14 F. high today, coldest since February 26, when the high in the Twin Cities was 8 F.
March 2: last subzero low in the Twin Cities (-3 F).
2.38" rain Wednesday in Baltimore, a new 24 hour rainfall record. Old record was 1.27" in 1976.
2.06" at Trenton, New Jersey
1.44" Mount Pocono, PA
1.72" Allentown, PA
1.52" Concord, New Hampshire
67.96" precipitation at Allentown, Pennsylvania so far in 2011, the wettest year on record. Old record: 67.69" in 1952.
A Wimpy Winter So Far:
"We have good reason to believe that what happened this year is not an anomaly, but instead is a harbinger of what is to come," NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco said in an interview. - from a Houston Chronicle article below on 2011's record number of extreme weather events.
Stagnant Air Over Pacific Northwest. A persistent inversion (a layer of warm air on top of colder air near the ground) has resulted in a foggy, smoggy airmass for much of the Pacific Northwest in recent days - advisories posted for stagnant, polluted air. Satellite loop courtesy of NASA's MODIS.
* Hurricane "Bawbag" slamming into Scotland? Read more here (at your own risk).
2011: A Very Soggy Year East Of The Mississippi. Here are Doppler radar rainfall estimates since January 1, courtesy of NOAA. A huge swatch from St. Louis and Little Rock to Pittsburgh, Washington D.C. and Boston has been soaked with over 60" - a few areas of 70"+ inch rainfall amounts from near Louisville to northern New Jersey.
Departure From Normal. The same NOAA tool shows rainfall surpluses of over 20" from Montana to Columbus, Ohio to Scranton, PA. Meanwhile much of Texas, Louisiana and the Gulf Coast has experienced rainfall deficits of 20" or more. It really has been a tale of two different nations, in terms of rainfall amounts so far in 2011.
An Increasingly Dry Neighborhood. According to NOAA much of Minnesota is running a 6-8" rainfall deficit for the year, with pockets of 12" rainfall shortages (compared to normal) near Wadena and the Minnesoeta Arrowhead. Parts of northern Wisconsin and the U.P. of Michigan are also extremely dry, while the central Dakotas report an 8-16" rainfall surplus.
Photo credit: "In this Sept. 8, 2011 file photo, residents watch flood waters from the Mohawk River in Schenectady, N.Y. from Hurricane Irene. America's wild weather year has hit yet another new high: a devastating dozen billion-dollar catastrophes. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced Wednesday that it has recalculated the number of weather disasters passing the billion dollar mark, with two new ones, pushing 2011's total to 12. The two costly additions are the Texas, New Mexico and Arizona wildfires and the mid June tornadoes and severe weather (AP Photo/Hans Pennink, File)"
Photo credit: "In this May 7, 2011 aerial file photo, tornado damage is seen in Tuscaloosa, Ala. America's wild weather year has hit yet another new high: a devastating dozen billion-dollar catastrophes. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced Wednesday that it has recalculated the number of weather disasters passing the billion dollar mark, with two new ones, pushing 2011's total to 12. The two costly additions are the Texas, New Mexico and Arizona wildfires and the mid June tornadoes and severe weather. (AP Photo/Dave Martin, File)"
Billion-Dollar Disaster Update
- To date, the United States set a record with 12 separate billion dollar weather/climate disasters in 2011, with an aggregate damage total of approximately $52 billion. This record year breaks the previous record of nine billion-dollar weather/climate disasters in one year, which occurred in 2008.
- These twelve disasters alone resulted in the tragic loss of 646 lives, with the National Weather Service reporting over 1,000 deaths across all weather categories for the year.
- Previously only 10 events were reported; the two new billion-dollar weather and climate events added to the 2011 total include:
- The Texas, New Mexico, Arizona wildfires event, now exceeding $1 billion, had been previously accounted for in the larger Southern Plains drought and heatwave event. This is in line with how NOAA has traditionally accounted for large wildfire events as separate events.
- The June 18-22 Midwest/Southeast Tornadoes and Severe Weather event, which just recently exceeded the $1 billion threshold
Plane Has Combative Attitude Toward Storms. Hurricane Hunter turboprops aren't the only aircraft investigating storms, as the American Meteorological Society explains in their "Front Page" blog: "Technological advancements don’t always involve brand-new applications; sometimes, progress can be made when older technology is utilized in new ways. Such is the case with aircraft used for scientific research. “Experienced” military aircraft have proven to be effective for many types of atmospheric studies, and with the news (subscription required) that a powerful combat plane used by the military for many years is to be reconfigured and given a new assignment, many are looking forward to even greater research capabilities. Originally developed in the 1970s, the Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II, better known as the “Warthog” or just “Hog,” is a twin-engine jet designed for close air support of ground forces. Now it’s being prepared to take on powerful storms."
Reinforcing Cold Front. It's a strange December alright: Rochester has more snow on the ground than Duluth. The high temperatures above were mostly recorded around midnight, readings falling through the teens during the day under a brilliant blue sky. Yep, it felt like late January out there - temperatures bottom out today.
Paul's Conservation Minnesota Outlook for the Twin Cities and all of Minnesota:
FRIDAY NIGHT: Mostly clear, still very cold. Low: 8