59 F. average high for October 15.
60 F. high on October 15, 2011.
Trace of rain fell Monday evening.
Upper 60s to near 70 today, 25 degrees cooler by Thursday.
GFS model hinting at rain/snow the last weekend of October (27-28). It's too early to get more specific than that.
Topsoil moisture across 86 percent of Minnesota's landscape is said to be Short or Very Short.
Stream flow measurements at reporting stations in the driest areas of the state rank below the 10th percentile when compared with historical data for the date.
Minnesota's drought situation is the result of abnormally dry weather over three distinct time periods. In some communities, precipitation deficits amplified the drought situation during each of these spells of dry weather. In other communities, dry periods were interrupted by wet weather, only to have precipitation shortfalls degrade the situation yet again."
Photo credit above: "Shifts such as these reflect a view among food producers that this summer’s drought in the U.S. -- the worst in half a century -- isn’t a random disaster. It’s a glimpse of a future altered by climate change that will affect worldwide production." Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg
Susie - although I don't see any accumulating snow thru early next week; I'm fairly convinced we'll see something closer to a "real winter." 22" of snow last winter in the metro - it was a Memphis-like winter, and the odds of two easy (wimpy) winters, back to back, are slim to nil. Although I expect the drought to linger into December I suspect we'll see at least 40" of snow this winter, maybe more - but most of it will come the latter half of winter. Last winter was the 3rd warmest on record for Minnesota. Although temperatures will probably be (slightly) warmer than average, based on a weak El Nino, it'll be significantly colder than last winter, so any snow that does fall will have a better chance of sticking around. That's my gut, more gut feel than science. Not as snowy and savage as 2010-2011, but not as meager as last winter. A step in the right direction...?
"Good morning. I am presently in Santa Rosalia, Mexico on a 42 foot sailboat. We, of course, are watching Paul closely. I pose to you the above question ("When a tropical storm becomes a hurricane, does it move faster?") and would have you give me any general information I might use in the future about hurricane avoidance in the future. Thank you very much."
Kim P. Philley
Hi James - Thanks for the e-mail and for keeping an open mind. First, maybe it's subtle semantics, but this isn't a matter of "believing" anything. It's acknowledging a tidal wave of data from published climate scientists that confirm the atmosphere is warming. Some of this warming may, in fact, be natural, but it comes at a time when greenhouse gases have increased by 39% worldwide.
I was initially skeptical in the late 80s and early 90s, but after seeing things on my weather maps I couldn't explain via "natural weather extremes" and digging into peer-reviewed science, I came to acknowledge what 97% of published, peer-reviewed climate scientists were reporting: there's probably a link between man-made pollutants and the warming we're seeing in the lower atmosphere. If it was the sun, the upper and lower atmosphere would both be warming, but we're observing a cooling trend in the upper atmosphere (stratosphere), while most of the warming is coming at night, consistent with greenhouse gases re-radiating warmth.
I disagree with your assertion about regulating greenhouse gases. "Clean coal" is an oxymoron; unless coal-fired plants bury or sequester greenhouse gas emissions (which no plant is doing right now) it's still the dirtiest form of energy. Natural gas is much cleaner, and power plants are already moving in this direction to save their customers money. We need to take advantage of our natural resources, yes, but a total dependence on fossil fuels will leave a legacy for our kids and grandkids, who will inherit a warmer, drier, stormier atmosphere. They're going to wonder why we were so short-sighted in not developing alternative, cleaner ways to power our economy. America's competitive advantage may also depend on our ability to innovate beyond carbon-based fuels. China and Europe aren't waiting around - they're moving aggressively beyond carbon. We need to be doing the same in the USA, not betting the farm on carbon.
As for the "no warming since 1998" meme - every climate scientist I've talked to says it's a blatant manipulation of the data. 1998 was a record El Nino year, warm Pacific Ocean water which added additional warmth to the atmosphere worldwide and spiked the numbers to some degree. You can cherry-pick specific beginning and ending dates to prove almost anything, but an honest look at the trends shows that warming has continued.
* Fullfact.org examines the "global warming stopped 16 years ago meme" here.
* The Texas state climatologist examines "The Danger Of Looking For Patterns In Short Time Series" in the Houston Chronice.
* Global Rank of Hottest Years To Coldest graph above courtesy of the U.K. Met Office.
James - sorry to pile on with so many reports, but the "global warming stopped" theme is demonstrably wrong, another attempt by deniers to twist the data and the trends to create a smoke-screen of confusion. I hope I answered your question.
* image above courtesy of dvice.com, which has an excellent article on "The 7 Worst Cyberattacks In History (that we know about)."
Photo credit above: "Prototype laser eye-protection spectacles." (Image: Crown Copyright/MoD)
Photo credit above: "Thirty-five year old Chris Todd has attempted to “walk” across 106 kilometers (66 miles) of open sea in a giant hamster wheel-like raft dubbed Tredalo."
Paul's Conservation Minnesota Outlook for the Twin Cities and all of Minnesota
* map above courtesy of Rob Guarino and liveweatherblogs.com, which has a great summary of the variables involved in the extended winter outlook.
"The modern dogma is comfort at any cost..." - Aldo Leopold, 1949
* graphic above courtesy of Think Progress. "In a 2010 presentation, Climate scientist Katherine Hayhoe has a figure of what 1000 ppm would mean (derived from the 2010 NOAA-led report)."
- Staggeringly high temperature rise, especially over land — some 10°F over much of the United States
- Permanent Dust Bowl conditions over the U.S. Southwest and many other regions around the globe that are heavily populated and/or heavily farmed.
- Sea level rise of some 1 foot by 2050, then 4 to 6 feet (or more) by 2100, rising some 6 to 12 inches (or more) each decade thereafter
- Massive species loss on land and sea — perhaps 50% or more of all biodiversity.
- Unexpected impacts — the fearsome “unknown unknowns”
- Much more extreme weather"
* the map above from geology.com shows the impact of a 7 meter rise in water from D.C. to Philadelphia. The concern isn't just rising sea levels, but huge "Nor'Easters" superimposed on top of rising seas, where waves can be 10-15 feet above normal.