Tag Archives: citizen science

Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For July 10 – 18, 2017

Greetings once again to one and all! I hope the weather is to your liking wherever you are. We get visitors from all over the world…and for some of you, it’s winter. For those of us in North America, it is incredibly hot across much of the continent with no let-up in sight. One would think they’d get used to this kind of wretched heat, but that’s not the case…at least for me. Stay safe if you’ve got to be out in the heat. As for tropical cyclone activity, the eastern Pacific and Atlantic are active for the moment, but fortunately none of the ongoing areas of concern as of this date are of any significant threat. Then again, this is only July and the peak of the Atlantic hurricane season is still several weeks away. There’s plenty to go over this week, so let’s get started.

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

CITIZEN SCIENCE

If you’re looking for an excellent citizen science project for home, work, or school, check out the CoCoRaHS project!

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

We’re getting some spectacular images of Jupiter’s Great Red Spot…a massive storm that has been in progress for hundreds of years.

Space isn’t empty…and it certainly isn’t a quiet place.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

Though this study linking ozone pollution and cardiovascular health was done on Chinese adults, it most certainly applies to cities all over the globe.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

A new and important National Oceanographic And Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) report has just been issued. Our humble home had its second warmest year to date and its third warmest June on record.

Some recent severe weather research has had some interesting results in Oklahoma. An experimental model predicted the path of a Oklahoma tornado a few hours before it formed.

Here’s a look at the latest US Drought Monitor. Severe and Extreme conditions continue to worsen in Montana and the Dakotas.

Conveying climate change information to the general public is a daunting task. Moving beyond doomsday reporting is essential if atmospheric scientists are to gain the public trust.

Certain locations in the USA will be affected by climate change much earlier than others. Here’s a look at some particularly vulnerable coastal areas.

Many people wonder if their individual actions can make a difference in climate change. Fortunately, I can answer in the affirmative. There are many things you can do to make a difference.

Now that you know what you can do, check out how old you are in CO2.

Eighteen military installations vital to the protection and security of the USA are endangered by climate change.

From a global perspective, the extreme heat that is felt with increasing frequency could become the climatological norm.

Interesting video of one of the most intriguing entrepreneurs you can meet. “Richard Branson, the founder and chair of the Virgin Group speaks during a panel discussion in New York and says the threat of climate change actually offers ‘one of the great opportunities for this world’.”

This is an old story that has been raised from the dead…most likely for hyperbole since it’s been a non-issue issue from the get go. “Female-named hurricanes are most likely not deadlier than male hurricanes.”

PUBLIC POLICY

Understandably so, many countries are expressing well-deserved dismay on the USA’s threat to pull out of the Paris Climate Agreement.

This should come as no surprise to Oklahomans who know him so very well. “Scott Pruitt Pretty Much Just Confirmed He’s Out To Dismantle The EPA.”

Socioeconomic ramifications of climate change are significant and require far more attention than they’re presently getting. Recent studies show that, “the pain of climate change will fall more heavily on America’s poorest bits than on its richest areas.”

If you want to help make the world a better place, collective action is much more effective than ineffectual individualism. As the saying goes, “there is power in numbers.”

And that’s a wrap for this post! I’d like to extend a warm welcome to my new followers in social media and invite you to check out Tornado Quest’s other social media outlets listed below. I’m glad you’re along for the fun! Interesting times ahead…so stick around for the fray!

Cheers!

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

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Copyright © 1998 – 2017 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Links: Week In Review For July 3 – 10, 2017

Greetings again to one and all!  I hope the weather is to your liking wherever you live. Here in the Great Plains of the USA, the summer heat has settled in. It’s not unusual, but this weather geek never gets used to it. There’s plenty to go over this week, so let’s get started.

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

SCIENCE EDUCATION

A very thought provoking essay on concerns with how science is taught in our classrooms.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

Would you like some citizen science to go along with your sun, sand, and surf? You’ve got it…right here!

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

Many had hopes that life could exist on Mars. Those hopes were dashed as the surface of the “red planet” is more than a little uninhabitable.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

We are forced to adapt and confront the fact that the largest expanse of coral reefs in the world is dying before our eyes.

While challenging and forcing you to face old habits, becoming plastic free as possible is not that difficult.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

June 2017 was another warm month for the planet in general and specifically in parts of the southwestern USA, western Europe, and Siberia.

Global surface air temperature anomaly for June 2017 relative to the June average for the period 1981-2010. Source: ERA-Interim. (Credit: ECMWF, Copernicus Climate Change Service)

A look at mean temperature percentile for the contiguous USA for June 2017. (Credit: NOAA National Centers For Environmental Information)

A chunk of ice about the size of the state of Delaware is about to break off in Antarctica. When it does break off, it will be one of the largest icebergs ever recorded.

There are many ideas regarding ice loss in Antarctica (which is normal for properly conducted science) and that can seem overwhelming to the lay public. Here’s a good overview on what to believe about the Antarctic ice loss.

Speaking of Antarctica, its ice-free areas are predicted to reach proportions that will affect the unique animal life and terrestrial plant life that exists there.

While a great deal of attention is given to Antarctica, Greenland is going though an equally disturbing amount of melting directly linked to climate change.

The latest US Drought Monitor shows drought conditions spreading rapidly in the Dakotas and Montana. Moderate drought continues in parts of Arizona, California, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas.

A great read from meteorologist Dan Satterfield: Yet Another Climate Myth Is Gone.

How hot could your city get by the year 2100? Taking heat island effects into consideration, far hotter than you’ll want your grandchildren to endure.

Last but not least, a quick reminder of summer Heat Safety. Deaths from summer heat are preventable with a few simple steps.

PUBLIC POLICY

A particularly disturbing read…especially in the context that this has been done in a deliberately clandestine manner. “Trump’s Alarming Environmental Rollback: What’s Been Scrapped So Far.”

EPA head Scott Pruitt feels climate science is broken and needs to be fixed. That’s rich.

Here’s an excellent essay on how climate change denialism has turned into something far darker and more dangerous than previously thought. “Their goal is to sow uncertainty in the public mind about what the science shows.” These nefarious interests are, when it comes down to brass tacks, trying to convey a sense of confusion amongst the general public.

In spite of the fact that a vast majority of earth scientists feel we are on the brink of sinking into the abyss of a new Dark Age, a few are standing up and fighting back.

The G20 summit has ended on a very dour note…which could have been avoided altogether if the USA had an administration capable of comprehending science and diplomacy. “Our world has never been so divided.” “Centrifugal forces have never been so powerful. Our common goods have never been so threatened.” – French President Emmanuel Macron

A former Republican congressman and noted climate change denialist has been picked to be the head of the infamous Heartland Institute. Surprised?

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

Cheers!

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

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Copyright © 1998 – 2017 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For June 19 – 27, 2017

Greetings everyone and welcome! I hope your summer (or winter for Southern Hemisphere folks) is going well. Here in North America, it’s certainly been warming up right on schedule. The Atlantic tropical season got off to an early start with a tropical storm making landfall in early June near the Texas and Louisiana coastal border region. As of this date (27 June 2017), Tropical Storm Dora is moving along the Mexico coast and dumped copious amounts of rainfall. Due to several ongoing projects, I had to delay publishing this post by one day…so let’s get started on this week’s topics.

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

CITIZEN SCIENCE

If you have a smart phone, an interest in weather, and would like to be a part of citizen science while contributing to National Severe Storm Laboratory weather research, the free mPING app is for you! It’s a very small app (so it won’t take up a lot of space on any smart phone…iOS or Android) is super easy to use, and can be used by you year round from all across North America. You can read more about the mPING project here.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLES

As those of us in the Great Plains of the USA well know, wildfires used to be an uncommon phenomenon. As of late, that has changed…and many plains states have seen year after year of devastating fires.

If any country can accomplish this, Sweden can. “Sweden Commits To Becoming Carbon Neutral By 2045 With New Law.”

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES

From the American Meteorological Society: TV Weathercasters’ Views Of Climate Change Appear To Be Rapidly Evolving.

It’s a difficult conversation, but having a heart-to-heart talk with kids about climate change is absolutely essential.

Though the focus on this article is the UK, it applies to any country that deals with heatwaves. To call them a national emergency is not an overreaction. Annually, heat kills more people than floods, lightning, tornadoes, high wind events, etc. combined.

A new study looks ahead several decades at what a warmer world would be like for humans. By the end of this century, the picture isn’t pretty.

While still on the topic of increasing global heat, here are two interesting reads on increasing high temperatures, first from Climate Central – ” Days Above 100F: Projections.” and the New York Times – “95-Degree Days: How Extreme Heat Could Spread Across The World.”

A look at seven climate change hotspots around the world. Yes, one of them is right here in the USA…New York state.

If you fly often, climate change may have an affect on the way you travel as well as the availability of flights.

We’ve just had the summer solstice in the Northern Hemisphere. Here’s a nice concise summer solstice article that tells you everything you need to know.

PUBLIC POLICY

Some very courageous USA cities are teaming up to post climate data taken down by the current presidential administration.

When politicians distort science and “cherry pick” false data in their traditional opportunistic fashion, scientists and academics are shocked and often sit on the sidelines. That has got to come to a stop…now.

The USA’s Interior Department is planning on dismissing employees by the thousands as environmental protection and concerns are dismissed as frivolous by the current presidential administration. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is marching lockstep with the same intent.

Finally, “Rick Got Rolled” but somehow I have a feeling that Rick Perry doesn’t get it nor cares. Nevertheless, the American Meteorological Society has had their fill of climate change denialism amongst politicians, media pundits, etc. and they’re sharpening their swords.

That’s a wrap for this post. I’d like to take a moment and welcome with thanks my new followers in social media. As of late, the social media landscape has taken on perilous dimensions. Like it or not, to make a difference and make our voices heard, it would behoove us to diversify our topics of interest…hence the fact that Tornado Quest has never been a “one note drone” that goes dormant save for severe weather events. I am involved in and feel strongly about many environmental issues, climate and weather of all kinds, our rapidly changing technology (especially the growth of renewable energy), and much more.

Cheers!

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

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Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2017 Tornado Quest, LLC

 

Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For June 5 – 12, 2017

Greetings to one and all! For those of us in North American, summer is in full swing with sizzling temperatures expected for the next several days. Summer heat is a highly underrated weather hazard and I’ve got some outstanding information from the National Weather Service in this week’s post. As for severe weather, it’s going to be a very quiet period for much of the Great Plains the next few days. Overall, May 2017 was quieter than usual across the contiguous USA with the number of tornadoes, high wind, and hail reports being below normal. And, of course, the big news of the past few days has been the USA’s decision to discontinue commitment to the Paris Climate Agreement. Fortunately, at the state and local level, there’s a groundswell gathering momentum that will hold to the commitment and do the right thing. There’s plenty to go over, so let’s begin.

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

CITIZEN SCIENCE

If you’re looking for a way to help out weather research with crowdsourcing citizen science, the mPING project is for you. The free app is easy to use and you can send reports year round for a variety of weather conditions.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

We’ve just observed World Oceans Day. Considering that approximately 75% of the surface of the earth is covered by water, it behooves us all to have a thorough understanding of how our oceans work and how important they are to our forms of life.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Here’s a look back at severe weather activity in the USA for May, 2017. Of note are two events recorded in Oklahoma…a 104mph non-tornadic gust reported at the Walters, OK Oklahoma Mesonet station and a 4.25″ hailstone that was documented in Okfuskee County, OK. The number of tornadoes nationwide was 290…only slightly higher than the statistical average of 276. Overall, it was a below normal month in severe weather activity.

Infographic courtesty NOAA Storm Prediction Center

This week marks the anniversary of the June 8, 1974 Great Plains tornado outbreak. While not one of the larger outbreaks of recent years, long-time residents remember this event well. The Tulsa, OK metro was hit by three tornadoes with up to EF-3 damage in some areas. The deadliest tornado was the Drumright, OK EF-4 which killed fourteen people along a thirty mile long path. Here’s a overview of the events across several great plains states.

This is also the anniversary of the Barneveld, Wisconsin EF-5 tornado. The Milwaukee, WI National Weather Service has a comprehensive overview.

Here’s a look at the dangers of sea level rise in the USA according to new data from NOAA.

Many American residents who don’t have a good understanding of hour weather and climate work are prime targets for climate change denialists who prey on their lack of earth science knowledge.

While on the topic of the American public, Dr. Marshall Shepherd has written and excellent essay on fifteen suggestions for broadcast meteorologists on conveying weather information to their viewers.

Flooding in the USA kills more people annually than tornadoes, lightning, high winds, and hurricanes combined. It would behoove those of us in America to take the threat of climate change induced flooding very, very seriously.

Summer heat is settling in across much of North America. By observing heat safety tips, heat illnesses and deaths can be prevented.

Infographic courtesy NOAA

PUBLIC POLICY

One of the most thought-provoking articles I’ve read as of late. The subtitle says it all and it right on the mark. “For too long, liberals have been treating climate change as a third or fourth tier issue. As the US exits the Paris Climate Accord, it’s time for liberals to re-evaluate an issue that subsumes all others.”

In some form of media, climate change denial, both scientific and political, is nurtured in a variety of ways. Most of it goes unchallenged. It’s time to change that and call the denialists out. This will also require some introspection on the part of those of us who accept the overwhelming evidence of climate change science.

A disturbingly unsettling read on six ways budget cuts will hamper NOAA’s weather forecasting capabilities. Yes, this will affect you in more ways than you can imagine.

As of this post, thirteen states in the USA are continuing on with their commitment to the Paris Agreement. Let’s hope that in short order many other states join their ranks.

While on the topic of dedication to commitment, here’s another good read from Climate Central on how the USA can hold to its promise for the Paris Agreement.

Asking public officials if they “believe” in climate change is the wrong way to attempt an initiation of a productive dialogue.

Last but not least, is there a way that individual Americans can still follow the Paris Climate Agreement? Absolutely. Here’s how.

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

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

Tornado Quest on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tornadoquest

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Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2017 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Links Week In Review For May 30 – June 5, 2017

Greetings to everyone! I hope the weather is to your liking wherever you are. Summer is settling in over much of North America and the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season has officially started. For the time being, it’ll be rather quiet in terms of severe weather activity for North America. Obviously, the big news this week is the announcement of the USA’s pulling out of the Paris Climate Accord. This is a major story with international implications and we’ll cover numerous links on that topic. Having said that, let’s get started.

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

CITIZEN SCIENCE

If you’re into citizen science and weather, check out CoCoRaHS…a very popular network of people across North America, the Bahamas, Puerto Rico, & USA Virgin Islands that send in valuable weather information every day!

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

For many residents of coastal Louisiana, USA, watching the coastline change due to climate change is more than an environmental crisis, but an economic one as well.

Pittsburg, PA is spearheading a revolution by planning to transition to 100% renewable-energy sources, like solar and wind, by 2035.

Our planet’s oceans are so vital to our very survival. Here’s a good list of ten things that you can do on land to help save the Earth’s oceans.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

This past May 31st marked the fourth anniversary of the El Reno, OK tornado. Of all the significant tornadoes I can recall over 45+ years, few have stirred as much contentious discussion as this event. The National Weather Service in Norman, OK has an excellent video overview of this exceptionally dangerous storm. Storm chaser Skip Talbot’s “Safety Lessons from El Reno” video is one of the most thorough reviews of this watershed event.

The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season has officially begun. NOAA is anticipating an above-average year in the number of tropical cyclones.

Here’s a quick list of five important hurricane preparedness factors to take into consideration. Number five is perhaps the most important. No matter how many tropical cyclones form, it takes only one to make a life and death situation hit home with you.

The National Weather Service also has a comprehensive website covering almost everything you need to know about hurricane preparedness.

With hurricane season starting, both NOAA and FEMA are without anyone at the helm. That should be very worrisome to all of us.

Summer heat is settling in over many areas of the Northern Hemisphere. Here’s some very important summer weather safety information from the National Weather Service. As with all weather hazards, a little preparation goes a long way. This not only covers summer heat, but severe weather, air pollution, and pet safety.

Summer is also in full gear for Scandinavia in spite of the fact that parts of Sweden got snowfall in June. Truth be known, this is not unusual for their climate.

Based on NOAA data for May 2017, carbon dioxide set another record on our planet…and we’ve no one to blame but ourselves.

PUBLIC POLICY

Here’s a statement from the European Union Climate Action and Energy Commissioner on the USA’s announcement to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. “Today is a sad day for the global community, as a key partner turns its back on the fight against climate change. The EU deeply regrets the unilateral decision by the Trump administration to withdraw the US from the Paris Agreement.

Many scientists, including meteorologists and climatologists, had plenty to say regarding the decision of the Trump administration to withdraw from the Paris Agreement.

The inimitable Chuck Doswell has shared his own views on this event and, in his own unique style, has written a spot-on essay.

For any country to leave the Paris Climate Accord is to take on the responsibility and burden of increasing the risk to their county’s public health…both physical and mental.

The Atlantic published this story on 9 May 2017 regarding the EPA’s dismissal of half its scientific board. It’s hard to not believe that it could be related (i.e. preparation) for the Trump administration, specifically EPA head Scott Pruitt, to break the USA’s commitment to the Paris Agreement.

This rejection of the Paris Agreement could have handed climate change deniers a very small “victory” that will only be sweet in a most temporary manner.

On the change that there’s a bright side to this unfortunate political gaffe, it’s the fact that other countries as well as USA states and cities can carry on their vows to meet our Paris commitment.

If Trumps climate speech of 1 June 2017 seemed FUBAR to you in regards to facts, you’re not alone.

““A lot of people portray evangelicals as anti-science. Evangelicals accept a lot of science, just not the parts that conflict their faith.” As a life-long resident of the bible belt, I can assure you that this is true. Cherry-picking is the modus operandi for evangelicals…and climate change is no exception.

Last but not least, this is always worth re-sharing…

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

Cheers!

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

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

Tornado Quest on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tornadoquest

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

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2017 Tornado Quest, LLC

 

Tornado Quest Science Links Of The Week In Review For May 15 – 22, 2017

Greetings to all! I hope the weather is to your liking wherever you are! It’s been a very busy week across much of the USA plains states this past week with several days of severe thunderstorms and tornadoes. The beginning of the Atlantic hurricane season is also right around the corner. If you live in a hurricane prone region, this is the ideal time of year to prepare for the storm that we hope you won’t see. This week’s post is a bit on the brief side due to several active days of severe weather but still has plenty of topics of interest…so let’s get started.

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

CITIZEN SCIENCE

Frequently, I will get inquiries as to how people can get involved in citizen science. SciStarter is a great place to begin with something for everyone.

SCIENCE EDUCATION

An interesting read on focusing on the “bigger picture” instead of minutiae details in improving STEM student learning and comprehension.

For science teachers, here’s a very good read from meteorologist Dan Satterfield with a very nice Teacher’s Guide To Climate Change. The link in the article will take you to a FREE copy of the guide.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

Fortunately no seeds were lost, but the irreplaceable stronghold of the world’s seeds was flooded by conditions attributed to climate change.

If you need some “eye candy,” look no further than the amazing planet we live on. Here’s a gallery of fifty-one amazing images of our humble home.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

With the North American severe weather season in full swing and the hurricane season just around the corner, now’s the time to double check your NOAA weather radio to make sure it’s in proper working order and, among other preparations, make a good emergency communication plan. If you’re wondering about the NOAA weather radio coverage for your area, check out this map for more information.

Are “High Risk” areas in Storm Prediction Center outlooks becoming more common? Actually, no…but the forecasting is becoming far more accurate.

What are the calendar dates with the most and fewest tornadoes? US Tornadoes takes a look at some very interesting tornado data.

Less than a year after previous one, the Pacific Ocean is possibly going with another El Niño event.

Globally, April 2017 was the second highest for the month of April going back to 1880. The 2017 year-to-date global temperature was also the second warmest on record.

The World Meteorological Organization has compiled a list of world records for the highest reported historical death tolls from hail storms, tornadoes, lightning, tropical cyclones.

Check out these amazing views of thunderstorms captured by a pilot. You don’t get views like this on every flight.

Having been a storm chaser since March, 1982, I have seen the avocation turn from a small community of perhaps 200 nationwide to a free-for-all circus. This article on the chaser traffic jam (and traffic jam is being much too polite) is a good starting point on addressing the challenges.

PUBLIC POLICY

The uncertainty of this scenario is exceptionally disturbing. Considering the current political trends in the USA, it should come as no surprise. “Will The Government Help Farmers Adapt To A Changing Climate?

There were impressive numbers for world-wide attendance on the April 2017 March For Science.


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

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Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2017 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Week In Review For April 8 – 16, 2017

Greeting’s to everyone! If you’re celebrating the holiday weekend, I hope it’s a good one. For those not celebrating, I hope your spring/autumn is going as well as possible. Here in the USA, the severe weather season is in full swing this week with several days of challenging forecasts. Also, don’t forget the March For Science is coming up on 22 April 2017! This week’s post will be a bit on the brief side due to a developing severe weather setup…so let’s get started.

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

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

A disconcerting privacy read. In the process of trying to guard privacy rights, some people are trying to “trash their tracks.” Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. Polluting your web history won’t keep you from having your rights violated by nefarious opportunists.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

Here’s a good read on spring-time citizen science projects from SciStarter! Why sit on the sidelines when you can take part? Citizen scientists add valuable data to research projects that, in most situations, would be difficult to obtain.

Citizen science and weather go hand-in-hand exceptionally well! Here are four ways you can enjoy citizen science get involved and contribute valuable weather and climate data to data bases and research!

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLE ENERGY

It seems as if wind energy gets less expensive month by month…and that’s some very good news!

The drought in California may by “officially” over, but it’s best to not think it won’t happen again.

Speaking of California, here’s some very good renewables news. On one day in March, 2017, California got fifty percent of it’s electricity from solar power.

NASA has a new Night Light Map that shows patterns of human settlement across our humble home.

Challenging times ahead for the EPA. With air quality in the USA still problematic, the health of millions is at stake.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

If this past winter seemed short for much of North America, you weren’t imagining things. For the southwestern USA states in particular, spring is coming earlier every year.

This is the kind of record breaking data that doesn’t bring about smiles. We’ve yet another record breaking month for low Arctic sea ice.

Here’s a very informative Science Friday interview with climate scientist Michael Mann on his recent House Committee on Science, Space, & Technology hearing testimony.

Time is running short. “We Must Reach Peak Carbon Emissions By 2020, Says Former UN Climate Chief.

Weather balloons carry instrument packages that supply invaluable data for forecasting and observations. Check out this video of a weather balloon exploding at 100,000 feet!

The Heartland Institute is at it again…this time will a well oiled PR campaign based on unfounded accusations sans evidence.

PUBLIC POLICY

NASA continues to be the target of budget cuts that, in the long run, will mean the demise of valuable data that benefits us all.

Now that former Oklahoma AG Scott Pruitt is running the USA’s EPA, some climate change denialists are bemoaning that, “he won’t fight.”

While on that topic, the train wreck continues. “Scott Pruitt Calls For An ‘Exit’ From The Paris Accord, Sharpening The Trump White House’s Climate Rift.”

Last but definitely not least, don’t forget the March For Science is only days away on 22 April 2017! Currently, there are over 500 satellite marches that will be taking place the world over!

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

Cheers!

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

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

Tornado Quest on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tornadoquest

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

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2017 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Week In Review For March 12 – 19, 2017

Greetings to everyone! All across most of North American, spring is in full swing much earlier than usual. The severe weather season has also kicked into gear and the peak of the season (by climate data) is still well over two months away. There’s plenty to cover this week, so let’s get started.

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

SEVERE WEATHER SAFETY

This week’s severe weather safety link is the Tornado Safety page from the Storm Prediction Center’s Roger Edwards. The page starts out with a very appropriate and true warning: There is no such thing as guaranteed safety inside a tornado. Freak accidents happen; and the most violent tornadoes can level and blow away almost any house and its occupants. Extremely violent EF5 tornadoes are very rare, though. Most tornadoes are actually much weaker and can be survived using these safety ideas.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

A up-to-date list of citizen science projects is always available from the folks at SciStarter. The City Nature Challenge is just one of many taking place in several USA cities. I’ve been a long-time participant in the CoCoRaHS rain, hail, and snow network. By participating, you will provide meteorologists with valuable precipitation measurements. The CoCoRaHS network also has a free app where you can send in your daily reports…even if you don’t get any precipitation at all!

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

For those of you familiar with the Scandinavian countries, it should come as no surprise that the World Health Organization (WHO) says that Stockholm is one of the cleanest capital cities on the planet.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

The recent snowstorm in the northeastern parts of the USA has brought more than snow. The usual cries of “foul” are not going unnoticed. Unfortunately, they’re not coming from a segment of the population that understands the daunting task of forecasting winter weather. Here are some badly needed answers from those who know.

Now that spring has arrived in the Northern Hemisphere, NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center has put together their Spring 2017 Outlook and these two maps that hint at a warmer-than-usual spring for much of the contiguous USA. As for precipitation, there are equal chances (EC) that much of the country experiencing drought will or will not get any relief.

For #WorldMetDay on 23 March 2017, the World Meteorological Organization has new cloud identification charts!

The new charts cover low, middle, and high level clouds as well as other general cloud information and are available in several languages.

Weather satellites are as essential to the atmospheric sciences as x-rays and CT scans are to the medical profession. Science Friday recently spoke with some folks from NOAA on the current and future nature of weather satellites. Do weather satellites need a repairman? What does the future hold for NOAA’s satellites?

For those who have taken part in a NWS Skywarn storm spotting course, you’ll find some valuable information in this video from storm chaser Skip Talbot called “Storm Spotting Secrets.” Please pay attention to the caution at the beginning of the video. This is NOT a replacement for a NWS Skywarn spotter training course. After having been a storm chaser since March, 1982, I can honestly say that almost every storm environment is different, nature always has the upper hand, and what will get you in trouble is either (1.) the danger that blindsides you that you never see coming or (2.) pushing the safety envelope in order to have more “extreme” videos and/or photographs. Many supercell thunderstorms can intensify at an almost incomprehensible rate and you may not have time to react in a safe and rational matter.

SCIENCE AND PUBLIC POLICY

Good for them. Let’s hope the more join the ranks. “In Challenge To Trump, 17 Republicans Join Fight Against Global Warming.”

A sobering read about the current state of Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) affairs. “A Guide To The EPA Data Under Threat By The Trump Administration.”

The recent proposed “skinny budget” is a very real threat to the EPA, NOAA, NASA, and more. It also potentially puts the general public at risk.

Speaking of budget, if the current USA presidential administration cuts climate science funding, the ramifications could severely hurt the UK’s climate scientists ability to do research. With NOAA in the crosshairs, this isn’t a matter to be taken lightly. Ginned up hype? Contrary to some who are on the defensive, no…this isn’t.

Although science funding makes up only about 1% of the annual USA’s federal budget, much of the future of climate science research funding is in jeopardy.

A very intriguing read. The USA’s new defense secretary cites climate change as a national security issue.

Unfortunate yet somehow not surprising. “Financial officials from the world’s biggest economies have dropped from a joint statement any mention of financing action on climate change, reportedly following pressure from the US and Saudi Arabia.”

THE QUIXOTIC

This is one of those headlines that leaves you a bit gobsmacked. “Climate Change Denier Jim Inhofe Says EPA Is ‘Brainwashing’ Out Children.”

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

Cheers!

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

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Copyright © 1998 – 2017 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Week In Review For February 11 – 18, 2017

Greetings to everyone! If it’s winter in your location, you’re probably wondering if we went directly from autumn to early spring. In spite of some heavy snowfalls in the Northeastern USA states, most of the USA and Canada is in the midst of a very mild winter. For many folks, it feels as if spring has already arrived. Speaking of spring, Skywarn spotter training classes are underway across the USA in preparation for the coming severe weather season. And, as expected, science and public policy is front and center again…and will be for some time. On that note, let’s get started.

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

SCIENCE AND PUBLIC POLICY

A reminder from January’s archives…the reasons behind the March for Science scheduled for 22 April 2017.

Scott Pruitt was confirmed as the head of the USA’s Environmental Protection Agency. Here’s a concise overview of what that means for the environment. On a personal note, those of us who live in Oklahoma and have serious concerns for our environment are very familiar with Pruitt’s past. There are daunting challenges ahead for the EPA.

The latest news for this week has focused on the impending dangers to the USA’s Environmental Protection Agency.

NASA’s valuable work and research on climate change may be facing significant peril or be altogether obliterated.

TECHNOLOGY

Before it disappears permanently, some ambitious and diehard coders are working non-stop to rescue climate science data.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

Would you like to help NASA searching for possible undiscovered worlds in the outer reaches of our solar system and in neighboring interstellar space? If so, here are the details!

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

Some amazing astronomical eye candy was captured recently in Sweden…and it’s quite a sight.

Recent research into the surface of Mars hints strongly at the presence of water in the not-so-distant past.

Our sun is an amazing star. It also produces very unusual bursts of radiation. NASA now knows why.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLES

An excellent read on the current state and future growth of renewable energy sources and the inevitable demise of fossil fuels.

Fifty years of environmental protections and a host of earth-friendly pledges are in dire danger of being wiped off the planet by the USA’s current presidential administration.

At the state level, the USA’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is under yet another threat from Florida lawmakers.

Bakersfield, CA has what is likely the worst air quality of any USA city. With the potential demise of the Environmental Protection Agency and/or regulations, Bakersfield’s air could be on track to get worse.

In some cities, residents are cautioned to take great care when an air pollution alert is issued. Safety tips for air pollution can be just as important as precautions taken for severe weather.

Here’s some good renewables news. “Wind Briefly Sets Record As Source For Electricity In USA.”

At Texas A&M, the first glow-in-the-dark bike lanes in the USA have been painted. Let’s hope these catch on in as many states as possible.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Based on NOAA and NASA data, January, 2017 was the third warmest on record globally. Here’s a look at global climate anomalies for January, 2017.

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Speaking of a warm winter, if February seems warm, you’re not imagining things. For the contiguous USA, it’s averaged five degrees above normal.

With the peak of North American’s severe weather season fast approaching, now’s the time to get your emergency kit in order.

According to new research and a newly developed a mathematical equation, people are causing the climate to change 170 times faster than natural forces.

Take a look at NASA’s campaign (which is a world-wide first) to make detailed maps of all the oceans and glaciers around Greenland’s coastline.

In a continent used to very hot weather, even this Australian heat wave is making the most jaded residents take notice. “The heat wave down under is unusual even for Australia – but it may not be so for much longer. The country is in the grip of one of the most ferocious heatwaves on record, and climate change is being held accountable.”

What Do Gorilla Suits and Blowfish Fallacies Have to Do With Climate Change?” Plenty. You’ll find out why in this excellent read on human behavior and the attitudes towards climate science.

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!


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

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

Tornado Quest on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tornadoquest

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Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2017 Tornado Quest, LLC

Tornado Quest Science Week In Review for February 4 – 11, 2017

Happy weekend everyone! February is moving along just fine with a major heat wave in Australia, significant snowstorms in the northeastern USA states and parts of eastern Europe, and an exceptionally warm winter day in the American southern plains. As of late, I’ve had several inquiries regarding storm spotter training. Across the USA, National Weather Service offices are having their Skywarn spotter training classes. Please check with your local National Weather Service office to see when training is scheduled in your area. This training is imperative to have if you’re to be an effective spotter. Also keep in mind that this is a commitment to your local community. Safety, for the public and yourself, is a non-negotiable priority and the purpose of storm spotting. Sensationalism, hyperbole, and fifteen minutes of fame on social media isn’t.

In other topics, public policy is now a permanent part of the sciences. It actually always has been but, in the interest of neutrality, many scientists have avoided it in spite of their frustrations. For reasons that are painfully obvious, scientists and citizen scientists are now in the politics business. Lock and load…we’re in for several years of a wild ride.

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

SCIENCE AND PUBLIC POLICY

The USA can’t afford to take part in any international or national cuts in science funding. Any attempts at such action would set us back many years.

Oklahoman’s are more than a little familiar with the new head of the USA’s Environmental Protection Agency and what he is capable of. The agency’s regulatory authority is in peril.

After what seems like a millennium of playing the apolitical “neutral” game, scientists are finally taking a stance politically…and none too soon.

A very thought provoking look at women in scientific research. The most startling statistic: only twenty-eight percent of researchers are women.

This young lady has the kind of fearless chutzpah that you can’t help but admire. “Congressman is righteously booed after dodging a young girl’s simple question about science.”

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

Twitter is finally putting some teeth and anti-harassment  into their policy toward trolls.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

This could also be posted under Atmospheric Science, but due to the potential use by citizen scientists, I’ve posted it here…and it’s very cool too. You can now post mPING reports from your RadarScope app! If you’re a citizen scientist, weather geek, nature enthusiast, or have any kind of interest in the weather and climate, RadarScope is the best mobile device weather radar app available.

GEOGRAPHY

A fascinating look at seven maps that will certainly alter the way you look at the countries around the world.

GEOLOGICAL SCIENCE

Considering the impending changes in the current administration, I doubt seriously this will come to fruition. We can only hope that somehow the EPA is still allowed to tell Oklahoma regulators to do more to protect the state from a surge in earthquake activity linked to the underground disposal of oil & gas wastewater.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLES

Here’s some good news from Europe. Approximately ninety percent of new power is from renewable energy sources. The caveat is what will happen after the year 2020.

Fortunately, there’s more good renewables  news this week. “Wind power is making a comeback. One of the earliest energy sources to be harnessed by mankind has now overtaken coal-fired generation in Europe and hydroelectric dams in the U.S.”

Air pollution can kill. You only have to look at the recent horrid conditions across much of China to see the life-threatening effects.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

As I mentioned earlier, it’s time for Skywarn spotter training. With the peak of severe weather season rapidly approaching, it’s time for training.

A much warmer than usual winter for the Arctic is still going full steam. That’s not a little disconcerting.

Here’s a very detailed view of drought conditions across the contiguous USA. For the first time since March, 2011, there are no areas in the USA that are experiencing “exceptional” drought conditions.

In other parts of the world, floods and erosion are problematic. Many of Britain’s significant sites are in critical danger of permanent alteration.

An enlightening read on how the new climate change denial is just like the old-school denial…just a touch of different rhetoric.

One of the more unfortunate stories this week concerns false information that claims the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) falsified climate data. Here’s Carbon Brief’s excellent article on this matter as well as a good read from the New York Times.

I couldn’t have said this better myself. “Climate change has long been the target of so-called fake news and its researchers can offer lessons for the wider society in how to handle deliberate misinformation.” Considering the overabundance of information that many people find difficult to sift through, a concerted effort to help the public discern scientific news conveyed by truth-seeking scientists from sub par propaganda from the interloping riff-raff is badly needed.

The United States isn’t the only country where climate change and policy is being ravaged in terms of short-term profits. Australia has an equally hostile climate as well. Myopic, vested interests have climate science squarely in their cross-hairs.

Last but certainly not least, here’s another reminder of the March for Science which will be taking place in Washington, D. C. and many, many other cities around the globe on Earth Day, 22 April 2017. For more information, please visit the March For Science website for details and how you can participate. One particularly interesting take on the even comes from Forbes magazine. “The March For Science In Washington Is Political Whether You Like It Or Not.”

march-for-science2

And that will be 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 ride!

Cheers!


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

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

Tornado Quest on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tornadoquest

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

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

Copyright © 1998 – 2017 Tornado Quest, LLC

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