Severe storm threat later today: from the Twin Cities and Duluth south to Des Moines, Kansas City and Tulsa a few T-storms may pack large, damaging hail, straight-line winds, even a few isolated tornadoes - details below from SPC.
Meteogram. I've always liked meteograms as a potent way to visualize expected changes in weather - I think it works much better than text on a page. The forecast calls for highs peaking around 32 C (93-95 F) by early afternoon, the best chance of showers and storms this evening and early tonight. Winds shift around to the west tomorrow, temperatures cooling a bit (only 80 for a high on Monday, give or take). Source: yr.no.
Sunday Severe Threat. An eastbound surge of much cooler, drier Canadian air will act as a trigger, creating enough low-level convergence to initiate convection - strong to severe storms most likely later today from Minnesota and western Wisconsin southward to Wichita and Tulsa. Source: SPC.
Number of Minnesota High Temperature Records (according to Mark Seeley):
27 June 2011
26 July 2011
2 August 2011
12 September 2011
58 October 2011
11 November 2011
69 December 2011
191 January 2012
12 February 2012
434 March 2012
14 April 2012
35 May 2012
Photo credit above: Matt McKean, AP.
Graphic credit above: "Temperature rankings for spring 2012 in the Contiguous U.S. Thirty-one states were record warm for the 3-month period, and an additional eleven states had top-ten warmth. Spring 2012 beat the previous record for hottest spring on record, set in 1910, by an remarkable 2°F. Image credit: NOAA/NCDC."
Western Tornadoes (Rare, Not Impossible) Hit Wyoming, Colorado. Details (and a compelling video) from the L.A. Times: "Parts of Wyoming and Colorado were working Friday to recover from the week's harsh weather, including tornadoes that caused minor injuries. A rare tornado cut through open country in southeastern Wyoming on Thursday, injuring at least one person and causing some property damage in the Wheatland area. In Colorado, four tornadoes were reported in the Elbert County area, southeast of Denver. A minor injury was also reported there."
Photo credit above: ""
Photo credit above: "Hail and floodwaters swamped this vehicle in Colorado Springs Wednesday night. A rescuer is seen helping someone from the vehicle, in this video clip from NBC Affiliate KOAA-TV."
Photo above courtesy of aliving00 and Instagram.
* "Buy a local/state map: Whether you are waiting out the storm or are forced to evacuate, a local and/or state map is essential. When the power goes out, your GPS might not be fully charged or fully functional, so a map will ease many headaches when either finding the quickest way out of town or getting around closed/blocked roads.
* Do your laundry and dishes ahead of time: Having all of your clothes, towels and dishes clean and ready to go will not only give you more resources during the storm, but you also won't have to worry about finding a place to wash them since you will have lots of clean ones on hand.
* Place towels along window sills and the bottom of doors leading outside: The towels will act as an extra barrier to keep water from seeping into your home. This is especially important for any windows or doors on lower levels and in basements."
Map above courtesy of the South Carolina Emergency Management Division.
A Sudden Urge For Donuts. How's this for evidence of a high pressure bubble (near Tasmania), warming, drying, sinking air under this high pressure system. More from NASA's Earth Observatory, via Facebook: "High-pressure weather systems often bring fair weather and relatively clear skies. In early June 2012, a high off the coast of Tasmania did just that...and in spectacular fashion."
Invasive Species Ride Tsunami Debris To U.S. Shore. Just what we need: more invasive species crowding out the stuff that's been growing for millenia. MyWay News from AP has the fascinating and vaguely troubling story; here's an excerpt: "When a floating dock the size of a boxcar washed up on a sandy beach in Oregon, beachcombers got excited because it was the largest piece of debris from last year's tsunami in Japan to show up on the West Coast. But scientists worried it represented a whole new way for invasive species of seaweed, crabs and other marine organisms to break the earth's natural barriers and further muck up the West Coast's marine environments. And more invasive species could be hitching rides on tsunami debris expected to arrive in the weeks and months to come."
Photo credit above: "This June 7, 2012 photo provided by the Oregon Park and Recreation Department shows an exotic mussel attached to a dock float that washed up on Agate Beach near Newport, Oregon. Scientists are worried that other debris from the 2011 tsunami in Japan could represent a new way for invasive species to reach American shores. (AP Photo/Oregon Parks and Recreation Department)."
"Life is full of contradictions. You want wealth? Create value for others. If you want to fly - fall down often."
- Newark Mayor Cory Booker
"The key to success is continually maintaining an ever-present curiosity."
- Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor
"You're going to fall down, but the world doesn't care how many times you fall down, as long as it's one fewer than the number of times you get back up."
- Screenwriter Aaaron Sorkin
1 in 531,441
I respond to data, where the numbers & trends lead me. The odds of recent heat records being random are about the same odds of me being drafted into the NFL.
"Each of the 12 months from June 201 through May 2012 ranked among the warmest third of their historical distribution for the first time in the 1895-present record. According to NCDC, the odds of this occurring randomly during any particular month are 1 in 531,441" reports Dr. Jeff Masters in his Wunderblog (link on my blog).
Dr. Mark Seeley writes "The estimated total number of daily maximum temperature records set or tied in Minnesota over the past 12 months is at least 900." Seeley reports 13 new statewide high temperature records tied or broken since June 2011. "This level of statewide extremes in maximum temperature has not been seen since the 1930s."
It's getting warmer out there. No kidding Paul. Mid 90s are likely by 3 pm, before a swarm of strong/severe storms arrive by the dinner hour. Stay alert later today.
Canadian air cools us off into Tuesday, but heat and numerous T-storms return from Wednesday into next Sunday. Highs poke into the 90s again by next weekend.
The extended outlook: "Stinking Hot!"
NASA Hints That Thinning Arctic Sea Ice May May Slow Impact Of Global Warming. The plankton will save us! Hopefully. Details from The Capitol Column; here's an excerpt: "Turns out that increased amounts of CO2 could actually help the planet stave off the effects of global warming. That is the consensus of a team of NASA scientists, according to a newly published report, which finds that a growing body of microscopic plants may eventually provide the Arctic ice with additional time. NASA researchers say microscopic plants could serve as a solution to increasingly high rates of CO2, one of the key contributors to global warming. The team of scientists suggest that the large quantities of phytoplankton, recently discovered growing under sea ice, could pull in large amounts of the greenhouse gas, possibly curtailing any potential consequences of global warming."
Photo credit above: "The number of major forest fires in B.C. will likely increase by 50 per cent or more in the next 40 years, according to a recent report on climate change. Telling the Weather Story, released this week by the Insurance Bureau of Canada, addresses altering weather patterns across the country in the coming decades and urges Canadians to adjust to the realities of climate change." File Photo: Joshua Lott, Reuters
Photo credit above: "The Pacific Institute gave every indication that Gleick would suffer no further sanctions for his actions, beyond his brief leave of absence." Photograph: Paul Chinn/The Chronicle.