5th warmest July on record for Minnesota (source: MN State Climate Office).
Warmest July in 50 years for the continental USA (source: Planalytics).
27 days above 100 in Oklahoma City during July.
"...The highest recorded temperature in Oklahoma City history is 113 degrees, set Aug. 11, 1936. Wednesday's predicted high is 111 degrees. The highest temperature so far in 2011 was 110 degrees on July 9." - article in The Oklahoman.
32 days in a row above 100 at Dallas (second longest streak on record). All-time record for consecutive 100-degree days at DFW: 42 days in 1980. We may come very close to that mark in 2011.
Close Encounter. Tropical Storm Emily is passing just south of Puerto Rico - some of the outer bands of the storm capable of heavy showers and storms, but the roughest surf (and heaviest rain squalls) are passing 50-125 miles south of San Juan. Radar loop courtesy of the Bio-Optical Oceanography Laboratory in Puerto Rico.
753. According to SPC the number of April, 2011 tornadoes has been revised to 753. The old April record was 267, in 1974. Almost THREE TIMES more than the previous record. The tornado record for any month was 542, set in 2003.
"...Since the 1970s, there has been no upward trend in the sun’s brightness." - article on the role of the sun in climate change from Yale's Environment 360. More details below.
"...Last month we set a record for the highest dew point ever recorded at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. Chicago recorded the very same thing. Yesterday, the news came that there is more land in the United States in extreme drought than in the history of the country. And it has been wet, too. In Alexandria, for instance, folks can't raise their docks any higher, so many people are simply pulling them out. Of course, Australia and Pakistan have seen more rain in the last five months than they've seen in their history. The Horn of Africa is in a drought worse than the one currently hammering Texas. Is this just weather? Or, is it climate?" - Op-Ed from Don Shelby at Minnpost.com, details below.
- July 4th weekend was the warmest since 2003 driven by sweltering heat and helping to drive traffic to beaches, water attractions, and movie theaters.
- The first week in July set 1,500 weather records due to heavy regional rainfall in the South Atlantic and East South Central regions and heat waves across the South Central Plains.
- Week 2 experienced similar regional trends of cooler temperatures on the West Coast and heat pushing from the Rockies to the East Coast. NYC and Philadelphia hit record highs as a part of 2,600 weather records for week 2.
- Week 3 of July 2011 was the warmest individual week in over 18 years. Several locations had their highest temperature ever recorded, including Newark, NJ (108F), Washington, DC (105F), and Hartford, CT (103F).
Hottest Day Yet. Just when you think it couldn't get any hotter in the central and southern USA: 110 at Dallas, 109 at Oklahoma City, 112 at Kansas City, 106 Little Rock, 112 Tulsa. Graphic courtesy of the Plymouth State Weather Center.
Ditto. Relief for New England, the Great Lakes and the Upper Midwest as dew points drop into the 50s, thanks to a fresh transfusion of Canadian air, but more record heat will grip the central and southern Plains, the Mississippi River Valley and Mid South, into the Carolinas and Florida. Map courtesy of Ham Weather.
Tropical Storm Emily. The enhanced infrared satellite loop (see the latest animation from wsi.com) showed Emily becoming more organized, wrapped up into a tigher, more concentric circle of clouds late Tuesday. Sustained winds are 50 mph and additional strengthening is likely today as Emily passes over warm, 85-degree water in the Caribbean. Hispaniola (Haiti and the Dominican Republic) may see a direct strike with some 10-15" rains, temporarily weakening Tropical Storm Emily, which is forecast to make a turn to the north, possibly tracking over the Bahamas by Saturday.
Emily's Projected Track. Tropical Storm Warnings in orange - most models take Emily across Hispaniola (where some weakening will take place), and then northwestward across the Bahamas, where further intensification is possible. The GFDL strengthens Emily to a 92 mph. hurricane, 100 miles east of Vero Beach, Florida by 2 am Saturday morning. Data courtesy of NHC and Ham Weather.
- Garage doors: If you want a replacement door, purchase a reinforced, wind-rated model. You can reinforce garage doors at their weakest points, using vertical brackets on each panel. Wood and light gauge metal guards, and hinges can be used. Experts suggest checking stores to see if retrofit kits are available for your garage door model.
- Roofing: If your roof needs replacement, a new one can be installed to meet stronger building codes adopted in 2002. Here are some tips we found on bracing and other roof strengthening and securing roofs to walls.
- Trees: Trim all tree limbs that could fall on your home before stormy weather is approaching.
- Windows: Install hurricane shutters and secure them in high winds. Protecting windows prevents wind and water damage and keeps the roof more secure. Duct tape will not suffice."
Satellite image of smog from NASA.
Air Pollution Makes Heat Even Worse. Here's a timely Op Ed from Ken Bradley, from Environment Minnesota:
"The heat wave sweeping the nation means more than just uncomfortable temperatures for all of us. It can also mean real threats to people’s health when excessive heat and sunlight mix with air pollution from power plants and cars, smog pollution is formed in the air, also known as ground-level ozone. Smog is the most pervasive air pollutant in the country – with nearly half of all Americans (48 percent) living in areas where the air is often unhealthy to breathe because of high smog levels. Minnesota’s recent heat wave has impacts on our population and pollution has made the situation even worse.
Clearing Trend. After a noisy, stormy start (with severe storms racing across central Minnesota and the north metro into Wisconsin, and flooding rains over northeastern Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin - skies cleared by afternoon with highs well up into the 80s, ranging from 88 in the Twin Cities to 89 at St. Cloud.
Paul's Conservation Minnesota Outlook for the Twin Cities and all of Minnesota: