Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For July 9 – 16, 2018

Greetings everyone! For folks in the Northern Hemisphere, I hope you’re keeping your cool. Yes, many areas  are in the climatological peak of summer heating, but there are also a number of areas experiencing unusual summer heat. Regardless, take it easy out there. As usual, plenty of topics to go over this week, so let’s get started.

For your consideration, here are this week’s links…

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

This is one of the most liberating experiences I’ve had in some time. “On The 10th Anniversary Of The App Store, it’s time to delete most of your apps.”

Online harassment is an almost unavoidable feature of the online world. As of late, it has taken on particularly vitriolic proportions. “Roughly four-in-ten Americans have personally experienced online harassment, and 62% consider it a major problem.”

CITIZEN SCIENCE

A good read on how public/personal health and air quality issues turned to citizen science for data collection.

Coming in contact with ticks is no fun…but some intrepid folks have done just that for scientists to study the ticks that bit them and whether or not they carried life altering viruses.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

Getting people to the point where they realize they’re buying a product & also borrowing the packaging. “Can Norway help us solve the plastic crisis, one bottle at a time?”

What was once thought to be pristine areas within Antarctic fjords have been found to contain levels of microplastics that rival urban areas.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

A look back at June 2018 from NOAA. “The June contiguous U.S. temperature was 71.5°F, 3.0°F above the 20th century average. Only June 1933 and 2016 were warmer for the nation.”

Graphic courtesy NOAA

As of 9 July 2018, there have been six weather and climate disaster events in the USA with losses exceeding $1 billion dollars.

Graphic courtesy NOAA

A story like this says as much about human behavior and the general public’s attitude toward scientific evidence as it does the ongoing heat wave and climate change.

Speaking of human behavior and science, people’s social network can have a significant effect on their behavior when faced with a natural disaster.

This is a fascinating and very detailed read on the importance of ocean temperatures, why they’re studied, and their importance to climate change.

As sea levels rise, much of our infrastructure, including the power stations and cables that control the internet we all use, are in a state of peril…and disruption.

An excellent essay from Dr. Marshall Shepherd on preventing weather related fatalities at outdoor sporting and concert events.

Forecasting the intensity of tropical cyclones is one of the most daunting forecasting challenges a meteorologist can face.

From the Climate Prediction Center, the latest technical El Nino diagnostic discussion.

Just for reference, here is a map of the contiguous USA and the warmest day of the year based on climate data going back to 1981.

Map courtesty NOAA

THE QUIXOTIC

Last but not least, I’ll let this article speak for itself. “That Self-Styled “Very Stable Genius” Is A Danger To Stability.”

FYI: If you see any ads on this blog, they are from WordPress and not me. I apologize for any inconvenience they may cause.

That’s a wrap for this post! I’d like to extend a warm welcome to my new social media followers and a big “Thank You” to everyone…I appreciate all of you!

Cheers!

Tornado Quest on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Instagram: https://instagram.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Tumblr: http://tornadoquest.tumblr.com/

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2018 Tornado Quest, LLC

Advertisements

Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For July 2 – 9, 2018

Greetings everyone! Considering the recent interest in Atlantic tropical cyclone activity, this post will focus on hurricane preparedness. It’s the perfect time to get ready for the storm you hope doesn’t happen. Much of North America, the UK, and parts of Africa and Asia have also been seeing a heat wave and enduring record high temperatures in some locations. Several other topics to review, so let’s get started.

For your consideration, here are this week’s links…

One of the most important elements in emergency preparedness is making sure your NOAA weather radio is in good operating order. Should other means of information not be available, your NOAA weather radio may be the only way you can receive important and potentially life-saving information and updates. If you don’t have a NOAA weather radio, now’s the time to shop for one before they become short in supply. There are many good brands available on the market. It’s also a good idea to have fresh batteries in case your electrical power should be interrupted. Most people think of a NOAA weather radio only when there’s a Tornado Warning. Truth is they are valuable year round, regardless of where you live. For further Hurricane Preparedness information, check out the links below.

Graphic courtesy NWS

PUBLIC HEALTH

Mosquito bites are more than just a nuisance. They can be life altering with West Nile and Zika viruses a substantial hazard. Here’s an excellent read on nine tips to help you avoid being bitten.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

This has been a long time coming. There are reef-safe sunscreens that are now available for you. Finally, you can do two important things simultaneously: save your skin from sun exposure and protect the Earth’s valuable reefs.

For Starbucks, this is one small step that many other companies are very likely to follow-up on. “Starbucks Joins The Growing Movement To Ban Plastic Straws.”

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

The heat is really cranking up across much of North America and the UK. Fortunately, even with air conditioning, there are steps you can take to keep your cool by adopting a few simple habits.

Speaking of heat waves, the ongoing heat has, “human fingerprints all over it.”

HURRICANE SAFETY INFORMATION

This excellent infographic from the National Weather Service in Wakefield, Virginia is spot on…and I’ll let it speak for itself.

 

Here’s a partial list of important sources of tropical cyclone weather information. This list is not intended to be all-inclusive and there are many other good, official sources of weather forecasts and safety/preparedness information.

National Hurricane Center

National Weather Service Homepage

NOAA Hurricane Preparedness

American Red Cross Hurricane Preparedness

American Red Cross Hurricane Safety Checklist (1 Page PDF file)

CDC Hurricane Preparedness

Extensive FEMA Emergency Preparedness Document (34 Page PDF File)

NOAA Weather Radio

Interactive NOAA Weather Radio Coverage Map

Ready.gov Basic Disaster Supply Kit Info

Preparing Your Pets For Disasters And Emergencies

This excellent checklist covers many items that people may think they don’t need in an emergency.

Next to NOAA weather radio, your mobile device can be one of the most important elements in staying informed.

That’s a wrap for this post! I’d like to extend a warm welcome to my new followers in social media and a bit “Thank You” for all of my long-time followers. It’s great to have all of you along for the fun.

Cheers!

Tornado Quest on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Instagram: https://instagram.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Tumblr: http://tornadoquest.tumblr.com/

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2018 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For June 25 – July 2, 2018

Greetings everyone! This post will be on the brief side since I’m taking a bit of time off for the Independence Day holiday…and if you’re in the USA, I hope you’re having a great holiday week. Also, a belated Happy Canada Day for my followers and friends in Canada. I wanted to pass along a few interesting links and include some summer safety information, so let’s get started.

Please note: If you’re viewing this page on a mobile device and you see ads or a “box” saying you can get your local forecast or weather, those are from WordPress and not me. I have no control over their presence for the time being and, as I’ve always said, it’s best to get your weather information from a reliable and official source. Sorry for any inconvenience and thanks for understanding.

For your consideration, here are this week’s links…

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

Is the tide beginning to show signs of changing on our use of plastics? Considering the effects it has on our oceans, we’d better do something very soon.

How much do our cities contribute to the world’s carbon footprint? A substantial amount. Approximately 20% of the world’s carbon footprint can be linked to 100 cities.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Here’s a fascinating read by Dr. Marshall Shepherd on hurricane behavior. “Why Hurricanes Almost Never Form Near Or Cross The Equator.”

This is an eye opening read from the World Meteorological Organization on the lessons learned from the 2017 Caribbean hurricane season.

Climate change has many disturbing trends and here’s one of them. “Meet America’s New Climate Normal: Towns That Flood When It Isn’t Raining.”

SUMMER SAFETY INFORMATION

As of this post, much of the contiguous USA is in the grips of a heat wave. While many areas in the sun belt are used to this heat, other folks aren’t. Regardless of where you live, you need to take some precautions. Heat doesn’t get the headlines that tornadoes, hurricanes, blizzards, et al. do, but it is a lethal…and silent…killer. Here’s some links followed by infographics that I hope will be of help to you.

Heat: A Major Killer

Summer Weather Safety & Survival: The Heat Index

National Weather Service Printable Heat Index Chart

Ultra Violet (UV) Radiation Awareness & Safety Info

World Health Organization: UV & Sun Protection

NOAA Weather Radio

Infographics courtesy NOAA/NWS

That’s a wrap for this post! Have a great Independence Day holiday everyone and stay safe!

Cheers!

Tornado Quest on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Instagram: https://instagram.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Tumblr: http://tornadoquest.tumblr.com/

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2018 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For June 18 – 25, 2018

Greetings all! It’s been a busy period for severe weather across the Great Plains of the USA with several powerful clusters of thunderstorms traveling hundreds of miles across several states. In stark contrast, the tropical Atlantic is very quiet, but that will change in the months to come. Heat will also be settling in across many areas in North American and the European continent. Again this week I’ve included several links for summer heat and hurricane preparedness that I hope you’ll find useful. Plenty to go over, so let’s get started.

For your consideration, here are this week’s links…

TECHNOLOGY

Since 2005, Firefox has been my browser of choice. Today, it’s leaner and faster than ever…and I couldn’t be happier. Like most folks, I use more than one browser, but Firefox has always been at the top of my favorites list.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

Here’s a very cool citizen science project where you can help NOAA research with a free app that helps document the Earth’s constantly changing magnetic field.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLE ENERGY

It’s challenging to cut single use plastics, but it can be done. Here’s a good read on the problem and some tips on how to reduce your use of plastics in the long term.

Wind energy in the USA’s Great Plains is very cheap…and getting more affordable by the day. Fortunately, this part of the country is perfect for this kind of renewable energy.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Here’s a very thorough read from the Union Of Concerned Scientists. “The Science Connecting Extreme Weather To Climate Change. (2018)

The latest US Drought Monitor shows some improvement in scattered locations, but extreme and exceptional conditions persist from UT & AZ into OK & TX.

The Earth’s oceans are becoming more acidic due to carbon emissions which shows the irrevocable climate/ocean link.

WEATHER SAFETY: SUMMER HEAT

Heat: A Major Killer

Summer Weather Safety & Survival: The Heat Index

Ultra Violet (UV) Radiation Awareness & Safety Info

World Health Organization: UV & Sun Protection

WEATHER SAFETY: HURRICANES/TROPICAL CYCLONES

The Atlantic ocean is quiet for now and there’s no hint of tropical cyclone development in the near future. Nevertheless, this is the perfect time to prepare for tropical cyclones. Waiting until everyone is in panic mode is the worst way possible to handle a potentially life threatening situation. It’s also important to keep in mind that most deaths from tropical cyclones comes from flooding…not wind. Remember…it only takes one storm to make for a major disaster.

 

NOAA Hurricane Preparedness

American Red Cross Hurricane Preparedness

CDC Hurricane Preparedness

Flash Flooding: Turn Around, Don’t Drown

NOAA Weather Radio

Interactive NOAA Weather Radio Coverage Map

Ready.gov Basic Disaster Supply Kit Info

Preparing Your Pets For Disasters And Emergencies

THE QUIXOTIC

If this doesn’t beat all, I don’t know what does. “The EPA Thinks Its Hurricane Response Was So Great It Ordered Special Coins For Everyone.”

That’s a wrap for this post! I hope all of you are having a great start to summer…or winter…depending on which hemisphere you live in. A big “Thank You” to all my followers in all my social media outlets. I’m glad you’re all along for the fun. There’s plenty more to come!

Cheers!

Tornado Quest on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Instagram: https://instagram.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Tumblr: http://tornadoquest.tumblr.com/

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2018 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Links In Review For June 11 – 18, 2018

Greetings everyone! El Nino and other climate topics have been given a good deal of discussion lately and we’ve got some links covering those topics. The latest State Of The Climate report from NOAA is out…and I’ll let the data speak for itself. With the ongoing heat wave across much of North America, I’ve included some summer heat safety info along with hurricane preparedness links. Let’s get started.

For your consideration, here are this week’s links…

SCIENCE EDUCATION

Few things would benefit our students more than a familiarity with the scientific method and critical thinking…regardless of what field they’re studying. “We Should Teach All Students, In Every Discipline, To Think Like Scientists.”

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

This will have an effect on our weather and climate patterns for some time to come. “The June ENSO forecast estimates a 50% chance of El Niño developing during the late summer or early autumn, and an approximately 65% chance of El Niño conditions in the winter, so forecasters have instituted an El Niño Watch.”

Imagery courtesy NOAA

The latest NOAA State Of The Climate report is out and includes a look at significant global climate events for May 2018.

This is unprecedented warmth…and it’s only a small piece of a much larger warming puzzle that’s rapidly falling into place. “The U.S. Just Observed Its Warmest 3-, 4-, And 5-Year Spans On Record.”

Imagery courtesy NOAA

Here’s a good listen about a very unique way of “listening” for tornadoes. If this works out, perhaps this will become part of the warning process of the future.

This is a “spot on” essay on why it’s not productive…or worth your time…to debate science that already has sound evidence to establish its facts.

This week, I’m continuing to pass on weather safety information. With the current heat wave across much of North America, summer heat safety is of utmost importance. It’ll get hotter into July and August…so keep this information handy.

WEATHER SAFETY: SUMMER HEAT

Heat: A Major Killer

Summer Weather Safety & Survival: The Heat Index

Ultra Violet (UV) Radiation Awareness & Safety Info

World Health Organization: UV & Sun Protection

The Atlantic is quiet for now, but this is the perfect time to prepare for tropical cyclones. Waiting until everyone is in panic mode is the worst way possible to handle a potentially life threatening situation. It’s also important to keep in mind that most deaths from tropical cyclones comes from flooding…not wind.

WEATHER SAFETY: HURRICANES/TROPICAL CYCLONES

NOAA Hurricane Preparedness

American Red Cross Hurricane Preparedness

CDC Hurricane Preparedness

Flash Flooding: Turn Around, Don’t Drown

NOAA Weather Radio

Interactive NOAA Weather Radio Coverage Map

Ready.gov Basic Disaster Supply Kit Info

Preparing Your Pets For Disasters And Emergencies

That’s a wrap for this post! I hope all of you are having a great summer…or winter…depending on which hemisphere you live in. A big “Thank You” to all my followers in all my social media outlets. I’m glad you’re all along for the fun.

Cheers!

Tornado Quest on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Instagram: https://instagram.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Tumblr: http://tornadoquest.tumblr.com/

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2018 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For June 4 – 11, 2018

Greetings everyone! I hope the weather is to your liking wherever you are. Here in the Great Plains of the USA, we’re in the middle of an early summer heat wave and drought. Unfortunately, there’s little long-term relief in sight. As for the Atlantic hurricane season, it has officially started and that means it’s time to prepare for the storm you hope never happens. This week’s post includes a few select starting points for your preparedness plans.

Hurricane Irma at near peak intensity on 5 September 2017. A storm half this intense can prove devastating to the region you live in. The time to prepare is now.

Many other topics to cover, so let’s get started. For your consideration, here are this week’s links…

GENERAL SCIENCE

Fortunately, the majority of Americans are far more concerned about climate change than NASA sending astronauts to Mars. Advances do come from space exploration, but in this case, years of successful missions with rovers have proven successful without endangering human lives.

How people digest information and handle communication is an interesting look into human behavior. This is not only relevant with everyday news, but important weather information that included life-saving warnings. Here’s a look at how Americans approach information and facts by the Pew Research Center.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

Recycling is something we all should do as often as possible. There are challenges that exist…and if we’re not careful, many items we think we’re recycling end up in landfills.

Plastic pollution across the world is on the brink of a substantial environmental crisis. Many of these items will not break down for thousands of years.

An interesting look at plastics, pollution, and it’s connection to the G7 summit.

Here’s an excellent article from Climate Central on rising ocean temperatures and the connection to many facets of our planet.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

May 2018 was the warmest May on record for the USA. Welcome to the new norm. Here’s the latest State Of The Climate report with more details.

A new study in the journal Nature says that hurricanes across the planet have been slowing their rate of movement in the last 70 years.

Recent media reports have been confusing as to the number of deaths from Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. Here’s an interesting read on how and why the numbers can be so confusing.

All lightning is not the same. The National Severe Storms Laboratory (NSSL) has a detailed overview. There are many different kinds of lightning that you should be aware of.

Infographic courtesy NOAA/NSSL

In spite of it’s reputation, summer has a host of hazards that should be respected. Here’s an excellent website from NOAA/NWS on summer safety and how to keep your loved ones and you safe.

As of this post, 2018 has been a quixotic year for tornado activity in the USA. Here’s a look at the activity so far, but that’s always subject to change. While the number of tornadoes has been below average, summer can still be quite active and autumn usually has an increase in severe weather activity as well.

Topography and urban development quite often work hand-in-hand to create flood disasters. “A 1,000 Year Flood In Maryland Shows The Big Problem With So Much Asphalt.”

From Climate Central: These Cities Are Most Vulnerable To Major Coastal Flooding And Sea Rise.

HURRICANE SAFETY AND PREPAREDNESS

With the Atlantic hurricane upon us, it’s always a good idea to have fast access to hurricane preparedness information.

NOAA Hurricane Preparedness

CDC Hurricane Preparedness

American Red Cross Hurricane Preparedness

Flash Flooding: Turn Around, Don’t Drown

NOAA Weather Radio

Interactive NOAA Weather Radio Coverage Map

Ready.gov Basic Disaster Supply Kit Info

Preparing Your Pets For Disasters and Emergencies

That’s a wrap for this post! I’d like to send a “welcome” to my new followers in social media. I’m glad you’re along for the fun!

Cheers!

————————————————————————–

Tornado Quest on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Instagram: https://instagram.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Tumblr: http://tornadoquest.tumblr.com

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2018 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For May 28 – June 4, 2018

Greetings everyone! With the beginning of June, the official Atlantic hurricane season has started. Oddly enough, it hasn’t been quiet. We’ve already had Tropical Storm Alberto make landfall on the Florida Panhandle spreading flooding rains across several states. As is the case with most hurricanes (at least in North America), inland flooding and not wind is the deadliest factor. I’ll start off this week’s post with several links to help you prepare for the season that’s already started with one storm. There’s also plenty of other topics to cover, so let’s get started.

For your consideration, here are this week’s links…

HURRICANE SAFETY AND PREPAREDNESS

NOAA Hurricane Preparedness

CDC Hurricane Preparedness

American Red Cross Hurricane Preparedness

Flash Flooding: Turn Around, Don’t Drown

NOAA Weather Radio

Interactive NOAA Weather Radio Coverage Map

Ready.gov Basic Disaster Supply Kit Info

Preparing Your Pets For Disasters and Emergencies

10th Anniversary of Hurricane Katrina

Hurricane Katrina approaching the USA Gulf Coast in August, 2005. Image courtesy NOAA.

NOAA Predicts 2018 Hurricane Season Could Be Above-Normal ...

This is NOAA’s list of names for 2018’s Atlantic Tropical Cyclones. As of 4 June 2018, Beryl will be our next named storm. Let’s hope we don’t make it to William.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

If you’re into flowers, especially exotic ones, and have an interest in citizen science, here’s a project involving both of those interests that you can do from home on your computer.

GEOLOGICAL SCIENCE

Mount Kilauea has been erupting for over 30 days. With no end in sight, it’s activity has given volcanologists an excellent opportunity to study its behavior.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLE ENERGY

This is a sound environmental policy that needs widespread implementation. “Throwaway plastic products including cotton buds, cutlery and straws could be banned across much of Europe under a proposal put forward by the EU.”

Speaking of disposable products, this essay takes a look at some of the bizarre things that can be found on the world’s beaches.

Could renewable energy sources have helped Puerto Rico get their infrastructure whipped back into shape? Yes, but unfortunately, that’s not what happened. Here’s how and why.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Anxiety, phobias, and PTSD related to storms is a very real challenge for many people. Here’s an excellent source of information from the NWS Norman that I hope will be of help to anyone dealing with this very difficult situation. It reminds me of an essay I read in the mid 1980’s from StormTrack founder David Hoadley. To put it concisely, he said that storm chasers should, when within earshot of the general public, would be wise to temper their enthusiasm for severe weather or their “big catch” of their latest chase. Not everyone who is privy to your interest has a similar fascination with weather. For some, an encounter with a hurricane, flood, tornado, et al. has been a life altering experience.

This past 31 May 2018 marked the 5th anniversary of the El Reno tornado which was, in many ways, a tragic landmark event in USA weather history. Much could and should have been learned by the storm chasing community considering what transpired. But was a lasting lesson really learned? This though-provoking essay from the Capital Weather Gang has several viewpoints. From my own observations in the field, chasers are taking risks now more so than ever. With the irresistible appeal of adrenaline, social media fame, and opportunities to get footage on television, few that have pushed the limit and lived to tell the tale will back off in spite of the odds and risks involved. Unfortunately for some, a repeat of the El Reno tragedy is inevitable.

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/7d/El_Reno%2C_OK_EF-5_Tornado_2013-05-31.jpg

El Reno, Oklahoma tornado near peak intensity on 31 May 2018. Photo via Wikipedia & CC BY-SA 3.0

As for the 2018 tornado season across the USA, it’s been relatively tranquil…so far. Let’s hope this trend continues for the rest of the year.

Does climate change and/or global warming increase the intensity of tropical cyclones? This interesting read covers that topic. Often it matters what data set is used and how it is compiled.

Dr Marshall Shepherd takes a fascinating look at why hurricane outlook experts changed their forecasts about the 2018 activity.

While on the topic of hurricane activity, it’s not too late to prepare for the hurricane you hope you never have to experience. NOAA has an excellent site that will help you get ready.

The official death toll from Atlantic Hurricane Maria is 64. Truth be known, it’s probably in the thousands. Just as with Hurricane Katrina or the Galveston Hurricane of 1900, the exact death toll may never be known. We must come to terms with the fact that, even though this is the 21st century, nature (and every possible way it impacts humans) will always have the upper hand.

NPR has broadcast special programming on the death toll in Puerto Rico that really brings to light the severity of the situation. Sadly, the fact that this story has been largely ignored by much of mainstream media in favor of trivial topics says much about how we are force-fed a diet of sophomoric “news” that’s designed to stir up hyperbole and histrionics.

This is a very telling article. The bottom line: Most Americans feel the federal government is doing much too little to address the challenges of climate change and the environment in general.

Summer heat has settled in with a vengeance across much of North America very early this year. Unfortunately, that also means that people will leave children, vulnerable adults, and pets in vehicles. That can prove deadly in short order. Heat safety should be practiced in temperatures as low as the mid 70’s regardless of where you live.

The latest US Drought Monitor is out. While some improvement has taken place, tens of millions of Americans still face drought conditions with little to no relief in sight.

Last but not least, these amazing GOES-17 weather satellite images are just the beginning of an exciting new era in forecasting and observing our incredible planet.

That’s a wrap for this post! I’d like to welcome my new followers in social media and send a big “Thank You” to the folks who have followed me for years. I’m glad you’re all along for the fun!

Cheers!

Tornado Quest on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Instagram: https://instagram.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Tumblr: http://tornadoquest.tumblr.com

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2018 Tornado Quest, LLC

 

Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For May 21 – 28, 2018

Greetings to everyone! If you’re in the USA, I hope you get a chance to take a moment to remember those who, in serving our country, paid the ultimate sacrifice. We have a wild weather setup that’s ongoing as of this post for the Memorial Day holiday. Alberto, the first named tropical cyclone of the 2018 Atlantic season, is ready to make landfall on the Florida panhandle coast. We’ve also had catastrophic flash flooding in the Mid-Atlantic region, severe weather in the central plains with more forecast for today and tomorrow, an ongoing drought for much of the southwest, a heat wave that is bringing triple digit head indices as far north as Minnesota, and Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano is still in the news. And…this is only the end of May.

There’s plenty to review this week, so let’s get started.

Summer heat is making an early appearance across much of the contiguous USA. Sad to say that there have been fatalities due to people leaving children in cars during hot days. These deaths are totally preventable and should never happen. Heat stroke and heat fatalities can occur in temperatures as low as 80F.

Infographic courtesty NOAA

CITIZEN SCIENCE

Here’s a very cool citizen science project that’s part history, part climatology. “Citizen Scientists Are Unearthing Climate Data From Old Ships’ Logs.”

GEOLOGICAL SCIENCE

The Kilauea volcano in Hawaii has been expanding as of late. Along with that is a new hazard, a toxic gas called “laze.”

Speaking of Kilauea expanding, a third lava flow has reached the ocean. This Hawaiian volcano has been very active since 3 May 2018.

In spite of the fact that we don’t hear about volcanoes often, they’re actually quite common around the globe. Here’s an excellent essay on 7 facts about volcanoes you should know.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

While the focus of this article is on protecting yourself from ticks this summer (see the Summer Weather Safety section for more info), there’s definitely an environment/climate connection.

We all know that clean air is essential for good health. Truth be known, clean air is also good for the economy.

Many of us had an idea that this was true, but reading this article still knocks the wind out of me. “Humans Just 0.01% Of All Life But Have Destroyed 83% Of Wild Mammals.”

The sheer mass of plastic pollution in our oceans is mind-boggling. In some images, these pieces of our lives take on the appearance of sea life.

Here’s a collection of more startling images of plastic pollution and wildlife. The National Geographic cover certainly hits the bullseye on this very disturbing scenario.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

NOAA issued their outlook for the 2018 Atlantic hurricane seasonThere are other outlooks as well from a variety of sources. They don’t all agree and variable are unavoidable. The most important factor to remember is these are outlooks, not forecasts.

While on the topic of hurricanes, here’s a fascinating study on 34 years of tropical cyclone eye location and size and it’s connection to other characteristics of these amazing storms.

New research on the connection of climate change and hurricanes indicates that these devastating tropical cyclones will become more intense in a myriad of ways in the coming decades.

The latest US Drought Portal has been issued. More specifically, the Drought Monitor shows some relief in the contiguous USA, but there’s no hint at long-term relief in sight for the hardest hit areas.

As of this post, the tornado “season” across the USA has been relatively tranquil with only three intense tornadoes documented. Considering the alternative, no one is complaining. Here’s an excellent read on why this year has seen less tornado activity compared to other years.

Meanwhile in Sweden, a recent heat wave brought not a little discomfort. Temperatures to 30C (86F) are rare in this part of the world. Wish I could say the same for Oklahoma. Additionally, heatwaves in many northern countries are becoming more common at a disturbingly frequent rate.

SUMMER WEATHER SAFETY

With the Memorial Day holiday having taken place in the USA, the “unofficial” start to summer has arrived. All across the Northern Hemisphere, the days are getting longer…and the sun’s rays more intense. With that comes a variety of hazards and the links below cover heat safety and UV protection. As with all weather hazards, a few simple precautions can prevent a ton of trouble.

Heat: A Major Killer

Summer Weather Safety & Survival: The Heat Index

Ultra Violet (UV) Radiation Awareness & Safety Info

World Health Organization: UV & Sun Protection

That’s a wrap for this post! For those of you who are new followers, I’d like to send a sincere “Thank You” and “Welcome” your way. I’m glad you’re along for the fun. For the folks who have been around a while, I’m glad you’ve stuck around for the fun. You know better than anyone that we can never tell what’s around the corner in this joint. I’m glad you’re along for the fun!

Cheers!

Tornado Quest on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Instagram: https://instagram.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Tumblr: http://tornadoquest.tumblr.com/

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2018 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For May 14 – 21, 2018

Greetings to one and all! I hope the weather is to your liking wherever you are. We’ve had some recent spells of severe weather in the USA, but the rest of May looks unusually quiet. Considering the alternative, I’m not complaining. Speaking of severe weather, here’s a quick reminder to check your NOAA weather radio as we navigate our way through the peak of the North American severe weather season and prepare for the beginning of the Atlantic tropical cyclone season.

For your consideration, here are this week’s links…

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

Only time will tell if this works. “Twitter Changes Strategy In Battle Against Internet Trolls.”

GEOLOGICAL SCIENCE

At least the largest of these will fall in desolate areas. “Large boulders 2 metres across and weighing 10 tonnes could soon begin blasting out from Kilauea, the erupting volcano on Hawaii’s Big Island.”

Kilauea is a major volcanic event. In spite of that, “the largest possible explosive event from Kilauea would still be tiny compared to other volcanoes around the world, from Krakatoa to Mount St. Helens to Vesuvius.”

Property damage isn’t the only victim of Kilauea’s activity. Public health is an ongoing issue that need more media coverage than property damage.

In retrospect, here’s a look at the 18 May 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens. (Article originally published in 2014.)

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

Here’s an interesting read on combining renewable energy and collecting NOAA environmental data. “Adaptable And Driven By Renewable Energy, Saildrones Voyage Into Remote Waters.”

The challenges on how to handle plastic pollution are not easy to sort out. Here’s one perspective on how solutions could be worse than the current situation.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

The latest US Drought Monitor is out. There’s little to no relief in sight for drought ravaged regions in the Extreme/Exceptional areas from the southwest into Oklahoma and Texas.

Sample of U.S. Drought Monitor

A wider perspective on the current USA drought conditions can be found at the US Drought Portal page.

The dismal snow pack in many western USA states isn’t a good sign for the summer heat and wildfires that often occur in this mountainous region.

There has been some discussion recently on the topic of heat bursts. They’re a common phenomenon, especially in the USA’s great plains. Here’s a good read on a fascinating weather event.

Hurricane Harvey was a powerful hurricane on its own. The record heat in the Gulf of Mexico just added more fuel to the fire. Unfortunately, this also means that tropical cyclones in the Atlantic basin could pack more of a powerful punch than people in their path are capable of dealing with.

In a new report released on 17 May 2018, NOAA confirmed that April 2018 was the 400th consecutive month of warmer-than-average global temperatures. “The year-to-date (January-April) global temperature was the fifth warmest such period in the 139-year record.”

https://www.ncei.noaa.gov/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/april-2018-global-significant-events-map.png

Infographic courtesy NOAA

New studies hint at climate change and its ramifications could be far worse than we anticipate.

PUBLIC POLICY

Becoming a politically engaged scientist has become less of an option and more of a requirement in today’s politically volatile climate.

The plot thickens as the train wreck continues. The USA’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been engaged in some unscientific actions as of late…and that’s putting it politely.

An interesting tale of a USA government sea level rise report finally being released after charges of censorship. “Although National Park Service officials say the report was handled properly, the study’s lead author says the administrative review process has morphed from a “rubber stamp” into a tool for the government to suppress inconvenient science. “Censorship is a good word for that,” said Maria Caffrey, the University of Colorado, Boulder, researcher who led the study.” There’s no shortage of censorship and twisting facts when it comes to climate change denialists.

That’s a wrap for this post! I’d like to extend a warm welcome to my new followers in social media. It’s nice to have you along for the fun. Stay safe and keep your eyes on the sky!

Cheers!

————————————————————————–

Tornado Quest on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Instagram: https://instagram.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Tumblr: http://tornadoquest.tumblr.com/

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2018 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For May 7 – 14, 2018

Greetings everyone! In spite of the relatively quiet spring severe weather season in the USA, it’s a good idea to stay on our toes and not let complacency set in. All it takes is one regional outbreak to change the statistics for the year. Here’s an important reminder on the difference between a Tornado Watch and a Tornado Warning. More information can be found in the Weather Safety portion of this week’s post. There’s plenty of other topics to cover, so let’s get started.

For your consideration, here are this week’s links…

You’ll find more information in the Weather Safety portion of this post.

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

This study has some disconcerting findings regarding the spread of false information across social media. If anything, it drives home the point that you should always rely on official National Weather Service and broadcast meteorologists for weather information, severe weather in particular. “During disasters, active Twitter users are likely to spread falsehoods. That’s according to new research that examined false tweets from Hurricane Sandy and the Boston Marathon bombing. Researchers found that 86 to 91 percent of active Twitter users spread misinformation, and that nearly as many did nothing to correct it.”

GEOLOGICAL SCIENCE

The USA does have its share of volcanoes. Some like Kilauea are quite active. In spite of its menacing appearance, the red hot lava isn’t how most people die from a volcano. Take a look at how volcanoes kill people.

Here are some spectacular images of Kilauea along with an interesting perspective on what residents of Hawaii see and its contrast with the viewpoints of geoscientists. “Both geoscientists and native Hawaiians agree that Hawaii’s lava is special. But they have different ways of talking about why that is—and different ways of seeing the substance that defines their profession or gives them a home.”

The visual impact of Kilauea can’t be denied when you look at this selection of images that go back to 5 May 2018.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

Wildfires alone carry their own potentially deadly threat, but the smoke can have very serious health consequences to some people miles away from the fires.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Can the sounds made by a tornado give a warning to a community? This novel idea in research seems to think so.

Here’s an interesting look at tornado activity and a state-by-state examination of distribution, monthly activity, etc. You’ll find some surprising data here

This is a nice piece with Rick Smith of NWS Norman, OK discussing the daunting challenges of forecasting weather in the world’s bullseye for tornado activity.

With the Atlantic hurricane season only weeks away, take a look at how supercomputers are revolutionizing one of the most daunting tasks a meteorologist can face…forecasting tropical cyclones.

The political bent of climate change and the contention that arises from it is quite absent in many other countries…except for the USA.

This may not be official White House policy, but the head of the USA’s Coast Guard isn’t afraid to discuss climate change. After all, rising sea levels are critical to their operations.

There’s been a lot of hyperbole as of late about air travel being a horrendous demon when it comes to CO2 emissions and it playing a major role in climate change. That makes for good headlines and, perhaps most oddly, some people swearing off air travel. The truth is that the real problem is what people do when they get where they’re going…even if they get there via a banana boat.

The latest State Of The Climate report for April 2018 is out…and one common thread is that is was quite dry in the plains and southwest and unusually cool for much of the contiguous USA.

https://www.ncei.noaa.gov/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/april-2018-us-significant-events-map.png

WEATHER SAFETY

I’ve included again this week links regarding severe weather safety. This list is just a partial example of the information that is available to keep your loved ones and you safe as we are now well into the North American severe weather season. The peak of severe weather activity, including tornadoes, is well underway.

Tornadoes, Lightning, & Thunderstorms: Nature’s Most Violent Storms (PDF file)

Tornado Safety Rules from the Storm Prediction Center

Highway Overpasses As Tornado Shelters (Slide Presentation)

The Online Tornado FAQ

Facts About Derechos

American Red Cross Severe Weather Safety Information

Flash Flooding: Turn Around, Don’t Drown

NOAA Weather Radio

Interactive NOAA Weather Radio Coverage Map

Ready.gov Basic Disaster Supply Kit Info

The Weather Channel: Prepare Your Pets For Emergencies

Last but not least…if you missed any safety information during National Hurricane Preparedness Week you can catch up at this link from the National Weather Service.

That’s a wrap for this post! I’d like to extend a “Welcome” to my new followers in social media. I’m glad you’re along for the fun. Much more to come so stick around.

Cheers!

———————————————————————————-

Tornado Quest on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Instagram: https://instagram.com/tornadoquest

Tornado Quest on Tumblr: http://tornadoquest.tumblr.com/

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2018 Tornado Quest, LLC

%d bloggers like this: