58 F. average high on October 14.
59 F. high on October 14, 2015.
October 14, 1966: An enormous hailstone crashes through the windshield of a truck near Claremont in Dodge County. It was reported to be 16 inches in circumference.
La Nina Watch - When Will Growing Season End?
So much for an end to mosquito and ragweed season. Most of Minnesota has experienced fall's first frost, but not the close-in suburbs. KARE-11 reports 2016's growing season is now 22 days longer than average, to date. Some communities could wind up with a growing season a MONTH longer than average. Whatever 'average' is these days.
As much as I enjoy our warming trend - on some subliminal level it's hard not to mourn the slow calcification of winter. No, the snow, ice and cold isn't what it used to be. These aren't your grandfather's winters.
NOAA has reissued a La Nina Watch for the winter; colder water in the Pacific may prevent the upcoming winter from being as toasty as last year. It'll snow, we'll see a parade of cold fronts - but odds favor another abbreviated, "compressed" winter.
We could hit 70F Saturday - 80F not entirely out of the question Monday before a cooler slap arrives by midweek. A stray shower may pop on Saturday; again Sunday PM.
Not perfect, but count your blessings. On this date in 1820 settlers at Fort Snelling were shoveling 11 inches of new snow.
Wild Winds - Soaking Rains. The Pacific Northwest was roughed up by hurricane force wind gusts along the coast overnight; a series of storms may drop as much as 4-6" of rain from Portland into Seattle in the coming days.
Animation credit: NOAA and AerisWeather AMP.
Hurricane Matthew Brought 1,000 Year Record Rainstorms to North Carolina. This would be the 6th thousand-year flood to strike the USA since October of 2015 (Texas, South Carolina, West Virginia, Maryland, Louisiana - now North Carolina). Here's an excerpt from Pacific Standard: "The storm swept in by Hurricane Matthew has produced rainfall that exceeds the level expected about once every 1,000 years, according to a statistical analysis using National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration data. Matthew broke numerous rainfall records in some of North Carolina’s toughest-hit towns, marking another spike in this year’s extreme weather. The new rainfall records were enabled by warming in the ocean and coastal atmospheres, which hold more water as temperatures increase — with a few cities across the Southeast reporting record levels of air moisture during the storm..." (October 6 file image: NOAA and AerisWeather).
Hurricane Matthew Was Deceptively Powerful. Here's an excerpt from NexusMedia that got my attention: "...Even a mild-mannered Category 1 or 2 hurricane can prove catastrophic if it produces enough rain. Hurricane Matthew dumped 18 inches on parts of North Carolina — more rain than Louisiana and Mississippi saw during Hurricane Katrina. Floods in the Tar Heel State destroyed 7,000 homes. More than 2,000 people needed to be rescued. Time and again, we see that water — not wind — wreaks the greatest havoc during severe storms. Just ask New York. Hurricane Sandy registered as a Category 1 storm, but it proved the second-costliest hurricane in U.S. history. Hurricane Matthew followed a similar pattern, prompting weather experts to criticize the wind-based system of classification..." (Image credit: NOAA).
Horrific Rains and Ocean Surge: Hurricane Matthew By The Numbers. Here's a clip from The Washington Post Capital Weather Gang: "...In the United States, record-setting amounts of rain have inflicted the greatest amount of hardship, with the Tarheel state at ground zero. 15 inches of rain in eastern North Carolina has resulted in catastrophic inundation. Emergency officials have conducted 2,000 rescues of people stranded in high water in North Carolina alone. Nearly half of the state’s 100 counties were in a state of emergency, and 52 shelters housed more than 4,300 displaced people. Lumber River in North Carolina reached a record 24 feet above its usual level, while the Tar River at Rocky Mount crested seven feet above flood stage..."
New York Is Going To Get A Lot More Hurricanes Like Sandy. The incidence of major flooding in New York has tripled since 1800 - the trends are troubling. Here's a clip from a story at Pacific Standard: "...When Hurricane Sandy reached the Mid-Atlantic four years ago, it brought with it some of the most severe flooding the region has ever seen. It also took a financial toll, with damages totaling more than $71 billion—second only to Hurricane Katrina among damage in the United States. And here comes more bad news: Researchers report that New York City is likely to get hit by many more floods on par with Sandy in the future. “[T]he frequency of Hurricane Sandy-like extreme flood events has increased significantly over the past two centuries and is very likely to increase more sharply over the 21st century, due to the compound effects of sea level rise and storm climatology change,” Ning Lin, an assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering at Princeton University, and her colleagues write today in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences..." (File image: Mike Groll, AP).
Image credit: "
Wind Patterns In The Lowest Layers of Supercell Storms Key Tornadoes. Here's an excerpt of an interesting press release at EurekAlert! Science News: "...We noticed that the biggest difference between tornadic and nontornadic storms was the wind in the lowest 500 meters near the storm," Coffer says. "Specifically, it was the difference in the way the air rotated into the storm in the updraft." All storms have an updraft, in which air is drawn upward into the storm, feeding it. In supercells, the rising air also rotates due to wind shear, which is how much the wind changes in speed and direction as you go higher in the atmosphere. Coffer's simulations demonstrated that if wind shear conditions are right in the lowest 500 meters, then the air entering the updraft spirals like a perfectly thrown football. This leads to a supercell that is configured to be particularly favorable for producing a tornado, as broad rotation at the ground is stretched by the updraft's lift, increasing the speed of the spin and resulting in a tornado..."
File photo credit: Caryn Hill.
Clean Power Just Turned Back the Clock on Global Warming Gases. Here's an excerpt from Bloomberg: "It looks as if all those wind and solar farms in the U.S. are making a dent in greenhouse gases that cause global warming. During the first six months of the year, carbon dioxide emissions from America’s energy industry dropped to the lowest point since 1991, according to a statement Wednesday from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. That’s in part because warmer-than-average temperatures in the first quarter prompted fewer people to crank up their thermostats, lowering energy consumption. It’s also because clean energy installations increased 9 percent during the first half compared to a year earlier, reducing the need for power generated by burning coal and natural gas..."
Photo credit: "The 110 MW Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Plant near Tonopah, Nevada was the first utility-scale facility in the world to feature advanced molten salt power tower technology. The developer wants to build 10 more of these at an undisclosed location in Nevada." SolarReserve.
Image credit: arizonaehomes.com.
TODAY: Sunny, windy, milder. Winds: S 15-30. High: 67
FRIDAY NIGHT: Partly cloudy and dry. Unusually mild for mid-October. Low: 61
SATURDAY: Clouds increase, stray shower possible late. Winds: SW 10-15. High: 72
SUNDAY: Dry start, then few PM showers. Winds: SE 10-15. Wake-up: 54. High: 64
MONDAY: Some sun, windy and warmer. Winds: SE 10-20. Wake-up: 56. High: 78
TUESDAY: Mostly cloudy, windy and cooler. Winds: NW 15-25. Wake-up: 54. High: 58
WEDNESDAY: Intervals of cool sunshine. Winds: W 8-13. Wake-up: 40. High: 54
THURSDAY: Frosty start in the 'burbs. Some sunshine. Winds: NW 7-12. Wake-up: 37. High: 53
Here's Why Many Young Voters See Climate Change as THE Issue in 2016. Public Radio International has the story: "...Climate change has intensified the drought in California, which has left many wells in California’s agricultural Central Valley without water. Communities vulnerable to flooding have the opposite problem, as we saw in Louisiana last month when 7.1 trillion gallons of rain fell in one week. Worldwide, average temperature records are broken month after month, with increasingly adverse effects the world over. And rising sea levels are already causing more destructive and dangerous storm surges, as we witnessed with Hurricane Matthew last week. Climate change will affect my career, my family, my community, my everything. For my generation, millennials, it is so much more than the “environmental” issue previous generations understood it to be..."
Photo credit: "
Did Climate Change Turbocharge Hurricane Matthew? You could certainly make the case, especially for Haiti and Cuba. here's an excerpt from Climate Signals: "...Unusually warm seas also fueled Matthew's rapid intensification and sustained the hurricane which broke the record for maintaining Cat 4/5 strength in October. Matthew first spun up into a hurricane on September 29, surging from a tropical storm into a Category 5 hurricane in just 36 hours, a stunning development consistent with the observed trend toward rapidly intensifying tropical cyclones..." (October 5 file image: NOAA and AerisWeather).
Climate Studies: New York City Flood Risk Will Triple, Western Wildfires Have Doubled. Here's the intro to a summary at Christian Science Monitor: "Expect more natural disasters as climate change goes unchecked, say scientists. Already wildfires across the Western United States have doubled during the past three decades as a result of human-induced climate change, according to a study published Monday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. And that study coincides with another published in the same journal predicting more dramatic flooding with rising global temperatures..."
Photo credit: "In July and August, the Roaring Lion fire devoured more than 8,000 acres of forest, along with over 60 homes and outbuildings in eastern Montana's Bitterroot Range. Here, the fire burns through dense conifers, July 31, 2016." Courtesy of Mike Daniels/Columbia University.