All of California remains in drought
with over 80% in worst categories of 'extreme' or 'exceptional' drought. Reservoir levels
are 50% below average. (previously
) [more inside]
Since January there have been signs of a possible El Niño brewing in the pacific, the first major one since 1998. While the US-funded ocean-monitoring system is in a state of partial collapse
, the data has continued to grow stronger, and this may now be the largest ocean temperature anomoly ever seen
. A major El Niño could significantly boost global temperatures, cause severe weather and storms, melt Arctic sea ice and help push the world into a warm phase of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, accelerating global warming. (more discussion
...and the news ain't good: "Evidence for climate change abounds, from the top of the atmosphere to the depths of the oceans. This evidence has been compiled by scientists and engineers from around the world, using satellites, weather balloons, thermometers, buoys, and other observing systems. The sum total of this evidence tells an unambiguous story: the planet is warming."
Overview letter is here
, Executive Summary is here
, and the full download is here
. [WARNING: Full download runs to 147MB).
In a report released [Tuesday], the World Bank analyzed the consequences of allowing temperatures to reach 4°C above pre-industrial levels by the end of the century. ... the report's authors admit that predications are a challenge. Still, they do their best to try to paint a picture, and boy, is it grim.
October 2012 is the 332nd consecutive month with an above-average temperature. If you were born in or after April 1985, if you are right now 27 years old or younger, you have never lived through a month that was colder than average. State of the Climate: Global Analysis October 2012
(NOAA). While $50 billion Sandy has had the spotlight, the biggest natural disaster of 2012 (in the US) has been the Great Drought
still ongoing which is expected to cut America's GDP by 0.5 to 1% for the year. The death toll from the heat waves that accompanied this year's drought will exceed that of Sandy. This Sunday and Monday, Ken Burns premiers his new documentary "The Dust Bowl"
, on PBS. (via
Is climate change causing our recent extreme weather events?
(pdf). A panel of eminent climate scientists lays out the current state of what we know, and what we don't know yet, in this forthcoming paper. Jason Samenow (of the Washington Post's Capital Weather Gang blog) nicely summarizes
the key points. [more inside]
A Message from a Republican on Climate Change:
I'm going to tell you something that my Republican friends are loath to admit out loud: climate change is real. I'm a moderate Republican, fiscally conservative; a fan of small government, accountability, self-empowerment and sound science. I am not a climate scientist. I'm a Penn State meteorologist, and the weather maps I'm staring at are making me very uncomfortable.
, first observed by Galileo, normally follow an 11-year cycle. We are into a few years into (recorded) cycle number 24 but according to NASA it's looking rather underpowered
. Nobody is certain exactly what the consequences will be, but one distinct possibility is a cold period
; a previous low in solar activity, the Maunder minimum
, is correlated with a brief Little Ice Age
. Nobody really knows how this unusual solar weather pattern might interact with human-caused climate change. Previously
, albeit somewhat controversially.
Australia is copping another pounding from natural disasters.
After the floods across Brisbane (previously
) in South-east Queensland, North Queensland
is in the firing line for a Category 5
cyclone called Yasi
The official warning: THIS IMPACT IS LIKELY TO BE MORE LIFE THREATENING THAN ANY EXPERIENCED DURING RECENT GENERATIONS. [more inside]
How are heatwaves in Russia and flooding in Pakistan related? Both result from a
kink in the jet stream
that has frozen in place
. (Previous coverage of the disasters in Russia and Pakistan on the blue.)
"...Arctic sea ice – frozen seawater that floats on the ocean surface – is now at its lowest physical extent ever recorded for the time of year, suggesting that it is on course to break the previous record low set in 2007.
Earth has been 0.65C warmer over the past 12 months than during the 1951 to 1980 mean, and that the global temperature for 2010 will exceed the 2005 record."
set to be the warmest year on record.
As summer arrives, a scientist writes (mostly negatively) about air conditioning
An igloo has been built near Capitol Hill. Someone having a bit of fun in the snow? No, it's a symbol of climate change skepticism
, built by the family of a Republican Senator. Sen. Jim DeMint also recently twittered that "It's going to keep snowing in DC until Al Gore cries 'uncle'"
. These are all examples of the politicization of Washington's lousy weather
Weather History Offers Insight Into Global Warming. Weather History Offers Insight Into Global Warming. The problems that often haunt other weather records — the station is moved, buildings are constructed nearby or observers record data inconsistently — have not arisen here because so much of this place has been frozen in time. The weather has been taken
(at Mohonk House, [map]
) in exactly the same place, in precisely the same way, by just a handful of the same dedicated people since Grover Cleveland was president... That extremely limited number of observers greatly enhances the reliability, and therefore the value, of the data. [more inside]
The world's weather is going haywire.
So says the World Meteorological Organisation
"The unstable world of climate change has long been a prediction. Now, the WMO says, it is a reality."
Where is the Kyoto Protocol
when you need it?
The warm water ocean currents of the Gulf Stream
are why London rarely gets snow yet Boston is fridged despite London being as far north as Montreal, Canada. New weather modeling research from Columbia University may turn this long-held belief on its head; London can thank the Rocky Mountains
for its mild winters. Good news for the rest of Europe too in case the Gulf Stream stops due to Arctic melting.