World Ocean Temps Spike to +1.26 Positive Anomaly as Antarctic Polar Amplification Ramps Up

Prospects for a moderate to strong El Nino are fading even as the eventual emergence of El Nino this year grows increasingly in doubt. But despite the failure of a weather system which tends to both spike global sea surface temperatures and atmospheric temperature values, the world’s oceans are screaming with heat, today entering hottest yet daily values for 2014 of 1.26 degrees above the already hotter than normal 1979-2000 average.

*****

The monster Kelvin Wave that so many forecasters believed would set off a moderate-to-powerful El Nino this year by as soon as this summer was crushed by a failure of atmospheric feedbacks. Strong westerly winds did not emerge and powerful high pressure systems both north and south of the Equator kept fueling the easterly trades, which tended to over-ride west wind systems when they did emerge. One of these high pressure zones was the doggedly persistent blocking high sitting off the US West Coast and contributing to the worst drought conditions in a century for California.

The Kelvin Wave was strong enough, however, to set off conditions in which May and June of 2014 were the hottest in the global record and in which ocean surface temperatures during July were also the hottest in the 135 year global record.

During that time, June saw global daily ocean temperature anomalies spike to as high as +1.25 C above the already hotter than normal 1979 to 2000 average in the GFS measure. Today, despite equatorial Pacific Ocean temperatures backing off from June highs, global sea surface temperatures spiked to an extraordinary +1.26 positive anomaly, beating out a time when a very energetic Kelvin wave was dumping a high level of heat into the Equatorial Pacific surface zone.

Sea Surface Temperature Anomaly global August 29, 2014

(Global Sea Surface Temperature Anomaly as of August 29th of 2014. Image source: University of Maine.)

These are extraordinary high sea surface temperatures. And they are likely a continuation of a trend, now four months running, in which the global ocean surface was at or near record highs.

Globally, the hottest areas continued to include a very warm zone off the US West Coast, a zone of +3 to +4 C positive anomaly values in the Bering Sea and behind the arch of the Aleutian Islands between Alaska and Russia, and a zone of much warmer than normal waters from Maine to Greenland to Iceland and Svalbard.

Austral Polar Amplification Heats Up

Even as global ocean surface temperatures shot to record or near record high daily values, Antarctica was undergoing its own major warm-up.

Human greenhouse gasses, more efficient at trapping heat during the long polar night that is winter, and at record warming values in the range of 481 CO2e appeared to be doing their work. For yesterday, temperature anomalies for all of Antarctica spiked to above +3 degree Celsius positive anomaly. Though not as high as the +5 C and greater anomalies observed for the Arctic during the winter of extreme polar vortex disruption that was 2013-2014, the Antarctic heat spike is still quite high. This is especially true for a region that has seen an expanding pulse of cooling fresh water from glacial melt together with strong down-welling and atmosphere to waters heat transfer in the Southern Ocean.

Antarctic Polar Amplification

(Antarctic heat anomaly of +2.94 C above the already warmer than normal 1979 to 2000 average on August 29, 2014. Image source: University of Maine.)

As of today, Antarctic heat anomalies were still in the very well above average range at +2.94 C. Most of the excess heat centered over the now destabilized and seaward spreading glaciers of West Antarctica which experienced extraordinary temperatures in the range of 15 to 20 degrees Celsius above average.

This much warmer than normal pool of air spilled above average warmth in all directions. And were it not for the expanding fresh water wedge, salt water downwelling, and strong winds driving a powerful atmosphere to ocean heat transfer in the Southern Ocean, the overall Antarctic temperature anomaly values would be even higher.

Overall, global surface temperatures were at +0.71 C above the 1979 to 2000 average in the global GFS measure today. And with August remaining far warmer than average for most the month, it appears likely that we will have another record or near record warm month. It is almost certain that ocean values with be at record levels and atmospheric values are not too far behind. All this potential for new record heat despite El Nino failing to form and increasingly in doubt.

New Kelvin Wave Not So Strong As the Last

To this point it is worth noting that a new warm Kelvin Wave is now propagating across the Pacific. The current wave is not anywhere near as strong as the event which occurred during winter and spring of 2014. Despite the failure of that Kelvin Wave and the weaker stake of the current wave, NOAA is still predicting a 65% percent chance of El Nino before the end of 2014. This is a lower potential than the 75 to 80 percent prediction from earlier this year and even if El Nino does emerge, consensus models now show a rather feeble iteration peaking at around +0.6 C for mid ocean temperature anomalies.

Kelvin Wave August 21

(Most recent Kelvin Wave as detected by NOAA. Image source: NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center)

Regardless, even if El Nino doesn’t form it appears that 2014 is well on its way to being one of the hotter years in the global record, continuing a long trend of inexorable surface warming.

Links:

University of Maine

NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center

July 2014 Shows Hottest Ocean Surface Temperature on Record

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96 Comments

  1. Longjohn119

     /  August 29, 2014

    I believe the ENSO models are no longer valid and need to be adjusted for the changes in the Jet Stream ….. The problem with that Reality is it’ll take 2 or 3 decades to fully see the pattern that will emerge and we don’t have that kind of time anymore to wait around and see what happens while continuing to twiddle our thumbs and act irrationally

    Reply
    • james cole

       /  August 29, 2014

      My thoughts as well. It is natural that we look to the recent past to judge how things will be with systems we are used to. But is the game different now? Global Warming may be making our recent experience less valid as a judge of familiar cycles and patterns. My question, are we entering an age of real uncertainty as to how climate adjusts and weather patterns adjust to the massive insult of global CO2 induced warming.

      Reply
      • Griffin

         /  August 29, 2014

        Very good points by both of you and something that I have been thinking of too. What amazes me is the number of very serious, full-time weather pattern forecasters that were misled by the signs we saw in the early summer. An example is WSI Energy Weather. They provide seasonal forecasts of weather patterns for the energy markets. Dr. Michael Ventrice, who has written for Dr. Masters on his Weather Underground Blog was “All in” on El Nino forming by July or August. It was not a guess or a bet by any means, but a call made by careful, highly trained observation of oceanic and atmospheric conditions. On June 3rd he tweeted that the atmosphere had “locked in” to an El Nino state and that was the final domino to fall, along with the westerly wind bursts and the Kelvin waves and the warm pools etc.
        Obviously something happened after that to unlock the progression. The whole thing fell apart with respect to the expected strength of the El Nino. The “Whiff” on this is remarkable to me. If some of the brightest and well-informed weather forecasters can be so wrong in front of those who pay them to make long range forecasts….it is the miss that tells the story. The miss says that the game HAS changed.
        Although El Nino has failed to materialize before, even recently, this one is different to me. Roberts post today shows exactly why. The great forces of ocean and atmosphere are being driven by a heat source that has no analog, and what is past is certainly no longer the prologue.

        Reply
      • I’d think the old systems of variability still function, but under a layer of warming related influence that increasingly confuses observations. For example, the current PDO/AMO variability would push for cooling in the atmosphere. And, ironically, it appears that warming has enhanced some of the atmosphere to ocean heat transfer mechanisms (strengthened trades, increased evaporation resulting in saltier waters in some regions). The fresh water mechanism that causes the AMO switch will have to be stronger, and it will be with the added melt. The warm water transfer across the Pacific PDO will have to be stronger and it almost certainly will be, due to more heat being piled into that region.

        Because the one extreme sets up conditions that drive the switch to the other extreme, the human forcing would have to be very strong to over-ride that mechanism entirely. To keep oceans in a constant state of rapid heat uptake. That said, we probably should expect the oceans to favor heat uptake due to the atmospheric imbalance and the drivers that act to push heat into the ocean — increasing winds, increasing evaporation and warm, salty water down welling, and an expanding fresh water layer due to ice melt.

        My general opinion is that IPCC and other climate models do not take into account this complexity and so atmospheric warming may be a bit less, while ocean warming and sea level rise may be quite a bit worse.

        My opinion is that this is far worse than the couple of degrees of atmospheric warming that are avoided initially, because it implies a far more rapid ocean death, more destructive glacial melt, an increased pressure on ocean bottom clathrates, and some very bad weather initially.

        Reply
    • Bill H.

       /  August 30, 2014

      Unfortunately, the climate “skeptics” take advantage of the “new normal” in which models developed and tested against the “old normal” no longer work reliably in order to undermine established climate science and AGW theory. The fact that they blatantly cherry pick – endlessly pointing to the “pause” in atmospheric warming while ignoring steadily rising oceanic temperatures or melting of sea and land ice at rates much higher than predicted by models – is something that they are able to conceal from the public.

      Reply
      • It’s not just the deniers, Bill H. All to often, still, the mainstream media put the evidence of the almost-out-of-control AGW under a cone of silence. Which means the deniers basically get to operate unhindered.

        Reply
      • james cole

         /  August 30, 2014

        Media silence is now at an Orwellian scale! I read his books, all of them, but “1984” was his take on the direction of modern states and media. He might have missed corporate power over media. But anyways, Corporate Power to control what mass media says is almost total. Corporate power over what governments do or don’t do is also at an all time high. Notice Obama, the liberal president and his total fail on climate change. Even should a president choose to tackle the problem head on, Media and Congress would crucify him at the behest of Corporate and Wall-Street political power and influence.

        Reply
        • Obama/liberals tried to do more on climate change but were stopped dead in their tracks by corporate-backed drill-baby-drill conservatives in Congress.

          We did get increased CAFE standards, better lighting efficiency standards, an EPA pushed to regulate Carbon, Keystone Pipeline delays, and a broad push for renewable energy funding at many levels. But what could have been achieved was far greater and, yes, Obama has tended to back an all of the above energy strategy that has slowed progress and generated ambiguity when we could have had leadership.

          I am not looking forward to what may happen if conservatives re-gain broader control.

    • Good point. It seems to me that many to most of the scientists are now advocating for swift action and strong climate policy. That should be warning enough.

      Reply
  2. Loni

     /  August 29, 2014

    That’s a lot of heat, the Arctic Ice cap is looking pretty tenuous.

    Reply
  3. Colorado Bob

     /  August 30, 2014

    Climate change: Rising sea levels pose salt threat in Vietnam –

    The report, “Fighting climate change: Human solidarity in a divided world”, by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) estimates that about 22 million Vietnamese people will lose their houses to rising sea levels.

    “If the sea level rises 1m by 2100, 90 per cent of the Mekong delta will be flooded.

    “Seventy per cent of its area will be intruded with saline water and two million hectares of rice will disappear,” said scientist Le Anh Tuan from the Institute for Climate Change Studies at Can Tho University.

    “Millions of people will become climate change refugees. Millions of people will fall into poverty,” the scientist said.

    The UNDP report estimates the sea level will rise by 33cm by 2050 and 1m by 2100.

    “Agriculture is the sector that is most affected by climate change, specifically by saline water intrusion and sea level rise,” said Mr Tran Thuc, director of the Viet Nam Institute of Meteorology, Hydrology and Environment.
    – See more at: http://www.straitstimes.com/news/asia/south-east-asia/story/climate-change-rising-sea-levels-pose-salt-threat-vietnam-20140830#sthash.UvDQzy8h.dpuf

    Reply
  4. Apneaman

     /  August 30, 2014

    A Big Summer Story You Missed: Soaring Oil Debt

    Returns diminish as energy companies resort to higher-cost, higher-risk hydrocarbons.

    http://thetyee.ca/Opinion/2014/08/29/Soaring-Oil-Debt-Summer/

    Reply
    • Bill H.

       /  August 30, 2014

      Looking at the graph it would appear that the oil companies have run up a debt of at least half a trillion dollars from this fossil fuel investment bubble.

      A rival to the sub-prime bubble?

      Reply
    • Good. This may put the schnitz on BAU, and sooner rather than later. We may get our radical mitigation of carbon emissions by 2020 after all!

      Reply
      • We can hope!

        My view is that all this money being dumped into FF at the moment is one enormous malinvestment. Climate change renders the resources technically unburnable in any scenario in which human civ survives, the new sources are all more tech and money intensive to extract, and the renewables just keep getting cheaper and easier to access.

        To Apneaman — thanks for the heads up. Looks like something to put on the burner for a broad assessment.

        Reply
  5. Tom

     /  August 30, 2014

    Lest anyone forget (this just keeps getting worse):

    http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2014/08/fuku-west-coast.html?utm_content=buffercddb8&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

    Scientists Drastically Underestimated Amount of Fukushima Radiation Worldwide

    Fukushima Radiation Has Spread Worldwide

    We noted 2 days after the Japanese earthquake that radiation from Fukushima could end up on the West Coast of North America. And see this.

    We started tracking the radioactive cesium released by Fukushima within weeks of the accident.

    In fact, U.S. nuclear authorities were extremely worried about the West Coast getting hit by Fukushima radiation … but publicly said it was safe.

    We reported that Fukushima radiation spread worldwide.

    And we’ve documented for years that the failure to test the potentially high levels of radiation hitting North America is a scandal.

    Sadly, we were right to be worried …

    The Journal Environmental Science & Technology – published by the American Chemical Society – reported last year that airborne levels of radioactive cesium were raised by 100 to 1,000 times (what scientists describe as two to three “orders of magnitude“):

    Before the FDNPP accident, average 137Cs levels were typically of 1 μBq m−3 in Central Europe and lower average values (<0.3 μBq m−3) were characteristic of northern, western and southern Europe.

    ***

    During the passage of contaminated air masses from Fukushima, airborne 137Cs levels were globally enhanced by 2 to 3 orders of magnitude.

    Indeed, even hot particles and nuclear core fragments from Fukushima were found to have traveled all the way to Europe.

    [concludes]

    The radioactive half life of cesium 137 is usually 30 years. But scientists at the Savannah River National Laboratory say that the cesium at Chernobyl will persist in the environment between 5 and 10 times longer – between 180 and 320 years.

    And the Fukushima accident has pumped out some entirely new forms of radioactive materials … in “glassy spheres“, buckyballs, ball-like spheres, and bound to organic matter. Scientists don’t really know how long these new forms will last …
    ______________

    Ok, back to the topic at hand.

    So where is all that heat being absorbed by the ocean going? If it's going toward the poles and melting Greenland, the Arctic and Antarctic, once that reaches some point (it doesn't have to completely melt, somewhere along the way the energy gets transferred/amplifies in the atmosphere) we're in for catastrophic warming on its heals, no?

    Reply
    • Fresh water outbursts from melt push the atmosphere and ocean surface to cool initially, sequesters more heat in the deep ocean as the fresh water wedge advances, driving hotter, saltier water downward.

      So there’s a see-saw in which warmth generates melt, and melt unlocks surface cooling but dumps more heat in the deep ocean which, probably, releases more deep ocean carbon, which leads to more warming. But you probably end up with a rather extreme whip lash in effects. Hence the warning about very bad weather on the horizon.

      Reply
    • RE the report on Fukushima — that’s just wretched. For my own part, I’m not comfortable at all with the current nuclear reactors still running and I can certainly understand why Germany is working to shut theirs down. In relation to the previous post, sometimes it’s better just to err on the side of caution, even if it’s more ‘costly’ in terms of less energy and more investments in renewables/efficiencies. My opinion is we’re better off going that route swiftly anyway.

      Reply
  6. So, Robert – I hear that you are writing a new book. 😉 Have you considered the views of this gentleman?

    http://steadystate.org/building-a-local-movement-transition-winnipeg-embraces-the-steady-state-economy/

    Reply
  7. Colorado Bob

     /  August 30, 2014


    Post-pigeon: 100 years since most common bird’s extinction

    Mark Avery on the lessons we need to learn from the loss of the passenger pigeon – billions once flew across the US

    On 1 September 1914 a pigeon died in Cincinnati zoo, around lunchtime, and with her died her species. The pigeon’s name was Martha and her species was the passenger pigeon. Only 50 years before, passenger pigeons flew in flocks of millions across the forests of the eastern US and Canada.

    Link

    Reply
  8. Ralph

     /  August 30, 2014

    I see the 90-day Southern-Oscillation-Index continues to plummet http://www.longpaddock.qld.gov.au/seasonalclimateoutlook/southernoscillationindex/30daysoivalues/ and eye-balling the raw data http://www.longpaddock.qld.gov.au/seasonalclimateoutlook/southernoscillationindex/soidatafiles/DailySOI1887-1989Base.txt is likely to do so for another couple of weeks.

    ENSO atmospheric feedbacks finally showing some signs of life?

    Reply
    • Those blocking highs aren’t looking quite so strong as they were either. The Jet Pattern over North America appears to be in flux as well.

      Something to keep an eye on.

      Reply
  9. Colorado Bob

     /  August 30, 2014

    Temperature hiatus periods to become a ‘thing of the past’ as emissions soar

    The momentum of global warming caused by the build-up of greenhouse gases is likely to overwhelm natural cooling processes within decades, according to research by the University of NSW.

    Global temperatures have largely plateaued during the past 15 years as natural variability – including oceans absorbing more heat and volcanic activity – have acted to stall warming at the planet’s surface.

    However, such “hiatuses” are increasingly unlikely if carbon emissions continue on their present trajectory, and will be “a thing of the past” by the century’s end, according to a paper published in Geophysical Research Letters.

    “From about 2030, it’s highly unlikely that we will get one of these cooling decades,” said Nicola Maher, a UNSW PhD-candidate and lead author of the paper. “When it does cool, it will not be enough to overcome the warming.”

    Read more: Link

    Reply
    • bassman

       /  August 30, 2014

      Thanks for this one Bob!

      Reply
    • I can’t read the paper (link below to Wiley paywall), but I was able to access some of the key figures from the paper. The paper suggests that hiatus periods are almost impossible after 2030 even with volcanoes the size of pinatubo, due to overwhelming GHG forcing. This is assuming an RCP 8.5 emissions pathway. I am not sure the likelihood of this emissions scenario. Someone explain if this is the most likely BAU pathway for a painfully slow transition to solar and wind or if it is the absolute worst case scenario of emissions.

      Either way I have been getting the impression that “hiatus periods” after 2020 are very unlikely considering that we still have surface warming in the current “hiatus”.

      http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2014GL060527/abstract

      Reply
      • RCP 8.5 is the emissions scenario that leads to 8.5 watts per meter squared forcing by 2100. It is a worst case projection and one we are well on the path of fulling now. RCP 8.5 assumes no comprehensive global climate policy pushing earlier reduction of fossil fuel emission and transition to renewable energy than would occur organically. It assumes a gradual slowing in the increase of carbon emission through the 21st century, but no peak. Total emissions by end century in this scenario approach 30 gigatons carbon per year or just a little less than triple current emissions.

        RCP 6.0 assumes policies that push a peak in carbon emissions at 16-18 gt carbon per year by about 2070 (adding about 50-60% to current emissions levels). This would peak ghg forcing at 6.0 watts per meter squared (assuming no catastrophic carbon feedbacks from the global system).

        RCP 4.5 peaks emissions slightly higher than they are now by 2040 (we are probably off this trajectory without very rapid mitigation).

        RCP 2.6 is probably blown and now practically unachievable without peaking current carbon emissions over the next couple of years and also adding in solar radiation management.

        Here’s a graph showing scenarios along with current path:

        Reply
    • We see this now. The current decade should have cooled. We had slow warming instead, with very rapid warming in the ocean.

      Fantastic paper there, Bob.

      Reply
  10. Colorado Bob

     /  August 30, 2014

    Global warming is about to turn Sweden’s highest mountain into its second highest

    The snow-capped southern peak of Lapland’s Kebnekaise, in the Scandinavian Mountains, reaches 2,097.5 meters (6,881.6 feet) above sea level, making it the highest point in Sweden. But not for long.

    The 40-meter-thick glacier on top of it has been shrinking, on average, a meter a year for the past two decades. In 1901, when the southern peak was first measured, its elevation was 2,121 meters.

    By next year, scientists at the University of Stockholm predict, Kebnekaise’s northern peak—which is solid rock—will likely become the tallest spot in the country.

    The culprit? Climate change. A recent research paper (pdf) that tracked 47 years of air-temperature records in Tarfala Valley, below the Kebnekaise glacier, found a significant warming trend. The period from 1995 to 2011 was 1.08°C warmer than the period from 1965 to 1994. Eight of the ten warmest years covered by the study occurred since 1999.

    The changes are already having an impact on the mountain’s habitat. “It’s been unusually warm up there this summer, the reindeer calves are dying because their mothers aren’t getting enough water to make milk, and the herders are struggling,” Rosqvist said. “No one can remember it ever being this warm.”

    Reply
  11. Colorado Bob

     /  August 30, 2014

    I posted this at Dr. Rood’s site ( Drought Conditions Wreak Havoc On Latin America )
    A reader from Panama writes :

    Quoting 129. Xulonn:
    I retired to the cool and beautiful town of Boquete in the highlands of western Panama a little over 2.5 years ago. I live at 3,400′ elevation in the shadow of Volcan Baru, the highest mountain in the country, and about 60km from the Costa Rica border. Our rainy season runs from April into December, so I am well into my third rainy season here. When I arrived, the 5-year average for rainfall (that’s how far back the record goes at the Wunderground station at nearby Palmira Arriba) was about 185 inches per year – more than twice the average annual precipitation in the Amazon Basin.As of today, we are 73 INCHES BEHIND the cumulative average to date for the five-years before I moved here. Yes, you read that correctly – the pre-2012 five-year cumulative average for the end of August here is 107 inches, and we’re only at 34 inches as I write this. Barring a late-season event like lastyearforSeptember and October, we will likely have water supply and electricity supply problems. Here’s a graph based on the 7 year average including the much drier years of 2012 and 2013: And yet, in the isolated 7,200 elevation mountain farming region of the Cerro Punta valley on the opposite side of Volcan Baru, there was a single-day event of torrential rain two weeks. It washed out roads and bridges in the narrow canyon that is the only way in or out of the valley. That isolated disaster took eleven lives, including indigenous children living in shacks next to the stream, and the driver and passengers in a small local bus that was carried into the raging river when a section of the narrow highway collapsed. David van Harna.k.a. XulonnBoquete, Chiriqui, Panama

    http://www.wunderground.com/blog/RickyRood/comment.html?entrynum=308#yourcomment

    Reply
  12. Colorado Bob

     /  August 31, 2014
    Reply
  13. Colorado Bob

     /  August 31, 2014

    Will Climate Change Denialism Help the Russian Economy?

    MOSCOW, Aug 30 2014 (IPS) – The recent call from Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev for “tightening belts” has convinced even optimists that something is deeply wrong with the Russian economy.

    No doubt the planned tax increases (introduction of a sales tax and increases in VAT and income tax) will inflict severe damage on most businesses and their employees, if last year’s example of what happened when taxes were raised for individual entrepreneurs is anything to go by – 650,000 of them were forced to close their businesses.

    Nevertheless, it looks like some lucky people are not only going to escape the “belt-tightening” but are also about to receive some dream tax vacations and the lucky few are not farmers, nor are they in technological, educational, scientific or professional fields – it is the Russian and international oil giants involved in oil and gas projects in the Arctic and in Eastern Siberia that stand to gain.

    “In October [2013], Vladimir Putin signed a bill under which oil extraction at sea deposits will be exempt from severance tax. Moreover, VAT will not need to be paid for the sales, transportation and utilisation of the oil extracted from the sea shelf,” noted Russian newspaper Rossiiskie Nedra.

    Link

    Canada, Australia, The U.S. , join the Russians , in the fossil fuel madness. Read all of this article, the age of the Oil Mafia is here, and like that scene in the Godfather II , ” Micheal, We’re bigger than US Steel”.

    The melting of the Arctic isn’t a disaster, it’s a wish come true in their eyes. Be careful what you wish for.

    What do SarHaHa Palin, and Putin both believe in ? “Drill Baby Drill”.

    Reply
    • Fantastic article, Bob. Resource curse indeed!

      And he did miss the major Yamal floods we spotted and analyzed last year. I’ll do my best to contact him. Thanks for this.

      Reply
  14. Colorado Bob

     /  August 31, 2014

    Al Gore bought off the Russians –

    However, it is not just the United Nations that has been warning against the burning of fossil fuels due to the related high climate risks. In 2005, Russia’s own meteorology service Roshydromet issued its prognosis of climate change and the consequences for Russia, stating that the rate of climate change in Russia is two times faster than the world’s average.

    Roshydromet predicted a rapid increase in both the frequency and strength of extreme climate events – including floods, hurricanes, droughts, and wildfires. The number of such events has almost doubled during the last 15 years, and represent not only an economic threat but also a real threat to humans’ lives and their well-being,

    Link

    Reply
  15. Colorado Bob

     /  August 31, 2014

    Robert, you’ll what to make contact with Mikhail Matveev. He’s never seen your posts on the Sino/ Russian floods last year . If he had, he would have used them.

    Remember, two are better than one.

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  August 31, 2014

      He’s never seen your posts on the Sino/ Russian floods last year .

      No one ever covered these floods , except crappy Russian web sites. And Chinese crappy web sites. Yet this was an epic flood , not seen in thousands of years. I know, I found the mud flowing into ocean .

      Reply
      • Colorado Bob

         /  August 31, 2014

        And you saw it all , And no one saw it like like you . And it never left this blog . As a total story.

        It was a great piece of work , and the world still as no idea how bad it was. and what a complete job you did of covering it. But I do , and you need to contact Mikhail Matveev.

        Reply
        • Thanks for this, Bob.🙂

          I’m still scratching my head over the MSM’s failed coverage of the Amur floods. This year, the coverage, overall, has been a little better. But it’s still in a vacuum without broader context.

          Someone needs to set up an agency to track down all the extreme weather events of the past 10 years and compare it to weather mid-20th century. I could try, but the pace of daily additions makes the task extraordinarily challenging.

      • Bill H.

         /  August 31, 2014

        Bob, Thank you for bringing the July 2014 floods in Russia to our attention. Here in the UK the massive Bosnia/Serbia flooding earlier this year and the floods in Bulgaria did receive very limited coverage, but I’ve seen nothing on Russia.

        Reply
  16. JoeT

     /  August 31, 2014

    Meanwhile the 30 day average Southern Oscillation Index has dropped below -10 and continues to fall. Might this mean instead that the El Nino may occur in the next few months?

    Reply
  17. Gerald Spezio

     /  August 31, 2014

    Sam Carana at Arctic News has a new piece about the increasing potential for massive Arctic methane release from very vulnerable tectonic & seismic formations.

    Reply
  18. Bernard

     /  August 31, 2014

    rain in Denmark today:

    http://www.dr.dk/Nyheder/Billedserier/2014/08/31102149.htm

    Sweden, also, but couldn’t find a report yet.

    Reply
    • The Skåne region of southern Sweden was hit suddenly by extreme rains on Sunday morning, with houses flooded, buses evacuated, and people having to swim to safety from their cars.
      Malmö, southern Sweden, received 20 millimetres of rain in under an hour on Sunday morning. One area near the town of Falsterbo rececived as much as 43 millimetres of rain during the night and early morning.
      The agency has now issued a class 1 warning for all of Skåne, saying that up to 50 additional millimetres may pour down on Sunday.
      http://www.thelocal.se/20140831/flash-floods-cause-chaos-in-southern-sweden

      Reply
  19. Colorado Bob

     /  August 31, 2014

    Sea levels around Antarctica have been rising a third faster than the global average, a clear sign of high meltwater runoff from the continent’s icesheet, scientists said on Sunday.

    Satellite data from 1992 to 2011 found the sea surface around Antarctica’s coast rose by around eight centimetres (3.2 inches) in total compared to a rise of six cm for the average of the world’s oceans, they said.

    The local increase is accompanied by a fall in salinity at the sea surface, as detected by research ships.

    These dramatic changes can only be explained by an influx of freshwater from melting ice, warned the study.

    Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2014-08-antarctic-sea-level-faster-global.html#jCp

    Reply
  20. bassman

     /  September 1, 2014

    And we have a second “no more hiatus likely to occur” paper. Key quote from abstract (really need to pay for a nature subscription).

    “Using a climate model that overrides tropical wind stress anomalies with observations for 1958–2012, we show that decadal-mean anomalies of global SAT referenced to the period 1961–1990 are changed by 0.11, 0.13 and −0.11 °C in the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s, respectively, without variation in human-induced radiative forcing. They account for about 47%, 38% and 27% of the respective temperature change. ”

    Masahiro Watanabe, Hideo Shiogama, Hiroaki Tatebe, Michiya Hayashi, Masayoshi Ishii, Masahide Kimoto
    Nature Climate Change
    Nature Publishing Group
    Aug 31, 2014

    http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nclimate2355.html

    Reply
  21. We’ve talked about this subject before, but:

    ‘Eating less meat is “essential” to ensure future demand for food can be met and “dangerous” climate change avoided, experts have warned.

    A study by leading university researchers in Cambridge and Aberdeen found food production alone could exceed targets for greenhouse gas emissions in 2050 if current trends continue.

    Population growth and the global shift towards “meat-heavy Western diets” has meant increasing agricultural yields will not meet projected food demands for the expected 9.6bn world population, it said.

    Increased deforestation, fertiliser use, and livestock methane emissions are likely to cause greenhouse gas emissions from food production to rise by almost 80%, a study by Cambridge and Aberdeen universities has found.

    Lead researcher Bojana Bajzelj, from the University of Cambridge’s department of engineering, said: “Agricultural practices are not necessarily at fault here — but our choice of food is.

    “It is imperative to find ways to achieve global food security without expanding crop or pastureland.

    “Food production is a main driver of biodiversity loss and a large contributor to climate change and pollution, so our food choices matter.

    “Cutting food waste and moderating meat consumption in more balanced diets, are the essential ’no-regrets’ options.”

    According to the study in Nature Climate Change, current trends in food production will mean that, by 2050, cropland will have expanded by 42% and fertiliser use increased by 45% over 2009 levels.

    A further tenth of the world’s pristine tropical forests would disappear over the next 35 years, it said.

    The study’s authors tested a scenario where all countries were assumed to have an “average” balanced diet – without excessive consumption of sugars, fats, and meat products.’
    http://www.irishexaminer.com/world/eating-less-meat-essential-to-saving-the-planet-284263.html

    Reply
  22. Gerald Spezio

     /  September 1, 2014

    Guy McPherson’s site, Nature Bats Last, has deteriorated into a grotesque intellectual farce.

    Reply
  23. Gerald Spezio

     /  September 1, 2014

    … or helium bags.

    I always respected him, & I still respect & like him.

    He was among the first academics to speak the truth.

    He has been dealing with this ugly madness for a long time, & it has to take a toll.

    Reply
  24. Mark from New England

     /  September 1, 2014

    Chris Hedge’s take on the September 21 climate march in NYC:

    http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/the_last_gasp_of_climate_change_liberals_20140831

    I tend to agree with him – these polite, permitted marches seem to have little real effect, though if large enough they may cause some of the power-elite to take notice.

    Reply
  25. Colorado Bob

     /  September 1, 2014

    Sioux City, IA (ABC9 News) – The final August monthly rainfall total at the Sioux Gateway Airport was 10.12 inches. This breaks the previous record of 9.07 inches set back in 2007.

    The Summer rainfall – including the months of June, July, and August – totals to 30.38 inches of rain at the airport. This breaks the previous Summer seasonal record of 20.13 inches set back in 2010. This summer included 2 of the 4 wettest months ever recorded since data started to be collected back in 1889. June 2014 qualifies as the wettest month ever while August 2014 is the 4th wettest of all time.

    Link

    Reply
  26. Colorado Bob

     /  September 1, 2014

    Heavy rain fell in southern Louisiana on Saturday morning, creating widespread flooding conditions.

    By early Saturday afternoon, Lake Charles, Louisiana has seen over 7.5″ of rain since midnight! In fact, 2.16″ of rain fell in the 4 a.m. hour and then another 2.64″ of rain fell in the 8 a.m. hour. This broke the daily rainfall record and today’s date ranks in seventh place for daily rainfall amounts.

    The National Weather Service in Lake Charles said that this rainfall is a 20 to 25 year event, meaning that this amount of rain can be expected every 20 to 25 years.

    Link

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  September 1, 2014

      “As a system nears a tipping point it moves to the extremes there it tends to get stuck, before wildly swinging back to the other extreme.”

      Tallahassee set their driest summer (defined as June, July and August) on record, shattering their previous record of 10.89 inches set in 2011. Only 8.99 inches was measured over the three-month period in Florida’s capital city.

      However, if you head to south Florida, Miami is within reach of having its wettest summer, with rainfall of around 14 inches above average from June through August. ……………………………………. A holiday weekend soaking pushed Lake Charles, Louisiana, to its record wettest June-August (36.90 inches), crushing the previous record by over three inches (33.31 inches in 1989). Incredibly, Lake Charles only picked up 9.48 inches during that same period in 2013.

      http://www.wunderground.com/news/august-summer-2014-records-20140829

      I find these Lake Charles, Louisiana, stats interesting. This 3 month record ( 36.90 inches ) , was set without a tropical system to juice the numbers. And the 9.48 inches for the same period last year surely was the lowest number on record.

      If I was David Rose, I could use this to say nature is in balance. But I’m not, and it looks like to me, nature is drunken sailor on the interstate.

      Reply
  27. Colorado Bob

     /  September 1, 2014

    The missing heat ?

    As so many have said before the heat isn’t missing. Heat does work , and the clearest example of this, is water cycle running at a new tempo. Take the new 3 month record from Sioux City, IA . Heat, not cold drove that water vapor off the oceans to set that amazing new record.

    30.38 inches of rain at the airport. This breaks the previous Summer seasonal record of 20.13 inches set back in 2010.

    A 4 year old record was broken by a 33 percent increase. Over a 3 month period. That is heat working in the oceans driving ever more water vapor into the atmosphere.

    The same heat engine was work this weekend in other places besides Lake Charles. –

    Heavy rain has poured across parts of Scandinavia over the past few days.

    The city of Malmo in southern Sweden reported 102mm of rain in the 24 hours up until midnight on Monday, 20mm of which fell in under an hour.

    In Copenhagen, 120mm was reported to have fallen in about three hours.

    http://www.aljazeera.com/weather/2014/09/flooding-hits-sweden-denmark-2014918535223494.html

    Reply
  28. Mark from New England

     /  September 2, 2014

    “With This Decade’s Climate Policy, Expect More Warming Than if Nothing Was Done at All”

    Provocative article at Truthout here: http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/25838-with-this-decades-climate-policy-expect-more-warming-than-if-nothing-was-done-at-all

    Reply
    • This article could well be used as a dictionary definition for failed logic.

      Reply
      • Mark from New England

         /  September 2, 2014

        Robert,

        Please explain its shortcomings in a few sentences if you have time. It would help me, and perhaps other readers here to sharpen our discernment.

        Thanks. Mark

        Reply
        • It’s rather simple. Coal is like global warming heroine. Continued burning makes the situation worse, but cessation of burning results in a painful withdrawal in which the portion of warming that coal burning masks through aerosol emissions comes back to haunt us. The longer we burn coal, the bigger the overburden and the worse the backlash.

          The article essentially confuses these facts and comes across as promoting continued coal burning and ignores the need for rational and rapid mitigation.

          So for some facts:

          Coal burning, alone, accounts for more than half of the global carbon emission. It is the worst source for overall CO2 heat forcing.

          Coal burning also pumps out aerosols that block incoming solar radiation, temporarily masking some of the heat forcing that is already in the air.

          Overall, negative heat forcing from coal-based aerosols is probably in the range of 0.6 to 1.3 watts per meter squared. While the global total is about 2.35 watts per meter squared with the aerosol cooling effect and about 3.5 watts per meter squared without it.

          Cumulative positive ghg forcing from coal burning is probably in the range of 1.8 to 2 watts per meter squared.

          So what happens if we stop burning coal now? No additional carbon hits the atmosphere but the aerosols fall out and we lose the temporary cooling and we end up with the full current ghg forcing impact (3.5 watts per meter squared) which is enough to warm the Earth by 1.9 C this century and about 3.8 C long-term.

          But what happens if we keep burning coal? Well, the greenhouse gas overburden grows and the temporary cooling aerosols remain in place such that net warming continues and the back-lash increases for any point when you decide to stop burning coal.

          So, in the next couple of decades, it’s not difficult to envision a 3.3 watts per meter squared net positive forcing and a 4.8 watts per meter squared total cumulative forcing without the negative aerosol feedback if we continue burning coal.

          So the continued burning has already overwhelmed the sulfate parasol cooling effect of past decades and the hangover/backlash for cessation of burning is even worse.

          This is what James Hansen calls the Faustian Bargain. You end up with some masked warming now but you have hell to pay warming later.

          In other words, continuing to emit carbon through coal burning, or other fossil fuel burning overwhelms the negative aerosol effect in a couple of decades and generates an even larger heating overburden once emissions do cease.

          So continuing to burn coal is a very, very bad idea.

          Now, if the article were responsible (and I see it as being grossly irresponsible) it might have said that if you shut down coal plants you might want to add some form of solar radiation management to account for the aerosol cooling effect and reduce/mitigate the backlash/hangover period.

          But, as is, the article basically promotes more coal burning which pushes us to an ever-worsening warming situation. In essence — the logic of a heroine addict.

      • Mark from New England

         /  September 2, 2014

        Thanks for that detailed explanation Robert. Perhaps you should post it in the comments section of this article at Truthout, or write the author. Though he may be mislead or mistaken, I don’t think he’s coming from a denialist or pro-coal perspective.

        Reply
        • There seems to be quite a lot of confusion these days. But, in essence, the solution is simple. Stop fossil fuel burning and carbon emissions to the atmosphere as rapidly as possible. Additional mitigations may well be needed but you can’t get anywhere without that. And if you’re looking at carbon emissions, coal burning is the worst actor.

      • Mark from New England

         /  September 2, 2014

        Yes, whenever I hear the phrase “clean coal”, I want to go ballistic. Especially when the supposedly better Democrats throw it around.

        I hear that Scott Brown, now running for a NH Senate seat, recently stated that he doesn’t believe in AGW, even though he believed in it when he ran for Senate in MA! That Koch Brothers money has an insidious effect on politicians. If I have a chance (and the guts) I may speak my mind to him if he speaks close to my location. This kind of behavior should disqualify anyone from even running for US Senate.

        Reply
        • Given the current temptations, I’m thinking the political candidates telling the truth about climate change are more likely to have broader integrity.

          So I’m for Jeanne Shaheen all the way.

          No surprise Brown is playing loosey goosey for Koch money. I don’t think the guy has found a shiney pair of boots yet that he wasn’t willing to lick.

      • Mark from New England

         /  September 2, 2014

        Yes, I agree about voting for Shaheen. She’s not perfect, but she does have a pretty good environmental voting record, according to the LCV. Scott Brown is an opportunistic politician who likely holds no firm convictions (can also be said of many Dems as well), but he will align with the Neo-Fascist Party as that’s what he’s got to do to please his far-right corporate masters. Scary what’s happening in America, the supposed land of Freedom, Democracy and all that Jazz.

        Reply
    • Apneaman

       /  September 2, 2014

      Sound like someone is suggesting we keep burning carbon so those not yet born can take the full hit…while we use up whats left of the resources. I’m sure they will understand.

      Reply
  29. Andy (at work)

     /  September 2, 2014

    Colorado Bob,

    I saw you mention Mikhail Matveev above. Do you have his email address or contact info by chance? He used to work for me in Southern California in the late 90’s, early 2000’s. Great guy, very smart. Lost contact with him when he moved back east ~ 12 years ago.

    Reply
  30. More than a months worth of rain has fallen in just 24 hours across parts of the Balkans.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/weather/feeds/29031240

    Reply
  31. Apneaman

     /  September 2, 2014

    Separate studies suggest current “pause” in global warming likely the last

    http://phys.org/news/2014-09-current-global.html

    Reply
    • Mark from New England

       /  September 2, 2014

      Thank Nature! Perhaps turning up the heat slowly will make the frogs jump… er, wait…

      Reply
  32. Colorado Bob

     /  September 3, 2014

    FAIRBANKS — The wettest summer in the history of Fairbanks continues to show no sign of drying out. The opening hours of September 2014 brought about 2.24 inches of rain, the most in any 24-hour period in any September for as long as records have been kept, all the way back to the early 1900s.

    Link

    Reply

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