According to NOAA's SPC, the PRELIMINARY 2017 tornado count is 651 (through May 2). Note that is the most active year for tornadoes since 2011, when there were 1,000 tornadoes. Keep in mind there was a major tornado outbreak in the Gulf Coast region from April 25-28, 2011 that spawned nearly 500 tornadoes, some of which were deadly. That outbreak is known as the Super Outbreak of 2011 and has gone down in history as one of the biggest, costliest and one of the deadliest tornado outbreaks in history.
According to NOAA's NCDC, May is the busiest month for tornadoes across the country, averaging 276! Note that most of these tornadoes occur across the Plains from Texas to Nebraska, which is also in a region known as "Tornado Alley". As it stands now, April was the busiest tornado month of the year thus far with a preliminary total of 189. It is likely that several days of severe weather will break out at some point this month somewhere across the country, so stayed tuned!
Major River Flooding Continues
Take a look at the flooding taking place along the Meramec River near Eureka, MO! Aerial photos from Twitter: @PDPJ via STLtoday show significant flooding taking place there!
See @PDPJ on Twitter HERE:
The images of the river flooding in the Central US are staggering as record and near record crests have been occurring in several locations. Here is the river gauge at the Meramec River near Eureka, MO, where a record crest occurred Tuesday night at 46.11 feet, besting the previous record crest of 46.06 feet on December 30, 2015.
By Todd Nelson, filling in for Douglas.
Average Low: 45F (Record: 22F set in 1967)
Daylight gained since winter solstice (December 21st): ~5hours & 39mins
1.2 Days Since First Quarter
"When climate scientists examine whether the warming of the Earth has made extreme weather events such as heatwaves or downpours more likely, they generally do it on a case-by-case basis. But a group led by Stanford climate scientist Noah Diffenbaugh has aimed to develop a more global, comprehensive approach to investigating how climate change has impacted such extremes. With a new framework they developed, Diffenbaugh’s team found that heat records were made both more likely and more severe for about 80 percent of the area of the globe with good observational data. For precipitation records, that percentage was about half. The team also examined a few particular events, finding, for example, that warming was clearly linked to the record-low summer Arctic sea ice extent of 2012."
See more from Salon HERE:
FILE - In this Sept. 30, 2015 file photo, a hotel guest carries his shoes as he is escorted to his car along in Miami Beach, Fla. The street flooding was in part caused by high tides due to the lunar cycle, according to the National Weather Service. A new scientific report finds man-made climate change played some kind of role in two dozen extreme weather events around the world in 2015. But it also detected no global warming fingerprints in a handful of other weird weather instances. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky, File)(Credit: AP)
"About 40 kilometers off Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula, in the waters of Lake Superior, rises the stone lighthouse of Stannard Rock. Since 1882, it has warned sailors in Great Lakes shipping lanes away from a dangerous shoal. But today, Stannard Rock also helps scientists monitor another danger: climate change. Since 2008, a meteorological station at the lighthouse has been measuring evaporation rates at Lake Superior. And while weather patterns can change from year to year, Lake Superior appears to be behaving in ways that, to scientists, indicate long-term climate change: Water temperatures are rising and evaporation is up, which leads to lower water levels in some seasons. That’s bad news for hydropower plants, navigators, property owners, commercial and recreational fishers and anyone who just enjoys the lake. When most people think of the physical effects of climate change, they picture melting glaciers, shrinking sea ice or flooded coastal towns (SN: 4/16/16, p. 22). But observations like those at Stannard Rock are vaulting lakes into the vanguard of climate science. Year after year, lakes reflect the long-term changes of their environment in their physics, chemistry and biology. “They’re sentinels,” says John Lenters, a limnologist at the University of Wisconsin–Madison."
See more from ScienceNews HERE:
(ALPAMAYOPHOTO/GETTY via ScienceNews)
________________________________________________________________"Why Space Dust Emits Radio Waves Upon Crashing into a Spacecraft"
"When spacecraft and satellites travel through space they encounter tiny, fast moving particles of space dust and debris. If the particle travels fast enough, its impact appears to create electromagnetic radiation (in the form of radio waves) that can damage or even disable the craft's electronic systems. A new study published this week in the journal Physics of Plasmas, from AIP Publishing, uses computer simulations to show that the cloud of plasma generated from the particle's impact is responsible for creating the damaging electromagnetic pulse. They show that as the plasma expands into the surrounding vacuum, the ions and electrons travel at different speeds and separate in a way that creates radio frequency emissions."
See more from SpaceREF HERE:
__________________________________________________________"Senate passes space weather bill"
"WASHINGTON — The Senate unanimously passed a bill May 2 intended to support space weather research and planning to protect critical infrastructure from solar storms. The Senate passed, via unanimous consent, the Space Weather Research and Forecasting Act. The bill cleared the Senate Commerce Committee in January, which had approved a similar bill in 2016. The bill is designed to outline roles and responsibilities for various U.S. government agencies to research, forecast and respond to space weather, which can affect communications, the power grid and other systems. It builds upon a national space weather strategy and action plan released by the Obama administration in October 2015."
See more from SpaceNews HERE:
(The space weather bill directs NOAA to plan for a replacement for the SOHO spacecraft, which provides critical imagery but is more than 20 years old. Credit: ESA via SpaceNews)
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