Tornado Quest Science Links And More For January 3 – 13, 2017

Greetings everyone! This has been a wild weather week across much of the western USA with California getting tons of snow, more than enough rainfall to put a dent in much of the drought stricken areas, and even an EF-0 tornado near Sacramento. Much of the midwest is bracing for an ice storm and, as of this date (13 January 2017) Ice Storm Warnings are in effect from the northeast Texas panhandle across Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, and even into west-central Illinois. As usual, there’s a plethora of other topics to cover. On a personal level, it’s been a “full dance card” week for me with many projects that led me to delay this week’s post. On that note, let’s get started…

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

SCIENCE EDUCATION

Excellent read from American Scientist magazine on nurturing scientific literacy among the general public. What is meant by ‘scientific literacy?’

CITIZEN SCIENCE

Here’s a fascinating story of a man who, in search of a quiet existence in a remote area, inadvertently had a significant effect on climate change science.

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

A very cool astronomy read about researchers getting the first look at a very rare kind of galaxy.

A recent study found evidence that the Earth’s moon is older than scientists thought…millions of years earlier than previously believed.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLE ENERGY

An idea that, for the sake of our future generations, should come to fruition. “How To Save $23 Trillion Per Year: 100% Renewable Energy For The World.”

Good advice to get the new year started off right. “All too often environmentalism is about stopping doing something, but maybe it’s time to be more active and start doing something instead?”

As of late, the air pollution in China has literally become lethal in nature. This article explains why their air pollution is on the rise again.

China isn’t the only country struggling with severe air pollution problems. Just five days into 2017, London has breached its annual air pollution limit.

Those of us in Oklahoma know all too well what Trump’s EPA nominee Scott Pruitt is capable of. Now, the rest of the country has the chance to find out for themselves.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

An interesting read on a study that says the frequency of large-scale tornado outbreaks is increasing in the USA, particularly when it comes to the most extreme events. A link to the original study is included.

Tornadoes in California? You bet. On 10 January 2017, the Sacramento area was visited by an EF-0 tornado.

The latest US Drought Monitor shows over 20% of the contiguous USA is experiencing drought conditions. Recent rain and snowfall throughout the southern states should provide relief that will be evident on the next Drought Monitor.

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There’s often a great deal of confusion about winter weather advisories, watches, and warnings. This NWS infographic has got you covered.

winter-weather-watch-warning-advisory-infographic

Are you prepared for an ice storm? If you’re in the areas under an Ice Storm Warning, all the preparations in this info-graphic (courtesy of the St. Louis, MO National Weather Service) should be rushed to completion.

are-you-prepared-for-an-ice-storm

While it may sound bizarre, you can have a blizzard even when it’s not snowing.

In 2016, a total of 121 flood related deaths occurred in the USA. This map from the National Weather Service’s Weather Prediction Center gives a state-by-state breakdown. High death tolls in West Virginia were due to June floods, Texas deaths from flooding in late May.

2016-usa-flood-deaths-map

Just when you thought the new year couldn’t get off to a more bizarre start. “House Science Committee’s Twitter Account Is Now Just Another Climate Science Denial Troll.”

While not necessarily representative of the whole of American society, this survey gives an informative ‘snapshot’ of the daunting challenges atmospheric scientists are up against when trying to convey climate science to the general public.

Another challenge is conveying the risk of climate change to the public. A recent World Economic Forum report ranks climate change and associated environmental factors as the greatest risk facing humanity.

Here’s a disconcerting ‘must-read’ on the anti-science crusade that continues to build steam in the USA. “The Congressional Attack On Science.”

A concise overview from the Capital Weather Gang of ten extreme weather events outside of the USA that killed thousands and cost untold billions during 2016.

In the Antarctic, an ice shelf is breaking up from the inside out. The ice shelf is bigger than New York’s Long Island and when it breaks off, it could result in global sea level rise that threatens many large cities close to the world’s coasts.

THOUGHT PROVOKING

Last but not least, when asked about death and the ‘afterlife,’ astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson gives a spot on answer that is particularly enlightening.

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

Cheers!


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Tornado Quest Science Links And More For December 27, 2016 – January 3, 2017

Greetings and salutations to everyone! Happy New Year as well! I hope all of you had a great holiday season and the new year is off to a good start. Here’s to 2017 being a year that is everything we want and need. As many of you  are aware of, 2016 was yet another year for the record books in terms of global temperatures with well above normal heat across nearly all continents. On the bright side, it was a ‘slow’ year for tornadoes in the USA. We’ll cover that in detail later in this post. Here’s a select few items to start the new year off with, so let’s get started.

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

HISTORY OF SCIENCE

The history of science has always been an area of study that’s near and dear to my heart. Here’s a particularly inspiring account of how female astronomers at Harvard University accomplished groundbreaking work in classifying stars.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLES

The dangers of fracking to water contamination (which includes water you use for personal purposes) have been known for years, but the EPA has finally and officially given their ‘seal of approval’ on the hazards. The lack of regulation, something that we Oklahoman’s know about all too well, is abhorrent…and likely to get worse with the new presidential administration.

Here’s some amazingly good renewables news! Sweden has generated more energy from wind power than it ever has before…the equivalent of six nuclear power plants.

The new year should be interesting to watch from an environmental perspective. Here are fifteen environmental trends to watch in 2017.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

2016 has ended with one of the lowest annual tornado totals for the USA since records began in 1954. A preliminary count of 901 could be a record low. At least that’s one bit of good news to come out of last year.

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Here’s a nice compilation of some spectacular tornado videos during 2016. The most important factor to keep in mind while watching these videos is the fact that several individuals involved put themselves in unnecessary danger. No video is worth risking life or limb for fifteen minutes of fame. To be a successful storm chaser or storm spotter, you must have a very detailed and exceptionally informed knowledge of the storm scale environment and accept the possibility that it could change so fast that you may not have time to react for your own well-being. Having chased since March, 1982, this is a lesson I learned very early on and on more than one occasion, it has kept me out of potentially life threatening scenarios.

There’s never a dull moment in Oklahoma weather…and this nice graphic courtesy of the Oklahoma Mesonet shows 2016’s histrionic highlights all across the Sooner State.

ok-mesonet-2016-weather-extremes

With winter comes dangerous wind chills that can result in everything from minor discomfort to permanent frostbite damage to even death. Here’s the best windchill chart available online courtesy of the National Weather Service in Spokane, Washington.

wind-chill-chart

While on the topic of wind chill and the dangers of extreme cold, a recent world-wide study in The Lancet shows that up to seventeen times more people die from cold than heat each year.

From Climate Central, a very important read on how to stay informed on climate change action in 2017. “Here are some of the key issues and places to watch this year as battles are waged against dirty energy, as climate policies are debated and implemented, and as governments abroad move to take over the leadership role that America seems poised to vacate.”

That’s a wrap for this post! I’d like to extend a warm welcome to my new followers in social media. There’s plenty of good things on tap with Tornado Quest in 2017, so I’m glad you’re along for the fun!

Cheers!


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Tornado Quest Science Links And More For December 20 – 27, 2016

Holiday greetings to one and all! If you were celebrating the holiday, I hope it was a good one for your family, friends, and you. This week’s post will be on the brief side while I take a few days off during the holiday season and attend to the typical yuletide routine. There’s plenty to read over in spite of the holidays…so let’s get started.

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

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

If Twitter seems to be losing it’s luster, you can thank a substantial decrease in civility and meaningful interaction along with, “harassment, abuse, bullying, intimidation, threats — a ceaseless flickering hum of low-level emotional violence.” From my own personal observations, many accounts (especially politically derived ones) are disturbingly combative. Others are strictly about self promotion and shilling. The decline of Twitter has been predicted for years, yet it still hangs on. Time will tell whether or not it will last the rest of this decade.

GENERAL SCIENCE/PUBLIC POLICY

As is often the unfortunate case, politicians are routinely untruthful. That begs the question, “If politicians can lie without condemnation, what are scientists to do?”

There’s a very important lesson scientists could learn from President-Elect Trump’s victory…and now more than ever, the experts need to closely listen to the public.

Speaking of an election, “Canadian Scientists Warn USA Colleagues: Act Now To Protect Science Under Trump.”

CITIZEN SCIENCE

An excellent read by Caren Cooper. “Quality And Quantity With Citizen Science.”

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLES

A Normandy village is home to the world’s first solar panel road.

The USA’s EPA has released a revised report on fracking…and this time the writing is done with a bit more caution.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Why do some people think that climate change is not happening? Sometimes it’s more than just politics or peer pressure…it’s a misunderstanding and mistaking local weather events as being the same as global climate trends.

An excellent climate change read for weather geeks and environmental interest folks by Katharine Hayhoe: Why Climate Change Should Matter to You.

Never underestimate the power of a grassroots movement. “Mothers Unleash Their Organizing Power On Climate.”

Here’s a very concise overview of the climate change reasons behind the current warm Arctic winter. “For the Arctic, like the globe as a whole, 2016 has been exceptionally warm. For much of the year, Arctic temperatures have been much higher than normal, and sea ice concentrations have been at record low levels.”

Speaking of a warm winter, it’s almost certain that 2016 will be yet another record-breaking warm winter for the USA.

THE QUIXOTIC

Oh my…there are some good times ahead in the USA. With people of this ilk in an presidential advisory position, who needs circus clowns?

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

Cheers!


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Tornado Quest Science Links And Much More For December 12 – 20, 2016

Greetings everyone! For those of you across North America, I hope you’re managing to stay warm during the current cold snap. It certainly adds a bit of ‘zing’ to the holiday season. Speaking of the holidays, this post and the following two will be on the brief side. It’s a crazy, busy time of year for many of us and I’m no exception. Still, there are important topics to keep abreast of, so let’s get started.

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

GENERAL SCIENCE

A wide variety of science fields are covered in this particular retrospective on the twelve key science moments of 2016.

SCIENCE COMMUNICATION

What’s the best way to communicate scientific concepts that are often very complex to the general public? “It turns out that even in the world of scientific writing, your eighth-grade teacher was right: how you write can matter as much as what you write.”

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

Exciting news for astronomy fans. The world’s largest digital survey of the visible Universe, mapping billions of stars and galaxies, has been publicly released.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

When the air quality in a city is so bad that airline traffic is cancelled, you know it’s air that is literally lethal to breathe.

Here’s an excellent read and infographic on reducing your plastic pollution. The plastics that are part of many life saving items aren’t the problem, it’s the “daily plastics” that aren’t always necessary and so easily discarded that are the challenge.

The Oklahoma Oil and Gas Association has released a “fact” sheet on waste water injection/fracking and it’s relation to the recent and dramatic increase of earthquakes in the Sooner State. For reasons that are blatantly obvious, they’re not taking responsibility for their actions. This is public relations cherry-picking at its best.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

An unsettling read from Climate Central: Scientists Are Saving Climate Data; This Is Why It Matters. “In recent days, efforts have sprung up to archive climate data on federal sites. They’ve been spurred by fears that the Trump administration could take a hostile stance toward climate science and that budget cuts could make data less accessible.”

A very unsettling essay by climate scientist Michael E. Mann that is a “must read” for anyone interested in the atmospheric sciences. “I’m A Scientist Who Has Gotten Death Threats. I Fear What May Happen Under Trump.”

Here’s a look at NOAA’s global State Of The Climate report for November, 2016. First, let’s take a look at selected climate anomalies and events.

201611Here’s the global temperature trends for November. While much of North America was quite above normal, parts of Europe and Asia were unseasonably cool.

201612

After a very warm November in North America, 2016 had to get one last cold shot in before year’s end. Watching it take place across surface observations (especially the Oklahoma Mesonet) was quite a sight.

Finally, a rather impertinent view of the never-to-be-settled-argument on school closings and winter weather. In this game, you just can’t win, even when erring on the side of justifiable caution.


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Tornado Quest Science Links And More For December 5 – 12, 2016

Greetings everyone! I hope the weather is being good to you regardless of where you live. This week’s post will be on the brief side due to previous commitments and I’ll update it periodically and repost the link on Twitter as needed. For many of us, the holiday season is quite busy and hectic and things in my neck of the woods are no exception. Without further delay, here we go.

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

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

I’m frequently coming across more reasons to justify my search engine preferences of StartPage and DuckDuckGo over Google. Here’s yet another one.

HISTORY OF SCIENCE

Here’s a fascinating segment from Science Friday on pioneering female astronomers who meticulously analyzed glass negatives.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

For those of us with interests in the atmospheric and environmental sciences, the new choice for the USA’s EPA administrator is not a little disturbing. We Oklahoman’s who know his tendencies are very familiar with the potential undoing that could occur in the next few years. His disdain for the EPA and environmental issues in general is no secret.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Interesting study from the National Center for Atmospheric Research on climate change and it’s connection to more intense precipitation events.

With the latest NOAA data taken into consideration, 2016 is well on its way to being the second hottest year on record for the contiguous USA.

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How scientific data is communicated to the general public is often just as important as the data itself. “Report Helps Scientists Communicate How Global Warming Is Worsening Natural Disasters.”

Some very daunting times ahead. “Surge In Methane Emissions Threatens Efforts To Slow Climate Change.”

Here’s an excellent infographic from the National Weather Service in Jackson, KY, USA that answers the frequently heard question, “Why do some forecasts ‘bust?'”

czawgi7ucaavxql-jpg-large

While on the topic of ‘busted’ forecasts, here’s an excellent read on why long-term computer model based forecasts should not be trusted. “Now is a good time to remind everyone that forecasts for extreme winter weather events more than about five to seven days into the future are not reliable. I’d add that if your “trusted source” for weather information is hyping an extreme event more than a week out, you consider finding a different trusted source.” That trusted source should always be your local National Weather Service and the local and national broadcast meteorologists of your choice.

This week marked the 50th anniversary of the ATS-1, the first Earth-observing satellite ever placed in geostationary orbit. This was truly a watershed event in weather satellite history.

Speaking of weather satellites, here’s news of a new weather satellite that has exciting possibilities into hurricane prediction.

Not a little disturbing news from Climate Central. “A Climate Denier Is Leading The NASA Transition.”

That’s a wrap for this post! As always, I’d like to extend a warm welcome to my new followers in social media. I’m glad you’re along for the fun. The best is yet to come.

Cheers!

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Tornado Quest Science Links And More For November 28 – December 5, 2016

Greetings everyone and Happy December to all of you! The beginning of “meteorological winter” is upon us for we who live in the Northern Hemisphere. So far, it’s been warmer than usual and mild…no surprise there…with drought conditions persisting and worsening across the western and southern USA states. As 2016 draws to a close, there’s not a little concern for the future of science in America. I’ve discussed the future years and what we expect..and will demand…with many friends, acquaintances, and colleagues in the scientific community. The consensus of deep concern is unanimous. That is addressed in several links within this post. On that note, let’s get started.

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

GENERAL SCIENCE/SCIENCE EDUCATION/CRITICAL THINKING

Depending on which demographic of the population you ask, scientists aren’t the authority on science.

This article addresses a recent “hot button” topic of fake news and how we, as fallible humans, swallow hook, line, and sinker (so long as it meets ones socio-political agenda) without first resorting to critical thinking, objective research, and scientific analysis. Here’s an excellent “Ten Questions For Fake News Detection” tip sheet that will be of great help. (1 page PDF file). Friendly tip: never get “news” from Facebook…chances are it has as much valid sincerity as a snake oil salesman.

While on the topic of fake news, it begs the question, “If politicians can lie without condemnation, what are scientists to do?” Post-Truth: A Guide For The Perplexed.

As the economic and social impact of the tech world increases, the skills we teach our children for success in a rapidly changing world need to keep pace with technology.

SCIENCE AND PUBLIC POLICY

An unsettling read from the Union of Concerned Scientists on why 2,300 scientists have good reason to be very worried about the future interaction of science and public policy.

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

Naming stars may sound easy, but it can be a truly daunting task of cosmic proportions.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

Over 100 million trees have died recently in California’s drought-stricken forests. With no relief in sight, this is an unfortunate trend that’s likely to worsen.

Nearly every piece of plastic ever manufactured still exists today. In spite of our best efforts in recycling, we’re facing a pollution dilemma with no easy answers.

GEOLOGICAL SCIENCE

The “Red River Rivalry” continues…but over a recent topic of discussion. Oklahoma and Texas disagree on how to handle fracking-induced earthquakes and the oil and gas companies responsible for them.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

A “must-read” for those living in tornado prone regions of North America from Climate Central. “Outbreaks of tornadoes — where multiple tornadoes form over an area in just a few hours or days — are responsible for most of the devastating destruction caused by severe weather, and a new analysis has reached a worrying conclusion about the worst of these outbreaks.”

Unfortunately, we’ll be seeing more of this in the years to come. Basically, it’s an outright denial of sound evidence that has stood the rigorous test of the scientific method. “Climate scientists have denounced the House committee on science, space and technology after the Republican-held panel promoted a misleading story expressing skepticism that the earth is dangerously warming.”

Recently, the US Senate passed a major bill to improve weather forecasting…and that’s very good news.

Finally, with winter having finally made its arrival across North America, the National Weather Service has an excellent Winter Weather Safety site that addresses many underrated hazards that can inconvenience, injure, or even kill you.

And that’s a wrap for this post! A big “welcome” to my new followers in social media. I’m glad you’re along for the fun.

Cheers!

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Tornado Quest Science Links And More For November 17 – 29, 2016

Greetings everyone! Thanks for stopping by. For those in the USA who celebrated the holiday, I hope you had a very Happy Thanksgiving. I took advantage of the rare opportunity for some R&R time for myself, so this week’s post will be a bit shorter than usual, but still full of thought-provoking ideas. There’s plenty to catch up on, especially on the front lines of climate change. On that note, let’s get started.

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

GENERAL SCIENCE

If you celebrated the USA’s Thanksgiving holiday, be thankful for many things, including science. There’s a myriad of topics to discuss and inspire a sense of wonder.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

A reminder that even though winter may be settling in across North America, your mPING and CoCoRaHS reports are still important. They’re not just for severe thunderstorms. Every single report counts!

GEOGRAPHY

The Mercator maps that so many of us are familiar with give a very distorted view of the world. How distorted? This article with an interactive map with show you.

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

Interesting news on Mars. “Frozen beneath a region of cracked and pitted plains on Mars lies about as much water as what’s in Lake Superior, largest of the Great Lakes.”

GEOLOGICAL SCIENCE

Oklahomans are suing frackers over earthquakes. I sincerely wish them luck in their pursuit of justice. Their defendants are capriciously deviant and very wealthy.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

People in urban areas are at risk of air pollution induced health problems with around 85% exposed to levels deemed harmful by the World Health Organization. These particles are too small to see or smell, but have a devastating impact.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

What scientists are seeing happening to the Arctic ice is both surprising and not a little alarming. Another spot-on and apt description is that the current scenario is, “seriously weird.”

The first decade of the 21st century set the pace. From Climate Central: USA Record Highs Will Far Outpace Lows With Warming.

Perilous times ahead in the USA regarding climate science & renewable energy. “The world is waiting to hear what President-elect Donald Trump has in mind for governing the U.S. Among the biggest questions is what will happen to the budget for climate and energy-related activities.”

An ominous note to what lays ahead in the world wide theater. In early 2017, the USA is poised to begin a potentially disastrous retreat from climate science leadership. China is more than happy to step up, don the crown and seat themselves in the throne. Don’t say you haven’t been warned.

The new GOES-R weather satellite is the most advanced one launched to date. It will not only provide amazing data, but could save your life someday.

As expected, Trump intends to dump the Paris climate accord, but at least 71 percent of the American public support it.

chart_paris-agreement-survey_718x361

It’s been a very quiet year in the USA for tornadoes. As of November 21, 2016, 830 preliminary tornado reports so far which is well below the statistical average.

cx5qmmouaaaryfw-jpg-largeThat’s a wrap for this post! I’d like to extend a warm welcome to my new followers in social media. I’m glad you’re along for the fun.

Cheers!

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Tornado Quest Science Links For November 10 – 17, 2016

Greetings everyone! How’s the weather in your neighborhood this week? Hopefully it’s to your liking. In parts of North America, we’ll be getting a good shot of cold autumn weather for mid November. In spite of that, much of the NOAA outlooks for the next week or so hint at relatively clement weather…which is good if you’ll be doing any traveling for the American Thanksgiving holiday. Regardless, be sure to keep tabs on forecasts for both your local area, destination, and all points in between. Things can and will change unexpectedly. It’s been a very busy week here with my dance card full and my cup runneth over repeatedly…so this post will be on the brief side.

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

GENERAL SCIENCE/SCIENCE EDUCATION

The fine folks at Science Friday have compiled a very cool list of six things you can break down right now!

Much to my delight, “the Paris Agreement includes Article 12, calling for the promotion of climate-change education — and the 2030 Agenda includes a comprehensive Sustainable Development Goal on education, with a specific target on education for sustainable development. Education is key to understanding climate change — it is vital to learning to adapt and take action, for today’s generation and tomorrow’s.”

Like it or not, science and politics (both foreign and domestic) go hand in hand more so now than ever before. With the recent USA election in mind, a few prominent scientists shared their reactions.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLES

For many years, a clean energy transition was said to be much too expensive and troublesome by skeptics and special interests. Furthermore, they claimed it would make consumers’ energy bills very expensive and increase operating costs. They were dead wrong.

Most everything we use can be recycled. If that’s the case, why don’t we do more recycling than we do now?

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Stop what you’re doing and take a deep breath. Chances are that the air you just breathed in and out is polluted.

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ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

October, 2016 was yet another record-breaking month for global temperatures. On its current track, 2016 looks to top 2015 for the year as a whole.

oct-2016-temp-mapFor October 2016, NASA’s map show lots of yellow, orange, and red. Simply put, those are areas where temperatures were well above average for the month. Map courtesy Climate Central & NASA.

Here’s an excellent piece by climate scientist Katharine Hayhoe. “Dear President-Elect: Climate Change Is Not A Hoax, And We’re All In This Together.”

La Niña is here and is playing a major role in the ongoing drought and worsening wildfires in the southern USA states.

Regardless of who is president, climate…and nature overall…supersedes any policy designed to focus on short-term goals.

Ending on an aesthetically positive note, take a look at these spectacular autumn vistas captured by drones.

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

Cheers!


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Tornado Quest Science Links And More For November 1 – 10, 2016

Greetings to one and all! It’s been a very busy week especially for those of us in the USA. On an international level, the UN Climate Summit is underway and the Paris Climate Accord had officially gone into effect. The latest NOAA State Of The Climate report has been issued and, to no ones surprise, October, 2016 was a warm and dry month for much of the contiguous USA. I’m running a couple of days behind due to some ongoing commitments, so let’s get started.

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

GENERAL SCIENCE/PUBLIC POLICY

Success, especially in the sciences, doesn’t often come at a “young” age. In fact, many of the greatest have made their mark  with, “a combination of personality, persistence and pure luck, as well as intelligence, that leads to high-impact success — at any age.”

Well said. “Climate change may be humanity’s greatest challenge in this century and far beyond. And the temporal scale on which it will play out is dangerously out of sync with the extremely short time horizon that characterizes our politics.”

This actually can be applied to many scientific fields. “Why Are There So Few Women Mathematicians?”

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

If your skies are clear on the night of November 14th, take a look at the “supermoon.”

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

In the fifth year of a severe drought, some California residents are going back to water-thirsty landscaping as the social stigma against using water is taking a break…for now.

GEOLOGICAL SCIENCE

Shake, frack, and roll. This past week, Oklahoma had another earthquake, this one centered near the town of Cushing and registered 5.0 on the Richter Scale.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

The latest NOAA State Of The Climate report is out. The USA had its third warmest October and second warmest year to date. Here’s a map of significant climate anomalies for the month.

state-of-the-climate-infographic-oct-2016In addition to the temperature increase, the drought conditions are spreading across a vast area from the south central states to New England.

Arctic ice is on the increase, but at a frightfully slow pace.

If you’ve not seen “Before The Flood” yet, it’s available on YouTube…you can watch it here. It’s well worth your time.

Katharine Hayhoe is a climate scientist. And she’s on a mission to persuade skeptics that humans are frying the planet and time is running out to stop it. She has a daunting task ahead of her as do all of us who try our best to objectively inform the public about climate change and the science behind it while keeping the information we share at an easily comprehensible level.

You’re probably already aware that the Paris Climate Accord is officially in effect, but far more strict reductions in emissions are needed for the long run.

During the next two weeks, critical issues will be discussed at the UN Climate Summit. These will have far-reaching implications on whether or not we can curb the ravages of global warming.

An interesting study on the connection between sunshine…and it’s connection to our psychological state of mind.

Superstorm Sandy certainly could happen again. Read how New York City is preparing for the next storm that could rival or exceed Sandy’s level of destruction.

A new study to help the individual realize how each one of us contributes to Arctic ice sea melt.

An excellent resource. “Individuals, businesses, and communities can respond to the challenges of our changing climate. This framework can guide you through the process of planning and implementing resilience-building projects.”

Finally, a nice infographic on dressing for winter weather.

dressing-for-cold-weather

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

Cheers!

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This Week’s Tornado Quest Science Links & More For October 24 – November 1, 2016

Greetings everyone! I hope all of you have had a good start to your week. It’s been relatively tranquil across much of North America the past week and the tropical Atlantic and eastern Pacific have been very serene. The season for tropical cyclones is winding down for North America. As we have seen with Hurricane Matthew, it only takes one to result in a tremendous amount of damage and hundreds of fatalities across several countries. As usual, there’s a plethora of topics to cover, so let’s get started.

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

SCIENCE EDUCATION/CAREERS

A very thought-provoking read on the state of math education in the USA…which is of particular important to anyone who plans on majoring in the atmospheric sciences.

Life for a new scientists just entering the field is more daunting than ever before.

GEOLOGICAL SCIENCE/SEISMOLOGY

A very good read on the recent upswing in Oklahoma earthquakes. “How The Oil And Gas Industry Awakened Oklahoma’s Sleeping Fault Lines.”

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RECYCLING

Solar energy is really taking off…and this is just the awesome beginning.

A study of 41,000 people has further solidified the irrevocable link between air quality (and a myriad of other environmental factors) and your physical health.

Across the globe, up to 300 million children live in conditions with air pollution up to six times over the limit of what is considered minimally safe air quality.

In urban areas, the growth of city trees has shown time and time again to improve air quality. The same can also be said for having indoor plants.

If we can recycle everything we use, including toothbrushes, cigarette butts, and all kinds of plastics that wind up in our oceans, why don’t we?

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Winter is on it’s way…and it’s not too early to review some winter weather safety tips that are geared toward travelers in automobiles. A winter weather safety kit is a must. If you need it, you’ll be glad you took the time to prepare. If you absolutely have to travel, know what to do to stay safe. Infographic courtesy of the National Weather Service.

winter-storm-safety

In your home, preparing for winter is very easy. These few tips will save you a lot of trouble and possibly your life. Infographic courtesy of the NYC National Weather Service.

cold-weather-tips-for-the-home

Will the polar vortex be a player this winter for the northern states of the USA? At least one source says, “Yes.”

Understanding why the public makes evacuation decisions in a hurricane scenario is as important as the evacuation order itself. “Why We Should Not Demonize Residents Who Refuse To Evacuate During Hurricanes.”

Some natural disaster events can be tied to climate change, but not all of them. Here’s why blaming all natural disasters on climate change is a recipe for disaster.

The Mediterranean region, already experiencing dry conditions, may be in for much worse in the decades to come.

There are several towns around the world that are grabbing climate change by the horns and courageously embracing changes that will be unavoidable to all of us…eventually. One of these towns is Greensburg, KS which was devastated by an EF-5 tornado in 2007 but is now one of the leading green communities in the USA.

Death Valley’s claim to having the world’s highest temperature reading could be put to death itself by renewed analysis.

Here’s a good read for my fellow weather geeks. “Sun-clouds-climate connection takes a beating from CERN.”

Take a look at a new way of evaluating damage to structures from tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, and earthquakes.

Have you ever wondered what those red and blue lines on some weather maps mean? Here’s a nice overview on how to read a basic weather map.

When it dark at 3:00 PM on a winter’s day in the fabulous city of Stockholm, Sweden, creativity (and productivity) soar sky high! Yes, climate and human behavior have strong links.

Finally, if you’ve not seen “Before The Flood” on National Geographic, you’re in for quite a treat. It’s well worth the time to watch it in its entirety. For people who don’t understand the gravity of climate change and what our children, grandchildren, & future generations face, this documentary will put it into perspective.

THE VISCERAL UNDERBELLY

According to a new poll in Texas’ 21st congressional district, 45 percent of respondents said they are less likely to vote for Rep. Lamar Smith because he refused to investigate allegations that ExxonMobil knew about climate change in the ’70s and failed to disclose the threat to the public. To add insult to injury, Smith is (ironically) also the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee chair and is among the 34 percent of Congress members who deny climate change.

That’s a wrap for this post! See you good people next time!

Cheers!


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Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

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