Summer El Nino on The Way; Long Range Models Are Still Freaking Out

Well, it’s official. According to NOAA’s May 14 update, we are now looking at a 90 percent chance that El Nino conditions prevail through Northern Hemisphere Summer and a greater than 80 percent chance El Nino will last throughout all of 2015:

El Nino Potential through 2015

(Climate Prediction Center’s ENSO probability forecast shows 90 percent chance of El Nino through June, July and August and a greater than 80 percent chance that El Nino continues on through to the end of this year. Image source: CPC/IRI.)

What this means, especially when we add in likely record warm global atmospheric temperatures (due to an excessive burning of fossil fuels by human beings) throughout the El Nino event period, is some rather odd, and probably extreme summer weather.

For the US, it means an increasing likelihood of heavy precipitation events from the southern plains states through the desert southwest. Storm track intensification through the Pacific to North America means that extreme rainfall events are a distinct possibility for states like Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, Arizona, Nevada, and New Mexico. California may even see some abnormal summer rainfall, taking a bit of the edge off the current drought.

Moving southward, we find drier conditions for equatorial South America and warmer than normal conditions for much of Brazil and Chile. Northern Hemisphere Summer El Nino also enhances the risk of drought throughout Australia, Southeast Asia, and India. In particular, India is vulnerable to monsoonal disruption due to emergence of El Nino during summer time. Enhanced precipitation near the date line also can spur increased cyclone development for the Western Pacific.

Northern Hemisphere teleconnections

(A geographic representation of major prevailing summer El Nino teleconnections. Image source: Berkley.)

These sets of atmospheric changes are what we could generally expect from a typical El Nino emerging throughout Northern Hemisphere summer. But we’re not really dealing with normal conditions. We’re dealing with global temperatures in the range of +0.8 degrees C above 20th Century averages and + 1 C above 1880s averages. As such, we should probably look to the margins for potential added impact.

Two areas in particular come to mind when considering such outliers. The first region is a zone from Ukraine through to Western Russia. Under added human heat forcing and conditions prevalent during summer El Ninos, this region shows an increased likelihood of drought and heatwave. A vulnerability that became particularly apparent during the El Nino of 2009-2010. Drought conditions are somewhat widespread for that region already this year. In addition, atmospheric high pressure development in this vulnerable area would now, with the enhanced surface warming due to human heat forcing, telegraph into the Arctic through a vulnerable zone near Yamal and the Kara and Laptev Seas. This would particularly enhance snow melt, permafrost thaw, and sea ice melt throughout this region. So with El Nino now a summertime certainty, this broader area certainly bears watching.

El Nino Teleconnection

(El Nino teleconnection to warming in Northwestern North America through to the Arctic Ocean and in regions of Central, Western and Northern Asia are possible this summer. Above is a GFS model  forecast temperature anomaly summary provided by The University of Maine’s Climate Reanalyzer.)

The second region to look out for is the zone ranging from Northwest Canada through Alaska and on into the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas. Summer El Ninos tend to enhance warming for this region. When adding in an already persistent heating throughout 2015 winter and spring, the area will fall under greatly heightened risk of severe wildfires and extreme and early snow and sea ice melt. Early extreme wildfires in British Columbia combined with rapid sea ice recession already ongoing through the Beaufort and Chukchi may well be indications that such a trend has already asserted.

Some Long Range Models Are Still Freaking Out Over a Potential Monster El Nino Later This Year

Moving beyond summer, we find a wide range of model consensus estimates showing strong El Nino by fall and winter of this year. NINO 3.4 departures from an average of global model ensembles compiled by Weather Underground hit a value of +1.7 C by September. A level just below the so-called Super El Nino Threshold of +1.8 C.

NOAA CFSv2 ensembles have continued to ramp higher. Weighted seasonal means have now spiked to +2.75 C for the key NINO 3.4 region with unweighted ensembles hitting +3 C for October, November and December. Weighted monthly means have spiked to +3 C anomaly for November while unweighted anomaly values for the same month have proceeded off the charts to an implied +3.5 C:

Nino 3.4 Monthly Anomalies May 15

(Some El Nino forecast models, like the one above, are really freaking out about the potential for a monster event by the end of this year. This NOAA model is basically off the charts. Image source: NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center.)

Should these predicted values emerge, they will literally blow the 1998-1999 Super El Nino out of the water. A monster event to shatter all records.

It’s likely that the currently extreme subsurface temperatures due to a very strong warm Kelvin Wave as well as continued powerful west wind back-bursts have kicked these models into freak out mode. And it’s certainly an issue worth keeping an eye on.

But it’s also worthwhile to consider that global deep ocean and atmospheric dynamics will push to cool equatorial Pacific waters during September, which would tend to tamp down warming extremes. A factor that many models, which measure the shallow water zone primarily, tend to miss.

Dr. Kevin Treberth, a top expert on El Nino and Ocean Temperature dynamics, notes to Weather Underground in a recent interview that:

“What happens after this Kelvin wave response is all over the place. This El Niño is being fought by the annual cycle, which tries to make SSTs cold by Sept-Oct.  That tendency keeps the warmest waters back near the International Date Line and cuts off the Bjerknes feedback.  If the SSTs develop to be big enough to overcome the annual cycle tendencies, then the Bjerknes feedback can kick in.”

For reference, Bjerknes feedback involves storm formation and subsequent west wind backbursts east of the Date Line and on toward South America. A feedback that tends to trap and channel ocean surface heat into the relevant El Nino zones and generally enhance warm sea surface temperature anomalies:

Bjerknes Feedback

(Graphic illustration of Bjerknes feedback showing sea surface temperature anomalies in the color measure and direction of wind flow indicated by black lines. It’s feature influenced by a general shoving of the Walker Cell eastward [implied but not shown]. Image source: ENSO as an Integrating Concept of Earth Science.)

So, at this point, we have a lock on a weak to moderate El Nino event continuing through this summer. After that time, an unprecedentedly warm Kelvin Wave will do battle with a seasonal tendency for cooling in the Eastern Equatorial Pacific. And if it wins out, we may see something never before recorded in the whole of the Earth Sciences — which would be very bad news for rates of global surface temperature increase this year, along with a huge number of other issues.

If not, we likely have a mid ocean El Nino through Fall and Autumn. And that may be bad news for a California desperately in need of drought relief.

Links:

NOAA’s May 14 El Nino Update

CPC/IRI

Berkley

Climate Reanalyzer

Weather Underground

ENSO as an Integrating Concept of Earth Science

Leave a comment

193 Comments

  1. Meanwhile, Antarctica is in the news again. From: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/05/15/antarctic-ice-shelf-disin_n_7291782.html

    “The [NASA] study, published online [yesterday] in the journal Earth and Planetary Science Letters, was based on airborne surveys and radar data.

    The study’s lead scientist, Ala Khazendar, said analysis of the data reveals that a widening rift in Larsen B will eventually break it apart completely, probably around the year 2020.

    Once that happens, glaciers held in place by the ice shelf will slip into the ocean at a faster rate and contribute to rising sea levels, scientists say.”

    Reply
  2. Thanks Robert for keeping us up to date!

    Reply
  3. JPL

     /  May 15, 2015

    I found an illuminating article on the evolving state of Siberian peat bogs at Siberian Times. Amazing photos, disturbing findings.

    http://siberiantimes.com/ecology/opinion/features/f0099-new-warning-about-climate-change-linked-to-peat-bogs

    John

    Reply
    • Bob also linked this over in the last thread. Really disturbing findings.

      Reply
      • JPL

         /  May 15, 2015

        Ha – should have known Bob beat me to it!🙂

        So, in other awesome news, Seattle is now home to the Shell Polar Destroyer rig that is headed back up to the Chukchi Sea this summer. I saw that sucker up close docked in Port Angeles a few weeks ago. I have to say, sanding there on the pier holding my toddler in my arms, I felt an immense sense of dread, particularly for what lies ahead in his lifetime. Sigh… The thing that really kills me is our President. Without his administration’s OK, there is no drilling in the Arctic. He claims to recognize the dangers of climate change, but actions speak louder than lip service:

        “President Obama weighed in Thursday on Shell’s offshore Arctic aspirations, saying experts have concluded that the corporation has developed strong safeguards.

        Obama said his administration stalled Shell’s application for exploratory drilling in the Chukchi Sea until it received necessary assurances. The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy and Management approved the application Monday after reviewing thousands of comments from the public, Native organizations, and state and federal agencies.”

        from http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/protesters-launching-kayaks-to-unwelcome-oil-rig-to-seattle/

        John

        Reply
  4. – Meanwhile drought expands in PNW along with its snowpack deficit.

    Washington governor: Drought has dramatically worsened, declares state emergency

    Washington Gov. Jay Inslee declared a statewide drought emergency Friday, citing a historically low snowpack and dwindling rivers.

    No mandatory rationing has been ordered, but because conditions recently worsened, Inslee took the step to declare the emergency.

    “Drought has deepened dramatically over the past few weeks,” Inslee said at a Friday briefing. “Conditions are expected to worsen over time.”

    http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-washington-drought-20150515-story.html

    Reply
    • Hurricane Ridge photos of snowpack (center) 2013 & 2015 — very telling.

      ‘On May 1, the Natural Resources Conservation Service found 11 snow sites in Washington that are snow free for the first time ever. Of the 98 snow sites, the Conservation Service measured in Washington, 66 of them are currently snow free.

      The U.S. Geological Survey reported in April that 78 percent of streams statewide were running below or much below normal. Some were already at historic lows.’

      kirotv com news 051515

      Reply
  5. Syd Bridges

     /  May 16, 2015

    Thank you for keeping us so well informed, Robert.

    I guess that the only solace is that ENSO predictions are not very reliable at this time of year, so we may dodge the bullet this time. Personally, I would prefer to avoid the shootout rather than duck the bullets.

    Reply
  6. eric smith

     /  May 16, 2015

    Robert,
    Your work has been stellar.
    Please contact me as the time is nigh.
    Eric

    Jnerics@gmail.com

    Reply
  7. Colorado Bob

     /  May 16, 2015

    Another climate change “winner” –

    Climate change boosts a migratory insect pest

    Date:
    May 13, 2015
    Source:
    University of Maryland
    Summary:
    The migratory potato leafhopper causes untold millions of dollars in damage every year. A study by entomologists suggests that climate warming could be making this problem worse. Using data that span more than six decades, the team found that potato leafhoppers arrive an average of 10 days earlier than in the early 1950s, and their infestations are more severe in the warmest years.

    Link

    Reply
    • Spike

       /  May 17, 2015

      More winners in this excellent article:

      In recent years we’ve seen a spike in vector-borne diseases which are also spreading to new regions.

      Here are a few that we’ve been tracking:

      Appearance of Chikungunya in the Caribbean
      Locally acquired Dengue in southern Florida, southern France, Italy, Portugal, and Japan
      West Nile Virus spreading across North America and Europe
      Malaria being transmitted at higher altitudes
      Lyme Disease spreading further north into Canada
      Japanese Encephalitis outbreaks intensifying in northern India

      https://www.iamat.org/blog/5-must-read-articles-on-climate-change-and-infectious-diseases/

      Reply
  8. Colorado Bob

     /  May 16, 2015

    THE CANADIAN PRESS

    VANCOUVER — British Columbia’s premier is calling a wildfire that has already scorched more than 130 square kilometres in the central Interior “alarming,” and is warning residents of a “bad forest fire season” ahead.

    Christy Clark was in Prince George Friday to get an update on the Little Bobtail Lake fire, which was reported May 9. ……………………… “There has not been a fire this big, this early in the year since 1983, and this fire’s bigger,” said Clark. She called the fire “alarming” and said it was likely caused by humans.

    Link

    Reply
  9. Colorado Bob

     /  May 16, 2015

    Aqua/MODIS
    2015/133
    05/13/2015
    05:25 UTC

    Fires and burn scars near Lake Baikal, Russia
    (false color)

    Reply
  10. Colorado Bob

     /  May 16, 2015

    Aqua/MODIS
    2015/134
    05/14/2015
    21:00 UTC

    Little Bobtail Lake Fire, British Columbia

    Reply
  11. Robert, I would like your opinion on this;
    http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nclimate2643.html
    and here;
    https://nicholas.duke.edu/news/carbon-emissions-peatlands-may-be-less-expected
    Apparently as peatlands move into drought particular high-phenolic content vegetation can move in and bind the carbon.
    The point being not that we shouldn’t stop the madness, but whether the madness will kick off a cycle that will wipe us all out.
    From your studies does it appear that Russia and Siberia is on average moving towards semi-permanent drought conditions?

    Reply
    • Unfortunately, see an average increase in precipitation for Siberia. Problem is, you get these meridional zones of warming and drought during spring and summer after heavy winter precip. So the foliage gets a huge initial burst after thaw, providing fuel for the burn zones. After the fires, the particulate matter seeds the clouds, and then you get these amazing deluges.

      But, overall, most models see precip increasing for broader Siberia. In any case, I think the conclusions on dry conditions are a bit too narrow, focusing only on microbe activity. You have quite a bit of available carbon and numerous mechanisms for release.

      Reply
      • Yes looks like the precipitation does appear to be increasing. In following that up I came across this;
        http://www.sciencepoles.org/interview/what-is-happening-to-carbon-in-arctic-tundra-permafrost
        Which is certainly interesting, they haven’t seen a carbon loss “But the fact that we’ve determined that the active layer of the permafrost has become deeper and the decomposers have become more active over the past 20 years is already a critical finding. The amount of carbon per unit volume of soil tends to increase in the deeper parts of the active layer of permafrost. Activating that soil carbon as the permafrost thaws may eventually lead to a major release of carbon into the atmosphere.”
        It’s a good read.

        Reply
      • Dave Person

         /  May 18, 2015

        Hi Paul,
        I understand your point but let me give an example of why integrating results and conclusions into a larger context can be critical. You mention seeding the tundra landscape with high-phenolic plants to sequester carbon emissions from thawing permafrost soils. A consequence is that many phenolic compounds in plants inhibit digestion by mammalian herbivores. If your planting scheme succeeded in changing the plant composition by increasing the high phenolic plants, you also may be saying goodbye to caribou and moose as well (although moose likely would tolerate it better than caribou because of their larger body size and ability to digest poorer quality forage). Maybe that is an acceptable trade off given the consequences of those emissions but it may still need to be addressed.

        dave

        Reply
        • Your right, this is an area where one should tread carefully. From dying poplars in China through to cane toads in Australia, messing with ecology can sometimes have far reaching implications. For example, The interesting consequence on increasing soil phenolic content could actually be on EEM fungi.
          “In April of 2013, scientists first discovered that mushrooms could be major carbon sinks, sequestering between 40 and 70 percent of the carbon in soil, and burying that carbon deeper down in the soil than if it were coming from the decomposing leaves and needles on a forest floor.”
          http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2014/01/09/3137501/eem-fungus-climate/
          Increased phenols inhibits the growth of some mushrooms. However, that fungi increased its tolerance when the growth media was cellulose (which is found in peatlands).
          http://nopr.niscair.res.in/handle/123456789/24482

          So I get the concern for caribou and reindeer grazing, but they already comprise lichens as part of their diet. Lichens accumulate phenol which apparently is not absorbed by the animal at all.
          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20033122

    • Dave Person

       /  May 16, 2015

      Hi Paul,
      Ah Toolik. I know the place. The problem with those studies is they compartmentalize one or two processes without integrating their conclusions into a larger system. What happens when the peat burns because of warmer temps and dryness? What happens when big chunks of the landscape sink and others rise as if an earthquake occurred because of thawing permafrost, rapidly exposing facets of soil long buried? What happens when deluges erode stream and river banks exposing more long buried soils? My advice is to accept their results as describing one more process at work but take their larger conclusions about the effects of melting permafrost on carbon emmissions with a grain of salt.

      dave

      Reply
      • I admit that I am in this for the science. Good and bad I see it all as complex processes at work. Some people focus on the positive feedbacks, which I can’t blame them because this is surely going to impact us severely.
        However, there is a couple of reasons to also look at the negative feedbacks:
        If they can be enhanced they might mitigate some of the damage. For example, would a seeding campaign for high-phenolic plants lock in some of the carbon?
        If we have a balanced view of positive and negative feedbacks then we are better positioned to act strategically for the benefit of our children’s futures.

        Reply
    • Dave Person

       /  May 18, 2015

      Hi Paul,
      You are correct about caribou but the key is that the diet of most ungulates must contain a balance of compounds. Shifting that balance by changing plant composition has consequences. Moose, for example, seem to need tannin in their diets (which is why many populations key in on willow), but not too much. Taking this discussion one step further, if a change in plant composition reduces the nutritional value of the landscape, caribou and moose may respond by lower density, lower reproduction, or both. In that case, they are less resilient to predators such as wolves and grizzly bears (which are now invading the tundra in greater numbers). Bears and wolves do not necessarily change their numbers in synch with their prey. That is particularly true of bears who are not obligate predators like wolves. The result is increased “top down” forcing on the ungulate population. The next step, is that indigenous subsistence hunters will be alarmed at the greater impact of predation and lobby government agencies to conduct predator control (killing bears and wolves). This brings me back to original point about the soil research. It is no doubt work and illuminates an important ecological process that may be a negative feedback. As a solution or key influence on total carbon emissions, you have to place the process in context, and context is everything.

      dave

      Reply
      • Dave, you make very valid points. The unknowns are certainly large.
        Normally what happens before a modification program is that they isolate the environment. A good example (amongst a lot of terrible failures) was in Australia a moth, Cactoblastis cactorum, was introduced in 1926 to control the introduced Prickly Pear. This was perhaps the greatest success of all biological control attempts anywhere in the world. The key being that the moth had been extensively tested to make sure it would not harm any Australian native plants.
        Ultimately it is probably a mute point because the high phenolic plants will be spreading regardless. Such as Mountain Crowberry (Empetrum hermaphroditum) which is native to the area.
        If that carbon is not locked in, then the Caribou are guaranteed to be drastically affected.

        Reply
  12. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 16, 2015

    Something that comes to mind is the stored energy potential in respect to El Nino. Eventually, El Nino breaches the fall / winter push back. It simply has to do so eventually. Until it does, energy (heat) continues to store in the Pacific.

    An analogy like an earthquake, one hopes for many small tremors as opposed to one biggie (both releasing the energy).

    Could the same be true here? Unless the stored heat can seep out or be emitted in numerous normal El Ninos, could the net stored energy eventually cause a super El Nino?

    Reply
    • Exactly, Andy. That’s a huge concern. Since 2013 we’ve been getting these strong spring Kelvin Waves. The summer to autumn trend crushed the Kelvin Wave in 2013, when Hansen was supposedly ‘proven wrong’ in his El Niño prediction. Then, come 2014, the ocean heat makes another big run for escape. This time tamped down again, but not enough to prevent a weak El Niño come March. But then we have this third massive Kelvin Wave.

      The issue, as you hint, is one of excess energy in the ocean and an atmospheric lag. Is a moderate El Niño enough to rebalance? Or do we eventually override the natural seasonal variability in the ocean SST cycle and end up with something quite extreme?

      The other point is that Kelvin Wave initiation during spring isn’t really a typical aspect of a strong El Niño. But we have three years now with the same feature. This may be a sign of a more permanent energy balance change in the Pacific. Possibly one that is moreso a feature of a warming world.

      Lots of speculation here, but something to think about.

      Reply
      • Andy in San Diego

         /  May 16, 2015

        Perhaps this is the new face of “Neutral”.

        Reply
      • Hi, Robert. From my POV, I favor “… a more permanent energy balance change in the Pacific.”
        We have a warm and relatively ice-free Arctic, and a firmly entrenched RRR, etc. exerting their influences.
        I have seen, up close, many harsh and unprecedented changes taking place along the Pacific Coast. I find it hard to believe things will ever revert to the healthy norm it once was.

        Reply
    • JPL

       /  May 18, 2015

      Andy, here is interesting article on where some of that stored Pacific heat may be going:

      http://www.climatecentral.org/news/indian-ocean-heat-19003

      John

      Reply
  13. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 16, 2015

    Check out the Mackenzie delta and outflow on this daily concentration map. The river looks like it is delivering warmer water, thus opening up the ice off the delta. It almost looks like one can see the “flow” under the ice as well from the river run off towards Alaska and into the archipelago.

    2012 repeat? (I think it was 2012 when the river flowed pretty toasty water into the delta and chewed through the ice quite quickly. I think it was 2012 but could be off on that part).

    Reply
  14. Colorado Bob

     /  May 16, 2015

    NASA study shows Antarctica’s Larsen B ice shelf nearing its final act

    “What is really surprising about Larsen B is how quickly the changes are taking place,” Khazendar said. “Change has been relentless.”

    The remnant’s main tributary glaciers are named Leppard, Flask and Starbuck—the latter two after characters in the novel Moby Dick. The glaciers’ thicknesses and flow speeds changed only slightly in the first couple of years following the 2002 collapse, leading researchers to assume they remained stable. The new study revealed, however, that Leppard and Flask glaciers have thinned by 65-72 feet (20-22 meters) and accelerated considerably in the intervening years. The fastest-moving part of Flask Glacier had accelerated 36 percent by 2012 to a flow speed of 2,300 feet (700 meters) a year—comparable to a car accelerating from 55 to 75 mph.

    Flask’s acceleration, while the remnant has been weakening, may be just a preview of what will happen when the remnant breaks up completely. After the 2002 Larsen B collapse, the glaciers behind the collapsed part of the shelf accelerated as much as eightfold – comparable to a car accelerating from 55 to 440 mph.

    The third and smallest glacier, Starbuck, has changed little. Starbuck’s channel is narrow compared with those of the other glaciers, and strongly anchored to the bedrock, which, according to authors of the study, explains its comparative stability.

    Read more at: phys.org

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  May 16, 2015

      Antarctic ice shelf could be gone within a decade

      Just 100 miles from Argentina’s Esperanza Base :

      Scientists have measured what is likely the highest temperature ever on Antarctica: 63.5 degrees Fahrenheit (17.5 Celsius).

      The measurements were made last Tuesday at Argentina’s Esperanza Base, on the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, according to the meteorological website Weather Underground.

      Map

      Reply
      • Colorado Bob

         /  May 16, 2015

        upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/f6/Antpen-en.png

        Reply
  15. Reblogged this on jpratt27.

    Reply
  16. Colorado Bob

     /  May 16, 2015

    The awful truth about climate change no one wants to admit

    There has always been an odd tenor to discussions among climate scientists, policy wonks, and politicians, a passive-aggressive quality, and I think it can be traced to the fact that everyone involved has to dance around the obvious truth, at risk of losing their status and influence.

    The obvious truth about global warming is this: barring miracles, humanity is in for some awful shit.

    Here is a plotting of dozens of climate modeling scenarios out to 2100, from the IPCC:

    http://www.vox.com/2015/5/15/8612113/truth-climate-change

    Reply
    • Griffin

       /  May 16, 2015

      And a very thoughtful counterpoint here from Jonathan Koomey.
      http://www.koomey.com/post/119106731153

      Reply
      • Have to agree with Jonathan on this one. We’ve locked in bad outcomes. But we urgently need to make every effort now to reduce the degree of devastation. And that means very rapid action on the part of every government around the world.

        Reply
      • wili

         /  May 16, 2015

        Human politics and behavior can, in principle, change very rapidly. Large-scale physical trends like ocean warming and ice sheet destruction, not so much.

        Unfortunately, there is very little evidence that the very large-scale political and behavioral changes needed to give us even a remote chance of averting really bad consequences (global temps north of 2C above pre-industrial) are anywhere on the horizon.

        How many people do you know who have recently decided to:
        Give up meat?
        Give up dairy?
        Give up flying?

        Sure there are positive signs with the divestment movement, the falling price of renewables, recent news about coal reductions in China…

        But we’re still a long, long way from where we have to be to even have a crap shoot at avoiding 2+, and mostly, most of us (and even more, most of TPTB) are still barreling along in the exactly wrong direction–case in point is the recent approval for drilling in the Arctic. This from a President who publicly proclaimed that it is time to get serious about climate change.

        Reply
      • Jacque

         /  May 17, 2015

        In response to Wili: how many people do you know who have recently decided to GIVE UP:
        Motorized vehicles of any kind (even bike tires come from fossil fuels, damn it)
        Cooking food and heating/cooling homes with fossil fuels (in addition to giving up most animal- sourced foods)
        Having more children

        Am I mistaken, or isn’t this the level we need to aim for?

        Reply
      • wili

         /  May 18, 2015

        Yes, Jacque, we will have to get there. But the things I mention are what people could give up without causing any harm to themselves, and in fact would likely improve most people’s health. And they are where the really big payback comes from. We can and should go back to tires made of actual rubber. I’m not sure what the recycle-ability of tire rubber is. Houses mostly shouldn’t be cooled, and improved insulation and maybe a bit of wood or solar heat should be able to do most of the rest.

        And yeah, most people who have a clue at this point aren’t having kids any more.

        But of course most people haven’t a clue.

        Reply
  17. wili

     /  May 16, 2015

    Now that we’re in the second half of May, can we also now say that the ‘spring fog’ is starting to clear, and that we can be more and more confident in these prediction with every day that passes?

    Reply
  18. Colorado Bob

     /  May 16, 2015

    Another Cat 5 typhoon

    1. SUPER TYPHOON 07W (DOLPHIN) WARNING NR 040
    01 ACTIVE TROPICAL CYCLONE IN NORTHWESTPAC
    MAX SUSTAINED WINDS BASED ON ONE-MINUTE AVERAGE
    WIND RADII VALID OVER OPEN WATER ONLY
    PRESENT WIND DISTRIBUTION:
    MAX SUSTAINED WINDS – 135 KT, GUSTS 165 KT

    Reply
  19. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 16, 2015

    If you look at this temp anomaly pic, you can see the ocean barfing up heat into the atmosphere off the coast of Oregon,Washington. You can then look at the coastline up through BC and see the flow as it moves up to Alaska into the Ocean.

    Reply
  20. – Bring on the Urban Heat Islands in order to maintain a falsehood, for green synthetic turf, absorbs and retains solar heat like you wouldn’t believe.

    Artificial turf use growing with the drought

    The long rolls of turf to the left of this house are about to become the green lawn of Hollister resident Kathy Provost’s dreams. But the grass is not the kind Provost thought she would cultivate on the family’s country property.

    This grass is artificial.

    Kathy and her husband Noel have spent about $71,000 to install synthetic turf, decomposed granite and pavers in an area that was once about 3,000 square feet of lawn in the front and back yards.

    – Free Lance News , Hollister, CA.

    Reply
  21. LRC

     /  May 17, 2015

    Some questions come to mind. Traditional strong El Ninos have a definite split of the jet stream over North America influencing weather systems in both North Pacific and North Atlantic Oceans. The question I have has to do with the influence of the Tenacious Troughs and Ridiculous Ridges on top of that the cold spot in the Atlantic off of Greenland which can easily establish a blocking high. If these get established during a strong El Nino therefore possibly interfering with the traditional path of the lower jet stream, where would all that weather influence go? Be sent north through the Bering strait similar to what happened in the North Atlantic earlier this year? Or would the southern jet stream be strong enough to overcome any possibility of this happening? The reason for this question as I have seen no discussion of this possibility even though in the last strong El Nino no TT-RR existed.
    As for the Bjerknes feedback scenario it seems to me that it is presumed that there is the traditional cold waters readily available in the North Pacific even though there has been an over abundance of over heated water traveling up into that area for the last decade. Could it be possible the upwelling will bring warm water instead of cold and really put a bad spin on the weather?
    On top of that, what if there is a serious melt in the Arctic Ocean this summer. Could it even cause greater shifts in traditional strong El Nino events?

    Reply
  22. Colorado Bob

     /  May 17, 2015

    Global warming ruining Scotland’s historic buildings

    “Where Scotland sits on the globe, we are right in the firing line for climate change impacts.

    “We have a maritime climate, we are right on the Atlantic coast, we are in the line of the jet stream, so we are very vulnerable ……………………………………… “We have 20 per cent more rainfall now than in the 1960s. And in some parts, like the north and west, in the winter we are getting 70 per cent more. These are quite major changes over four or five decades.

    “The other thing happening is the temperature is rising. Scotland now has a five-week longer growing season than it had in the 1960s, so we are getting a lot more biological growth.

    Link

    Reply
  23. Kevin Jones

     /  May 17, 2015

    Open water near OBuoy #9. Just north of Northern Greenland.
    http://obuoy.datatransport.org/monitor#buoy9/camera

    Reply
  24. Kevin Jones

     /  May 17, 2015

    Various weather reports show Barrow at/near record 38F today. A warm past 7 days. A warm next 10 forecast.

    Reply
  25. Kevin Jones

     /  May 17, 2015

    My word. Just walked through 3 hourly anomaly out to May 24 keeping an eye on North Slope and adjacent Arctic Ocean. http://cci-reanalyzer.org/Forecasts/

    Reply
  26. Kevin Jones

     /  May 17, 2015

    under Region, click on Northern Hemisphere 7 day. Under Parameter, click on air temp anomaly… for any uninitiated…..

    Reply
  27. Kevin Jones

     /  May 17, 2015

    Looks as though Fairbanks missed a record high of 71F by one degree yesterday. 10 day Weather Underground forecast has highs averaging about 80F. Yesterday’s year to date average high: 56F.

    Reply
  28. Colorado Bob

     /  May 17, 2015

    Super Typhoon Dolphin Becomes Earth’s 5th Category 5 Storm of 2015

    An unusual number of Category 5 storms so far in 2015
    May 16 is exceptionally early to be getting our third Category 5 storm of the year in the Northwest Pacific. The global record for Category 5 storms is held by the El Niño year of 1997, which had twelve Category 5 storms–ten of them in the Northwest Pacific. The third Cat 5 of 1997 in the Northwest Pacific occurred on July 22, so we are more than two months ahead of that year’s record pace. Dolphin is also the earliest-appearing 7th named storm of the Northwest Pacific’s typhoon season; the previous record was on May 19, 1971. Super Typhoon Dolphin is already Earth’s fifth Category Five storm this year, which is an unusually large number of these high-end tropical cyclones for so early in the year. Earth averaged just 4.6 Category 5 storms per year between 1990 – 2014, so we’ve already exceeded our average for an entire year; 2015 already has the 6th most Category 5 storms for any year in the past 26 years (reliable satellite records of Southern Hemisphere tropical cyclones extend back to 1990, so we only have about a 26-year period of decent records for global Category 5 tropical cyclones.) The majority of these storms occur during the July – November peak of the Northern Hemisphere’s tropical cyclone season, with 59% of all Cat 5s occurring in the Northwest Pacific, so it is likely we will see several more Cat 5s this year. The early and violent start to 2015 typhoon season is due, in part, to exceptionally warm ocean temperatures in the typhoon breeding region between 5 – 10°N near the Date Line. These temperatures have been over 2°C (3.6°F) above average in recent months, due to a strengthening El Niño event.

    http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/comment.html?entrynum=2992#commenttop

    Reply
    • Just a thought on the strength of typhoons. In your opinion, with higher temperatures would you expect specific humidity to increase? Since air can hold about twice as much moisture for every 20 degrees Fahrenheit increase then it would seem to me that mass would increase. That increased mass would have to increase the force of the wind. So could typhoons also be getting stronger within a given category?

      Reply
  29. Ouse M.D.

     /  May 17, 2015

    Sam Carana with another horrifying insight- just take a look at next week’s temperature forecasts for the Arctic….
    I guess this melting season is it.

    http://arctic-news.blogspot.de/2015/05/mackenzie-river-warming.html

    Reply
    • james cole

       /  May 17, 2015

      “On May 12, 2015, a temperature of 80.1°F (or 26.7°C) was recorded in the north of Canada, at a location just north of latitude 63°N.”
      I guess any thinking person would see this type of warming to be a clear signal of global warming due to Green House gas accumulations in the atmosphere. Mainly due to fossil fuel burning. We all know how clearly this signal is being sent by such temperatures. But our governments and corporations ignore most of what this blog contains by way of scientific evidence.
      It seems clear that an Ice Free Arctic Summer point is near. The calculations of how much MORE heat will be absorbed by now open dark waters, versus the former summer ice cover, must be shocking in themselves. I am an alarmist by most people’s definition. I believe a tipping point in the Arctic is being reached, from which a spike upwards in temperatures in the far north will follow. Feed backs are potential monsters, but the CO2 warming alone is pushing us towards ice free summers, and all the added heat that that means.
      And, we have the possible major slowdown or worse of the Atlantic current. As Wikipedia puts it. ” A shutdown or slowdown of the thermohaline circulation is a postulated effect of global warming”. I think we already have a clear signal of a slow down of the current, if I’m not mistaken. The speed or Arctic changes should have all governments in alarm mode, if not panic mode. Instead, geopolitical forces are pushing towards more and more conflict over fossil fuel access, reserves and delivery routes. The world has chosen to stake the next 50 year at least on fossil fuels. Economists write daily about energy, as if fossil fuels were all there was in the economic equations. Nobody seem in the least concerned in our Governments, Corporations or Economics leadership circles.
      Greenland is not seen as a crisis, instead the Power That Be are eying the great meltdown with eager anticipation of future resource profits from the newly exposed lands. A death wish is afoot!

      Reply
      • james cole

         /  May 17, 2015

        ” a forecast for May 23, 2015, showing temperatures in Alaska and neighboring parts of Canada that are 36°F (20°C) higher than they used to be (1979-2000 baseline). ”
        That’s serious warming.

        Reply
      • Colorado Bob

         /  May 18, 2015

        Methane blowouts coming to North America .

        Reply
      • danabanana

         /  May 18, 2015

        “Nobody seem in the least concerned in our Governments, Corporations or Economics leadership circles.”

        Because those who pay the pipers are counting on Geo-Engineering to ‘fix’ AGW.

        Reply
      • Mark from New England

         /  May 18, 2015

        Colorado Bob: “Methane blowouts coming to North America”.

        How dare you speak of Congress that way😉

        Reply
    • Griffin

       /  May 18, 2015

      Did they escape from the aquarium? Sorry. I know they didn’t, but what the heck do you say to something that strange!!?
      Next there will be caribou in New Hampshire!

      Reply
      • On Facebook(tm) one Mariellen M. said: “So Cool!!”

        Reply
      • Mark from New England

         /  May 19, 2015

        That is odd. They had to swim all the way around Cape Cod to get to Narragansett Bay. They’re certainly not swimming south for cold water! Still, pretty cool to see them this far south of their normal range. Hmm…

        Reply
  30. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 18, 2015

    If you get a chance, check this tool out. It is based on NASA’s Rapid Spectroradiometer. Very cool tool. I’ld suggest starting with SSTA in the Pacific.

    http://podaac-tools.jpl.nasa.gov/soto/

    Reply
  31. Thanks Andy.

    Also for those interested, there is an updated information on forest fires in Canada. There are also some pictures and area of the forest fire.

    Here is Little Bobtail Lake Fire

    Alex

    Reply
  32. Ouse M.D.

     /  May 18, 2015

    With recent events showing a rapid acceleration, my non- peer reviewed conclusion about peer- reviewed (not just) climate science is:

    OBSOLETE
    FAULTY

    Reply
    • entropicman

       /  May 18, 2015

      Ouse M.D.

      Perhaps a better word would be conservative. Most scientists are reluctant to recognise extreme trends without very strong evidence.

      Reply
      • Andy in San Diego

         /  May 18, 2015

        I read a piece on those doing the real science are gun shy about what they report and temper everything down due to concerns. The concerns being the denial crowd dog piling on them. Thus they have to hedge things to the absurd.

        That is how “we are screwed” gets turned into “there is a light possibility that something unpleasant may occur somewhere at some time in the potentially distant future, however there is also a significant chance that what we are observing is signal noise and it may represent nothing at this time and further observations are required”.

        They get Koch’d.

        Reply
      • rustj2015

         /  May 18, 2015

        I’d add, Andy, that there must be a MOOC course in public speaking based on The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Universe.

        Reply
  33. Colorado Bob

     /  May 18, 2015

    ‘Disaster after disaster’ hits Marshall Islands as climate change kicks in

    This is part one of a three-part series examining the effects of climate change on the Marshall Islands and what is being done to adapt to the increasing threats it poses.

    Link

    Reply
  34. Colorado Bob

     /  May 18, 2015

    March of the Penguins director to close Cannes with climate change film Ice and the Sky

    The director has spoken of his trip to the continent to film the documentary Ice and the Sky about Claude Lorius – the man credited with discovering global warming – and how shocked he was to see the effects of climate change at first hand.

    “We didn’t have rain in [many parts] of Antarctica until two or three years ago,” said Jacquet. Now the increase in temperatures means the environment and its inhabitants are experiencing rainfall “for the first time in history”.

    “In a way, this is very terrible because the animals there are absolutely not adapted to the rain. The penguin chicks are dying because they are so wet that they get cold – they are dying this way.”

    Link

    Reply
  35. JPL

     /  May 18, 2015

    Are the Coast Guard’s Icebreakers Ready for an Arctic Oil Spill?

    http://www.seattleweekly.com/home/958353-129/are-the-coast-guards-icebreakers-ready

    Survey says… not really.

    John

    Reply
  36. – There is a large area of dense heat off the coast of BC, Canada and the PNW. The traditional cauldron of storms and weather that was the Gulf of Alaska — is no more. It may never be again.
    Quite a few strings of intense heat off the USA E Coast, and up in the Beaufort.

    – POV PDX PNW: The air/sky/atmosphere is thick and turgid. It looks like cotton batting. Most days it looks like this.
    Sunsets show a thick layer of smoke and ash to the NW due to Siberia burning.

    – “Siberia Burning” the headline we should see.

    – Do not count on MSM, or USG to do much until civilian casualties “impede commerce.”
    Bet on that.

    Reply
  37. – NCAR UCAR AtmosNews:

    Exposure of U.S. population to extreme heat could quadruple by mid-century

    BOULDER – U.S. residents’ exposure to extreme heat could increase four- to six-fold by mid-century, due to both a warming climate and a population that’s growing especially fast in the hottest regions of the country, according to new research.

    Extreme heat kills more people in the United States than any other weather-related event…
    [Add in air pollution deaths — which are worsened by heat.]

    http://www2.ucar.edu/atmosnews/news/15524/exposure-us-population-extreme-heat-could-quadruple-mid-century

    Reply
  38. 2015 dark snow science expedition takes shape
    Posted on May 18, 2015 by Jason Box

    Our cause to inform the global public what’s happening in the remote but important Arctic leads us to our third Greenland science expedition taking shape.

    Building on our past experience, our work this summer is to continue flying UAV missions over Greenland ice, across an elevation profile to track the darkness of the bare ice area expanding as snowline climbs the ice sheet. Our UAV range this year is 4 times what it was last year, 200 km+! We’re flying higher end instruments over the ice dark ice fields, sheet’s blue lakes, river networks, moulins and crevasses, producing unprecedented visual and science material.

    http://darksnow.org/2015-dark-snow-science-expedition-takes-shape/

    Reply
  39. Washington State Is In A Drought ‘Unlike Any We’ve Ever Experienced’

    http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2015/05/18/3659911/washington-drought-emergency-declared/

    Reply
  40. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 18, 2015

    Sea Ice is being baked off the delta of the MacKenzie. Not a good omen for the summer melt season due to high temperature outflows from the river.

    MacKenzie River is shallow and wide, thus it can soak up heat quite nicely.

    Reply
    • wili

       /  May 19, 2015

      The big melt action, it seems, is going to start north of Alaska and NW Canada. The area has been very warm and has anomalously low snow coverage and depth. The Siberian side, not so much so far.

      Reply
  41. islandraider

     /  May 19, 2015

    It was 81F in Inuvik today. 81. Sunrises around 4 am. Sun sets around 1 am. The snow is mostly gone. Lots of heat energy in the system. It is going to be a very interesting spring & summer.

    Reply
  42. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 19, 2015

    Federal water managers released a report Monday projecting that Lake Mead’s water levels will fall below a point in January 2017 that would force supply cuts to Arizona and Nevada.

    http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/feds-project-lake-mead-drought-trigger-point-2017-31135829

    Reply
  43. Forest fires in Alaska, way too soon I suggest (yeah, check the w forecast again)


    Alex

    Reply
    • Andy in San Diego

       /  May 19, 2015

      Thanks Alexander,

      Alaska has had their quick response crews prepped and ready on April 1st, earliest they have ever had to do that. This seems ominous for the whole northern region.

      Reply
    • Note also “extremely low humidity” — the Forestry spokesperson mentioning fires being started by power tools like lawn mowers and grinders.
      We will hear more of this sort of cause and effect disasters in the making.
      The power tool lobby is entrenched in the US Congress. Power tools are FF. And they are everywhere.

      Energy consuming GHG emitting mechanical devices operated by brazen citizen fools in a degraded landscape. Our neighbors — our bleak future.

      It takes the ‘civil’ right out of civilization.
      OUT

      Reply
  44. Aldous

     /  May 19, 2015

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/may/18/fossil-fuel-companies-getting-10m-a-minute-in-subsidies-says-imf

    So, this is how much it costs to prop up our modern industrial civilization. Money, that ought to be used elsewhere, carelessly flowing into an abyss.

    Reply
  45. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 19, 2015

    Cantareira System usable volume is at 8.2% on the graph, 19.2% if one adds in the “technical reserves”, secondary or less quality water.

    Looking at the rainfall & levels for the 10th / 11th the measurements may be compromised (sediment, calcs or other). Rainfall of 25mm should generate 0.1% volume increase historically. But on the 11th, 25mm recorded an increase of 0.2%.

    The levels are dropping at a 0.1% / 4 day rate per their site. However the current estimate is that Sao Paolo will be unable to get to the end of June.

    Currently over 1 million with dengue fever in Brazil.

    Reply
  46. Climate change altering frequency, intensity of hurricanes

    http://phys.org/news/2015-05-climate-frequency-intensity-hurricanes.html

    Reply
    • Griffin

       /  May 19, 2015

      This is a change that can easily pass the “eye test”.

      Reply
  47. rustj2015

     /  May 19, 2015

    A positive note of potential easing of the CO4 threat:
    How microbes acquire electricity in making methane
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/05/150518112029.htm

    Reply
  48. Robert In New Orleans

     /  May 19, 2015

    The Heat is On Glenn Frey

    Reply
  49. Colorado Bob

     /  May 19, 2015

    Earth has its 4th Warmest April and Warmest January – April Period on Record

    By: Jeff Masters

    http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/comment.html?entrynum=2994

    Reply
  50. Griffin

     /  May 20, 2015

    DT, I thought of you the moment I saw this. Horibble. Santa Barbara is too beautiful for oil on it’s beaches. Damn.

    http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-pipeline-santa-barbara-coast-20150519-story.html

    Reply
    • Thanks, Grffin.
      Terrible news about the oil spill.
      Much of the coastline has a long history of oil extraction and storage.

      From the article; ” a four-mile-long sheen extending about 50 yards into the water. Officials said winds could send the oil another four miles south toward Isla Vista.”

      Between the spill site and Isla Vista (UCSB) is the Coal Oil Point Reserve, apart of the UC Natural Reserve System.
      I spent a number of summers there on the beach protecting Western Snowy Plover, and Least Tern, breeding and nesting habitat. (Summers, I did Plovers and Terns, winters, it was Monarch Butterflies along the coast.)
      I hope the slick can quickly be contained.
      Pic is from COPR Plover papa raising the young. Mama lays, and incubates, then moves on while Papa stays and does the rest.

      Reply
      • After many decades of absence, mainly from human influences, we were able to watch the Plovers and Terns breed again. It was quite a wonderful cycle to witness.
        Ace photographer Callie Bowdish took this of young and hungry Terns getting fed.
        calliebowdish dot com

        Reply
      • And, just 100 m. away on Coal Oil Pt. is a Gray Whale migration counting station. That’s ace whale spotter Micheal Smith in the flat brimmed hat near the tripod. What a place, with a great bunch of people.

        Reply
  51. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 20, 2015

    True color daily satellite image of Arctic, scrollable, zoom able.

    Points to zoom into:

    Hudson Bay, East Side and open areas all over.
    Great Slave Lake – Zoom in to see the ice crumbling
    MacKenzie River – Follow it from Great Slave Lake to Inuvik. It is pretty much open the whole way.
    Pretty Much Entire Land Mass – Lack of snow pack.
    Sea Ice Around Mackenzie Delta – Ice Is being destroyed, blasted to bits.
    North Slope coastline – Sea ice dissipating.

    http://www.arctic.io/explorer/

    Reply
  52. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 20, 2015

    Whitehorse NWT forecast High Temps.

    Wed-79F
    Thu-82F
    Fri-82F
    Sat-84F
    Sun-83F
    Mon-81F
    Tue-82F

    Some sites show a few degrees less, but within 5F of those listed.

    Forecast does not show anything near normal within the forecasts.

    Normally it is ~57F for this time of year.

    Reply
  53. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 20, 2015

    Soil Moisture Deficit – New Zealand

    Reply
  54. Colorado Bob

     /  May 20, 2015

    In just 45 minutes, 2.99 inches of rain drenched San Angelo Regional Airport, located southwest of the city. This was more than the average rainfall for the entire month of May – 2.82 inches – their wettest month on average.

    http://www.weather.com/storms/severe/news/san-angelo-texas-flooding-may2015

    Reply
  55. The weather for much of the country has been stubbornly persistent, whether it be extra sunshine, heat, rain or cooler temperatures. Severe weather has been largely concentrated in the southern part of the plains, particularly in Oklahoma and Texas. While that in it of itself isn’t especially unusual, the regularity of severe weather and the flooding rainfall accompanying the storms has been. Meanwhile, in Charlotte, North Carolina a drop of rain hadn’t been recorded in the month of May as of Tuesday afternoon.

    http://news.weathernationtv.com/2015/05/19/explaining-persistent-weather-pattern/

    Alex

    Reply
  56. Colorado Bob

     /  May 20, 2015

    Obama Recasts Climate Change as a More Far-Reaching Peril

    “I am here today to say that climate change constitutes a serious threat to global security, an immediate risk to our national security, and, make no mistake, it will impact how our military defends our country,” Mr. Obama will tell the graduating cadets, according to excerpts from his speech distributed by the White House. “And so we need to act, and we need to act now.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/21/us/obama-recasts-climate-change-as-a-more-far-reaching-peril.html?_r=0

    Reply
    • Ouse M.D.

       /  May 20, 2015

      Great… So it´s the military what`s gonna solve all the problems created largely my militarism.

      Reply
      • Robert In New Orleans

         /  May 21, 2015

        Ouse,
        Sorry man but it was W that opened pandoras box in Iraq and unleashed the cancer called ISIS. Obama is trying to pick up the pieces and so will Hillary and who ever succeeds her.

        Reply
  57. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 20, 2015

    One thing I didn’t connect last night on the arctic.io satellite image last night was the state of the rivers in the NWT.

    Hay River looked clear (no ice) as did MacKenzie and Great Slave Lake was pretty much in it’s ice flushing / destruction phase.

    I remember in the early 80’s we were still able to drive across / over the river in May so I looked up the breakup date this year for the river, April 23rd. Breakup used to happen about a month later. This is a big deal in Hay River as the ice causes a dam which can result in mass flooding. When that starts to occur, dynamite is used to bust up the ice blockages.

    Here is a picture from the 2008 flooding cause by such an event.

    The long road that goes off to the top of the image (biggest road), I live on that one about 1/2 way. The large building you see at the top right side is the NTCL Synchro where ships and barges are pulled out of the river and maintained (I worked out of that building). At the T intersection by the river, at the bottom of that prominent road you can see a building, that is a hotel, restaurant and probably the toughest damn bar you could find (called “The Zoo”). The pool tables were bolted to the floor. Otherwise if someone lost a game, was drunk and pissed off he’ld would flip it over. Any live bands were protected behind a chicken wire cage so they don’t get beat up or hit with empty bottles.

    I’m looking around to see if there are online records of the river breakup dates over time.

    Reply
  58. Robert, is this a Modoki pattern of El Nino, or the more routine kind. And, if it is Modoki, what effect will it have.

    Reply
    • TomCobbler

       /  May 20, 2015

      wolfhheinl, Many experts were suggesting a Modoki earlier in the year but those same people seem to be suggesting it will be more of a routine kind. I should add these same people are seeing at least a moderate el nino, possible a very strong event for the remainder of the year.

      Reply
  59. I’ve seen several talks by Prof. Richard Alley.

    This is the latest I’ve come across. The recent WAIS data seem to have spooked him…

    Reply
  60. Colorado Bob

     /  May 20, 2015

    Richard Alley: “The Biggest Control Knob: Carbon Dioxide in Earth’s Climate History”

    Reply
  61. rayduray

     /  May 20, 2015

    NASA’s Earth Observatory notes the temporary closing of the Dalton Highway between Fairbanks and Deadhorse. Lotsa flooding.

    http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=85905&eocn=home&eoci=iotd_readmore

    Reply
  62. Colorado Bob

     /  May 20, 2015

    Some forest facts:

    Aspen trees are crashing.
    Joshua trees are crashing.
    Pinyon trees are crashing.
    Juniper trees are crashing.

    The pine beetle has killed an area the size of Montana.

    The spruce bud worm. Is eating Canada.

    This is not up for debate. These trees are gone.

    Reply
    • Also, loss of shade trees over streams and waterways means water temps too hot for many fish, like salmonids to reproduce or survive.

      Reply
    • Note too that trees suffer from air pollution a they respire through their foliage. They basically wear their lungs on the outside which is in constant contact with the atmosphere and its many toxic and phytotoxic contents. This also creates a very pathogen friendly medium for all flora.

      Reply
    • Mark from New England

       /  May 21, 2015

      Someday someone (in power), somewhere is going to say “My God, what have I done?”

      Reply
  63. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 21, 2015

    Fire Ban in Hay River was put in place on May 11th due to lack of ground moisture.

    http://hayriver.com/uploads//fire_ban.pdf

    Reply
  64. – We will see more of these sorts of things in the PNW as the, possibly “Endless”, summer continues. “Endless Summer” was a feature length 1960s Bruce Brown surf movie. Things have changed.

    No Klamath water left to combat salmon-killing parasite

    GRANS PASS, Ore. (AP) — A deadly salmon parasite is thriving in the drought, infecting nearly all the juvenile chinook in the Klamath River in Northern California as they prepare to migrate to the ocean.

    The Klamath Fish Healthy Advisory Team, made up of state and federal agencies and Indian tribes, warns a major fish kill is likely, and the Yurok Tribe and NOAA Fisheries Service have asked for extra water releases to flush out worms that carry the parasite, known as C shasta.

    But the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation says after four years of drought, it has no water to spare for chinook salmon.

    Bureau spokeswoman Erin Curtis said Wednesday the water stored in Klamath Basin reservoirs is already committed to endangered sucker fish and threatened coho salmon, and releasing water now means less for any crisis that erupts this summer.

    Water for farmers on a federal irrigation project has also been cut to less than half of full deliveries as mountain snowpacks that supply reservoirs have dwindled to zero.
    -katu.com-news

    Reply
  65. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 21, 2015

    Whitehorse YT Forecast High for Friday, 84F.

    Andy in the Yukon, any news from your end on the temps, melt etc….?

    Mackenzie River is clear, Great Slave Lake ice is crumbling, the shoreline from Tuk to Alaska looks like the ice is getting wiped out. Curious what it is like from first hand.

    Reply
  66. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 21, 2015

    Looking at the way the heat is just churning out of the waters off the coast of BC and spreading over Alaska to NWT and into the Arctic on Climate Reanalyzer, it is as though some form of an Arctic Nino is occurring.

    That is not dissipating at all, it looks like it is just disgorging more & more heat.

    Reply
  67. Robert In New Orleans

     /  May 21, 2015

    I am so sorry to be harsh, but Jeb is just like his idiot brother:

    Jeb Bush: It’s ‘Intellectual Arrogance’ To Agree With Scientists About Humans Driving Climate Change

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/05/21/jeb-bush-climate-change_n_7351156.html

    Reply
    • Mark from New England

       /  May 21, 2015

      No need to apologize! Another Bush, or any Republican, in the White House = guaranteed inaction on climate change when we need it the most.

      Reply
  68. Andy in San Diego

     /  May 21, 2015
    Reply
  69. Greg

     /  May 21, 2015

    Meteorologist Stu Ostro has updated his enormous annual Climate Change meteorological Slideshow to include 2014 and 2015 weather events (at least 40 additional slides) along with his expert analysis. He covers most of the major events of the year and some we have not covered here. This is, warning, a 71 MB file. Year 2014 now begins on slide 1041! I have only begun to work my way through it but his ongoing intellectual transformation from skeptic to full-on hawk is evident throughout.

    http://i.imwx.com/web/multimedia/images/blog/StuOstro_GWweather_latestupdate.pdf

    Reply
  70. Santa Barbara oil spill: Pipeline operator has long record of problems

    Plains Pipeline, the large Texas-based company responsible for the pipe that ruptured in Santa Barbara County, has accumulated 175 safety and maintenance infractions since 2006, according to federal records.

    The company, which transports and stores crude oil, is part of Plains All American Pipeline, which owns and operates nearly 18,000 miles of pipe networks in several states. It reported $43 billion in revenue in 2014 and $878 million in profit.

    The company’s infractions involved pump failure, equipment malfunction, pipeline corrosion and operator error.

    latimescom local california la-me-oilspill

    http://www.trbimg.com/img-555d6916/turbine/la-2428876-me-0520-sb-oil-spill26-als-jpg

    Reply
    • Interesting (I sure wish that I had a benzine/benzene monitor back when I was doing my traffic dust-air pollution sleuthing in SB.)
      Here’s a captioned photo from the SB Independent. The very same weekly that, when I showed them severe traffic soot problems, told me, “People don’t want to hear [see] bad news.” So they ignored me.
      The benzine monitor: Kristen Karnes and Eric Simon with Center for Toxicology and Environmental Health use an UltraRAE, a handheld monitoring device, to get readings of Benzine Refugio State beach the day after the oil spill (May 20, 2015)
      Photo: Paul Wellman

      Reply
      • A valuable FF world VOC tool for $5K & up.. (350 compounds!) (Not the monitor pictured above.)

        UltraRAE 3000
        Portable, wireless advanced VOC monitor
        Accurate measurement of VOCs from 0.05 to 10,000 ppm
        3-second response time for VOCs
        60-second snapshot measurement option and unique 15-minute STEL measurement
        Correction factors for more than 350 compounds

        Reply
      • it’s amazing that post-event bad news is worthy of glorious publication but pre-event, or real time, documentation isn’t.
        -Foiled and Unamused.

        Reply
      • – Must butt in again but:
        A VOC monitor would have beep/clicked with very high numbers if it came near the vapors from my blackened fingers.
        I was doing my usual finger swipe test on the metal louvers on the intakes of a ventilation unit on a City owned parking structure. In the background is the County Admin. building where I had a few adventures too.

        Reply
      • -There’s more at the same location but at ground level where dry ventilated and circulated matter collects. This should be instructive. Am i a liquid, a gas, or a dry solid?

        Below is the dry traffic dust and soot ‘ejecta’ on the pavement near an exit. The stuff collected in a ‘drift’.

        Reply
  71. Research published in the journal Science on Thursday found the Southern Antarctic Peninsula (SAP) ice sheet is losing ice into the ocean at a rate of 56 gigatons each year – about 8,500 times the mass of the Great Pyramid of Giza. This adds around 0.16mm per year to the global sea level.

    The sheet’s thickness has remained stable since satellite observations began in 1992. But Professor Jonathan Bamber of Bristol university, who co-authored the study, said that around 2009 it very suddenly began to thin by an average of 42cm each year. Some areas had fallen by up to 4m.

    “It hasn’t been going up, it hasn’t been going down – until 2009. Then it just seemed to pass some kind of critical threshold and went over a cliff and it’s been losing mass at a pretty much constant, rather large, rate,” said Bamber.

    Bamber said the findings were particularly concerning because the SAP ice sheet sits on land that slopes downward away from the sea. This allows currents of relatively warm water to push inland, undermining and further destabilising the sheet.

    “This part of Antarctica is believed to be inherently unstable. So what that means is you only need to give it a nudge and it will go into a different state. And it looks like its been nudged into a different state where it looks like it’s going to a considerable amount of mass for considerable amounts of time – years to decades,” he said.

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/may/21/stable-antarctic-ice-sheet-may-have-started-collapsing-scientists-say

    Reply
    • “… until 2009. Then it just seemed to pass some kind of critical threshold and went over a cliff and it’s been losing mass at a pretty much constant, rather large, rate,” said Bamber.”

      This likely describes many Earth systems now in decline. Some, I have witnessed first hand. Possibly even the timeline fits — since 2006 – 09 these things have been happening.
      Meanwhile…

      Reply
      • Thats why it seems quite probable we are seeing now a sustained acceleration of the sea level rise (closer to 4mm/year than 3mm/year), as Robert was reporting few posts ago.

        Alex

        Reply
  72. – Lucrative hot box Alaska:

    Alaska’s Famous ‘Ice Road’ Is Closed By Extreme Flooding
    May 19 2015

    Traffic along Alaska’s famous Dalton Highway has stalled at a time when hundreds of truckers would typically be transporting critical supplies to the state’s northern oil fields. The highway known as the Ice Road in the popular History channel series “Ice Road Truckers” is the only overland route to these lucrative operations…
    ibtimes com alaskas-famous-ice-road

    Reply
    • Andy in San Diego

       /  May 22, 2015

      The temp anomaly must be doing a number over the whole area.

      Today, 80F / 27C in Whitehorse YT, tomorrow 83F / 28C

      Ice coverage in the ocean is now testing the -2 std dev line and should dip below it pretty soon. It looks like it is tracking roughly 300,000 to 500,000 square km under the 2012 extent for this date.

      If you look at this daily sea ice concentration , observe above Alaska across to the Archipelago. The concentration reduction now extends quite far into the ice cap (if we can call it that anymore).

      Reply
  73. Part of Antarctica Suddenly Started Melting at a Rate of 14 Trillion Gal. a Year

    When I sent Bamber a final follow up email asking whether the suddenness of the melt alarmed him about the possibility of other areas following suit, the response came back in a matter of seconds: “Yes it does.”

    http://motherboard.vice.com/read/part-of-antarctica-is-now-melting-at-a-rate-of-14-trillion-gallons-a-year

    Reply
  74. Griffin

     /  May 22, 2015

    Flooding in Izmir, Turkey. Dramatic video of extreme flash flood.
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=v6CkNKgn7FQ

    Reply
  75. james cole

     /  May 22, 2015

    “Bush, answering questions from reporters after an event in Salem, New Hampshire, defended remarks he made a day earlier in which he said scientific research does not clearly show how much of climate change is caused by humans and how much is from natural causes.”
    Bush doubled down today calling arrogant those who question climate skeptics views.
    What can I say. this man may very likely be president for 8 years.
    Those who still hold out hope of American’s rapid adoption of C02 reductions, should know that Bush is a moderate, plenty others will out do him by a long way in denial.

    Reply
  76. – 0520 Still burning Siberian wildfires give smoky skies at sunset in the PNW.

    Reply
  77. Ouse M.D.

     /  May 22, 2015

    I’d be surprised if the Jetstream (Arctic Sea Ice) would make it through this Melt Season.
    Haven’t seen these huge sinus- waves

    Reply
    • It looks like those energetic sinusoid garlands are a relic of a wonderful past.
      I learned to watch them bring weather to BC and CA. Now the weather energy is basically gone from those places.
      Thanks for the memories, Ouse.

      Reply
  78. http://www.biogeosciences.net/12/2953/2015/bg-12-2953-2015.html

    David Archer’s model downplays Siberian continental shelf methane.

    Reply
  79. ‘Epic’ flooding on Dalton Highway hinders North Slope oil operations

    DEADHORSE — Unprecedented flooding continues to interfere with daily operations on the North Slope oil patch after surging waters wiped away swaths of the Dalton Highway and isolated a section of Deadhorse, the jumping-off point for the sprawling industrial region.

    “This is just epic,” said Mike Coffey, commander of the unified incident command, a response team consisting of the state, the North Slope Borough and oil companies. “People who have been here for decades say they’ve never seen anything like it.”

    The state has estimated the costs of the damage and repairs since March at $5.1 million. The federal government may pay for much of that, since the icing and flooding on the highway has been declared a disaster, said Coffey, the director of state transportation maintenance and operations.

    The event was caused by heavy summer rains followed by extensive freezing this winter, trapping the water in place, then a rapid spring warmup that has brought record temperatures to the region.

    “It’s kind of a perfect storm for things to go south,” said Coffey.

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  May 22, 2015

      … Another record high temperature for Barrow…

      Todays high temperature so far has been 47 degrees… ..
      Breaking the old daily record of 41 degrees set in 2011 and is
      the warmest temperature for so early in the season.

      Reply
  80. Colorado Bob

     /  May 22, 2015

    Barrow, Alaska: The Last Place You’d Expect to Find Record Warmth

    Barrow, Alaska, set daily record high temperatures three straight days May 17-19, topping out at 46 degrees Tuesday. Then on Thursday another record high of 47 degrees was set.

    This may not sound warm to you, but north of the Arctic Circle, this is extreme warmth for late May.

    http://www.weather.com/forecast/regional/news/barrow-alaska-record-warmth-may-2015

    Reply
    • The top of the “world’ is cooking — baking in a carbon induced atmospheric convection oven.

      Reply
  81. Colorado Bob

     /  May 22, 2015

    Citing climate change as a major threat, one of the world’s largest insurance companies has pledged to drop its remaining investment in coal assets while tripling its investment in green technologies.

    At a business and climate change conference held this week in Paris, AXA — France’s largest insurer — announced that it would sell €500 million ($559 million) in coal assets by the end of 2015, while increasing its “green investments” in things like renewable energy, green infrastructure, and green bonds to €3 billion ($3.3 billion) by 2020.

    Link

    Reply
  82. Colorado Bob

     /  May 22, 2015

    When the sun comes up tomorrow, thousands of square miles of tundra will be exposed to above 80F degrees in May.

    Epic.

    Reply
  83. – There really should be no doubt that neurological damage is integral to exposure to extremely toxic gases and aerosols.
    Society’s inability to cope with this ongoing existential threat gives some testimony to this.

    Air Pollution Reduces Cognition, & Not Just Via The Lungs

    New research from an international coalition of investigators has found that air pollution directly causes cognitive deficits (negatively affects cognition) independently from the reduced lung functioning that accompanies exposure to air pollution.

    So, it looks like those of us that complain about not being able to think clearly after breathing in diesel fumes for long periods of time now have some scientific evidence to back us up — if you’re breathing in polluted air, you’re limiting your cognitive abilities, and it’s not just because you’re having trouble breathing.

    Until this new work from Swiss + German researchers, it wasn’t quite clear whether air pollution worked to diminish cognitive abilities via the reduction of effective breathing firstly, or whether air pollution was itself a cause of cognitive deficits.

    Study leader Mohammad Vossoughi, a PhD student at the Leibniz Institute for Environmental Medicine, commented on the work: “Our findings disprove the hypothesis that air pollution first decreases lung function and this decline, in turn, causes cognitive impairment by releasing stress signals and humoral mediators into the body.”

    This work means that other possible mechanisms must now be considered — such as the possibility that that particulate pollution (as well as other forms of pollution) could be “translocated to the central nervous system via our sense of smell.”

    http://cleantechnica.com/2015/05/22/air-pollution-reduces-cognition-not-just-via-the-lungs/

    Reply
  84. ibtimes-com-epa-finalizes-rule

    EPA Finalizes Rule To Eliminate Air Pollution ‘Loophole’ For Oil Refineries And Factories

    When factories and oil refineries near Houston’s massive seaport start up or shut down, black plumes of smoke and scorching flares burst into the air. Neighboring houses rattle and shake, and pungent fumes waft through the windows, stinging eyes and scratching throats.

    “There have been times I get so disoriented, I won’t even drive,” said Suzie Canales of nearby Corpus Christi, home to a 10-mile industrial stretch known as Refinery Row. “I’ve been on the phone when there’s an event going on, and I cannot hear the person on the other line. It’s like being next to an airplane,” she said.

    In Texas and other states, refineries, chemical manufacturers and natural gas processers release thousands of tons of toxic pollution each year during startup, shutdown, maintenance breaks and malfunctions. These so-called “upset” emissions are largely exempt from the federal Clean Air Act, which limits hazardous pollution from facilities and vehicles. Thanks to decades-old provisions — critics call them loopholes — companies for years have been allowed to sidestep air quality rules during these phases.

    Reply
  85. – Santa Barbara, CA

    motherjones-com-environment-2015-05

    These Photos of Sea Creatures Soaked by Oil in California Will Break Your Heart

    A small crab covered in oil Troy Harvey/ZUMA

    Reply
    • Jiffy Lube, anyone?

      Memorial Day? Gentlemen, start your engines? Gentle men don’t have engines to start!

      Refugio State Beach Santa Barbara News-Press/ZUMA

      Reply
  86. Two whales surfaced near an oil slick off Refugio State Beach. Michael A. Mariant/AP

    Reply
    • It’s so indescribably depressing to be witnessing first hand what fossil fuel addicted growth is doing to this planet and biosphere.

      Reply
  87. – Faulty logic, impaired cognition — millions of ‘worn’ out vehicle tires.

    Florida retrieving 700,000 tires after failed bid to create artificial reef

    Divers restart tire retrieval from an estimated 700,000 dropped near Fort Lauerdale in 1972, hoping to retrieve 90,000 on top of 62,000 already exhumed.

    Florida officials have resumed raising some of the hundreds of thousands of tires dumped off its shores decades ago during an unsuccessful attempt to create an artificial reef.

    Between 1m and 2m tires were piled in the waters around Florida in the 1970s, but coral and fish never took to them…

    “The ocean has ever-changing currents and storms, and they’re moving around and smothering and killing natural coral,” she said.

    http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/may/22/florida-retrieving-700000-tires-after-failed-bid-to-create-artifical-reef

    Reply
    • -France too.
      France fishes thousands of used tyres from failed artificial reef off Cannes
      Thousands of tyres recovered from seabed off Riviera after artificial reef scheme proves ecological disaster
      telegraph-co-uk-news-worldnews-europe-france 13 May 2015

      Reply
  1. Climate Change + El Nino Brings Epic Floods to Texas | robertscribbler
  2. Third Warm Kelvin Wave to Raise Extreme El Nino by Fall? | robertscribbler

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: