February 26, 1981: Thunderstorms move across Minnesota, dumping 1.61 inches of rain at Montevideo. Many places were glazed over with ice.
February 26, 1948: A severe ice storm occurs over central Minnesota. At the St. Cloud Weather Office 1/2 inch of clear ice was measured. 65 telephone poles were down in St. Cloud.
I'm Serious: Let's Build a Wall Around Minnesota
I’m paranoid, agitated and semi-delusional, but that doesn’t mean building a wall around Minnesota isn’t a great idea!
Think about it. An embarrassing trade deficit with Wisconsin. North Dakota exports dirty-oil trains. Iowa lurks just to our south. Manitoba has its way with us every winter.
I’ll get Canada to pay for it. Let’s keep tornadoes out, and immediately deport all undocumented mosquitoes. Let’s start winning again!
Why me, you ask? Look, I’ve built 4 beautiful companies. My people love me, even when I’m wrong, which is most of the time. But that doesn’t matter when you’re SHOUTING!
I must be running a fever. Spring fever? Expect April-like 50s today, probably breaking the record set in 1896. We cool off next week - Tuesday's storm brushing Chicago with plowable snow; but no headline-grabbing weather drama expected here. NOAA's GFS model pulls 50s and a hard rain into Minnesota within 12 days.
Canada's influence is fading, but we still need that wall. Despite my inane ramblings please consider me for Hennepin County Dog Catcher on Tuesday. Vote early and often.
February Continues Minnesota's Warm Streak. Here's an excerpt of this week's installment of Minnesota WeatherTalk, courtesy of Dr. Mark Seeley: "Following the strong trend of the past several months and enhanced by a string of unusually warm days to end the month, February of 2016 will likely finish as a warmer than normal month for most places in the state. Mean monthly temperatures will range from 3 to 6 degrees F above normal around the state. Extreme values include high temperatures in the 50s F on February 19th and February 27th (this Sat) at such locations as Redwood Falls, Marshall, Browns Valley, Wheaton, MSP, and other communities; and minimum temperatures of -36°F at Embarrass and -35°F at Cotton on February 14th (Valentine's Day). Minnesota reported the coldest temperature in the nation on only six dates during the month, fewer than the 9 dates in January with the nation's lowest reading..."
Photo credit above: "
The Tornado Formula. Why is the USA the tornado capital of the planet? It's complicated. Here's an excerpt of a good explainer at The Atlantic: "...The U.S. gets so many tornadoes because, in large part, the presence of the Rocky Mountains and the Gulf of Mexico,” Harold Brooks, a scientist at the National Severe Storms Laboratory, told me in an email. Those features create the conditions for the three key ingredients necessary for the kind of severe thunderstorm that can produce tornadoes:
1. Warm, moist air at low levels
2. Cool, dry air aloft
3. Horizontal winds that increase with height from the ground-up—and change direction, so that they blow from the equator at low levels, and from the west aloft.
The United States sees all three of those ingredients..."
Photo credit above: "Richard Rowe / Reuters.
Photo credit: "The site of the Aliso Canyon gas leak." Credit: UC-Davis
* The report is here.
St. Paul to Bar Itself From Investing in Fossil-Fuel Companies. Here's an excerpt from twincities.com: "The city of St. Paul won’t be investing in oil companies in the near future. Expressing concern about climate change, the St. Paul City Council voted Wednesday on a resolution barring the city from investing pension funds and other public money directly into fossil-fuel companies. The divestment decision is mostly symbolic, as the city’s public employee pensions are managed by the Minnesota State Board of Investment and not invested by the city itself..." (Photo credit: Dan Anderson at Flickr).
Image credit above: Jonas de Ro // CC BY-SA 3.0
Let's Keep Moving Minnesota's Clean-Energy Vision Forward. Here's an excerpt of an Op-Ed at MinnPost from arctic explorer Will Steger and Kentra Roedl: "...We envision a goal of zero emissions and 100 percent clean energy in Minnesota by 2050, a goal that echoes the call from the youth who gathered in Paris to demand a strong climate agreement that safeguarded their future. We know what’s at stake. We’ve seen climate change alter the Arctic as well as our winters here in Minnesota. The recent news of 2015’s record-setting heat is a sobering reminder that climate change is not slowing down. We need to chart a path to a clean-energy future that is faster than the path to climate catastrophe. We don’t have time for pauses or delay. The good news is, the clean-energy industry is not pausing either. In Minnesota, solar jobs have increased 131 percent since 2013, according to the newly released Solar Jobs Census, and the industry expects another 20 percent increase this year..."
Photo credit above: CC/Flickr/Sebastian Celis. "We envision farmers putting up wind turbines and solar panels among their cornfields as new and profitable crops to harvest."
Photo credit above: "The 2014 Honda Accord plug-in hybrid is displayed at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Michigan January 14, 2013." Reuters/James Fassinger.
TODAY: Blue sky, record high temperature. Winds: SW 10-15. High: 55
SATURDAY NIGHT: Clouds increase, mild for late February. Low: 36
SUNDAY: Windy and cooler. Sprinkles/flurries possible.. Winds: NW 15-25. High: 41 (falling)
MONDAY: Overcast and milder again. Winds: W 10-15. Wake-up: 29. High: 45
TUESDAY: Mostly cloudy, colder breeze. Winds: NW 10-15. Wake-up: 21. High: 28
WEDNESDAY: Chilled sunlight, less wind. Winds: W 5-10. Wake-up: 13. High: 26
THURSDAY: Mostly cloudy, few flurries? Winds: SE 8-13. Wake-up: 14. High: 29
FRIDAY: Overcast, late mix possible. Winds: SE 10-15. Wake-up: 24. High: 35
Graphic credit: National Snow and Ice Data Center.
Scientists Are More Confident Than Ever in Troubling Sea Level Rise Projections. A confidence level of 95% that seas are rising faster now than anytime in the last 27 centuries? Here's an excerpt from ThinkProgress: "...That’s not to say the scientific community was unsure sea level rise is happening, and that greenhouse gases are behind it. It means that the certainty surrounding sea level rise projections needed to improve, according to the IPCC. Now, however, two separate studies developed by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany, and Rutgers University in the United States, say modeling techniques are agreeing like never before in their conclusions. Most importantly, while the Potsdam study found that sea level rise will likely be as much as 50 inches by the end of the century unless greenhouse gas emissions are rapidly reduced, the Rutgers study found that global sea levels rose faster in the last century than in the last 3,000 years. Both studies were published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences..." (Photo credit: AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton).
Sources and credits: Climate Central, EPA, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Dino Kordopitoulas, Justin Peebles, Frank Pompa and Jim Lenahan, USA TODAY Network.
What's The Best Way to Cut Your Carbon Emissions? Here's an excerpt from CityLab: "...If Americans aren’t interested in buying dramatically more efficient vehicles, they could instead try an across-the-board approach, piling up little actions in different sectors. For instance, you could reduce driving by 6 percent, buy a car that’s 22.8 mpg instead of 21.4, replace any remaining incandescent bulbs with LEDS, eat 35 percent less meat, and cut 67 percent of personal food waste. Each of those piecemeal choices makes a 1 percent cut in overall emissions. “If you want to do things on several fronts and combine the benefits that way because it’s easier for you, you would have to do a lot of different small things to equal the benefit of a large increase in fuel economy,” Sivak tells CityLab..." (Photo credit: AP / Jae C. Hong).
Bill Nye: My Question for the GOP Candidates. Here's an excerpt from CNN.com: "...As you may know, the three front-running candidates are apparently in denial about the effects and seriousness of climate change and global warming. As a voter and taxpayer, I'd like to know why each of them has no apparent concern about a problem that is worrying people all over the rest of the world. And by the way, those same people are very much hoping the U.S. will lead, showing the way to produce all of our energy renewably. Texas is a remarkable example of the number of jobs we could create and the new economy we'd establish by embracing renewable energy sources. Right now, Texas gets 10% of its electricity from the wind. I hope you find that remarkable, if not astonishing, because it's a huge number. The wind industry there is just getting started. The Stanford University-based Solutions Project estimates that Texans could get over 60% of their energy from the wind, and virtually all of the remaining 40% from the sun..."