31 F. average high on February 27.
59 F. maximum temperature on February 27, 2016.
February 28, 1981: Ice is out on Lake Minnetonka. Boats are enjoying the early thaw.
Ditto: Odds Favor Warmer Than Average Into Spring
"The future is an enigma wrapped in a riddle." Wait, Warren Beatty just handed me an envelope with the Spring 2017 Outlook - I'm very excited to share the news with you and other members of the Academy.
NOAA predicts warmer and wetter from March thru May, which, when you really think about it, isn't much of a stretch. Meteorologists refer to "persistence", which is a fancy way of saying "go with the flow". The first best-guess is a continuation of the current pattern. Which has been consistently milder than average.
February is over 10F. warmer than normal in the Twin Cities; the 6th or 7th warmest on record. According to the Minnesota DNR we didn't add any points to the "Winter Misery Index" this month. Heck, the metro picked up 3 tenths of an inch of snow.
Welcome to Shreveport!
Rain falls today with highs in the low 40s. March comes in like a Star Nosed Mole tomorrow, with scrappy clouds and a cooler wind. Weekend temperatures may top 50F, even a shot at a few 60s late next week!
I'm keeping the driveway stakes in, just in case March lives up to its reputation. The ECMWF hints at slushy snow early next week.
Map credit: NOAA CPC (Climate Prediction Center) is forecasting milder than average for much of the USA over the next 3 months, with a wet bias from the Pacific Northwest to the Great Lakes. Place your bets.
84-Hour Outlook. NOAA's NAM guidance shows numerous showers and T-storms breaking out from the Great Lakes to the Gulf Coast; most severe across the Mid South later today and Wednesday. Rain today ends as a little slush tonight and Wednesday across Minnesota and Wisconsin, while the Pacific Northwest braces for more heavy rain and snow in the coming days. The map looks like something out of the third or fourth week of March. Animation: Tropicaltidbits.com.
Snowfall Potential Into Next Monday. That great snowy spigot in the sky just doesn't want to shut off, from the Rockies of New Mexico and Colorado to the Cascade Range in Oregon and Washington state, where GFS guidance prints out some 2-4 FOOT snowfall amounts over the next 6 days. Yes, there will be water in the Colorado River this year.
Map credit: Climate Reanalyzer.
Map credit: "
Snow Dump in Iceland. Check out some of the photos of the recent heavy snow event in Reykjavik at The Iceland Monitor: "Icelandic photographer Gunnar Freyr woke up to the sound of a tree breaking in his garden and saw the heavy snowfall coming down. He grabbed his camera and ventured into the city centre to capture these fantastic photos of a magical night. Snow depth was measured at 51 cm at 9 am this morning in the capital which breaks the record of 48 cm in February in 1952. Only once has this been exceeded, in January of 1937 when snow was 55 cm..."
Photo credit: "People had some hard work in store for them on Sunday when it came to retrieving their cars." Photo/Gunnar Freyr.
According to this PowerPoint, developed and partially presented by the NWS’s Project Management Office, only 37 of the 116 WFOs in the continental U.S. will be operating 24/7/365 by FY 19. Also on February 14, the same date as the NCEP annual meeting, NWS Director Dr. Uccellini assured employees, “the part timing of the offices is off the table” at a Fireside Chat webinar with the Cheyenne, Wyoming and Shreveport, Louisiana Weather Forecast Offices. This follows his statements at the January 2017 AMS meeting in Seattle, Washington that there will be no “part timing of Forecast Offices....”
The Powerpoint in question is here.
Flood Insurance: Does Your Excuse Hold Water? With flash flooding on the rise it might be wise to review your coverage. Here's an excerpt from The Orlando Sentinel: "We know the old saying: when it rains, it pours… and when it pours, it floods. With winter snow storms coming to an end, the threat of flooding increases as the snow begins to melt and the rivers and creeks begin to swell. It’s easy to forget about how powerfully destructive water can be. In fact, nine out of 10 natural disasters include flood, making it the number one disaster in the United States according to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). However, only 15 percent of homeowners have flood insurance. From 2006 to 2015, total flood claims cost more than $1.9 billion per year and the average claim was more than $46,000 during that time..." (Fort Lauderdale flood file photo: NOAA).
Saudi Arabia to Curb Oil Use With $50 Billion Renewable Energy Plan. Here's a clip from Good News Network: "Saudi Arabia, the nation ranked as one of the world’s top crude oil exporters, has launched a $50 billion initiative to phase out fossil fuels in favor of renewable energy. The country plans on harnessing 10 gigawatts of renewable energy by 2023 by constructing several wind and solar plants throughout the nation. Saudi Arabia plans on completing the initiative with 700 gigawatts. The initiative will not only be economically beneficial for the nation’s residents, but will also help steer Saudi Arabia’s main federal income away from crude oil as well as help the country meet worldwide sustainable energy goals..."
Photo credit: D.H. Parks, CC.
Photo credit: "Rep. Joe Schomacker (top left), Sen. Karin Housley (top right), Sen. Nick Frentz (bottom left), Rep. Erin Maye Quade (bottom right)."
50 by '30 Renewable Energy Standard for Minnesota. A (pdf) Fact Sheet is here.
Former Trump Aid Says Renewable Energy May Be Cut. TIME.com has more details: "A former top aide on energy issues for President Trump's transition speculated that the Administration will cut research funding for wind and solar power and redirect money to fossil fuels. Energy lobbyist Mike McKenna, who headed Trump's Department of Energy transition team until late November, told the West Virginia Coal Association that current funding allocations favoring renewable energy would likely be changed. "The young people have a word for it, it's not sustainable," he said, alluding to the agency that crafts the President's budget. "If DOE doesn’t take care of that on it’s own accord, the Office of Management and Budget almost certainly will..." (File photo: Joe McNally, NatGeo).
Study Finds Cyclists 6 Times Healthier Than Other Commuters. Because it's harder to eat chips on a bike. Here's an excerpt from Momentum Mag: "...When many people consider the health impacts of cycling, they think of the sport-oriented form of cycling that involves long-distance, fast rides and lycra, or at the very least a pair of sneakers and a workout shirt. Casual commuter cycling is better for you than sitting in a car or on the bus, sure, but it can’t be that much better, can it? A recent study undertaken at Brunel University in London, England, found that English people who regularly commute by bike are four times more likely than other commuters to get the 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week recommended by the World Health Organization. With its focus narrowed to London rather than nationwide, bike commuters were six times more likely to meet the recommended activity guidelines..."
Photo credit: Kamyar Adl
Photo credit: "Ape Canyone, where miners were attacked by "apemen." Jordan/CC By-NC-SA 2.0
TODAY: Light rain, drizzle. Winds: N 8-13. High: 41
TUESDAY NIGHT: Leftover clouds and flurries, slushy coating? Low: 23
WEDNESDAY: Scrappy clouds, few flurries. Winds: NW 8-13. High: 33
THURSDAY: More clouds than sun, brisk. Average for early March. Winds: N 8-13. Wake-up: 19. High: 32
FRIDAY: Sunny start, then clouds increase. Winds: S 10-15. Wake-up: 17. High: 36
SATURDAY: Partly sunny and milder. Winds: S 7-12. Wake-up: 28. High: near 50
SUNDAY: Peeks of sun, more hints of April. Winds: S 8-13. Wake-up: 36. High: 53
MONDAY: Rain changes to snow, gusty and colder. Winds: NW 15-25. Wake-up: 38. high: 41 (falling)
Photo credit: "Flooding from seasonal king tides has worsened in Fort Lauderdale as a result of sea-level rise." (Joe Cavaretta/Sun-Sentinel)
For Some Arctic Plants, Spring Arrives Almost a Month Earlier. Here's an excerpt from The New York Times: "Every spring, Arctic plants rely on cues from the environment — like warmer weather, longer days and shrinking ice sheets — to tell them when they should awaken from winter’s slumber. But as the climate warms, these plants are getting mixed signals about when to rouse. In a new paper published in Biology Letters, researchers detail findings from a 12-year study of when plant species in the low Arctic region of Greenland first bud in the spring. Timing varied from plant to plant, but one speedy sedge species — a flowering, grasslike herb — stirred a full 26 days earlier than it did a decade ago. The change corresponds to nearly an entire growing season, and breaks the record for the greatest shift in spring-bloom timing that the scientists have observed in the Arctic..." (File photo credit: Arctic Journal).
St. Paul Launches Climate Action Plan Effort to Become Carbon Neutral. Here's an excerpt from Star Tribune: "To offset St. Paul's total annual greenhouse gas emissions, the city would have to install 985 wind turbines. Or it could preserve more than 31,086 acres of forests or somehow prevent 575,901 homes from using electricity for a year. But adding a turbine every few blocks or having hundreds of thousands of people go off the grid probably is not the answer, so the city is launching an effort to come up with a Climate Action Plan that provides a feasible path to reduce pollution. St. Paul's goal is to be carbon neutral by 2050, completely offsetting emissions so there would be no net release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. It is one of 633 communities across the world that agreed, as part of a compact of mayors, to develop plans to address climate change..."
File photo: St. Paul Chamber of Commerce.