Tag Archives: mPING

Severe Weather Safety Links To Keep You And Your Family Safe. #WeatherReady (Updated 7 April 2017)

For Monday, April 3, 2017, the Storm Prediction Center is forecasting numerous severe storms across parts of several southern states. The climatological peak of activity isn’t until May…so we’ve several more weeks of active severe weather episodes that may, or may not, materialize. Regardless, best to be prepared. I hope these links are of assistance to you.

SEVERE WEATHER SAFETY AND PREPAREDNESS

SEVERE WEATHER INFORMATION

One caveat about this category. The two links for the SPC and NWS are excellent sources and the starting point for everyone’s information. As for local broadcast meteorologists, I can only suggest that you watch those which are to your liking…which is extremely subjective…and therefore in the interest of fairness and objectivity, I have no recommendations.

INFOGRAPHICS

From the Storm Prediction Center (SPC), a concise explanation of risk categories. (Graphic courtesy SPC)

Do you know the difference between a WATCH and a WARNING? (Graphic courtesy NWS Amarillo, TX)

When a Severe Thunderstorm Warning is issued, there is specific criteria that a thunderstorm must meet to be considered severe. You should be aware of those criteria and recognize them if you see them and what safety precautions to take. (Graphic courtesy NWS Birmingham, AL)

Your mobile device can save your life. Make sure your phones, tablets, et al. are charged at all times. (Graphic courtesy NOAA)

CITIZEN SCIENCE: CONTRIBUTING TO DATA BASES AND RESEARCH DURING/AFTER THE STORM

  • CoCoRaHS: “”Volunteers working together to measure precipitation across the nations.”
  • mPING: “Weather radars cannot “see” at the ground, so mPING reports are used by the NOAA National Weather Service to fine-tune their forecasts. NSSL uses the data in a variety of ways, including to develop new radar and forecasting technologies and techniques.”

Last but not least on the list of links is one that I know pertains to not a few people…a phobia of thunderstorms, tornadoes, lightning and thunder. It may be no consolation, but I have two bits of encouragement for anyone who suffers with these challenges.

  1. The first three (thunderstorms, tornadoes, and lightning) are obvious hazards, but thunder is harmless. It’s merely the air reacting to the sudden heating caused by the extremely hot lightning bolt. If you’ve ever experienced a static electric shock and heard a small “pop” sound, it’s basically the same thing, only on a larger scale. So let the thunder roar. It is what causes the thunder that you need to be wary of.
  2. Consider where you live or will be during a severe thunderstorm. The chances of the very spot you are in getting the worst of the storm are actually rather small. Let’s say you live in a 2,000 square foot home and a severe thunderstorm warning has been issued for your area. The odds of the highest winds, largest hail, and perhaps flash flooding blasting the structure you’re in is quite small. On a map, you’re a mere speck that is barely seen without a magnifying glass. Let’s take it up a notch a bit an consider tornadoes. In spite of what you see on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, the local or national news, etc., tornadoes are an exceptionally rare event. Most tornadoes are also in the EF-0 or EF-1 category with maximum winds of perhaps 110 m.p.h. at peak intensity. Most frame homes and commercial buildings will easily sustain a direct hit from a tornado of this strength. Yes, it’ll leave a mess but if you read the safety rules above and take proper precautions, you’ll be fine. Scared? Yes. That’s normal. Our limbic system in our brain (aka fight or flight) is a wonderful part of hundreds of millions of years of evolution that has evolved to give us adrenaline, increased heart rate and respiration, and a host of other reactions that are there for our benefit. Bottom line: have a disaster/severe weather preparedness kit assembled and at-the-ready year round, know what to do in a severe thunderstorm or tornado warning, avoid any lightning dangers, don’t drive or go into flash flooding areas, keep abreast of weather updates with a NOAA weather radio, your mobile device, and/or the broadcast meteorologists of your choice, and you’ll be just fine. Knowledge is power…and you’ll feel more powerful and less fearful with an increased knowledge of storms and what to do when a watch and warning is issued for your location.

Finally…one last word…

Please keep in mind that only NOAA weather radio, your local National Weather Service office, or reliable media are the best sources of important, timely, and potentially life-saving weather information, watches, and warnings! None of the links on this page should be used for life-&-death decisions or the protection of property!

Stay weather aware…and stay safe!

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 And More For July 19 – 29, 2016

Greetings everybody! I hope everyone’s having a good week and, if you’re dealing with the heat wave covering a good portion of North America, you’re staying cool and comfortable. For much of the USA, drought conditions are spreading and even include many northeastern states. For folks into citizen science, there’s news regarding the mPING app. And, as usual, there’s plenty of climate data to keep up with…so let’s get started.

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

CITIZEN SCIENCE

If you’re using an older version of the mPING app, please update so your important weather reports will work with the updated database. If you’re not familiar with mPING, it’s a great way for citizen scientists to report weather events to the National Severe Storms Laboratory to help with their research. The mPING app is free, takes up very little space on your smart phone, and is available for both iOS and Android.

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

Twitter finally dealt a blow to one if it’s most offensive users. Let’s hope this isn’t a one-time publicity stunt.

Twitter is also regrouping in an effort to attract new users in order to, “help people to understand that Twitter isn’t really a Facebook-like social network where you connect with friends and family (thank goodness for that!) nor a place where you have to show up and tweet every day.” For severe weather information, Twitter is “hands-down” the best social media platform to receive severe weather watch and warning information…so long as you follow official media and National Weather Service accounts.

Trolls are an ever-present irritant in the online world, but there are ways to soundly destroy them…and it’s not that difficult.

An incredible technology and aeronautical achievement has just been completed. A solar-powered aircraft had circled the globe!

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

An excellent read on why we need to remember the Apollo moon landings.

The red spot storm on Jupiter has been observed for hundreds of years. The air in its thunderstorms boil at temperatures of of at least 2400°F (1300°C).

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

Now that the DSCOVR satellite has been orbiting the Earth for over a year, its EPIC camera has finally captured enough images for a year-long time-lapse video of our home.

Thanks to climate change, wildfires in the USA have burned over 2.6 million acres so far this year…and there’s more to come.

California isn’t the only state in the US that is currently ravaged by drought. The northeastern states are in the grips of dry conditions as well.

A novel idea that’s worth looking into. If you’ve got an overabundance of CO2, get more giant trees.

For those who have the daunting task for forecasting flood events, climate change just changed the rules they must play by.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

We all need weather forecasts available on our mobile devices. The National Weather Service has you covered for your summer vacation…and year round.

Weather Ready Graphic

An excellent read by Dr. Marshall Shepherd. “Do You (Or Your Meteorologist) Understand What 40% Chance Of Rain Means?”

For the next three months (August, September, and October, 2016), NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center’s outlook is for above average temperatures for the contiguous forty-eight states and Alaska.

We’re only in late July and, according to data from NOAA and NASA, 2016 is already shaping up to be another record-breaking year for global temperatures.

With 2016 shaping up to be another record-breaking year for global temperatures, here’s an important look at many USA cities which are bound to set records of their own.

A new NASA-led study finds that almost one-fifth of the global warming that has occurred in the past 150 years has been missed by historical records due to quirks in how global temperatures were recorded.

A very informative read on how climate models are accurately predicting ocean and global warming.

Part health, part weather…a good read on keeping the human body cool during a heat wave. Your life could depend on it.

While on the topic of heat and the human body, here’s a comprehensive list of seven misconceptions about heat and humidity. Chances are you believe in some of them.

An interesting map of the climate worries that are (most likely) in the USA’s public mind…state-by-state.

An interesting read on one of the more enigmatic lightning related phenomenons in meteorology: ball lightning.

Yet another media-hype unscientific term has infiltrated itself into mass media and the colloquial dictionary. Welcome to the “heat dome.”

Finally, a look at the best arguments that climate change denialists can devise. From the article, “These are the publishing climate scientists who argue that something other than humans is responsible for the majority of global warming, although their explanations are often contradictory and don’t withstand scientific scrutiny.” The flat-earth society is still alive and well.

That’s a wrap for this post!

One last note; due to ongoing commitments to many other projects, this blog post will now be published on Friday. I’d also like to welcome my new followers in social media. I’m glad you’re along for the fun! All of Tornado Quest’s social media links can be found below.

Cheers!

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Tornado Quest Science Links And Much More For January 18 – 25, 2016

For much of the eastern USA, it’s been a very interesting week. A major snowstorm with blizzard conditions effected many states from the Mid-Mississippi valley to the Mid-Atlantic and northeastern states. When the going gets rough, you might as well have fun! On that note, let’s get started.

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

CITIZEN SCIENCE

Good news for citizen science folks into weather! The free mPING weather app is now global! Your important reports help with weather research. Check out the details here!

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

Astronomers are checking into the possibility of a “planet nine” in our solar system.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

Do the safety impacts of using ice during a winter storm outweigh the negative long-term environmental impacts?

Scientists say that plastic may best define our current period within the Anthropocene. I’m inclined to agree.

The air quality of the UK has, as of late, taken on lethal proportions.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

A spot on read on the climate change denier’s histrionics that rear their sophomoric heads during events like the USA’s recent snow event.

Based on NOAA and NASA data, 2015 was the hottest year on record. Will 2016 follow suit?

Millions of people across the USA are dealing with the aftermath of a massive snowstorm. Just how do all of those snowflakes form?

El Nino may bring welcome rains to drought plagued California, but it’s a mere drop in the bucket.

With the recent snowstorm/blizzard fresh in the minds (and everything else) of millions of folks in the eastern USA, I’d like to once again pass along some winter weather safety information that I hope you’ll find helpful.

Last but not least, some friendly advice. Always rely on trusted and official sources of weather information year round regardless of where you live. Obviously this includes NOAA’s National Weather Service but also should include the national an/or local broadcast meteorologists of your choice. It would behoove you to avoid the social media fear mongers, “hypesters”, and armchair meteorologists (often referred to as media-rologists since the growth of their social media is more important than timely and accurate information). The squeaky wheels get the grease and, unfortunately, it all too often isn’t official weather sources of potentially life-saving information. My opinion on this isn’t popular for the obvious reasons, but I stand by every word and feel it is very sound.

On that note, that’s a wrap for this post! A hearty “Welcome” to my new followers in social media. I’m glad you’re along for the fun and flattered that you’ve chosen to follow me.

Cheers!

 

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Tornado Quest Science Links And Much More For September 30 – October 7, 2015

Two big stories have dominated the North American weather news this week. The first event is Hurricane Joaquin which, as of this post, is still an ongoing event. Joaquin peaked in intensity on 3 October 2015 when it briefly reached maximum sustained winds just under the Category 5 threshold making it the most intense tropical cyclone of the Atlantic 2015 season to date. The other big story, which could have been made worse if Joaquin had made landfall on the eastern USA coast, is the historic flooding in North and South Carolina. The Charleston, South Carolina region was hit particularly hard. While flooding often doesn’t appear as “devastating” as substantial wind damage, it can be just as (if not more) deadly and force residents into years of recovery and rebuilding. One only has to look at areas of New Orleans, Louisiana to see this. Some areas of the “Big Easy” have yet to recover a full decade after Katrina slammed ashore in 2005. The deadliest natural disaster in the history of Tulsa, Oklahoma is not a tornado, but the Memorial Day flash flooding event of May, 1984 in which 14 fatalities occurred. Flooding kills more people every year than all other weather related phenomenon combined. Unfortunately, its dangers are highly underrated by much of the general public until they meet it head on. Only then does the stark realization occur that floods can be just as devastating to life and property as a major hurricane or violent tornado. On the brighter side, this week is the National Weather Service’s “Did You Know” week which is going on to help inform the general public about the many facets and benefits the NWS provides to our quality of life. You’ll likely see many posts on Twitter from your local NWS office with the hashtag #NWSDYK.

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

CITIZEN SCIENCE

An excellent essay on the benefits of citizen science. “Science Of The People, By The People, And For The People.”

A reminder to download the free mPING weather app you can use year round regardless of where you live and contribute to weather research. “The NOAA National Severe Storms Laboratory is collecting public weather reports through a free app available for smart phones or mobile devices. The app is called “mPING,” for Meteorological Phenomena Identification Near the Ground.” This app also has a very, very small “footprint” so it won’t be gobbling up a ton of space on your smart phone.

If you’re into citizen science and astronomy, you need to check out this new collaboration.

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

New high-resolution photos of Pluto’s moon Charon show that it’s so ugly, it’s positively beautiful.

NASA has just released over 8,400 Apollo moon mission photos online…and they are spectacular.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RECYCLING/RENEWABLES

Perhaps the most cynical and imprimatur hyperbole on recycling I’ve ever read. “The Reign of Recycling.” When short-term profits supersede long-term environmental benefits, we’ve made no progress…and the author and New York Times have no problem with condoning such irresponsibility. Fortunately here’s a spot-on rebuttal that slays the arguments put forth in the NYT article.

Robots could (and should) make sorting recycling materials safer.

Indoor air quality is just as important as the air we breathe outside. Here’s some handy tips on how to improve indoor air quality on a budget.

The USA is gaining ground in the use of renewable energy but in some respects, has a great deal of catching up to do.

There’s a surprisingly cold “blob” of water in the north Atlantic. What’s causing that?

It happened once, it  can happen again. “Scientists say an ancient mega-tsunami hurled boulders nearly as high as the Eiffel Tower.”

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

If you’ve not checked out the National Weather Service’s Enhanced Data Display, you should take a peek. It’s a fantastic source of weather information for the general public, pilots, emergency managers, and more.

NOAA’s Environmental Visualization Laboratory has a very cool way to view weather conditions worldwide in an interactive site that’s well worth checking out.

This article, written early in the life cycle of Hurricane Joaquin, poignantly expresses the frustrating forecasting scenarios that so often plague meteorologists.

During Hurricane Joaquin’s early stages, the European forecast model was more accurate at one stage than the American model. What does that mean for weather forecasting?

What caused the recent record-setting rainfall in South Carolina? Here’s a nice overview that explains everything you need to know.

My fellow weather geeks will enjoy this NPR story. “What’s At The Edge Of A Cloud?”

Fortunately, there’s a reason or two for feeling optimistic about the upcoming Paris climate change summit.

While some recent documented gains in Antarctic ice may offset losses, there’s no reason to celebrate. The deniers will likely jump on this story, but their own workplace climate is changing.

There’s no “grey’s” or uncertainties about this. “No Doubt About it: People Who Mislead The Public About Climate Change Are Deniers.”

Speaking of melting ice and glaciers, the Mont Blanc glacier in the French alps isn’t what it used to be and is France’s most visible symbol of climate change.

The high price of reckless disregard for solid climate science. “The Cost Of Doing Nothing Hit $400 Trillion.”

THE QUIXOTIC

When public servants run out of constructive projects to benefit society and the quality of life, they do what they do best…especially if they’re threatened by science. Start a witch-hunt.

That’s a wrap for this post!

A quick “Thank You” and “Welcome” to my new followers on social media. It’s nice to have you here. I’m in this for the long haul, so the fun is just getting started.

Cheers!

Tornado Quest on Instagram

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@gmail.com

 

 

 

Tornado Quest Science Links And Much, Much More For May 5 – 12, 2015

The last day of an active severe weather episode is underway as of this post with tornado and severe thunderstorm watches in effect for parts of the Great Lakes and Ohio valley region. The focus of most of the week’s severe weather has been across the central and southern plains. If you’d like to review some of the data from past severe weather events, visit the Storm Prediction Center’s Severe Weather Events Archive. It’s a treasure trove of information that can prove helpful in many regards, especially for those interested in using past events and their relation to forecasting techniques. It’s also been a very long week for me…so this will be a very short post. Still, there are several items I’d like to share with you.

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

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

How often should you post on social media? It depends on what you’re using. The most important “A-#1” rule to remember is…quality over quantity.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

Check out iSeeChange… a crowdsourced citizen science journal of community submitted local weather and environment observations.

A reminder for you to download the mPING app for your iOS or Android smart phone. It’s a very small app, won’t take a lot of space, and will help weather research with your real-time reports!

Has Wyoming criminalized citizen science? Certainly seems suspiciously malevolent to me.

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

“Using the Hubble Space Telescope, researchers have observed a gas clump in the early stages of its gravitational collapse for the first time.”

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/SUSTAINABILITY

There’s a reason I never use incandescent bulbs unless absolutely necessary. “The Shocking Truth About LED lights.”

The western drought hasn’t spared Arizona from the same kind of water woes California is facing.

Starbucks is going to stop selling bottled water in drought-ravaged California.

The western drought isn’t only bringing problems related to water, the coming “fire season” is expected to be difficult as well.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

With the addition of the Marginal and Enhanced SPC risk categories, I’m often asked what is the meaning behind it all. Fortunately, the folks at SPC have this handy graphic.

A very interesting read on weather forecasters, specifically those in broadcast media, and changing attitudes toward climate change.

A very tough job indeed. “Two Guys In Paris Aim To Charm The World Into Climate Action.”

Being a geoscientist can be very hazardous work. Unfortunately, two scientists recently lost their lives while studying climate change.

It’s becoming increasingly difficult to access research stations in Antarctica due to sea ice which is increasing due to a variety of reasons.

Thanks to Hadley Cells, we can take a look at an interesting map that averaged cloud cover over our planet for the past thirteen years.

This past week was the 110th anniversary of the Snyder, OK tornado…one of the top 20 deadliest tornadoes in USA history. The death toll of 97 is approximate since there is no data on exactly how many people were killed. One of the more sobering images is the mass grave containing more than thirty unidentified fatalities from the tornado.

A QUICK NOTE TO MY NEW FOLLOWERS…

I’d like to extend a sincere “Welcome!” to my new followers! I’m glad you’re along for the fun! There are some cool things in the works for Tornado Quest over the next few months. Like all good things, it takes time and finding the right people for the right job. If you’re new to Tornado Quest, don’t let the name fool you. I purposefully explore and share a wide spectrum of earth science information, specifically geoscience, environmental, and atmospheric science topics. There’s always something interesting going on with this amazingly complex planet we live on. To focus only on storm chasing and specifically tornadoes, really misses the point. As one of my meteorological mentors told me in the spring of 1984, “All weather is interesting. There’s something fascinating going on every day. If someone can’t grasp that and tornadoes are all they’re interested in, well…they’ve no business being a part of this science.” He couldn’t have been more correct.

That’s a wrap for this post! See you folks again soon!

Cheers!

Tornado Quest Science Links And Much More For Jan. 19 – 26, 2015

There’s been a wide variety of topics across many fields of science that have been of interest to many folks this past week. As is often the case as of late, most center on climate issues. A few encouraging stories on the renewable energy front have also been of great interest. As for the current winter across North America, much of the TX panhandle and NM saw significant snowfall as did much of the northeastern states from PA and NY into New England during a powerful storm that could put its mark into the record books. Due to some previous commitments and a bit of workload related to the ongoing blizzard in the northeastern states, this week’s post will be a bit on the brief side.

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

CITIZEN SCIENCE

If you’re riding out the big northeastern blizzard, you can help the National Severe Storms Laboratory with weather research by reporting snow, wind, etc. via the mPING app!

While you’re out in the snow, you may want to measure how deep it is. The folks at the National Weather Service in Norman, OK have put together a quick tutorial on how to measure snow correctly.

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

A “spot-on” read with some psychology, physiology, and social media blended to make a very valid point. It’s no wonder that, for those of us who see the glass as half full, the sarcastic snarks in social media are so repulsive.

A very interesting look (in images) of “The Emerging Global Web.”

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

Amateur astronomers have made some significant contributions to science…including discovering comets.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/SUSTAINABILITY/RENEWABLES

Here’s some good news on the renewables front. A large area will soon open for wind power in New England.

An interesting read on having a lawn that is greener in every sense of the word.

Check out these fantastic aerial images of our humble home. They do put things in perspective.

This gives “Bean Town” a whole new meaning! “Boston’s Got Gas As Methane Seeps From City.”

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Are you following the Twitter account of your local National Weather Service office? If not, here’s a complete list for the USA.

Not necessarily atmospheric science, but an interesting look at how Colorado keeps 9,000 miles of highway clear of snow.

East Antarctica’s largest glacier is melting…and that’s a lot of ice. A lot. Up north in Greenland, two lakes beneath the ice have disappeared.

A fascinating look at some weather history. If you think it’s bad getting through a blizzard in the 21st Century, reconsider what the folks in New York City suffered with in 1888.

Finally, in regards to the ongoing blizzard, here’s a great essay by Greg Laden. “The Great Blizzard of 2015: Fair To Say It Is AGW Amplified.”

Last but definitely not least, here’s some very important winter weather safety information for you folks who are dealing with this week’s massive snowstorm.

Stay warm and safe folks!

Cheers!

Tornado Quest Science Links For Dec. 8 – 15, 2014

It’s no secret that the big weather news this week was the storm system that brought a great deal of rainfall to the west coast and specifically to the drought ravaged parts of California. While this may have helped take the edge off the ongoing drought, it’s only temporary. In fact, in the long-term, it’s unlikely that much benefit will be seen from this event. There’s plenty more to take a look at, so let’s get started.

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

CITIZEN SCIENCE

Just a reminder of the amazing free mPING app that you can get for iOS or Android. Whether its snow, hail, or high winds, you can send in a report to the National Severe Storms Laboratory and help weather research! The mPING app, unlike many other weather apps, has a very small footprint…so it won’t gobble up a ton of space in your mobile device.

Can citizen scientists lead the way in exciting new research? You bet they can.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/SUSTAINABILITY/RECYCLING

Check out one of the most novel ideas for recycling used Christmas trees I’ve seen to date.

If plastic doesn’t have a recycling number, what should you do with it?

Aside from not taking it for granted, what did Americans learn this year from not being able to drink their water?

An interesting infographic on which countries are the most energy efficient.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

A recent Met Office study indicates heatwaves are likely “every other year” by 2030’s.

Here’s the latest State Of The Climate report from NOAA’s National Climactic Data Center. It was a chilly November for the contiguous USA, but that was a global exception.

Six thought-provoking charts on the future of climate change.

A good read on the inextricable link between our atmosphere and biosphere.

A climate change denier ≠ skeptic. In fact, nothing could be further from truth in labeling. Hence, many scientists are encouraging journalists to stop referring to deniers as skeptics.

There’s a great deal of media coverage in the aftermath of the latest UN Climate Summit. Here’s a concise overview. Unfortunately, what was agreed upon has little teeth.

Oklahoma is known for tornadoes in the spring, but December? No month is immune. Oklahoma County recorded it’s first December tornado on 12/14/14. Tulsa County has experienced December tornadoes in 1975 (Dec. 5th) and two on Christmas Eve 1982 (Dec. 24).

Speaking of tornadoes, ustornadoes.com has compiled a “top ten” list of tornado videos of 2014. Please note that this is not an endorsement of storm chasing, “extreme” or otherwise, and the inevitable dangers chasers/spotters will encounter.

Interesting read from NASA on research into thunderstorm gamma rays.

What are your chances of a white Christmas in the contiguous USA? In my neck of the woods, slim to none.

That’s a wrap for this post!

Cheers!

Tornado Quest Gee-O-Science Links For Jan. 13 – 20, 2014

A relatively quiet weather week has been on hand for most of North America save for the latest snowstorm which, as of this post, is blanketing much of the northeast with several inches of snow. As for climate, the big news of the week was NOAA’s State Of The Climate Report which reviewed 2013 and gave us no surprises for long-term climate trends…our planet is warming.

Here are this week’s links…

HISTORY OF SCIENCE

The history of science has always fascinated me and this article is no exception. Take a look at these amazing old medical illustrations.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

This could easily go under the ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE category, but I want to emphasize the importance of the citizen scientists with the mPING app from the National Severe Storms Laboratory in Norman, OK. Anyone with a iOS or Android smart phone can download the app (which is amazingly small compared to so many other apps) and year round contribute to weather research by reporting your weather conditions.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

Would I invite an environmentalist  to a party? You bet I would. But, like so many other science fields, there are unfair “stereotypes” that taint the non-scientists’ view of certain professions or fields of study.

ASTRONOMY

Smile Earthlings! You had your photo taken from a point in our solar system very near Saturn.

An amazing story that is sadly ignored. If there was anyone who deserves a follow on Twitter, it’s this astronaut.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Most of the atmospheric science community is VERY tired of hearing the polar vortex over-hype. I’d like to think the AMS has put a stake through the heart of a term that has been around for decades…and is nothing new.

A fascinating read that’s part science history, part climatology. What caused a 10-year winter starting in 536?

A great read by Brad Panovich that all aspiring and/or hobbyist meteorologists should read: Wishcasting versus Forecasting.

An interesting project is underway with NASA drones studying the western Pacific stratosphere.

Several good climate reads this week…starting with this one: Andrew Dessler’s testimony on what we know about climate change…and from Real Climate: If You See Something, Say Something.

Finally, here’s NOAA’s comprehensive State Of The Climate Report. Pour yourself a cup of your favorite beverage and settle in for a spell. There’s a lot of data to absorb here but the message is more than clear.

Have a great week everyone…

Cheers!

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