Tag Archives: wind energy

Tornado Quest Science Week In Review For January 23 – 28, 2017

Greetings and salutations one and all! I hope the weather is being good to you wherever you are. There’s a lot to cover this week…and considering recent current events, there’s more than the usual amount of science and public policy topics to cover. Like it or not, the climate of the country is changing in more than one way. We’ve challenging times ahead.

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

SCIENCE AND PUBLIC POLICY

Taking into consideration the inevitability that the next four years in the USA will be challenging for science, many scientists are now planning to run for public office.

From any rational viewpoint, a disturbing event that is unfolding daily. Any way you slice it, facts aren’t political. “What We Actually Lose When The USDA and EPA Can’t Talk To The Public.” (Updated)

Is there more than one way for the USA to pull out of the Paris climate agreement? Unfortunately, yes.

Still in its formative stages, the March For Science is slowly gaining momentum…and will likely be the next big march in Washington, D.C. The organizers have a website and Twitter account where you can stay up-to-date on details.

Starting with only a few texts between friends, “500 Women Scientists” has grown to 14,000 strong and counting.

TECHNOLOGY

A very interesting privacy and security read. “Firefox, Chrome start calling HTTP connections insecure.”

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLES

Environmental disasters such as the BP Deepwater Horizon Gulf Of Mexico oil spill take a heavy toll on the biosphere…and mental health of people who have to deal with the immediate effects and long-term aftermath.

The USA’s Environmental Protection Agency has an uncertain future. To get an idea of how filthy it was before its formation, take a look back at America’s environmental state before 1970.

Here’s some good news on the renewable/wind energy front. The USA’s largest offshore wind farm is coming to Long Island.

And some more good news…the Irish parliament has voted to take on the task of divesting from fossil fuels.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

NOAA recently tweeted a page that has been a good source of information on global warming…and it’s probably one of the best FAQ sites on the topic you’ll find online. There’s a plethora of references too…and those are gems for further research.

In recent decades, flooding in the northern countries of Europe has more than doubled.

The latest Drought Monitor shows that for the first time since March, 2011, exceptional drought conditions are not affecting the USA population.

Highlights: Drought conditions have eased a great deal across much of California.

capture-2

Extreme Drought conditions (red shading) have spread rapidly in parts of Arkansas and Oklahoma.

capture-1

If you’ve ever wondered how a well done tornado path survey is written up by a National Weather Service office, the survey of the Albany, GA tornado of 22 January 2017 by the Tallahassee, FL NWS is a good example. The vast majority of path surveys done by the NWS are exceptionally detailed studies.

And that’s a wrap for this post! As always, I’d like to send a warm welcome to my new followers in social media. It’s nice to have you along for the fun. 🙂

Cheers!

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

Greetings to one and all! I hope the weather is to your liking regardless of where you live. Autumn is beginning to make its presence known in parts of North America. As of this post, a very warm spell has settled over much of the southern and central Great Plains of the USA. It’s been a long, hot summer and I’m ready for some cool crisp mornings with a change in fall foliage color. The tropical Atlantic is rather active at this time. Fortunately, none of the systems that are being watched are a current threat to any land masses or populated areas. As usual, there’s plenty to cover, so let’s get started.

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

GENERAL SCIENCE

A very thought-provoking read where scientists answer twenty questions on the future of humanity.

Speaking of questions, here’s an excellent and very objective read by Lawrence Krauss on twenty questions for this year’s presidential candidates. “The net result? There is something here for everyone, because every view, no matter how inconsistent, is presented somewhere.”

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

A very good Psychology Today article from 2014 on the nature of the online troll. Considering recent events, it’s a read worth revisiting.

Do you use WhatsApp? Be prepared to share (unwillingly) a great deal of your private information with Facebook. There’s an opt-out, but personally speaking. I’d recommend you change over to Telegram.

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

A look at an interesting concept of the possible climate of Mars past…and how it could have led to its present day appearance.

No, Cupid didn’t make the “heart” on Pluto. It was something else far more interesting.

Don’t mess with the Milky Way. “Kamikaze galaxy explodes after diving into the Milky Way.”

From the BBC…from auroras to galaxies… a nice collection of spectacular imagery.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLES

New scientific ways of monitoring and predicting the affects climate change have on our ecosystems are coming to fruition.

Ghost Forests” are on the increase thanks in no small part to climate change. Unfortunately, this is a trend that will be on the upswing for some time.

Driven by climate change, large masses of trees across the USA are succumbing to diseases, insects, droughts, and wildfires.

Check out this nice “gif” of the USA’s growing use of wind power. Take note that the South has a lot of catching up to do.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Meteorologists with the National Weather Service (NWS) have a tough job with many daunting tasks and challenges. They need all the public and governmental support they can get. Your local National Weather Service office as well as other NWS social media accounts are the definitive source for all-important and potentially life-saving information.

An excellent comic that should put (temporarily) the kibosh on “the climate has always been changing” denier crowd.

Part climate science and part public policy in an interesting read on how climate adaptation can save money and improve the quality of life.

A very good climate read. “Why We Don’t Know If It Will Sunny Next Month But We Know It’ll Be Hot All Year.”

I could talk about this until I’m blue in the face. There is a distinctive difference in weather and climate. Hopefully, this short video will clear up the confusion.

Over a month after the devastating August, 2016 Louisiana floods, environmental and health concerns are growing along with anger among residents in the affected areas.

Flooding of low lying coastal areas in the USA due to sea level rise is no longer a theoretical concept.

And that’s a wrap up for this post! For my new followers in social media, I’d like to extend a warm welcome…I am quite active in other forms of social media and would really enjoy connecting and collaborating with other folks into the sciences.

Cheers!

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Tornado Quest Science Links And Much More For Nov. 22 – 29, 2015

Greetings to all! I hope you had a great week. If you celebrated Thanksgiving this past Thursday, I hope you had a great holiday. As the end of the 2015 Atlantic tropical cyclone draws to an official close, we can take note that it’s been another year without a significant landfall on the contiguous US states. Save for Sandra, an intense late season hurricane, the Eastern Pacific has fallen silent as well. Our attention, for those who care about the future of our planet, will turn to the United Nations Conference On Climate Change (COP21) in Paris, France in the coming week. Lots of news to keep on on…and plentiful links of good info within this post…so let’s get started.

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

TECHNOLOGY

Finding a secure mobile messaging app can be a daunting task. This article should help you easily narrow down your choices.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

You only have to step out of your back door to take part in this citizen science project. “Collecting Meteorites In Your Own Back Yard.”

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

Check out this amazing 46 billion pixel map of a small part of our Milky Way galaxy.

This nice retrospective puts NASA’s Apollo program in a new light.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLES

“The Great Pacific garbage patch is one of the world’s least talked about environmental disasters.” It’s plastic in paradise.

A new satellite program called FireSat, has the potential to be invaluable in a world where, due to climate change, large fires have become more common.

A slight rise in US carbon emissions was noted in 2014. Thought it was less than 1%, it’s still far too much and in the wrong direction.

This amazing animation from NASA gives us an idea of our planet’s yearly plant cycle.

A very interesting question! “Why Are Autumn Leaves Mostly Yellow In Europe And Red In North America?”

This very nice interactive map unveils the mystery of wind turbines.

What can the world learn from Europe’s self-styled greenest city? A lot!

Once again, Sweden is leading the way by challenging the world to go fossil fuel-free.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Here’s a very nice overview of the 2015 Atlantic tropical cyclone season. Joaquin was the most intense hurricane this year…reaching Category 4 status.

Recent discussions of a climate change “hiatus” have proven to be as unsound as the use of the word itself.

A good read from the World Meteorological Organization. “2015 Likely To Be Warmest On Record, 2011-2015 Warmest Five Year Period.”

One of the most sparsely populated states in the USA is also one of the leaders in the per capita CO2 production.

Do you think you’re up to taking the “hardest climate change quiz ever?”

The most unusual weather story I’ve seen in some time. “D.C. Weather Balloon Falls On Car In Philadelphia And Is Mistaken For A Bomb.”

Will be interesting to see how well this works out. “New National Weather Service Outlook Will Tell You About The Next Snowmageddon Up To A Week In Advance.”

A very informative read by Dr. Marshall Shepherd. “Four Odd Facts About Rain.”

A nice paleoclimatology read. “Scientists discover 308-million-year-old tropical forest in the Arctic.”

THE QUIXOTIC

Sadly, a vast majority of our elected public servants in Washington, DC are out of step with sound scientific evidence and the American public.

That’s a wrap for this post! I’d like to extend a sincere welcome to my new social media followers! Glad you’re along for the fun!

Cheers!

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@gmail.com

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Tornado Quest Science Links And More For Aug. 5 – 12, 2015

Greetings to all. I hope your summer (for my Northern Hemisphere followers) is going well and you’re handling the heat as well as possible. It may be the middle of August, but with the amount of daylight decreasing daily along with lowering “average” high temperatures, there are hints that autumn is just around the corner. In fact, for the N. Hemisphere, the meteorological autumn starts on September 1st. Nothing magical happens at the stroke of midnight on September 1st, it’s simply an easier way to “compartmentalize” the months of the year for statistical climatological purposes. The peak of the Atlantic hurricane season is literally on the doorstep. From this week until late September, the probabilities of Atlantic tropical cyclone formation increase dramatically. For the time being, a combination of dry air over the Atlantic along with wind shear (strong winds increasing in speed and direction with height) are not allowing any storms to organize. This will only be a temporary setup and the current calm scenario can and will change. For those who live in areas vulnerable to Atlantic tropical cyclones, this is an excellent time to make sure your emergency preparedness kits and plans are in place. Are you ready?

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

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

A very nice essay on a phenomenon that is one of the biggest irritants of my online experience (aka…adverts & pop-ups). “The Ethics Of Modern Web Ad-Blocking.”

GEOLOGICAL SCIENCE

How many American’s are vulnerable to earthquakes? The numbers are surprisingly high.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLES

How about some awesome renewables news. “The US Wind Energy Boom Couldn’t Come At A Better Time.”

This has to be seen to be believed. “Millions Of ‘Shade Balls” Protect LA’s Water During Drought.” Naturally my first question is, “Are these plastic spheres recyclable and/or reusable?”

This article’s focus is on the UK, but it applies to countless large metro areas around the world.

Why is the USA turning to renewable energy? When it comes to even strictly economics, the answer is obvious.

A desert is a desert is a desert, right? Truth be known, there are several kinds of deserts with vastly different ecosystems.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

An excellent read that puts to the trash bin a common misconception. “Corrected Sunspot History Suggests Climate Change Not Due to Natural Solar Trends.”

You’ve probably seen this before, but there’s no time like the present to add this to your bookmarks. NWS Heat Safety Tips.

NOAA is quite confident that this year will be a relatively quiet hurricane season for the tropical Atlantic. But, the caveat is the fact that it only takes one land-falling hurricane to make it seem otherwise.

I can think of far worse places to live than Minneapolis, but by some accounts, the Twin Cities is rated as least desirable in climate ranking. When climate change is added to the equation, cities all across North America will be vastly different from they are now.

If climate change wasn’t bad enough, four of the worst insect pests known to the human species will thrive…unfortunately.

Central and eastern Europe has been roasting in a recent heat wave that can hold its own to anything seen in the USA’s southern plains.

Check out this amazing new series of maps from NOAA. This is the kind of site you can spend far too much time looking at…even if you’re not a weather geek.

This dashcam video from Taiwan is a perfect example of how ANY vehicle can be swept away by even the most modest tornadoes. IMHO, judging by the speed of water vapor in the vortex, the type of debris lofted, and behavior of buildings and vegetation, I’d rate this tornado no stronger than a robust EF-1 or a very weak EF-2…ergo…NO vehicle is safe in ANY tornado.

A bit of weather and engineering…ever wonder how a skyscraper stays intact during a typhoon/hurricane…or any high wind storm for that matter? Me too.

And that’s a wrap for this post! Here’s a hearty “welcome”  to my new followers. I’m glad you’re along for the fun. 🙂

Cheers!

Tornado Quest on Twitter.

Media inquiries: tornadoquest@gmail.com

Tornado Quest Science Links And Much More For June 9 – 16, 2015

Much of the contiguous Great Plains of the USA is in store for more rain this week. While always welcome, it’s been too much of a good thing as of late. A great deal of the rain will come from the remnants of Tropical Storm Bill. Meanwhile in California, the drought scenario has reached a boiling point as residents are forced to face a fact they refuse to accept: they live in largely a dry climate. Recent severe weather activity across North America has shifted to the central and northern plains to the northeast. While not unusual, it seems to have done so earlier this year than the climatological norm. There’s plenty of other good topics out there, so let’s dive in.

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

TECHNOLOGY/SOCIAL MEDIA

If this article won’t make you appreciate your laptop, nothing else will.

Another good move by Twitter increases the power of the people over social media trolls.

Hashtags are a mixed blessing. Used correctly and efficiently, they are effecting in disseminating information. Otherwise, they can be annoying #andmakenosensejustlikethiseone.

Social media, when used correctly by official sources, is an excellent source of information and communication during and after disasters.

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

Here’s an excellent primer on one of astronomy’s most unusual enigmas…the black hole.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/RENEWABLES

Can the recent heavy rains in the USA trigger a busy wildfire season? Yes, they can.

Money talks…and some Californian’s with more than enough think they’re exempt from water restrictions during the current ongoing drought. What they fail to understand is the climate they reside in…and that climate is largely a dry one.

As wind energy becomes more popular, the technology naturally advances to more efficient (and quieter) modes of operation.

Savor these spectacular views from the ISS of our humble home.

A fascinating read on the connection between our planet’s forests and climate.

The USA EPA did a recent study that showed no links between fracking and water contamination. In spite of the comprehensive nature of the 1,000 page report, what was left out was the fact that we know so little about unknown (or ignored) risks.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Is the world off course to prevent two degrees C of warming? Apparently so.

Good read with links to further information. “NASA has released data showing how temperature and rainfall patterns worldwide may change through the year 2100 because of growing concentrations of greenhouse gases in Earth’s atmosphere.”

This tantrum was inevitable. “USA climate change deniers lambast the Pope over his environmental encyclical.”

For those of us who are urbanites, the urban heat effect can make summer nights as miserable as the afternoon heat. Fortunately, there are options that can help.

Finally, part climatology, social science, and public relations…could some of the Pope’s quotes regarding climate change be game-changers in the debate? Time will tell.

If you’re in the states with pending flooding issues, stay safe and remember, Turn Around, Don’t Drown.

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

Cheers!

Tornado Quest Science Links And Much, Much More For March 23 – 30, 2015

To say that the severe weather season for the contiguous USA got started with a “bang” is a vast understatement. Nature pulled a fast one on us. What appeared as a potentially big (literally) hail day with a Moderate and Enhanced Risk for parts of Arkansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma turned out to be an event with all modes of severe weather occurring. At the bottom of this post will be sites with up-to-date information relevant to the event. Is this an omen as to what the rest of the severe weather season will bring? Not likely, but then again, nature always has the better hand and the ace up the sleeve. We’ll have to wait and find out. As for preparedness, it’s best to be prepared for emergencies even if one doesn’t occur. There’s plenty of other interesting topics for this week, so let’s get started.

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

GENERAL SCIENCE

A very telling read about scientists studying journalists that cover science.

SOCIAL MEDIA

Once again Twitter shows off its third-rate milquetoast attitude towards trolls and bullying.

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

The scorch marks left by our rovers are Mars quickly fade as the red planet reclaims traces of our presence.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

As a former HVAC technician, I can vouch for the validity of this infographic on the dangers of indoor air pollution.

A new study shows the extent that humankind has tailored the Earth’s landscapes to our own devices at the expense of the rest of the natural world.

The current California drought isn’t helping the already problematic air quality issues.

Did you take part in Earth Hour on 28 March 2015? I did…and didn’t miss anything I thought I might.

Here’s some awesome renewables news from the Lone Star state! Georgetown, Texas will get all of its power from solar and wind. They should win an award. Now, who’s next?

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Here’s the latest US Drought Monitor. Unfortunately, little to no change from last week. This past week’s rainfall in the southern plains didn’t fall on the parts of Oklahoma and Texas that need it the most.

Interesting new study based in part on NASA satellite data has shows an increase in large, well-organized thunderstorms is behind increased rainfall in the wettest tropical regions.

A very thought-provoking read on the media’s response to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

It’s our responsibility to leave a health planet for our children, grandchildren, and the many generations to follow. “Tackling Climate Change ~ For Our Kids.”

Antarctica may have seen a recent high temperature record. 63.5F may not be blistering hot, but it’s toasty for that continent.

Speaking of Antarctica, it’s ice shelves are not in the best of shape.

THE 25 MARCH 2015 OKLAHOMA AND ARKANSAS SEVERE WEATHER EVENT

First, some handy safety tips from AAA on what to do if you’re driving and find yourself caught in a storm. Ideally, the best thing to do is not wind up in that kind of bind in the first place!

Summary pages of the 25 March 2015 severe weather events from the Tulsa, Norman, Springfield, and Little Rock National Weather Service offices. Much of this information is preliminary and updates will be added often.

Here’s an excellent video by broadcast meteorologist George Flickinger of Tulsa’s KJRH discussing the Sand Springs, OK tornado and how the silly myths (rivers and/or hills protecting a town or city) were blown away by this storm.

Nice radar images from the Tulsa NWS of the Sand Springs, OK tornado.

An impressive gallery of images from the Tulsa World of the Sand Springs, OK tornado damage.

An excellent must-read for anyone who really wants to understand the dynamics of severe weather: “The Science Behind The Oklahoma And Arkansas Tornadoes Of March 25, 2015.”

As time allows, I may add a few more links with further information regarding this event.

That’s a wrap for this post! I’d also like to extend a hearty welcome to my new followers…very glad you’re along for the fun!

Tornado Quest Gee-O-Science Links For May 27 – June 3, 2014

Here’s a hearty welcome to meteorological summer in the Northern Hemisphere. For folks south of the equator, welcome to winter. Summer will definitely be felt across much of North America this week with many areas of the plains states flirting with the triple digits in temperatures. There will also be multiple rounds of severe weather possible across the southern and central plains. It’s been rather quiet in sheer numbers of tornadoes, but we still have many potentially active months ahead. As is usually the case in weeks like these, this post will be shorter than usual.

Let’s take a look at this weeks links…

GENERAL SCIENCE

Is it acceptable to fudge the facts on science to pacify? Personally speaking, no. The scientific method and rationalism can stand on their own merit.

TECHNOLOGY

Sad but true. Total digital privacy no longer exists.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

A good read by Caren Cooper: Coop’s Citizen Sci Scoop: Shake it up with the fast pace of citizen science!

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/SUSTAINABILITY

Check out this new wind turbine design that has incredible potential especially in urban areas

Wind energy projects in Osage County, OK are dividing “neighbors and families?” Surely you jest!

Fumes from traffic come with a high price.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

If you’ve not seen NOAA’s Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services site, take a look. It has a wealth of information…much of which will be very important during the Atlantic hurricane season.

A hurricane’s storm surge is often the most dangerous effect it has on land. NOAA has a new source of storm surge data with potentially life-saving information.

A NASA satellite scheduled to be launched in July will look for answers to further our understanding of climate change.

A very telling video report showing Americans on the front lines of climate change.

Rainforests may hold clues to questions being researched by scientists who normally study desert climates.

In spite of a lower-than-average number of tornadoes, 2013 events packed quite a punch.

What has to be one of the most “odd” studies has created quite a row…and the noisiest commentators aren’t who you’d expect. Bruised egos perhaps?

That’s a wrap for this week. We’ve several busy severe weather days ahead for the plains. If you’re under the gun, stay very weather aware and stay safe!

Cheers!

Tornado Quest Gee-O-Science Links Feb. 18 – 25th, 2014

With the North American severe weather season fast approaching, the contiguous USA has just had its first widespread severe weather event. Fortunately, it appears that most damage was minor, tornadoes were not common, and straight line winds were the major hazard. In light of this severe weather episode, I’ve been asked a number of times, “What will the 2014 severe weather season be like?” Honestly, I haven’t a clue. There are many global atmospheric characteristics and trends that could give us a hint, but they’re not consistently reliable. The policy I recommend: Prepare for the worst & hope for the best. Knowledge is power…and make sure you have access to reliable and timely severe weather information. First, make sure your NOAA weather radio is functioning and you have plenty of batteries. Second, if you’re active in social media, follow your local National Weather Service office, your favorite local broadcast meteorologists, and any local officials/emergency management accounts. Now comes that waiting game.

Here are your links for this week…

GENERAL SCIENCE

This is something I’ve wondered about. “How Wrong Is Your Time Zone?”

For the mathematically inclined, formulae can thrill in the way that visual art and music do.

ASTRONOMICAL SCIENCE

A good primer for those curious about astronomy: “Where Do Galaxies Come From?”

If clear skies are in your area, enjoy viewing Jupiter which, in a few days, will be at its highest point in the sky for many years to come.

GEOLOGICAL SCIENCE

What’s causing the recent spike in unprecedented seismic activity in Oklahoma?

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE/SUSTAINABILITY

Parts of the UK have experienced devastating floods as of late. They’re now at a crossroads in adaption, or abandonment.

A sobering look at images at the horrible air pollution that plagues much of China.

We’re aware of the three R’s: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, but what about Repair?

If we’re to take sustainability seriously, we need a clear vision of what a sustainable future will look like.

The spinning blades on wind turbines not only generate useful electricity, but in rare occasions…lightning

The recent loss of Arctic sea ice may have long-term effects that are greater than expected.

Some amazing imagery of the recent loss of snow-pack in California.

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

When much of Moore, OK was devastated by an EF-5 tornado on 20 May 2013, the Plaza Towers Elementary become a deathtrap…not because of the tornadoes intensity, but due to shoddy construction.

The ongoing drought in California may have serious consequences concerning public health.

In spite of short-term cold spells and winter precipitation, January, 2014 was the fourth warmest January since records began in 1880.

JUST WHEN YOU THOUGHT IT COULDN’T GET MORE WEIRD…

Giant walls built across the traditional ‘tornado alley’ can save the day!

Good news! The Farmer’s Almanac is spot on. Weird.

More bizarre histrionics from the climate change denialists. Apparently those they disagree with (including yours truly) are “global warming Nazi’s.”

Make no mistake about it. The climate denialist machine is well-oiled and well-financed.

Denialism means just that. Denying information or facts that have proven to be true. Being a skeptic is another matter!

Finally, an interesting read on the “shills, skeptics, and hobbyists lumped together in climate denialism.”

In closing, I’d like to add some objective sanity regarding the matter.

My point for posting the above articles is, save for the last one, to show an example of the bizarre antics that have taken place in the world of earth sciences.  I don’t enjoy the bitter vitriol any more than anyone else and DO NOT under ANY circumstances entertain or tolerate trolls or bullying…online or in person. The saddest point about the climate change discussion is the vitriol from denialists has sunken to a new sophomoric low that eradicates any sense of professionalism on their behalf. It’s the kind of childish “mud-slinging” that so often seen in political races. It’s also dismaying to see seemingly intelligent people create accounts in social media for one purpose: trolling those who disagree with them. Hopefully, this will be a self-correcting phase and many of the bullies will disappear when they realize they are truly persona non grata in every sense of the phrase.

And as for the proposal to build walls that prevent tornadoes, well…that’s just pure bullshit.

Cheers!

Tornado Quest Gee-O-Science Links For Oct. 12 – 20, 2013

The crispness of cool Autumn air is beginning to settle in across the Northern Hemisphere. Some areas in the contiguous 48 states have seen significant snowfall amounts. In the tropical Atlantic, one of the least active hurricane seasons in over 40 years continues. And with the US government shutdown over (for the time being), NOAA, NASA, USGS, the EPA, and other agencies are getting back into the swing of things. Unfortunately, a great deal of scientific research was put on the back burner. So, with all that in mind, lets take a look at this weeks links…

ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE

Many folks in tornado prone areas pine for public shelters. Chuck Doswell doesn’t think they’re a good idea and I very much agree.

The folks at the Capital Weather Gang wrote a very interesting article that (in spite of its unpopularity) I feel is quite valid: Beware the flaky forecasts.

National Geographic has a very nice multi-media feature on the El Reno, OK tornado of May 31, 2013 with a great overview of the Twistex team.

Here’s a very interesting read (with journal reference) on how the Earth’s rotation affects vorticies (hurricanes, tornadoes, ocean currents, etc.) in nature.

Wind energy is great and I hope becomes more the norm. Unfortunately, those spinning blades can play havoc with National Weather Service radars.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

The World Health Organization has now included air pollution as a major health hazard.

CITIZEN SCIENCE

Project FeederWatch is a great way to get involved in citizen science during the cold winter months. Think of it as keeping track of miniature dinosaurs!

NASA has a very cool cloud spotter app for all of you folks out there who, like me, spend a lot of our outdoor time looking at clouds.

Here’s a great article with a plethora of citizen science projects that has almost something for everyone.

PALEONTOLOGY/EVOLUTION

When I was awestruck at the size of the Tyrannosaurus in NYC’s Museum of Natural History, I naturally assumed it was probably the largest in the world. Nope…there are bigger ones!

And that’s a wrap for this post! Hope everyone has a great week!

Cheers!

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