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7 March 2019

Thoughts on the Lee County Alabama Tornado: Worthless Sirens and Unsafe Mobile Homes

I’m hearing the same familiar refrain after the Lee County Alabama tornado last week. Newspaper reports saying there was little warning while residents say they never heard the sirens. Sirens Are So Last Century Let’s get the sirens out of the way first. They are not (and never were) designed to be heard indoors. We are talking 1930’s technology, and while some days it may not seem like it, we …

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22 February 2019

Things You Should Probably Stop Saying to Your Meteorologist

Meteorologist Dakota Smith posted the following video. You should check out his YouTube channel as well. Spot on Dakota!

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20 February 2019

January 2019 Was Third Hottest On Record, and No It’s Not a”Natural Cycle.”

NOAA announced today that January was the third hottest on record and the ten warmest have all been since 2002. Think about that for a second. If you think that the climate is not changing, then that statistic is impossible to reconcile. Oh, you may say that this is just a warm period globally, and the thermometer record is not long enough to have any meaning. Well, that record is extended …

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31 January 2019

Note to the Media: Getting Science/Weather Stories Right Matters Just As Much As Any Other

The cold hard scientific truth is that the polar vortex is 6 (plus) kilometers high and located south of Hudson Bay tonight. It never reached the American Midwest, and every story you’ve seen or read about it (except perhaps one or two notable exceptions) have been wrong. Indeed, the Washington Post is not the only one to post “polar vortex” headlines that were dead wrong this week. It’s turned into an …

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29 January 2019

The Climate Threat is Much Worse Than You Think, But There’s Still Hope

I know a lot of people are tired of hearing the title of this post, but it’s true. The threat we face from climate change is a lot worse than you think it is. There is near unanimous agreement that we must strive to keep the Earth’s temperature from going above 2 degrees C from the pre-industrial times, and better yet would be holding it to 1.5 C. That’s not …

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14 January 2019

Weather Satellites are Far More Vital Than You Think

I’ve written a lot here about weather satellites here, and how a decent forecast beyond three days would be impossible without them.  They are indispensable to everyone from forecasters to firefighters to pilots.   While you mainly see GOES (geostationary satellites) images on TV, I just finished a weathercast showing the image above from a satellite in Polar Orbit. I used it to show where the snow fell this weekend, but …

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4 January 2019

Government Shutdown Impacts Biggest U.S. Atmospheric Science Meeting

The annual meeting of the American Meteorological Society starts Sunday in Phoenix. It’s the biggest meeting of the atmospheric science community in the U.S. and one of the biggest worldwide. In a normal year, thousands of meteorologists from NOAA (and other government agencies), many universities, and the private sector (including meteorologists in broadcasting like me) will share knowledge and listen to presentations from recent research. Most importantly, students who are …

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23 December 2018

Guy Walton Proves You can Teach Climate Change to 4th Graders In A Whole Different Way!

Meteorologists start out with a fascination of weather like snowstorms and tornadoes and hurricanes, but by the time you finish a degree in atmospheric science you end up falling in love with the physics behind it all! We still love all the other weather but I still remember my fascination as I learned the physics and how we can  predict the travels and the temperature and velocity of a blob …

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21 December 2018

History’s Most Famous and World Changing Picture Was Taken 50 Years Ago Monday.

The “Earth Rise” image, taken as Apollo 8 entered orbit around the Moon, is considered to be the one image that changed the way we see our planet. Before that photo, all but a few looked at the wilderness and nature in general as something to be tamed, but the stunning photo of Earth rising above the desolation of the Moon changed that. It’s hard to overstate the impact of …

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12 December 2018

NOAA’s Says The Polar Freezer is In Defrost Mode

NOAA’s Arctic Report Card came out today but with all the news (that’s barely fit to print) these days, it was easy to miss. Here’s a summary of the major points and an excellent video from NOAA that summarises it. Too bad I’ve not seen it linked on any major news sites. You can read the whole report here. Report Card Highlights from NOAA Surface air temperatures in the Arctic continued to …

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