81 F. average high on August 11.
78 F. high on August 11, 2014.
August 11, 1945: Downpour over Red Wing. Nearly 8 inches of rain fell.
August 11, 1899: A lightning bolt from "clear skies" destroys a storefront in Fisher, Polk County.
"When a dog bites a man that is not news...but if a man bites a dog, that is news" said John Bogart almost a century ago. Some things never change. The quiet, the ordinary and the good don't get much coverage; it's much more fun chasing shiny objects. "News is anything that makes someone say gee whiz!"
So I'm taking the day off (at least mentally) to celebrate a rare and magnificent lack of "weather" floating above Minnesota. This is as good as it gets - ever. Three thumbs up!
Enjoy the last remnants of comfortable Canadian air because we're about to heat up: highs brush 90F Thursday into Saturday. The bloated bubble of antiperspirant-challenging heat blanketing the west will try to surge north later in August.
Just for laughs and giggles I dialed up the GFS 2 week outlook, which brings 100F heat into MSP on Monday, August 24 . Circle your calendar. I'm not convinced it's going to get that hot - but don't write off uncomfortably sweaty weather just yet.
Today's weather blog focuses on the probability of a Yellowstone super-volcano going off (don't lose sleep), how Saharan dust is shutting off hurricanes in the Atlantic and what weirdness awaits from a brewing Super El Nino. Great fun!
What If The Yellowstone Supervolcano Erupted. Bend over and kiss your ash goodbye. A plowable amount of volcanic ash would result, along with enough new aerosols in the upper atmosphere to cool the Earth by several degrees and create a temporary nuclear winter, capable of decimating agriculture. Other than that nothing to worry about. To paraphrase comedian George Carlin "...don't sweat the thundershowers!" Here's an excerpt of a fascinatingly sobering explainer at HowStuffWorks: "...The eruption could be expected to kill as many as 90,000 people immediately and spread a 10-foot (3-meter) layer of molten ash as far as 1,000 miles (1,609 kilometers) from the park. Rescuers probably would have a tough time getting in there. The ash would block off all points of entry from the ground, and the spread of ash and gases into the atmosphere would stop most air travel, just as it did when a much smaller volcano erupted in Iceland in 2010..." [source: Lemas]... (File photo: USGS).
Photo credit above: "One of the new marine turbine rotor blades is floated in on a barge, ready for installation." Photo credit: Kepler Energy.
TODAY: Warm sunshine, pleasant. Winds SW 10. High: 85
WEDNESDAY NIGHT: Clear to partly cloudy. Low: 68
THURSDAY: Partly sunny, more humid. Dew point: 64. High: 89
FRIDAY: July flashback. Hot sunshine. Wake-up: 70. High: near 90
SATURDAY: Steamy sun, feels like upper 90s. Wake-up: 71. High: 92
SUNDAY: Growing risk of showers, T-storms. Wake-up: 72. High: 85
MONDAY: Intervals of sun, a bit cooler and less humid. Wake-up: 65. High: 81
TUESDAY: Clouds increase, storms at night. Wake-up: 63. High: 82
* John Oliver's memorable clip is here, courtesy of YouTube and HBO.
Animation credit above: "A GIF of National Geographic atlases from 1999 through 2014 shows how Arctic ice has melted over time." Source: National Geographic Maps.
Why Misleading Americans About Climate Change is Dangerous. Here's a clip from a New York Times article: "...In fact the overwhelming majority of research supports the reality of climate change — a 2013 review of nearly 12,000 scientific articles published between 1991 and 2011 found that of those that took a position on the issue, 97.1 percent endorsed the idea that climate change was real and human-caused. The study concluded that papers disputing climate change were “a vanishingly small proportion of the published research.” Making Americans aware of this fact can have real effects. A study published earlier this year found that informing people of the scientific consensus on climate change “causes a significant increase in the belief that climate change is (a) happening, (b) human-caused and (c) a worrisome problem..."
Sunspot Science Throws Wrench In Favorite Climate Denialism Claim. No, it's not the sun. Grist has the story - here's an excerpt: "...Last week, at a meeting of the International Astronomical Union, Frédéric Clette, an astronomer at the Royal Observatory of Belgium in Brussels, announced that sunspot activity has not, in fact, increased over the past century, as some scientists believe. According to Clette, those little bursts of magnetism on the sun’s surface have actually remained pretty constant since 1715. If true, this news would be a huge downer for people who don’t believe in anthropogenic climate change. After all, if there was a gradual increase in sunspot activity culminating in a peak sometime near the end of the 20th century, then obviously that would’ve been causing global warming this whole time, not humans (scientists would disagree, but who cares?)..."