July 16, 1963: A downpour falls at St. Charles, where half a foot of rain accumulates in one day.
Record Rains - Risky Heat Spike Late Next Week
So who cares about a couple degrees of warming? Maybe the guy up in Brainerd who reported nearly 9 inches of rain in his rain gauge earlier this week. Warmer air holds more water vapor, more moisture to fuel intense summer rains.
Monday was another "mega-rain" event, classified as 6 inches of rain falling on at least 1,000 square miles. According to Mark Seeley there have been 13 such Minnesota floods since the early 1800s. Six of these have occurred since 2002.
A warmer background temperature also increases the frequency and intensity of extreme heat events, similar to what it's in store next week. NOAA's local Twin Cities office said: "This set-up is even more favorable than some of the hottest heat waves in the past. Confidence continues to increase for a potentially dangerous heat wave."
The heat peaks next Thursday or Friday, when a few towns nearby may hit 100F. Factor in dew points in the 70s for a heat index close to 110F. A serious sauna - and very dangerous.
An MCS T-storm complex tonight packs torrential rains; 1-3 inches may soak a few towns. Welcome to the steaming jungles of Minnesota!
This Week's Northland Flood Biggest Since 2012. So says the Minnesota DNR and State Climatology Office; here's an excerpt: "The largest flash flood since the June 19-20, 2012 event in northeast Minnesota struck some of the same areas on July 11-12, 2016. This time Pine County was hit especially hard. The highest two-day total found so far with this event was 9.34 inches at a DNR rain gauge volunteer site near Cloverton in eastern Pine County, near the Wisconsin border. The event was approximately 24 hours in duration, but spanned over the observer's observation time. Flooding rains also affected parts of Morrison, Aitkin, Cass, Crow Wing, Benton, Mille Lacs, Kanabec and Carlton Counties. Numerous roads were affected by water in the hardest hit counties. Southbound I-35 was closed for a time and Highway 61 was closed during the afternoon hours of the 12th. The area covered by six inches or more of rainfall exceeded 2,000 square miles, with at least 1,000 square miles in Pine County alone...."
CDC found that over 650 people die per year from exposure to extreme heat (most of any weather threat). These deaths are preventable. Heat is considered a silent killer. It doesn’t come in toppling down trees or damaging homes, and often people don’t even know that they are suffering from heat illness.Dr. Hawkins is spot on. I cringe when I hear a death from heat and football called an “accident...”
Heat is the No.1 weather related killer, and as carbon pollution continues, global temperatures will keep climbing, bringing hotter summers and more extreme and dangerous heat. Climate Central's States at Risk project analyzed historic trends in summer temperatures since 1970 as well as projections for future extreme heat for hundreds of metro areas across the lower 48 states. Using several measures, our findings show that most U.S. cities have already experienced large increases in extreme summer heat and absolute humidity, which together can cause serious heat-related health problems..."
Here's How The World Could End - And What We Can Do About It. Science has a quick read that will make it a bit harder to fall asleep; here's an excerpt: "...Some researchers fear that another Carrington-like event could destroy tens to hundreds of transformers, plunging vast portions of entire continents into the dark for weeks or months—perhaps even years, Murtagh says. That’s because the custom-built, house-sized replacement transformers can’t be bought off the shelf. Transformer manufacturers maintain that such fears are overblown and that most equipment would survive. But Thomas Overbye, an electrical engineer at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, says nobody knows for sure. “We don’t have a lot of data associated with large storms because they are very rare,” he says. What’s clear is that widespread blackouts could be catastrophic, especially in countries that depend on highly developed electrical grids. “We’ve done a marvelous job creating a great vulnerability to this threat,” Murtagh says. Information technologies, fuel pipelines, water pumps, ATMs, everything with a plug would be rendered useless. “That’s going to affect our ability to govern the country,” Murtagh says..."
Photo credit: "Electrical surges due to a solar storm shocked telegraph operators in 1859; today, they could wreak havoc on power grids and electronics." NASA/Martin Stojanovski.
SUNDAY: Unsettled, humid. More T-storms around. Winds: SW 8-13. High: 85
MONDAY: Partly sunny, almost comfortable. Winds: NW 5-10. Wake-up: 65. High: 82
TUESDAY: Sticky sunshine returns. Wake-up: Winds: S 8-13. 67. High: 86
WEDNESDAY: Early thunder, then hot sun. Winds: S 10-15. Wake-up: 70. High: 90
THURSDAY: Broiling sun, feels like 105 to 110F. Wake-up: 74. High: 98
FRIDAY: Scottsdale with lakes! Hot sun. Winds: NE 5-10. Wake-up: 80. High: 96
At Ground Zero for Rising Seas, TV Meteorologist Talks Climate. I have a lot of respect for John Morales in Miami, talking on the air about the ways a warming climate is already flavoring weather across south Florida. Here's an excerpt of an interview at Yale Environment 360: "...Ten years ago we had a big problem among broadcast meteorologists, who by greater than 50 percent seemed to be in the skeptic camp of anthropogenic global warming, according to some surveys. They either weren't communicating it, or they were finding ways to disparage the state of the science. Recognizing this, Bob Ryan, a former president of the American Meteorological Society (AMS), and myself, we co-authored an article in 2007 in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society saying that our profession is the face of science for the general public, that it is our responsibility to communicate the state of the science of climate change, that, in doing so, we need to divorce ourselves from political, religious, personal, and other views and just simply communicate the state of the science at the time..." (File image of Miami Beach: Trip Advisor).
Scientists Think They've Just Pinpointed the Key Driver of Ice Loss in Antarctica. Chelsea Harvey reports at The Washington Post: "The Antarctic Peninsula is headed for trouble — that much scientists know. Glaciers on the peninsula, which extends from the increasingly unstable West Antarctic region, have been retreating for decades, and some in the region have undergone particularly accelerated melting since the 1990s. Until recently, many scientists assumed that a steady increase in air temperature around the peninsula, the product of global warming, was the primary cause behind most of the ice loss. But new research looking at the western side of the peninsula suggests that this may not be the case after all. A study published Thursday in the journal Science suggests that warm ocean water may be the biggest driver of glacial retreat in that region — and it’s a problem that may not be getting enough attention..."
Photo credit: "
The tax code is riddled with provisions that promote inefficiency and favor politically connected industries. Leading Republicans including House Speaker Paul Ryan and every presidential candidate in the last few cycles have argued for cleaning up and simplifying the tax code. One great way to do so would be to eliminate the various tax breaks for fossil fuel producers, particularly for oil and gas, which currently cost taxpayers several billion dollars per year. Republican politicians, of course, often favor these gifts because fossil fuels are popular among their base and are dominant in the economies of many red states. But principled conservatives should favor getting rid of them. (And if they want to make sure the government isn’t left favoring wind and solar, they could schedule fossil-fuel and clean-energy tax credits to phase out simultaneously.)..."
Graphic credit: "ACT-America, or Atmospheric Carbon and Transport – America, will conduct five airborne campaigns across three regions in the eastern United States to study the transport and fluxes of atmospheric carbon dioxide and methane."
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