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 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.

cxjysnxweaaex4d-jpg-large

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 October 17 – 24, 2016

Greetings to one and all! I hope the weather, autumn in particular, is going your way. It’s been an unusually warm October across the Southern Plains of the USA with many areas running a rainfall deficit of up to nine inches. In the Atlantic, the tropical cyclone season is winding down. Much of the southeastern USA (North Carolina in particular) is still reeling from the effects of Hurricane Matthew. Looking to the future, NOAA has issued their outlook for the coming winter. Time will tell what comes to fruition. There’s plenty of other topics to explore, so let’s get started.

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

SCIENCE EDUCATION & PUBLIC POLICY

By an overwhelmingly large margin, there is bi-partisan support for science in the USA yet it has remained untouched among topics discussed. How can we make America scientific again?

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLE ENERGY

Articles such as this one on air quality show the irrevocable link between meteorology, environmental science, and public health. “Clean Air For Livable Cities.”

Over the last thirty years, forest fires in the western USA have seen a dramatic increase thanks in no small part to climate change.

Considering the current divisive political climate, this should come as no surprise to any of us in the USA. “U.S. Senate Could Block Landmark HFC Climate Treaty.”

Very good news on the wind power front. “Although solar power gets more press, the wind power industry is growing nearly as fast. The (GWEC) released a historic report Tuesday in Beijing, saying 20 percent of the world’s total electricity could come from wind by as early as 2030.

Here are some startling images that speak for themselves. “Industrial scars: The environmental cost of consumption.”

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

NOAA has issued its outlook for the winter of 2016-2017. The main caveat is to remember that this is an outlook and NOT a forecast. Yes, there is a difference.

outlook_map_temp_2016 outlook_map_precip_2016

Based on recent NASA data, 2016 is shaping up (from a global perspective) to be another year where long-standing climate records are broken. September, 2016 stands alone itself on world-wide records.

Top climate scientists have just under two years (until 2018) to deliver a new UN report of dangers and avoiding strategies for warming of 1.5C.

Based on World Meteorological Organization data, a “new era of climate change reality” has been reached. “In 2015, for the first time, carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere were at 400 parts per million (ppm) on average across the year as a whole, the World Meteorological Organisation’s (WMO) annual greenhouse gas bulletin reveals.”

The future to a young climate scientist can seem very daunting. Here’s an excellent Q&A with several climate scientists on their careers and the challenges they face.

A sobering read from a former US Navy meteorologist on climate change. “It’s Eroding Our National Security.”

According to the Danish Meteorological Institute, Sweden could be in for one of its coldest winters in quite some time. Long-term forecasts such as this are often a long shot and based on large-scale global weather patterns mixed with statistical data…so only time will tell if their outlook will come to fruition.

Hurricane Matthew may have been a “once in 1,000 year” event for North Carolina, USA…but it won’t take another 1,000 years for an equally bad (or worse) event like Matthew to happen again.

Just because autumn  and it’s cooler temperatures have settled in across much of the USA doesn’t mean the wildfire danger has decreased. In fact, many significant wildfire events in recent years have taken place in the fall. Wildfires are one of the greatest underrated environmental/weather hazards.

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That’s a wrap for this week! I’d like to extend a warm welcome to my new followers and a big “thank you” to my long-time friends in social media. I’m glad you’re all along for the fun!

Cheers!


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

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Tornado Quest Science Links And More For July 12 – 19, 2016

Greetings everyone! If it’s hot in your location, I hope you’re keeping cool and comfortable. Here in the southern plains of the USA, we’ve got quite a heat wave thanks to a large dome of high pressure that’s parked itself over the region. Buckle up and enjoy the ride, this is going nowhere soon. Recent trends show much of the severe weather activity is occurring in the northern plains which is the climatological norm. Before we begin, I’d like to extend a hearty “Welcome” to my new followers in social media. I’m glad you’re along for the fun! There’s plenty of interesting reads in many areas, so let’s get started.

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

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

NASA is racing to finish a new Mars rover, and the mission just got a launch and land date. The new rover will leave Earth by August 2020, and in February of 2021, it will hit the surface of the Red Planet to search for signs of life.

In this research project, the thick clouds that cover Venus are no hindrance to exploring the surface of the planet.

GEOLOGICAL SCIENCE

A bizarre yet fascinating look at what happens when lava swallows a tree.

An interesting read on how some San Andreas fault earthquakes in the western USA can be triggered by the gravitational forces of the sun and Earth’s moon.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLES

Here’s some good renewables news. The largest offshore wind farm in the USA could be coming soon to New York, if the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) approves the project as expected.

This is only bound to get worse. The largest freshwater lake in Florida, USA is covered in a scum of blue-green algae which is also traveling down nearby waterways and out to the coastline. Unfortunately, Florida’s current governor has done nothing in the past to prevent this environmental mess.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

A big “Congratulations” to Jim Cantore who’s celebrating thirty years at The Weather Channel!

An excellent read that’s worth a re-post. “Meteorologists shouldn’t just ‘stick to the weather,’ they should openly discuss climate change.”

Is climate change truly here to stay? Yes…and here’s a list of seven (of many more) reasons why.

The true power of many becoming one can be invaluable. “Thirty-One Top Scientific Societies Speak With One Voice On Global Climate Change.”

Are the potential health dangers of climate change enough to make the public sit up and take notice? By some accounts, the answer is in the affirmative.

In order to reach climate goals & the 2°C (3.6°F) threshold, new technology is needed ASAP.

Unfortunately, billion dollar weather and climate disasters are becoming more commonplace…and it’s not because of inflation.

For those of us who live in large urban areas, this is no surprise. USA cities are becoming dangerously hot during our scorching summers.

You’ve probably been enjoying this year’s El Niño without realizing it. If your weather as of late has been pleasurable, hopefully you enjoyed it while it lasted.

Have you ever wondered how a NOAA National Weather Service office layout is setup? Here’s some fine examples.

Why are Swedes happy about a 25C “heatwave?” Simple…those kind of temperatures are rare in Scandinavia…even in the middle of summer.

Thanks a wrap for this post!

Cheers!

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Tornado Quest Science Links For May 9 – 16, 2016

Greetings everyone! I hope all of you have had a good start to your week. There have been multiple rounds of severe weather across North America in the past few days, unfortunately it also includes fatalities which occurred during tornadoes in Oklahoma. Due to reviews of recent severe weather events and the pending severe weather today across the Southern Plains, this post will be another brief one. Having said that, let’s get started.

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

SOCIAL SCIENCE

An interesting read on those “Eureka” moments that many of us have every so often.

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

Check out these amazing images from the Hubble telescope of the planet Mars.

Just as no two snowflakes are alike, no two spiral galaxies are alike.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

A very important question for current and future generations. Can cities be sustainable?

In many of the world’s most polluted cities, driving bans or restrictions are becoming commonplace.

Since the Paris climate agreement, cities and companies have pledged to fight climate change. What’s next?

On the positive side, more cities are becoming greener with renewable energy sources soaring through the roof.

Details on the commitments of the U.S. and the five Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden) on further climate action after the Paris Agreement.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Take a look at a very compelling climate change visualization that speaks volumes.

When studying the atmosphere, there’s more to it than the adrenaline rush of severe thunderstorms. Here’s an excellent read on the important study of the link between the Earth’s atmosphere and biodiversity.

A fascinating read on pinpointing the timing of when oxygen first appeared in the earth’s atmosphere.

2016 continues to break global temperature records with April being the seventh hot month in a row.

As the Atlantic hurricane season approaches, the National Hurricane Center has released it’s list of names for the 2016 Tropical Cyclone season.  Capture 1

THE QUIXOTIC

Somehow I strongly suspect that if the genders were switched, this wouldn’t have been an issue. “Reporter forced to cover up on live TV because her dress was too revealing.”

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!

Cheers!

 __________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

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

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

Greetings to one and all! I hope everyone’s having a great week and, regardless of where you live, the weather’s to your liking. There are plenty of topics to cover this week, especially in the climate change realm, and we’ll touch on those. However, due to impending severe weather in the USA’s central and southern plains this week from 26 April – 28 April, this post will be shorter than usual. Speaking of the severe weather threat, this would be an excellent time to double-check your emergency preparedness kit, your NOAA weather radio, other reliable sources of information, and any other details regarding the safety of your family, friends, coworkers, and you. At the end of this post there are three infographics that will explain the basics of what you need to know for severe weather safety. Having said that, let’s get started on this week’s post.

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

SCIENCE EDUCATION

Fortunately, reason and the scientific method have triumphed once again. “Court Tosses Kansas Case That Tried To Challenge Science Education Guidelines.”

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

Smartphone users are redefining, and diminishing, privacy in public places.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

A very thought-provoking read on the “irony” of Earth Day cleanups.

A nice read on seven things we’ve learned about our fragile and humble home since the first Earth Day back in 1970.

On the flip side, there’s plenty to celebrate on Earth Day…no need for endless pessimism!

Natural disasters around the globe have resulted in economic losses of roughly $7 trillion (equivalent to about £5tn or €6tn) since 1900, according to a new calculation from scientists.

The relentless drought plaguing the western parts of the USA has had far-reaching effects of many facets.

As many as half of all USA citizens breathe air that is literally a public health hazard.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

There’s no doubt about it that April is, statistically, the top month for long-track tornadoes in the USA.

An excellent climate read from Climate Central. “Flirting With The 1.5°C Threshold.

March, 2016 continues a global streak of staggering global warmth due to climate change.

With the Paris climate agreement now signed by more than half of the world’s countries, the hard work begins.

“By mid-century, pockets of southern Europe will face at least one severe climate hazard every year of the scale now occurring only once a century, according to a new study.”

Sad but true quote from Upton Sinclair. “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.” No better way of displaying climate change denial at its best than with “Bill Nye the Science Guy Takes On Climate Denialist Joe Bastardi the ‘Goebbels’ Guy.”

Last, but not least, here’s some valuable information to have on hand with regards to the pending severe weather for this week…or any time of the year for that matter.

IMG_0805This graphic from the Storm Prediction Center explains what you need to know about the different levels of severe weather risks that are issued in outlooks.

Watch and Warning Info GraphicIf a watch or warning is issued for your area, here’s the basics of what you need to know…most importantly, the difference between a watch and a warning.

IMG_0807If a warning is issued for your area, any of the thunderstorms can contain at least one (if not all) of the above hazards.

Cg45hP8WgAAyK2h.jpg largeMany people are still confused as to the difference between a tornado warning vs. a tornado watch. Here are the basics of what you need to know.

And 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!

Cheers!

________________________________________________________________________________________________

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@protonmail.ch

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/

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