Tornado Quest Science Links And More For August 26 – September 2, 2015

For all my followers in the Northern Hemisphere, I’d like to extend a “Happy Meteorological Autumn” to you. Nothing magically happens on September 1, December 1, etc…it’s simply an easy way to categorize climatological seasons. For many of us in North America, we won’t notice many changes for several more weeks. In fact, the most noticeable change for those of us in the Great Plains are the days with decreasing hours of daylight. That will continue until the Winter Solstice in late December when, once again, the days will slowly get longer in spite of many long winter days ahead. As for the tropical cyclone activity, the Atlantic has behaved quite well. Erika was forecast by many computer models to reach hurricane intensity and threaten Florida and possibly the eastern seaboard. Fortunately, that didn’t come to fruition. On the flip side, Fred ramped up quickly west of the African coast which prompted an unheard of Hurricane Warning for the Cape Verde Islands. The Pacific has been another story. Just this past week for the first time since records have been kept, three major category hurricanes were in progress at the same time and all three visible on the same satellite image. Quite the jaw-dropping sight!

 

vis sat hurricane

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

TECHNOLOGY

A disconcerting read on how an increasing number of wireless users are being tracked by “zombie cookies.”

Google Chrome users have a reason to celebrate. Auto-play Flash ads are now blocked in Chrome.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

Fall into Phenology with this very cool citizen science project from Project BudBurst. With autumn just around the corner, now’s the time to get involved!

Here’s an intriguing European citizen science project where smart phone users can collect data on air pollution.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

From the North American Great Plains to the Pacific Northwest, large wildfires are becoming increasingly common and more destructive.

Speaking of wildfires, in 2015 alone, more than 8 million acres across the USA have been consumed. That’s an area larger than the state of Maryland.

Wildfires in close proximity can be lethal, but so can the resulting smoke which can travel hundreds of miles.

I’ve read several disturbing stories about this and, unfortunately, it’s likely to only get worse. “Plastic In 99% Of Seabirds By 2050.”

Iceland, you’ve always rocked in my book…and this takes you up a few notches higher. “Iceland turned an old coal plant into a haven for artists and entrepreneurs.”

Pope Francis has courageously stepped up to the plate once again…this time he’s asking the rich and powerful to do their share on behalf of our humble home.

You don’t have to be rich and powerful to do something good. Here’s a good list of eleven tips for saving water…and money.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

An excellent read by Dr. Marshall Shepherd on why it’s easier to track a hurricane than predict its intensity.

This is a fascinating, but not surprising, study from NASA on the connection of vegetation and the urban heat island effect.

Upon close examination and after ten years, these satellite images from NOAA of Hurricane Katrina’s aftermath are still startling.

A very interesting retrospective. One hundred sixty years of hurricanes in one infographic.

Finally, September is National Preparedness Month in the USA. The theme for 2015 is “Dont’ Wait, Communicate.” Check out www.ready.gov for details.

I’d like to extend a hearty “Welcome!” to my new followers…glad you’re along for the fun!

That’s a wrap for this post…the 200th post for me on this particular blog since April, 2009. I’m looking forward to the next 200…and much, much more!

Cheers!

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@gmail.com

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