weak, more warming towards El Niño thresholds is possible.
The Bureau’s ENSO Tracker remains at WATCH status. This means the chance of an El Niño developing in 2014 is at least 50%, which is double the normal likelihood of an event. Five of the eight climate models surveyed by the Bureau suggest El Niño is likely for spring. However, if El Niño were to occur, it is unlikely to be a strong event.
El Niño is often associated with below-average rainfall over southern and eastern inland areas of Australia and above-average daytime temperatures over southern Australia. Similar impacts regularly occur prior to the event becoming fully established.
The Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) index has been below −0.4 °C (the negative IOD threshold) since mid-June, which means 2014 is now considered a negative IOD year. Model outlooks suggest this negative IOD event is likely to be relatively short-lived, with the Indian Ocean returning to neutral by spring. A negative IOD pattern typically brings wetter winter and spring conditions to inland and southern Australia, and could be countering the effects of the current El Niño-like ocean pattern in the Pacific.
Next update expected on 26 August 2014
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249. JohnLonergan
10:09 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
WHAT COMES TO THE RESCUE WHEN FOUR AGING NUCLEAR PLANTS SHUT DOWN IN THE U.K.?

A standard criticism of wind and solar power is that they are intermittent energy sources and depend on blowing wind or shining sun in order to produce energy. Because of this, traditional power plants like coal, gas, and nuclear are still required as baseload sources that can be relied on to generate 24 hours a day. This relationship is changing as renewable energy storage improves, baseload renewable sources like geothermal and hydropower are further incorporated, and smart grid technology enhances deployment. In the U.K. this week the tables have temporarily turned as wind power is replacing an unanticipated lack of nuclear generation from the nation’s grid.
On Monday, EDF Energy announced it was shutting down four of its U.K. reactors, or around a quarter of its total nuclear generating capacity, after a defect had been found on the boiler spine of a reactor. The company decided to take the “conservative decision” to shut down three other reactors, though no radioactive release or injuries were reported. The reactors are expected to remain closed for about two months. EDF, a French state-owned utility, said the current closures should not effect the U.K.’s energy supply thanks to the low-demand summer season and “a lot of wind power that is being generated right now.”

Read more ...
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248. Xulonn
9:27 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
The fracking for oil business is not much more than a scam, and certainly can not keep the current greater levels of oil production up as the corporations scramble for financing. These money-losing business ventures are chasing ever more difficult to get oil, and the wells quickly deplete compared to conventional wells - production can drop 70% or more in the first year!

Richard Heinberg is a Sonoma County resident who lived a few miles from me, and whom I had the pleasure of meeting a couple of times starting with a conversation at the Earth Day Celebration in Sonoma, California in 2004. Richard has been writing about peak oil and the futility of pursuing FF pipe dreams since his landmark 2003 book. "The Party's Over: Oil, War and the Fate of Industrial Societies."

His current Museletter essay on the near-term financial and physical impossibility of increasing - or even maintaining - oil production levels via fracking as conventional oil production continues to decline is eye opening.

Quoting Richard Heinber's MuseLetter:

Museletter 267: Blame the Environmentalists

August 12, 2014

The US energy revolution is starting to unravel, even while policymakers continue to believe the hype. This month’s Museletter looks at the reality behind the hype. First up is a look at the ballooning debt behind energy companies struggle to keep the hamster wheel of oil production going. Part two is a short essay revealing how belief in US energy independence is leading to short sighted and dangerous foreign policy.

Excerpts:

Here’s The Script, in four despicable acts:

Act 1. Fracking boom goes bust as production from shale gas and tight oil wells stalls out and lurches into decline.
Act 2. Oil and gas industry loudly blames anti-fracking environmentalists and restrictive regulations.
Act 3. Congress rolls back environmental laws.
Act 4. Loosened regulations do little to boost actual oil and gas production, which continues to tank, but the industry wins the right to exploit marginal resources a little more cheaply than would otherwise have been the case.
----------------------------

"The industry continues to claim that tight oil and shale gas are “game changers” and that these resources will last many decades if not centuries. Though the CEOs of companies engaged in shale gas and tight oil drilling are undoubtedly aware of what’s going on in their own balance sheets, hype is an essential part of their business model—which can be summarized as follows:"

Step 1. Borrow money and use it to lease thousands of acres for drilling.
Step 2. Borrow more money and drill as many wells as you can, as quickly as you can.
Step 3. Tell everyone within shouting distance that this is just the beginning of a production boom that will continue for the remainder of our lives and the lives of our children, and that everyone who invests will get rich.
Step 4. Sell drilling leases to other (gullible) companies at a profit, raise funds through Initial Public Offerings or bond sales, and use the proceeds to hide financial losses from your drilling and production operations.
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247. Xulonn
8:50 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
Quoting 246. ColoradoBob1:
ColoradoBob quoting himself.
I'm just curious Bob, and not trying to start an argument, but what is your logic for repeatedly quoting yourself instead of editing comments if you want to add to them?

We're all pretty intelligent here, and get your messages the first time you post your comments, so I can see no useful purpose for repeating yourself like that.

As you are aware, I "like" and "plus" most of your original posts - but not the redundant ones where you quote yourself. You contribute a lot of good information - mostly news about extreme and unprecedented weather events, and I read them regularly
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246. ColoradoBob1
7:54 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
Quoting 245. ColoradoBob1:

Heavy fires destroy forests in Russian Far East

VLADIVOSTOK, August 12. /ITAR-TASS/. Heavy forest fires which broke out in the Russian Far East since the forest fire season began have already destroyed huge forest territories, the press service of the forestry administration of the Russian Far East said Tuesday.

"This year, the fires have already destroyed more than 1.6 million hectares of forests, which is double the forest territory damaged in the same period last year," it said.


Link


Aqua/MODIS
2014/224
08/12/2014
02:25 UTC

Smoke over eastern Russia

Link
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245. ColoradoBob1
7:42 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
Heavy fires destroy forests in Russian Far East

VLADIVOSTOK, August 12. /ITAR-TASS/. Heavy forest fires which broke out in the Russian Far East since the forest fire season began have already destroyed huge forest territories, the press service of the forestry administration of the Russian Far East said Tuesday.

"This year, the fires have already destroyed more than 1.6 million hectares of forests, which is double the forest territory damaged in the same period last year," it said.


Link
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244. pcola57
6:56 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
Exxon Starts Most Controversial Oil Rig in the World
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243. goosegirl1
6:10 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
**Welcome back..
How far in the "boonies" are you?**

Not quite far enough for the Good Lord to remove his shoes before he enters, but far enough that you stock up for the winter and sport 2 dishes on your roof to be in touch with the outside. We live about 150 miles west and south of DC in the WV mountains, not far from Mt Storm and Caanan Valley.

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242. ColoradoBob1
5:36 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
Danger to Great Barrier Reef growing as reports reveal site's health is declining

The outlook for the Great Barrier Reef looks grim, with many of the threats to its environmental health worsening over the past five years and expected to deteriorate further as climate change intensifies, two major reviews have found....................Broadly, they find that the damage caused to key sections of the reef from climate change, poor water quality, some fishing practices and coastal development has worsened. These threats were exacerbated by a series of storms, cyclones and floods in the past five years.

Read more:Link
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241. JohnLonergan
5:04 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
Quoting 237. FLwolverine:



I wonder how long "harsh weather [and] high sea states" will continue to inhibit exploitation. My bet: not long.


My bet, 10 years, at most.
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240. JohnLonergan
5:02 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
July SST Highest Ever, Excepting Only Last Month

Last month the Hadley global sea surface temperature (SST) anomaly for June was at its highest ever for the entire dataset, which goes back to 1850.

This month, Hadley's July SST anomaly was second-highest, warmer than all months except last month. (Seems like the start of a cooling trend).

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239. tlawson48
4:52 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
Quoting 237. FLwolverine:
I wonder how long "harsh weather [and] high sea states" will continue to inhibit exploitation. My bet: not long.


Having been in the merchant marine, I can tell you that if the price is right, the crew is expendable. When a supertanker comes in with a forty ton anchor missing due to "harsh weather [and] high sea states", the parent company just installs a new one and back you go.
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238. ColoradoBob1
4:51 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
234. JohnLonergan

Russian order for three icebreakers from Helsinki shipyard confirmed

Link
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237. FLwolverine
4:47 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
Quoting 234. JohnLonergan:

The US Navy recently released their new "Arctic Roadmap" for the years 2014 to 2030. ……….
Thank you, JohnL. This is very interesting. I wondered what the report had to say about anticipated weather conditions in the Arctic, since ice free water is not the only consideration for activity in that region. This statement is under "Economic Interests and Strategic Resources":

"Near-term: Present to 2020.

Robust transit shipping will be unlikely in the near-term due to harsh weather, high sea states, and economy-of-scale limitations.21 Destination shipping in the region along the Northern Sea Route is likely to increase, especially in the Chukchi Sea and the waters off of eastern Russia and Norway, where oil, gas, and mineral exploration, tourism, and fishing appear most viable. Fishing in the United States’ exclusive economic zone (EEZ) will remain under a moratorium while the effects of climate change on fish stocks are examined.22 Exploitation of energy and mineral resources in the Arctic will remain in the exploratory stages."

I wonder how long "harsh weather [and] high sea states" will continue to inhibit exploitation. My bet: not long.
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236. JohnLonergan
4:38 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
From The CLIMATE CHANGE NATIONAL FORUM

Teaching Climate Change through Six Questions

Given all the back and forth on climate change out there, it can be hard to know what to think. It’s also a complicated subject, so much of the information is distributed all over the place or in huge tomes. Below I’ve put together a fairly quick overview that I’ve used for teaching, which might be helpful to others.

One of the key things to keep in mind is that there are actually several distinct questions surrounding global warming, even though they’re often conflated into a single ‘climate debate.’ Some we know the answers to very well, others less so. Here’s the progression of questions, as I see them:

1. Is the climate changing?

2. Are humans responsible?

2. How do we know the CO2 is ours?

3. How much will climate change in the future?

4. How big of a deal is this?

5. What, if anything, can or should we do about it?
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235. ColoradoBob1
4:20 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
Sweden's Massive Forest Fire Lit by Record Temperatures

A massive forest fire in Sweden has been raging for 11 days, and has grown into the largest fire the country has seen within the last four decades. This fire is occurring in the wake of the highest temperatures Sweden has ever experienced on record, and experts are quick to point out that this is no coincidence. .................................... some parts of Sweden are experiencing the highest temperatures and dry conditions they have ever seen on record. NASA's Earth Observatory is seeing record temperatures as high as 95 degrees Fahrenheit for late July into Early August, and with trade winds changing across the world's oceans, this dry season is not expected to let up.

Link

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234. JohnLonergan
4:12 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
The US Navy recently released their new "Arctic Roadmap" for the years 2014 to 2030. According to the Navy's press release:

...Amongst many other things the roadmap document itself discusses future reductions in sea ice cover in the Arctic:

Reduction of Arctic Ocean sea ice is expected to continue, and major waterways will become increasingly open. By 2020, the Bering Strait is expected to see open water conditions up to 160 days per year, with 35-45 days of shoulder season. The Northern Sea Route will experience up to 30 days of open water conditions, with up to 45 days of shoulder season conditions. Analysis suggests that the reliable navigability of other routes, including the Transpolar Route and the Northwest Passage, is limited in this timeframe. There will be shoulder season route variability based upon ice age, melt, and movement.

By 2025, the Bering Strait will see up to 175 days of open water (and 50-60 days of shoulder season). These figures increase to 190 days of open water (and up to 70 days of shoulder season) by 2030. For the Northern Sea Route, predictions are for up to 45 days of open water (with 50-60 days of shoulder season) by 2025, increasing to 50-60 days of open water by 2030 (with up to 35 days of shoulder season conditions). This period will begin to see greater accessibility of the Transpolar Route, which is forecast to be open for up to 45 days annually, with 60-70 days of shoulder season. Analysis suggests the reliable navigability of the Northwest Passage will continue to remain limited in this timeframe.

Beyond 2030 environmental conditions are expected to support even greater and more reliable maritime presence in the region. Major waterways are predicted to be consistently open, with a significant increase in traffic over the summer months. The Northern Sea Route and Transpolar Route should be navigable 130 days per year, with open water passage up to 75 days per year. The Northwest Passage will be increasingly open during the late summer and early fall.


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233. ColoradoBob1
3:39 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
Heavy rain has hit many parts of Southwest China during the past two days, causing flooding in some areas. San-quan township of Chongqing experienced its most serious flood in a century, as about 260 millimetres of rain fell in the upper reaches of the Long-Yan river.

Link
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232. JohnLonergan
2:43 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
This article in The Guardian is a discussion of the paper FLwolverine referenced in post# 210:

New study finds fringe global warming contrarians get disproportionate media attention

30% of fringe climate scientists who say carbon pollution causes little global warming report frequent media coverage, vs. just 15% of mainstream climate scientists

A new study led by Bart Verheggen surveyed 1,868 scientists studying various aspects of climate change, asking them several questions mainly focused on what’s causing global warming. They survey also asked the respondents,

How frequently have you featured in the media regarding your views on climate change?


The answers to this question reflect whether the media is really fair and balanced on the subject of global warming. A truly balanced media would give equally proportional attention and coverage to climate scientists in the mainstream and on the fringes. For example, if 20% of contrarian climate scientists reported frequent media attention, a fair and balanced media would also give frequent coverage to 20% of mainstream climate scientists.

Instead, fringe contrarian climate scientists reported that they receive frequent media coverage twice as often as mainstream climate scientists.

Read more ...
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231. JohnLonergan
2:23 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
Codfish numbers at key fishery hits all-time low

The level of codfish spawning in one of the most critical fisheries in the Northeast U.S. is at an all-time low, putting more pressure on a fishery already dealing with declining catch and dramatic quota cuts.

National Marine Fisheries Service scientists say the amount of cod spawning in the Gulf of Maine is estimated to be 3 to 4 percent of its target level. That number declined from 13 to 18 percent three years ago.

Low levels of reproduction in the fishery are holding repopulation back, scientists say. They are investigating what might be driving down the numbers of cod but believe temperature change — which they have also linked to a declining Northern shrimp stock and northern migration of herring — may be one factor.

Read more ...
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230. JohnLonergan
2:09 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
CRUISING THE SHORES OF OF DENIAL : ALL ASHORE FOR TARSANDINIA, THE SEPTIC ISLE

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229. Naga5000
12:57 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
Quoting 228. ColoradoBob1:

"I've lived in this area 40 years, and can't ever recall all the major expressways closing for flooding like happened in today's storms," said Jeff Masters, director of meteorology for The Weather Channel's sister company, Weather Underground...................................Some of the heaviest rain came in the 6 p.m. hour, when 1.24 inches of rain fell at Detroit Metropolitan Airport in just 24 minutes, part of a record-breaking 4.57 inches of total rainfall for the day. It is the second-heaviest calendar-day rainfall on record in the Motor City, behind only a 4.74-inch deluge on July 31, 1925.

In Oakland County, a spotter reported 6.25 inches of rain over just 12 hours in Southfield.

Despite measuring its snowiest winter on record earlier this year, breaking a 133-year-old record, Detroit's precipitation total for 2014 to date was near normal before Monday's storm.


Link

The Japan Meteorological Agency issued an "emergency weather warning" for Mie Prefecture over the weekend as it was drenched by all-time record rainfall, with nearly 17 inches of rainfall in 24 hours.

The maximum reported rainfall occurred in Yanase, Kochi Prefecture, on Shikoku. The site recorded 1,081 millimeters (42.56 inches) of rain in the 72-hour period ending at 12:30 p.m. JST Sunday, Aug. 10, including a remarkable 862 millimeters (33.94 inches) of rain in just 24 hours.


Link


I-94 in Michigan:

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228. ColoradoBob1
12:33 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
"I've lived in this area 40 years, and can't ever recall all the major expressways closing for flooding like happened in today's storms," said Jeff Masters, director of meteorology for The Weather Channel's sister company, Weather Underground...................................Some of the heaviest rain came in the 6 p.m. hour, when 1.24 inches of rain fell at Detroit Metropolitan Airport in just 24 minutes, part of a record-breaking 4.57 inches of total rainfall for the day. It is the second-heaviest calendar-day rainfall on record in the Motor City, behind only a 4.74-inch deluge on July 31, 1925.

In Oakland County, a spotter reported 6.25 inches of rain over just 12 hours in Southfield.

Despite measuring its snowiest winter on record earlier this year, breaking a 133-year-old record, Detroit's precipitation total for 2014 to date was near normal before Monday's storm.


Link

The Japan Meteorological Agency issued an "emergency weather warning" for Mie Prefecture over the weekend as it was drenched by all-time record rainfall, with nearly 17 inches of rainfall in 24 hours.

The maximum reported rainfall occurred in Yanase, Kochi Prefecture, on Shikoku. The site recorded 1,081 millimeters (42.56 inches) of rain in the 72-hour period ending at 12:30 p.m. JST Sunday, Aug. 10, including a remarkable 862 millimeters (33.94 inches) of rain in just 24 hours.


Link
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227. JohnLonergan
12:00 PM GMT on August 12, 2014
From Nick Stokes:

TempLS global temp down 0.066C in July


Not very much blue on that map.



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226. pcola57
9:54 AM GMT on August 12, 2014
Quoting 217. JohnLonergan:


Very interesting John..
Thanks for the post.. :)

Quoting 209. FLwolverine:<


Thanks FL for the definition post..
I understand the paper better now..

Quoting 219. Astrometeor:

Oh, just remembered. I have a request for you guys and gals. If someone could,
So, that's the big thing with my Mom. She would be alright with AGW, except she doesn't see any warming happening here in Nashville.


Hey Astro..
Glad your Mom is interested in AGW..
Just make sure she understands that to be "alright" with AGW is insane.. :)

Quoting 220. Naga5000:



Thanks for helping Astro out Naga..
I couldn't.. :)
Quoting 215. goosegirl1:



Welcome back..
How far in the "boonies" are you?
I'm "out there" as well..
But believe it or not..
Competition for our $$'s here have enriched us with new optical fiber cable (with an underlying new Governmental complex locally in the offing..
Although I'm not a "Big Brother" guy..
I'll take the benefit thereof..
I'm now "optically alive!!..Lol.. :)
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222. ColoradoBob1
11:32 PM GMT on August 11, 2014

Extreme weather becoming more common, study says

Rise in blocking-patterns – hot or wet weather remaining stuck over regions for weeks – causing frequent heatwaves or floods

Extreme weather like the drought currently scorching the western US and the devastating floods in Pakistan in 2010 is becoming much more common, according to new scientific research.

The work shows so-called “blocking patterns”, where hot or wet weather remains stuck over a region for weeks causing heatwaves or floods, have more than doubled in summers over the last decade. The new study may also demonstrate a link between the UK’s recent flood-drenched winter and climate change.

Climate scientists in Germany noticed that since 2000 there have been an “exceptional number of summer weather extremes, some causing massive damage to society”. So they examined the huge meanders in the high-level jet stream winds that dominate the weather at mid-latitudes, by analysing 35 years of wind data amassed from satellites, ships, weather stations and meteorological balloons. They found that blocking patterns, which occur when these meanders slow down, have happened far more frequently.


Link
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221. bappit
10:27 PM GMT on August 11, 2014
There are regional differences in the effects of global warming. Some people would rather call it climate change partly because of the confusion that causes. At any rate, tell her that plotting temps for a single location does not guarantee you will see 1.4 F warming (or so) since around 1850.

The mountainous western U.S. (includes Rocky Mountains) and relatively low flat plain extending from the Gulf of Mexico to the Arctic Ocean favors the development of a trough over the eastern U.S. Such a trough brings cold air down from the Arctic.

With increased loopiness of the jet stream (link) this kind of trough could be more persistent leading to more cold air coming down to the southeast U.S. Warmer air moves into the Arctic replacing the air that comes south.

Point out that the greatest effect from global warming has been occurring in the Arctic (link).
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About RickyRood

I'm a professor at U Michigan and lead a course on climate change problem solving. These articles often come from and contribute to the course.