Saturday, April 25, 2015

Spring Returns Next Week - Remembering the May 6, 1965 Super-Outbreak

52 F. high temperature in the Twin Cities Friday.
62 F. average high on April 24.
45 F. high on April 24, 2014.

.34" rain fell yesterday at MSP International Airport.

April 25,1996: Heavy snow over northern Minnesota. 10 inches of snow at Baudette. The International Falls airport closed for only the second time in history.

Too Much Warning?

There's a nagging, dangerous perception that big, Oklahoma-size tornadoes can't hit the Twin Cities. Although rare, violent, long-track tornadoes are possible, especially in May.

On May 6, 1965 a swarm of 6 major tornadoes, 4 of them EF-4 super-twisters, hit the metro area. Fridley experienced 2 EF-4's, just 85 minutes apart. WCCO-AM saved countless lives with their coverage, but 13 people died, 683 were injured. These were the last EF-4's to strike the metro.

Now comes new research suggesting that longer lead times, 30 or 40 minutes, compared to a national average of 13 minutes, may lead to poor, even reckless decisions; people try to drive away from the approaching instead of sheltering in place, which greatly increases the risk. You don't want to be sitting in a car or truck when a tornado crosses the interstate. Bad idea.

Live TV video of an approaching tornado gets people moving MUCH faster than hearing a tornado warning. Seeing is believing. And motorcycle helmets may offer the best protection from head and neck injuries. Details on my blog below.

Nothing violent in sight, just a gray Saturday with a warming trend later this week. 60s return tomorrow; 70s by next weekend as a ridge of warm high pressure stretches north across the Plains. I could see 80 degrees in about a week.

A growl of thunder is possible Tuesday, again Friday but nothing severe is brewing just yet. Give it a couple of weeks.

May 6, 1965 Super-Outbreak In The Twin Cities. The local Twin Cities National Weather Service has a link to a page with more details of the remarkable tornado outbreak of 1965. There hasn't been anything like it since, which has created a misleading sense of apathy among some local residents. "Big tornadoes can't hit here - it's too urban, too built-up". That's simply not the case. A large tornado has warm, moist inflow from a 20 mile radius. A few parking lots and high-rise buildings won't slow it down. Here's an excerpt from a good NWS summary: "The worst tornadoes in Twin Cities history occurred in 1965, with five tornadoes sweeping across the western and northern portions of the 7-county region, and a sixth tornado just outside the metropolitan area. Four tornadoes were rated F4, one was an F3, and the other produced F2 damage. Thirteen people were killed and 683 injured. Many more would have been killed had it not been for the warnings of the U.S. Weather Bureau, local officials, and the outstanding communications by local radio and television stations. Many credit the announcers of WCCO-AM with saving countless lives. It was also the first time in Twin Cities history that civil defense sirens were used for severe weather..."

Photo credit above: "An areal view of the destruction along Louisa Drive in Mounds View." Picture courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society, Photograph Collection.

This Week's Chilly, Snowy Relapse. Mark Seeley has more details on the cold snap earlier in the week. Flurries brushed the Twin Cities metro; but a plowable amount of flurries piled up over the Minnesota Arrowhead. Here's an excerpt from his latest report at Minnesota WeatherTalk: "Many places around the state reported at least a trace of snow on April 21st (Tuesday) and 22nd (Wednesday), and some places reported measurable amounts.  The following were new daily record snowfalls amounts for April 21st:
 4.0" at Isabella
1.5" at Embarrass, Kabetogama, and Ely


In addition Orr reported 3.0", Tower 2.0", and International Falls 1.9" but these were not new record totals for the date.  Following the snow, the low temperature plunged to just 10°F at both Fosston and Embarrass, the coldest reading in the nation for April 23rd..." (Boundary Waters webcam courtesy of U.S. Forest Service).


Spring Regains Its Bounce. After a brief temperature relapse earlier this week, complete with obligatory snowflakes, milder air returns to Minnesota next week with highs in the 60s. European guidance suggests 70s, even 80s by next weekend. The best chance of a few showers and T-showers: Tuesday, again Friday of next week. Source: Weatherspark.

How Warm Weather Influences our Mood. Yes, warm fronts can be good for your state of mind; breaking news from the University of Duh. There's even science to back up (the obvious!) Here's an excerpt of a good summary at Huffington Post: "...The gold standard on this subject is a 2004 University of Michigan study that found people who spent at least 30 minutes outside in pleasant weather -- either by taking a trip to warmer climates in the winter months or by taking advantage of a newly warm spring day in the park -- had happier moods. And in corroborating research, a 2014 UM study found that being outside could lead to a better mindset and reduced stress..."

How Alabama Made Tornado Helmets a Standard for Protection. My first choice is a form-fitted concrete-reinforced, form-fitted body cast that's bolted to the floor. My second choice would be a helmet, for a variety of good reasons. AL.com is doing some terrific reporting on what is considered state of the art; here's an excerpt: "...Earlier, AL.com, using the analysis of the UAB Injury Control Research Center that the best helmets for protection would be those that offer head, neck and face protection, listed the top helmets for protection:
1)    An American Motorcycle Association-approved helmet with a full face shield providing head and neck protection is the top helmet and is easily accessible. But a good motorcycle helmet can cost many hundreds of dollars.
2) Football helmet. A football helmet is designed to protect the head and face, including the sides of the head. It should be one approved for full contact. A good football helmet can cost more than $200..."

Photo credit above: "Motorcycle helmets with face guards offer best protection like this one. Mike Culberson credits this helmet with preventing injury, if not saving his life, when his home roof collapsed during tornado in Fultondale, Ala., on April 27, 2011." (Special/Michael Culberson).

Special Report: Are Tornado Sirens Outdated Technology? The short answer is yes. Here's a snippet from a story at wsaw.com: "...And the Langlade County Emergency Manager, Brad Henricks agrees. Because he said tornado sirens are not as reliable as you may think. “To mention if you can even hear it at 2 a.m. in the morning when severe weather approaches. Second problem, the sirens don't tell you exactly what the threat is, there are better ways to get informed,” said Henricks. He said a new technology called a “Wireless Alert System” on your cell phone could be even more effective. That system sends important messages through your cell phone. It's geographic specific. So if you are from Las Vegas visiting Wisconsin and if the activity is in range of your phone, you'll get a text message..."

What If April 9th Tornado Had Taken A Different Path? Large cities have been particularly lucky when it comes to direct strikes from major tornadoes. So argues the author of this good post at Northern Illinois University Newsroom: "...And had it been closer to Chicago, the number of homes and people affected would have been immense. People have a false sense that tornadoes only happen in rural settings, but nothing could be further from truth,” he added. As evidence, he points to Minneapolis, Atlanta, Springfield, Mass., Huntsville, Ala. and Raleigh, N.C. Just within the last decade, tornadoes have struck downtown areas in those cities. In Illinois, the 1967 Oak Lawn tornado and the 1990 Plainfield tornado are reminders that the Chicago metropolitan region is not immune to tornado threats..."

Photo courtesy NIU meteorology professor Walker Ashley.

Radar Upgrade Has "Changed The Way We Do Business" At Weather Service. Al.com has an interesting article focusing on the advantages of dual-polarization Doppler radar, and for the first time, the ability to see debris lofted into the air by large tornadoes. Here's an excerpt: "...Dual-pol radar can help meteorologists better identify when a tornado has touched down. It's even more useful at night, when storm spotting becomes next to impossible. "It can tell us when a tornado is on the ground and that debris is being cast high into the air," said Jeffrey Medlin, the meteorologist in charge at the National Weather Service office in Mobile. "We have several different data sets we can look at within the dual pol and see that..."

Image credit above: "Dual-polarization radar enables meteorologists to see when a tornado is on the ground and debris is being thrown into the air. It's working much better than many anticipated." (National Weather Service).

U.S. Maps Pinpoint Earthquakes Linked To Quest for Oil and Gas. The New York Times reports; here's the intro: "The United States Geological Survey on Thursday released its first comprehensive assessment of the link between thousands of earthquakes and oil and gas operations, identifying and mapping 17 regions where quakes have occurred. The report was the agency’s broadest statement yet on a danger that has grown along with the nation’s energy production. By far the hardest-hit state, the report said, is Oklahoma, where earthquakes are hundreds of times more common than they were until a few years ago because of the disposal of wastewater left over from extracting fuels and from drilling wells by injecting water into the earth..."

Map credit above: "The maps below show where there has been seismic activity, caused mostly by oil and gas operations. Northern Oklahoma and southern Kansas have been especially hard hit, with an exponential growth in the number of human-caused earthquakes." Source: U.S. Geological Survey.

Artificial Photosynthesis Breakthrough Turns CO2 Emissions Into Plastics and Biofuels. Ultimately innovation, not regulation, will take the edge of climate volatility. Here's another shining example, courtesy of Gizmag: "Scientists at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of California, Berkeley have created a hybrid system of bacteria and semiconducting nanowires that mimics photosynthesis. According to the researchers, their versatile, high-yield system can take water, sunlight and carbon dioxide and turn them into the building blocks of biodegradable plastics, pharmaceutical drugs and even biofuel..." (File image credit: NASA).

What You Need To Know Before Investing In Solar Stocks. The Motley Fool has some advice; here's an excerpt: "There may not be an industry with greater potential for growth today than the solar industry. It's a $120 billion industry today that's upending an electricity industry that will be worth $4 trillion annually by 2035 -- and it could go on to upend transportation fuel as well. That's incredible growth potential for a solar industry that has already grown 30% compounded annually over the last 20 years...."

Photo credit above: "Entire communities are going solar, changing the energy landscape." Source: SolarCity.

Scientists Find Missing Link in Yellowstone Plumbing: This Giant Volcano Is Very Much Alive. To paraphrase George Carlin, don't sweat the thundershowers. And forget warming, if this baby goes of we're talking nuclear winter for an extended stretch. Pray we don't start issuing updates on Yellowstone anytime soon. Here's a clip from The Washington Post: "Yellowstone National Park is the home of one of the world's largest volcanoes, one that is quiescent for the moment but is capable of erupting with catastrophic violence at a scale never before witnessed by human beings. In a big eruption, Yellowstone would eject 1,000 times as much material as the 1980 Mount St. Helens eruption. This would be a disaster felt on a global scale, which is why scientists are looking at this thing closely..."

Photo credit above: "The gorgeous colors of Yellowstone’s Grand Prismatic hot spring are among the national park’s myriad hydrothermal features created by the Yellowstone supervolcano. A new University of Utah study reports discovery of a huge magma reservoir beneath Yellowstone’s previously known magma chamber." (“Windows into the Earth,” Robert B. Smith and Lee J. Siegel).

The Army Is Testing Handheld Ray Guns. What was once science fiction is now scientific reality. Pretty amazing, and this new breakthrough makes your Taser look like a toy. Here's an excerpt from DefenseOne: "...The military, too, has been experimenting with so-called energy weapons for decades, including lasers. “Most of these are vehicle-towed and require a huge power system,” Burke noted. “The antennas are sometimes seven feet.” The Burke Pulser, meanwhile, fits onto an M4 rifle like a standard suppressor. Burke estimates that the cost to mass-produce them would be less than $1,000 each. What do you do with an energy gun? You don’t shoot people. The gun is intended for use against electronics, potentially giving dismounted soldiers an edge against the ever-wider range electronic and cyber threats that they might face on patrol..."

Photo credit above:  U.S. Army photo by Army Staff Sgt. Scott Griffin

Mission Possible. Can a 64-year-old guy with heart disease, emphysema (COPD), and missing half a lung, succeed at twelve of the most iconic climbs in America?  "Phil Huston climbed mountains, rock cliffs and ice walls in 5 countries. He climbed Mount Rainier 12 times; the last ascent just 3 months after losing half of his lung to cancer. “The Climb for Clear Lungs Adventure” proves that even the worst health crises can be overcome. Let’s show how strong older athletes really are!  35 days. 12 climbs. 7 destinations. 18,000 vertical feet. Goal: Promoting screening for millions with undiagnosed lung diseases."

Clear Lungs Adventure: Sunday, 4/26 at 3:30, Room 104 Hanson Hall, University of MN, West Bank.

* If you've smoked at least 100 cigarettes over the course of your life you are at increased risk of COPD. Phil is a dear friend of mine (we worked together at WLOL-FM). He isn't letting COPD slow him down, but his mission is to raise awareness among the general population. Many people have COPD and they don't even realize it yet. Take the screening test from the COPD Foundation; it takes a minute or two.

China Says Please Stop Hiring Funeral Strippers. My new favorite headline of the week, and potential proof that we may be, in fact, living in the End Times. Here's an excerpt from The Wall Street Journal: "In China, friends and family of the deceased may have to do without a special form of funereal entertainment: strippers. According to a statement from the Ministry of Culture on Thursday, the government plans to work closely with the police to eliminate such performances, which are held with the goal of drawing more mourners..."



TODAY: Mostly cloudy, breezy and cool. Winds: E 10-20. High: 55
SATURDAY NIGHT: Clouds linger. Low: 39
SUNDAY: Partly sunny, a nicer day. High: near 60
MONDAY: Intervals of sun, lukewarm breeze. Wake-up: 42. High: 66
TUESDAY: Unsettled, passing T-shower. Wake-up: 48. High: 63
WEDNESDAY: Mix of clouds and sunshine. Wake-up: 50. High: 62
THURSDAY: Some sun, almost feels like spring. Wake-up: 48. High: 68
FRIDAY: Humid, risk of a few T-storms. Wake-up: 52. High: 69
* 70s are possible next weekend, even a shot at 80F. on Sunday, May 3.


Climate Stories...

Warming Hiatus Will Not Stop Long-Term Global Climate Change. Factoring additional heat going into the oceans there hasn't been a true hiatus in warming; here's a clip from Sydney Morning Herald: "A recent hiatus in global temperature rises will not temper the ultimate impact of climate change by the end of the century, research by Australian climate scientists has found. In a study published in the journal Nature Climate Change on Thursday, the researchers compared different climate models – complex computer simulations used by scientists to project the impact of rising atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gas – that showed a decade-long hiatus in surface temperature rises since 1995 to those that did not..."

Thawing Permafrost: A Slow, Giant Carbon Release. InsideClimate News takes a look at what may wind up being the biggest climate tipping point: "...Kevin Schaefer, a permafrost scientist with the National Snow and Ice Data Center at the University of Colorado in Boulder and an author of the article, calls the thawing of the permafrost a "true climatic tipping point." Scientists are still trying to pinpoint when it will happen, but Schaefer said that a likely point is around the middle of this century, when the Arctic changes from a carbon sink to a carbon source. When that happens, it will trigger a centuries-long, unstoppable feedback system, in which warming will release carbon, which will trigger more warming, which will release more carbon..."

Bob Inglis: Show Courage on Climate Change. Yes, finding ways to grow the economy and put more people to work, tapping more energy without relying on fossil fuels is America's Energy Moonshot for the 21st century. Here's an excerpt of an Op-Ed from former South Carolina (Republican) Congressman Bob Inglis at GreenvilleOnline: "America has an exceptional opportunity to prove that accountable free enterprise can solve climate change. The Great Recession dealt a blow to our confidence, but we’re coming back. If we boldly end all subsidies for all fuels and attach all costs to all fuels, liberty and transparent markets will spark consumer-driven innovation. In order for America to lead on climate change, the unconvinced need to be persuaded that achievable solutions can be found that fit with their values. Climate doomsayers have incanted a future full of fear. Climate naysayers have counseled a clutch of the fuels that have worked for us in the past..." (File photo above: Richard Shiro, AP).

Will Drought And Climate Change Kill the Winter Olympics? Vice Sports has a fascinating story about shifting patterns and which cities have the consistently cold winter weather and moisture to be able to support an Olympic bid; here's an excerpt: "...Even beyond 2022, the Winter Olympics appears to be in peril. As temperatures continue to rise as a result of climate change, the minimum temperature benchmark of 32F will be harder to meet. The table (above) lists the current daily minimum and maximum temperatures in February at all the previous host cities' alpine venues since Nagano, Japan, in 1998..."

Exclusive: Obama Tells Us What's To Come on Climate, Drought. National Geographic has the article; here's an excerpt that caught my eye: "...The president is more opaque, however, when asked directly about whether Americans should expect to sacrifice everyday activities that consume fossil fuels and water. Instead, he points to how far the country has come in recent decades, and to how much progress is under way. “In just 40 years, we’ve cut air pollution by nearly 70 percent while the economy has tripled,” he says. “By the middle of the next decade, our cars will go twice as far on a gallon of gas.” He adds that reducing climate-altering gases “represents one of the greatest economic opportunities of the 21st century...”

What Do Volcanic Eruptions Mean For The Climate? Carbon Brief does a good job summarizing the potential impact of the new volcano roaring to life in Chile; here's an excerpt: "...Volcanic eruptions can affect climate in  two main ways. First, they release the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide, contributing to warming of the atmosphere. But the effect is very small. Emissions from volcanoes since 1750 are  thought to be at least 100 times smaller than those from fossil fuel burning. Second, sulphur dioxide contained in the ash cloud can produce a cooling effect, explains Prof Jim McQuaid, professor of atmospheric composition at the University of Leeds..."

Photo credit above: Calbuco volcano eruption. Credit: Philip Oyarzo Calisto

Changes in Water Vapor and Clouds are Amplifying Global Warming. The Guardian has the story - here's a snippet: "... If the cooling effect gets smaller, it means the Earth will warm more than expected. If the cooling effect of clouds gets bigger, it means the Earth will warm less than expected.
What the present paper shows is that future changes to clouds will cause slightly more warming. Scientists describe clouds as a “positive feedback” on global warming. This finding is consistent with the work of Dr. Andrew Dessler. He had published work here and here showing changes in clouds are making the Earth warm more than otherwise expected
..."

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Nothing to Whine About: Rain Today, 70s Next Week

55 F. high temperature in the Twin Cities Thursday.
62 F. average high on April 23.
47 F. high on April 23, 2014.

April 23, 1990: A record of 88 degrees is set at Redwood Falls


Sputtering Spring

Oh stop your whining. Yes, you. I know it's buried somewhere in the Constitution - or maybe the Bill of Rights? I should have paid attention in history class. Yes, it's our God-given right to honk, bellow and bray about the vicissitudes of the weather. It's just all SO unfair!

A dollop of perspective is in order. April 2015 is still running 3.5F warmer than average, to date. We've picked up .3 inches of snow this month. That compares to 7 inches in April, 2014, and a whopping 21.8 inches of snowy fun in April, 1983. That was my first full month living at MSP. I remember wondering what parallel universe I had tumbled into.

So it hasn't been that rough a spring, all things considered. Moisture has been sparse though, lake water levels are down; all but far southeast Minnesota is in moderate drought. A 3-day soaking qualifies as "good weather" this year.

NOAA's NAM model prints out .76 inches of rain Friday night but I think that may be generous; once again the brunt of the rain is forecast to pinwheeling south of Minnesota. Long-range ECMWF guidance shows a string of 70s next week, even a shot at 80F. It will feel like spring again next week.

In today's blog: dual polarization Doppler at 152 National Weather Service sites is so sensitive it can see the "debris ball" of a tornado on the ground. That should mean fewer false alarms.

Moderate Drought. All but far southeastern Minnesota is now in an extended (deepening) drought, as the biggest, wettest storms continue to track south of Minnesota. I'm still hoping for a shift in the pattern, one that brings a parade of sloppy storms into the Upper Midwest. That could still happen but it's not imminent.

* the latest U.S. Drought Monitor for Minnesota is here.

Late Evening Tornado Outbreak? AerisWeather's TPI, Tornado Potential Index, shows an enhanced risk of tornadic supercell thunderstorms from Dallas to Tulsa and Wichita. There's a good chance SPC may upgrade the enhanced risk to moderate risk, which is a tripwire of sorts, suggesting at least a few large, long-track and damaging tornadoes.

Late April Sledding. NASA's high-resolution MODIS satellite imagery shows snow on the ground over the Minnesota Arrowhead and BWCA; significant snow for much of Ontario. You can clearly make out the lake-effect streaks of snow, especially downwind of Lake Superior.

A Long, Cool Drink? NOAA model guidance shows some .50"+ rainfall amounts setting up north of St. Cloud and south of the Twin Cities and Eau Claire, the heaviest amounts of rain reaching Iowa and Illinois where some 1-3" rains may trigger flash flooding. Source: AerisWeather Enterprise.

Warming Trend. Today looks cool and damp and Saturday won't win any awards for beauty and splendor. But things start to go right again Sunday, with a streak of 60s and 70s next week; 80F not entirely out of the question by the end of next week. Source: Weatherspark.

First 80s of 2015. Models are in fairly tight agreement, showing a steady warming trend into late April and the first week of May. A few models shows highs near 80F from April 30 to about May 3. Source: AerisWeather Enterprise.

How Warm Weather Influences our Mood. Yes, warm fronts can be good for your state of mind. There's even science to back up (the obvious!) Here's an excerpt of a good summary at Huffington Post: "...The gold standard on this subject is a 2004 University of Michigan study that found people who spent at least 30 minutes outside in pleasant weather -- either by taking a trip to warmer climates in the winter months or by taking advantage of a newly warm spring day in the park -- had happier moods. And in corroborating research, a 2014 UM study found that being outside could lead to a better mindset and reduced stress..."

What If April 9th Tornado Had Taken A Different Path? Large cities have been particularly lucky when it comes to direct strikes from major tornadoes. So argues the author of this good post at Northern Illinois University Newsroom: "...And had it been closer to Chicago, the number of homes and people affected would have been immense. People have a false sense that tornadoes only happen in rural settings, but nothing could be further from truth,” he added. As evidence, he points to Minneapolis, Atlanta, Springfield, Mass., Huntsville, Ala. and Raleigh, N.C. Just within the last decade, tornadoes have struck downtown areas in those cities. In Illinois, the 1967 Oak Lawn tornado and the 1990 Plainfield tornado are reminders that the Chicago metropolitan region is not immune to tornado threats..."

Photo courtesy NIU meteorology professor Walker Ashley.

Radar Upgrade Has "Changed The Way We Do Business" At Weather Service. Al.com has an interesting article focusing on the advantages of dual-polarization Doppler radar, and for the first time, the ability to see debris lofted into the air by large tornadoes. Here's an excerpt: "...Dual-pol radar can help meteorologists better identify when a tornado has touched down. It's even more useful at night, when storm spotting becomes next to impossible. "It can tell us when a tornado is on the ground and that debris is being cast high into the air," said Jeffrey Medlin, the meteorologist in charge at the National Weather Service office in Mobile. "We have several different data sets we can look at within the dual pol and see that..."

Image credit above: "Dual-polarization radar enables meteorologists to see when a tornado is on the ground and debris is being thrown into the air. It's working much better than many anticipated." (National Weather Service).

100-Year Hurricane Could Cost $250 Billion If It Hit Miami. At some point our luck will run out. If not Miami, Tampa, Houston, New York or Boston. Here's the intro to a story at Miami New Times: "Hurricane season 2015 starts in just a few weeks and so far, most experts are forecasting another sleepy storm period in the Atlantic. But another study out this week makes it clear that it would only take one monster 'cane to wreak an insane amount of damage in booming South Florida. A new study released by the disaster modeling experts at the Karen Clark Company estimates that if a major hurricane, with a 1-in-100 chance of occurring in a given year, were to hit downtown Miami the losses would eclipse more than $250 billion in damage..."

Where People Go To Check The Weather. Young people, millenials specifically, aren't consuming weather information the way their parents do. It's all about mobility. Here's an excerpt of an interesting read at FiveThirtyEight: "...Because I’m 24, I either don’t bother checking the weather or just use the default app on my phone. I assumed everyone else was like me in this regard. I was wrong. I couldn’t find data on this, so I asked SurveyMonkey Audience to run a simple survey. It ran April 6-10 and had 938 respondents. It asked two main questions: How do you check the weather? And, do you check a weather report every day?..."

Mission Possible. Can a 64-year-old guy with heart disease, emphysema (COPD), and missing half a lung, succeed at twelve of the most iconic climbs in America?  "Phil Huston climbed mountains, rock cliffs and ice walls in 5 countries. He climbed Mount Rainier 12 times; the last ascent just 3 months after losing half of his lung to cancer. “The Climb for Clear Lungs Adventure” proves that even the worst health crises can be overcome. Let’s show how strong older athletes really are!  35 days. 12 climbs. 7 destinations. 18,000 vertical feet. Goal: Promoting screening for millions with undiagnosed lung diseases."

Clear Lungs Adventure: Sunday, 4/26 at 3:30, Room 104 Hanson Hall, University of MN, West Bank.

* If you've smoked at least 100 cigarettes over the course of your life you are at increased risk of COPD. Phil is a dear friend of mine (we worked together at WLOL-FM). He isn't letting COPD slow him down, but his mission is to raise awareness among the general population. Many people have COPD and they don't even realize it yet. Take the screening test from the COPD Foundation; it takes a minute or two.

It's Not The 1% Controlling Politics. It's The 0.01 Percent. Corporations are people, and my dog, Leo, is a space alien. God help us. Here's a clip from a story at Mother Jones: "...In other words, about 125 Americans* control more than 40 percent of election contributions. Notably, between 2010 and 2012, the total share of giving by these donors jumped more than 10 percentage points. That shift is likely the direct result of the Supreme Court's 2010 Citizens United ruling, which struck down decades of fundraising limits and kicked off the super-PAC era. And this data only includes publicly disclosed donations, not dark money, which almost certainly means that the megadonors' actual share of total political spending is even higher..."

Italian Company Hopes To Market Synthetic Eyeballs. The bionic man may not be that far off, after all. Here's an excerpt of a fascinatingly creepy post at Gizmag: "Imagine being able to see in black and white or with an Instagram-like filter, or to have what you see through your eyes transmitted wirelessly, simply by swallowing a pill. Or imagine having vision so sharp and accurate that your visual acuity is on par with the most sight-adept people in the world. Italian research studio Mhox hopes to one day make this a reality with its EYE concept, which would offer 3D bioprinted eyes that replace your existing eyeballs..."


TODAY: Mostly cloudy. Rain develops. Winds: SE 15 High: near 50
FRIDAY NIGHT: Periods of rain, chilly. Low: 40
SATURDAY: Mostly cloudy, cool breeze lingers. High: 51
SUNDAY: Partly sunny, hints of spring. Wake-up: 36. High: near 60
MONDAY: Intervals of sun, warming up. Wake-up: 42. High: 68
TUESDAY: Some sun, risk of a T-shower. Wake-up: 45. High: 65
WEDNESDAY: Mild sunshine. No complaints. Wake-up: 47. High: 73
THURSDAY: Blue sky. Feeling feverish again. Wake-up: 49. High: 76


Climate Stories...

What Do Volcanic Eruptions Mean For The Climate? Carbon Brief does a good job summarizing the potential impact of the new volcano roaring to life in Chile; here's an excerpt: "...Volcanic eruptions can affect climate in  two main ways. First, they release the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide, contributing to warming of the atmosphere. But the effect is very small. Emissions from volcanoes since 1750 are  thought to be at least 100 times smaller than those from fossil fuel burning. Second, sulphur dioxide contained in the ash cloud can produce a cooling effect, explains Prof Jim McQuaid, professor of atmospheric composition at the University of Leeds..."

Photo credit above: Calbuco volcano eruption. Credit: Philip Oyarzo Calisto

Changes in Water Vapor and Clouds are Amplifying Global Warming. The Guardian has the story - here's a snippet: "... If the cooling effect gets smaller, it means the Earth will warm more than expected. If the cooling effect of clouds gets bigger, it means the Earth will warm less than expected.
What the present paper shows is that future changes to clouds will cause slightly more warming. Scientists describe clouds as a “positive feedback” on global warming. This finding is consistent with the work of Dr. Andrew Dessler. He had published work here and here showing changes in clouds are making the Earth warm more than otherwise expected
..."

Conservatives Don't Think Global Warming Will Happen In Their Lifetimes. Not all conservatives, but a significant percentage. Which is ironic, because it's happening now - we're already observing symptoms. And conservatives in Europe and even China are now acknowledging the trends. Here's the intro to a story at Politico: "Everyone except conservative Republicans seems to agree that global warming will happen in their lifetime, according to a new Gallup survey released Wednesday, just in time for Earth Day. Fewer than four in 10 self-identified conservative Republicans — 37 percent — think that global warming will occur in their lifetime, while 19 percent believe it will affect future generations..."

It's Time To Begin Bracing For Effects of Climate Change. The Register-Guard in Eugene, Oregon has the Op-Ed; here's an excerpt that caught my eye: "...However, in what might turn out to be a mistake of epic proportions, there have been no efforts to teach the skills that people and groups will need to cope psychologically, emotionally and spiritually with the increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events and the toxic stress associated with climate disruption. Research has linked climate impacts with debilitating anxiety, depression, moral distress, compassion fatigue and post-traumatic stress disorder. Mounting psychosocial troubles have been identified, including interpersonal aggression, extremism, crime and violence. The Pentagon has connected climate disruption to more terrorism and war..."

Obama In Everglades: Threats from Climate Change "Can't Be Edited Out" of Conversation. Here's a snippet from a Miami Herald story: "...Obama also took a jab at Republican Gov. Rick Scott, who prohibited state staff from using the term “climate change,” according to several former employees and academics. Scott has said no such ban exists. “Climate change can no longer be denied. It can’t be edited out. It can’t be omitted from the conversation,” Obama said, without naming the governor..."

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Brighter and Better Thursday Ahead

Quadruple Rainbow?
I've seen a double rain, even part of a triple rainbow, but have never heard of a quadruple rainbow, have you? Take a look at this incredible image taken by Amanda Curtis from Glen Cove, NY on April 21st, 2015. Great shot Amanda!!

(Image courtesy: Twitter Amanda_Curtis)


Brighter & Better
By Todd Nelson

We sure get spoiled quickly don't we? One week we see consistent temperatures in the 60s, 70s and 80s to frost, wind blown snow and below average temperature the next. Mother Nature has a unique way of balancing itself out. All the extreme ups and downs tend to level themselves out over time. The longer the timeframe, the closer to average you would tend to be.

However, one disturbing trend over recent years is the extreme drought in the Western U.S., especially in California. Efforts to control water usage and mitigate additional drought concerns continue. In a recent report, Californians are being asked to cut water usage by 25% in hopes to conserve an additional 1.3 million acre-feet this year. Reservoir levels are running significantly lower than average; it's a trend that is weighing heavy on the minds of many.

A weak storm system moves into the Western U.S. over the next few days; precipitation amounts will be fairly low. We get a piece of this system on Friday with a few cool rain showers lingering into the early weekend.

Temps are still cooler than avg., but at least things are heating up with my favorite hockey team...
GO WILD!!

==================

WEDNESDAY NIGHT: Mostly clear and chilly! Lighter winds. Low: 29. Winds: NW 5-15mph
THURSDAY: Frosty start. Brighter and better, less wind. High: 52. Winds: NW 5-10mph
THURSDAY NIGHT: Mostly clear, not quite as cold. Low: 35. Winds: light SE
FRIDAY: Mostly cloudy, scattered rain showers High: 52.
SATURDAY: Damp start, partly sunny by afternoon. Wake-up: 38. High: 54.
SUNDAY: A little warmer and more sun. Wake-up: 38. High: 60.
MONDAY: Clouds thicken, rain develops late. Wake-up: 45. High: 58.
TUESDAY: Breezy. Rain/snow mix possible. Wake-up: 40. High: 54.
WEDNESDAY: Windy. Lingering sprinkles/flurries. Wake-up: 39. High: 54.

===================

This Day in Weather History
April 23rd

1990: A record of 88 degrees is set at Redwood Falls.

====================

Average High/Low for Minneapolis
April 23rd

Average High: 62F (Record: 86F set in 1990)
Average Low: 41F (Record: 19 set in 1910)

====================

Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
April 23rd

Sunrise: 6:14am
Sunset: 8:08pm

====================

Moon Phase for April 23rd at Midnight
1.7 Days Before First Quarter




=====================

Minneapolis Temperature Trend
It appears that the coldest weather is now behind us (for a little while). We will gradually warm back to near average temperatures by the weekend, but extended forecasts are suggesting another brief cool down by the middle/end of next week. Regardless of what happens through the end of the month (temperature-wise), we still are seeing a warmer/more unsettled trend into early May.



===================

Thursday Temperature Outlook
With weather conditions continually improving through the week, Thursday won't be all that bad. Other than being cooler than average, we'll have more sun and lighter winds! Tempreatures will warm into the 40s and 50s across the state (cooler than average by 10F or so), but with the wind, it'll still feel like the 30s, 40s across much of the state.



Thursday Wind Outlook
Nice to see winds finally subsiding! Westerly winds will still be a bit breezy (10mph to 15mph) across the eastern part of the state, but not nearly as nagging as it was earlier this week.



Thursday Weather Outlook
The large upper level low will continue to slowly moving east on Thursday. Although we'll still be a bit cool and breezy, we'll have lots of sunshine across the Upper Midwest! Grab your light jacket and sunglasses.



Simulated Radar
The simulated radar loop below shows the remnant snow showers from PM Tuesday/AM Wednesday slowly moving east. Thursday looks like a mostly quiet day across the region, but note the spotty showers moving back into the region by Friday.



Precipitation Outlook
Weather conditions will sour a bit towards the end of the week with rain showers moving in on Friday; up to 0.10" to 0.20" may be possible through 7pm Friday.



National Weather Outlook
Nice to see that stubborn, slow moving, large upper level low moving east of the Great Lakes Region through the end of the week. Weather conditions will slowly improve for folks in the northeast quadrant of the nation, but another storm system will quickly develop behind it and move into the middle part of the country through the 2nd half of the week. Widespread showers and storms will be possible with mountain snow, strong/severe storms in the Plains and pockets of heavy rain.



Severe Threat Thursday
...SUMMARY... ISOLATED TO SCATTERED THUNDERSTORMS...WITH SOME PRODUCING LARGE HAIL AND WIND DAMAGE...WILL BE POSSIBLE THURSDAY ACROSS MUCH OF TEXAS...SOUTHERN OKLAHOMA AND LOUISIANA. MARGINALLY SEVERE STORMS WITH HAIL AND STRONG WIND GUSTS MAY OCCUR IN PARTS OF THE CENTRAL GULF COAST...WEST-CENTRAL TEXAS AND CENTRAL OKLAHOMA. THUNDERSTORMS MAY ALSO DEVELOP ACROSS PARTS OF THE OZARKS...CENTRAL PLAINS...CENTRAL ROCKIES...INTERMOUNTAIN WEST...DESERT SOUTHWEST AND SIERRA NEVADA. ...SRN PLAINS AND LA... AN UPPER-LEVEL RIDGE IS FORECAST TO MOVE EWD ACROSS THE SRN AND CNTRL PLAINS ON THURSDAY OVER THE TOP OF A WARM SECTOR LOCATED ACROSS THE ERN HALF OF TX INTO LA. SFC DEWPOINTS ARE FORECAST TO BE IN THE LOWER 70S F IN CNTRL AND EAST TX RESULTING IN STRONG INSTABILITY. IN SPITE OF THIS...SUBSIDENCE DUE TO THE UPPER-LEVEL RIDGE WILL HELP TO KEEP CONVECTIVE INITIATION ISOLATED THURSDAY AFTERNOON AND CONCENTRATED ALONG BOUNDARIES. AS LOW-LEVEL CONVERGENCE INCREASES ON THE MESOSCALE...A FEW CONVECTIVE CLUSTERS COULD DEVELOP BY EARLY THURSDAY EVENING AND PERSIST INTO THE OVERNIGHT PERIOD. THE MOST FAVORABLE AREA FOR CONVECTIVE INITIATION WOULD BE ON THE WRN EDGE OF THE MOIST SECTOR ALONG THE I-35 CORRIDOR AND NEAR A WARM FRONT EXTENDING SEWD ACROSS ARKLATEX. NAM FORECAST SOUNDINGS FOR WACO AND DALLAS AT 00Z/FRI SHOW IMPRESSIVE THERMODYNAMICS WITH MLCAPE OF 3500 TO 4500 J/KG AND STEEP LAPSE RATES NEAR 7.5 C/KM FROM 850 TO 500 MB. IN ADDITION...VEERING WINDS WITH HEIGHT BELOW 700 MB AND WLY FLOW ALOFT WILL CREATE STRONG DEEP-LAYER SHEAR ACROSS MUCH OF THE WARM SECTOR. THIS SHOULD SUPPORT SUPERCELLS AND LARGE HAIL IN AREAS WHERE STORMS CAN INITIATE. WIND DAMAGE COULD ALSO OCCUR WITH CLUSTERS THAT CAN ORGANIZE DURING THE EARLY EVENING. A TORNADO OR TWO CAN NOT BE RULED OUT WITH SUPERCELLS THAT CAN BECOME DOMINANT. FURTHER TO THE EAST ACROSS LA...THUNDERSTORMS COULD ALSO DEVELOP IN A MODERATELY UNSTABLE AND STRONGLY SHEARED ENVIRONMENT. ALTHOUGH LAPSE RATES ARE NOT AS STEEP AS ACROSS TX...ANY CONVECTIVE CLUSTER THAT CAN ORGANIZE COULD DEVELOP A WIND-DAMAGE THREAT DURING THE LATE AFTERNOON AND EARLY EVENING.


Severe Threat Friday
...SUMMARY... SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS WITH LARGE HAIL...WIND DAMAGE AND SOME TORNADOES WILL BE POSSIBLE ACROSS ACROSS THE CENTRAL PLAINS SOUTHWARD INTO THE SOUTHERN PLAINS AND EASTWARD INTO THE LOWER MISSISSIPPI VALLEY. THUNDERSTORMS MAY ALSO DEVELOP ACROSS PARTS OF THE CENTRAL GULF COAST...CENTRAL HIGH PLAINS AND INTERMOUNTAIN WEST. ...CNTRL PLAINS... AN UPPER-LEVEL TROUGH IS FORECAST TO MOVE EWD INTO THE CENTRAL PLAINS ON FRIDAY AS A SFC LOW DEEPENS ACROSS THE CNTRL HIGH PLAINS. BACKED SELY WINDS AT THE SFC WILL ALLOW LOW-LEVEL MOISTURE TO GRADUALLY INCREASE ACROSS THE CNTRL PLAINS DURING THE DAY WITH THE MOISTURE AND INSTABILITY AXIS SETTING UP ACROSS SCNTRL AND NRN KS. SFC DEWPOINTS ARE FORECAST TO BE AROUND 60 F ALONG THIS CORRIDOR WITH MODERATE INSTABILITY DEVELOPING BY AFTERNOON. MODEL FORECASTS SUGGEST THAT THUNDERSTORMS COULD INITIATE ALONG THE WEST EDGE OF THE INSTABILITY AXIS IN THE MID TO LATE AFTERNOON WITH A COMPLEX OF STORMS MOVING EWD ACROSS CNTRL AND ERN KS DURING THE LATE AFTERNOON AND EARLY EVENING. NAM FORECAST SOUNDINGS AT 00Z/SAT FOR SALINA AND EMPORIA KS SHOW MLCAPE IN THE 2000 TO 2500 J/KG RANGE WITH STEEP LAPSE RATES AND 40 KT OF 0-6 K SHEAR. THIS ENVIRONMENT SHOULD BE FAVORABLE FOR SUPERCELLS WITH LARGE HAIL AND WIND DAMAGE. THE NAM...GFS AND ECMWF SOLUTIONS AGREE THAT A 40 TO 50 KT LOW-LEVEL JET WILL DEVELOP ACROSS SRN AND ERN KS DURING THE EARLY EVENING AS THE LEFT EXIT REGION OF THE MID-LEVEL JET PASSES OVER THE AREA. THIS COULD MAKE CONDITIONS FAVORABLE FOR TORNADOES WITH THE MORE DOMINANT SUPERCELLS. THE SEVERE THREAT INCLUDING A RISK FOR LARGE HAIL AND WIND DAMAGE SHOULD CONTINUE EWD INTO MO DURING THE EVENING AND MAY REACH THE MID MS VALLEY DURING THE OVERNIGHT PERIOD. ...SRN PLAINS/ARKLATEX/LOWER MS VALLEY... AN UPPER-LEVEL RIDGE IS FORECAST TO MOVE INTO THE LOWER TO MID MS VALLEY ON FRIDAY. A WARM SECTOR SHOULD BE IN PLACE FROM CNTRL TX EWD TO THE LOWER MS VALLEY WITH A LOW-LEVEL JET FORECAST TO DEVELOP ACROSS EAST TX AND LA DURING THE DAY. LIFT ASSOCIATED WITH THE LOW-LEVEL JET AND LARGE-SCALE ASCENT ASSOCIATED WITH AN APPROACHING UPPER-LEVEL TROUGH MAY SUPPORT SCATTERED TO WIDESPREAD THUNDERSTORM DEVELOPMENT ACROSS THE REGION AS A 60 TO 75 KT MID-LEVEL JET PASSES BY TO THE NORTH. MCS DEVELOPMENT WILL BE POSSIBLE FROM THE ARKLATEX SWD ACROSS EAST TX...LA AND INTO WRN MS. NAM FORECAST SOUNDINGS AT 21Z FRIDAY FOR MONROE LA EWD TO THE MS RIVER SHOW MLCAPE AROUND 1500 J/KG WITH 45 TO 50 KT OF 0-6 KM SHEAR. THIS SHOULD BE FAVORABLE FOR SUPERCELL DEVELOPMENT ALTHOUGH CONVECTION COULD ALSO ORGANIZE INTO LINES AS STORMS CONGEAL DURING THE AFTERNOON. WINDS AT LOW-LEVELS ARE FORECAST TO BE SOMEWHAT VEERED TO THE SSW WITH UNIDIRECTIONAL WIND PROFILES IN PLACE ABOVE 850 MB. THIS SHOULD BE FAVORABLE FOR WIND DAMAGE ESPECIALLY IF A COLD POOL CAN ORGANIZE ACROSS THE REGION FRIDAY AFTERNOON. LARGE HAIL...WIND DAMAGE AND A TORNADO THREAT COULD DEVELOP WITH SUPERCELLS AND THE MORE INTENSE LINE SEGMENTS.


Precipitation Outlook
According to NOAA's HPC, the precipitation outlook through AM Monday suggests pockets of heavy rainfall across the south-central part of the country as well as area along the Front Range.



Western Snowfall
As our next storm system moves into the western half of the country over the next few days, snowfall will be possible across the high elevations. There may be pockets of heavier snowfall, but it will be confined to the peaks. Regardless, it is nice to see snow/precipitation in the Western U.S.!



8 to 14 Day Temperature Outlook
According to NOAA's HPC, the 8 to 14 day temperature outlook (April 29th - May 5th) suggests cooler than average temperatures continuing across the Eastern U.S., but it is also showing a mild trend across the Western U.S. building into the Central U.S.



2015 PRELIMINARY Tornado Count
According to NOAA's SPC, the 2015 PRELIMINARY tornado count suggests there have been 154 tornadoes through April 20th. The 2005-2014 average through April 20th is 383, so we continue to stay well below the average to date. However, we have surpassed that of last year, when there were only 109 tornadoes through April 20th and that of 2010 when there were only 97 tornado reports.



Nearing the April 25th-28th, 2011 Tornado Outbreak
We are nearing the 4th anniversary of the largest/costliest and one of the deadliest tornado outbreaks ever recorded across the U.S., which took place April 25th-28th, 2011.

"The April 25–28, 2011 tornado outbreak was the largest and one of the deadliest tornado outbreaks ever recorded, affecting the Southern, Midwestern, and Northeastern United States and leaving catastrophic destruction in its wake. While the states that were hardest hit were Alabama and Mississippi, the outbreak also produced destructive tornadoes in Arkansas, Georgia, Tennessee and Virginia, and affected many other areas throughout the Southern and Eastern United States. In total, 355 tornadoes were confirmed by the National Weather Service (NWS) and Environment Canada in 21 states from Texas to New York to southernCanada. Widespread and destructive tornadoes occurred on each day of the outbreak, with April 27 being the most active day with a record of 211 tornadoes touching down that day from midnight to midnight CDT (0500 – 0500 UTC). Four of the tornadoes were destructive enough to be rated EF5, which is the highest ranking possible on the Enhanced Fujita scale; typically these tornadoes are only recorded about once each year or less."
"In total, 348 people were killed as a result of the outbreak, which includes 324 tornado-related deaths across six states. In addition, 24 fatalities were not caused by tornadoes, but were confirmed to be as a result of otherthunderstorm-related events such as straight-line winds, hail, flash flooding or lightning.In Alabama alone, 238 tornado-related deaths were confirmed by the Storm Prediction Center (SPC) and the state's Emergency Management Agency."
"April 27 had the most tornado-related fatalities in the United States in a single day since the "Tri-State" outbreak on March 18, 1925, when at least 747 people were killed. Nearly 500 preliminary local storm reports were received for tornadoes over four days, including 292 in 16 states on April 27 alone. This event was the costliest tornado outbreak and one of the costliest natural disasters in United States history (even after adjustments for inflation), with total damages of approximately $11 billion (2011 USD)."

Read more from Wikipedia HERE:



Below Normal 2015 Atlantic Hurricane Season Ahead?
Earlier this month, Colorado State University released it's 2015 Atlantic Hurricane Season forecast and this is what they are saying.

"Colorado State University team predicts below-average 2015 Atlantic hurricane season"
"FORT COLLINS - Colorado State University researchers are predicting a well below-average hurricane season for the Atlantic basin in 2015, citing the likely development of a moderate to strong El Niño event as well as anomalous cooling of the tropical and sub-tropical Atlantic."
"The CSU Tropical Meteorology Project team is calling for seven named storms during the Atlantic hurricane season, which runs from June 1 to Nov. 30. Of those, researchers expect three to become hurricanes and one to reach major hurricane strength (Saffir/Simpson category 3-4-5) with sustained winds of 111 miles per hour or greater."
"The team bases its forecasts on over 60 years of historical data that include Atlantic sea surface temperatures, sea level pressures, vertical wind shear levels (the change in wind direction and speed with height in the atmosphere), El Niño (warming of waters in the central and eastern tropical Pacific), and other factors."
"So far, the 2015 season is exhibiting characteristics similar to the 1957, 1987, 1991, 1993 and 2014 hurricane seasons, all of which had below-normal activity, said Phil Klotzbach, lead author of the report."
"“The tropical Atlantic has anomalously cooled over the past several months, and the chances of a moderate to strong El Niño event this summer and fall appear to be quite high,” Klotzbach said. “Historical data indicate fewer storms form in these conditions.”"
"The team predicts that 2015 tropical cyclone activity will be about 45 percent of the average season. By comparison, 2014’s tropical cyclone activity was about 75 percent of average."
"The CSU team will issue forecast updates on June 1, July 1 and Aug. 3."
EXTENDED RANGE ATLANTIC BASIN HURRICANE FORECAST FOR 2015:
-Released April 9, 2015-
Tropical Cyclone Parameters Extended Range
(1981-2010 Climatological Median Forecast for 2015
in parentheses)
Named Storms (12) 7
Named Storm Days (60.1) 30
Hurricanes (6.5) 3
Hurricane Days (21.3) 10
Major Hurricanes (2.0) 1
Major Hurricane Days (3.9) 0.5
Accumulated Cyclone Energy (92) 40
Net Tropical Cyclone Activity (103%) 45


See more from ColoState.edu HERE:

(Image courtesy: NASA; Hurricane Irene August 25, 2011)


April 23rd: National Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day
"Founded by Gloria Steinem and the Ms. Foundation for Women, National Take Our Daughter and Sons to Work Day, an “unofficial” National holiday began in 1993.   As is it scheduled on a school day for most children, schools are provided with literature and they are encouraged to promote the program."
"National Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day is recognized on the fourth Thursday of April each year."
"This annual event is an educational program in the United States and Canada that revolves around parents taking their children to work with them for one day.  It is the successor of Take Our Daughters to Work Day which, in 2003, was expanded to include boys.  Most companies allowed both girls and boys to participate since the beginning, renaming the day “Take Our Children to Work Day” or such an equivalent name."
Read more from NationalDayCalendar.com HERE:

(Image courtesy: NationalDayCalendary.com)


"What is the Smell of Rain?"
"Australia’s national science agency – the CSIRO – has come up with some pretty amazing inventions over the past 86 years of research, from polymer banknotes to insect repellent and the world-changing Wi-Fi. But we can also lay claim to something a little more esoteric – we actually invented a whole new word. And no, we’re not talking about one of these new-fangled internet words like “YOLO”, “selfie” or “totes”."
"The word is “petrichor,” and it’s used to describe the distinct scent of rain in the air. Or, to be more precise, it’s the name of an oil that’s released from the Earth into the air before rain begins to fall."
"This heady smell of oncoming wet weather is something most people are familiar with – in fact, some scientists now suggest that humans inherited an affection for the smell from ancestors who relied on rainy weather for their survival."

Read more from EarthSky.org HERE:

(image courtesy: Bidgee via wikipedia)


"Air Force’s plan to drop U.S. forecast system for U.K. model draws criticism"

"The U.S. Air Force Weather Agency, which provides forecasts for Air Force and Army missions around the world, plans to replace its U.S.-based forecasting system with a model from the United Kingdom."
"The U.K. model selected by the Air Force, known as the Unified Model of the United Kingdom Met Office, is widely respected. The Air Force says it will improve its forecast capabilities and lower its costs. Within a single framework, this model is able to provide both short- and longer-range forecasts over large and small areas — which is not a seamless operation within the current U.S. system."
"But the decision — which was made without coordination with the National Weather Service or U.S. Navy, who partner with the Air Force to improve predictions — has drawn criticism from parts of the U.S. weather research and forecasting community. Several leading figures say they are perplexed that the Air Force has selected a foreign model when the United States is investing substantial resources to develop its own world-class models."

Read more from WashingtonPost.com HERE:

(Image courtesy: Val Gempis/U.S. Air Force)


Thanks for chekcing in and have a great rest of your week! Don't forget to follow me on Twitter @TNelsonWX