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21 August 2015

Hurricane Danny May Be at Peak Strength

Danny now has winds near the center at 115 mph, but it is actually a rather tiny storm. Latest model runs continue a west-NW track but dry air is just to the north and wind shear will begin to impact the storm in about 48 hours. This should weaken it and the latest hires numerical model guidance shows just that. The intensity forecast from the HWRF model shows it weakening …

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18 August 2015

Tropical Storm Danny Forms in the Eastern Atlantic.

Every 6 years there is the chance that I get a hurricane named after me,and this year is looking good. Tropical Storm Danny has formed and is slowly strengthening. Model guidance is all in rather good agreement, especially the dynamical models that tend to have the best skill. Wind shear is strong to the north of the system, but it will likely stay south of the shear until it approaches …

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14 August 2015

The Ugly Side of August Arrives in The Northeast Next Week

Unlike much of the Plains and the Deep South, the summer has not been that hot across the mid-Atlantic and Northeast U.S. but next week is going to bring the ugly side of August to much of the region. The heat will likely make it all the way into Toronto and Montreal and affect millions of people. This same weather pattern a month ago would likely bring highs in the …

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21 July 2015

Study: Most rain comes from ice clouds

Benjamin Franklin was the first to surmise that, even on a hot summer’s day, the raindrops falling on our heads might begin life as ice particles at high altitudes. In the centuries since 1780 it became possible to probe the atmosphere directly by balloon and by aircraft, and remotely from the ground and from satellites. These observations confirmed Franklin’s suspicion. However, two questions remain: how large are the fractions of rain produced by liquid clouds and by ice clouds? And how variable are they over the globe and over time?

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29 April 2015

Lucky break kept major hurricanes offshore since 2005

For the last nine years the United States has dodged the hurricane bullet: No major tropical cyclones have made U.S. landfall. Such a remarkable “hurricane drought” has never been seen before – since records began in 1851. It beats the previous record of eight years from 1861-1868, say researchers who have looked into the probabilities of the unusual streak, what it means for the chances of hurricanes this year and whether or not insurance premiums reflect the risks. Their conclusion: the hurricane drought is mostly a matter of dumb luck.

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27 April 2015

Was Your Record High Temperature A Result of Climate Change? Probably.

A paper in Nature Climate Change today is getting international press and for good reason, It contains a rather astounding statistic. Here is a quote from the beginning of the paper with my highlights in red:  Climate change includes not only changes in mean climate but also in weather extremes. For a few prominent heatwaves and heavy precipitation events a human contribution to their occurrence has been demonstrated1, 2, 3, 4, 5. Here we …

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10 April 2015

The surprising strength of ‘rainpower’

Torrential rains inside hurricanes might be acting as a control knob on these giant storms, reducing their intensity by as much as 30 percent, according to a new study.

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18 March 2015

NOAA: Earth Had Warmest Winter On Record

Earth just had it’s warmest winter on record, and this past February was the second warmest on record. This from NOAA/NCDC During February, the average temperature across global land and ocean surfaces was 1.48°F (0.82°C) above the 20th century average. This was the second highest for February in the 1880–2015 record. The highest temperature occurred in 1998, at 1.55°F (0.86°C) above average. During February, the globally-averaged land surface temperature was 3.02°F …

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6 March 2015

True Color View from NASA of a Snowy Northeast

This is from the NASA Terra Satellite today March 6, 2015. Click for a size large enough to print.  

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27 January 2015

Making Snowfall Forecasts More Accurate

We are at the cusp of some amazing technology that will hopefully make forecasting snowstorms, like the one predicted yesterday, much more accurate. I was on a local program produced by the TV station I work for (WBOC-TV) last week, and I showed a couple of smart phone apps that may eventually make a real difference in forecasting. Making better forecasts requires higher resolution models and that means more data …

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14 January 2015

Mountain monitoring system artificially inflates temperature increases at higher elevations

In a recent study, University of Montana and Montana Climate Office researcher Jared Oyler found that while the western U.S. has warmed, recently observed warming in the mountains of the western U.S. likely is not as large as previously supposed.

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13 January 2015

Hanging With Smart People at AGU

The AGU meeting every December in San Francisco is truly an amazing experience, and while I only was able to be there for two days, it was well worth flying across the entire continent and back in 48 hours. Here are some sights and sounds from the AGU that I and others made. Up first is meeting Geoph Haines-Stiles one of the senior producers of the original COSMOS with Carl …

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9 January 2015

City Lights, On A Cold and Snowy Night

The Suomi satellite has the ability to get images of the Earth at night, and this week it grabbed one of the prettiest shots yet, under the light of a full Moon. With clear skies and snow on the ground, you can see the snow and if you look closely you can see some high clouds on top of the lights across portions of Iowa and Minnesota. You can get a much …

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Not just rain: thunderstorms also pour down ozone

A new study in Geophysical Research Letters offers for the first time unequivocal evidence that large storms move significant amounts of ozone from the stratosphere down to the troposphere, the lowest part of the atmosphere.

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11 December 2014

Super-Fast Jet Makes Jets To Europe Super-Fast

Departures were being delayed from the U.S. to the UK to keep aircraft from arriving to early in Europe. You have to feel for the folks flying from Heathrow to Seattle though; add two hours to an already LONG flight! I experienced this once on a flight from Atlanta to London, and arrived an hour early. We sat on the plane though waiting for a gate to open up!

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2 December 2014

Seems It Finally Rains In Southern California (and it snows too!)

Heavy rain and snow is moving into California tonight, as an intense surface/upper level low pressure system taps warm tropical air to the south and shoves it into California. California gets most of its rain in winter and you might be surprised to know that most if it comes from just 5-6 storms. The water vapor imagery from the GOES shows the storm well. Keep in mind that you are …

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24 November 2014

The Governor of New York Owes an Apology to a Bunch of Meteorologists

The Governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, really stepped in it on Saturday. He’s now getting a firestorm of criticism, and he deserves every bit of it, but I want you to understand why before I go into what he said. There is an old rule among weather forecasters, and it goes like this- “Never forecast a record, you will probably be wrong!”. Now I, and many others, have broken …

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14 November 2014

Indian Summer For The End of November?

There are growing sign,s that after one more blast of even colder air next week, we will see some much warmer air over the Central and Eastern U.S. as we head into Thanksgiving. Indian summer may be on the way! The forecast below is based on an average of many long-range model runs of the Climate Forecast System. Research shows that an average of model runs provides a more accurate …

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23 October 2014

Forecasters and Science Writers Knock Weather.Com For Hype

A low-end nor’easter is bringing wind and rain to much of the Northeast U.S. this evening, and Gale Warnings have been posted in the Atlantic as well. As nor’easters go, this is not really a big one, and we will see far worse over the coming months, with some of them bringing snow instead of rain.This is what I told my viewers here in Maryland/ Delaware, and so did many …

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8 October 2014

How rain falls – not just how much – may alter landslide risk

New research finds that it’s not just the amount of rain that falls on a hillside, but the pattern of rainfall that matters when trying to determine how likely a slope is to give way. This new information could improve forecasts of landslides, which are typically hard to predict, said the scientists conducting the research.
Different rainfall patterns—a short, heavy deluge, a light, steady downpour, or sporadic showers—will trigger different numbers of landslides with varying amounts of debris, according to the new study published today in Water Resources Research, a journal of the American Geophysical Union.

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