Nothing like a bracing May wind chill to perk you up, while much of the rest of Northern Hemisphere bakes under a hot, frying sun. Still think climate change is nothing but hot air? Check your latest insurance premium. A run of extreme summer floods and hailstorms in 2013 left behind $942 million in damage across Minnesota, one of the 3 costliest states in the nation.
Bob Johnson is President of the Insurance Federation of Minnesota and he's seeing the impact of climate volatility in the rates we pay for homeowners insurance. "This number means that Minnesota insurance consumers will continue to experience double digit premium increases due to severe weather claims, continuing the decade-long trend. This trend is not sustainable" he e-mailed me Monday night.
At least this rerun of (October) puts a lid on any severe weather risk into the weekend. A storm stalling over the Great Lakes keeps us cool and dry into Sunday; just a few instability showers Thursday. Fields & gardens will finally dry out a little.
Swarms of storms flare up along an advancing warm front next week as temperatures approach 70F. I still don't see a hot front - but 60s & 70s may return in time for Memorial Day.
That would be nice.
|Total Reports = 442|
|Tornadoes = 11|
|Hail Reports = 165|
|Wind Reports = 266|
TEMPERATURES WILL FALL INTO THE LOW TO MID 30S ACROSS MUCH OF CENTRAL AND WEST CENTRAL MINNESOTA. THIS WILL RESULT IN AREAS OF FROST...ESPECIALLY IN SHELTERED AND LOW LYING AREAS. SENSITIVE OUTDOOR PLANTS MAY BE KILLED IF LEFT UNCOVERED.
Photo credit above: "A helicopter attacks a wildfire burning in the north county of San Diego Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires pushed by gusty winds chewed through canyons parched by California's drought, prompting evacuation orders for more than 20,000 homes on the outskirts of San Diego and another 1,200 homes and businesses in Santa Barbara County 250 miles to the north." (AP Photo)
File photo credit: Jim Gehrz, Star Tribune.
Looks Like Rain Again. And Again. Justin Gillis at The New York Times examines trends with heavy summer rainfall, patterns I've been describing for 15 years - this tendency toward weather getting stuck, resulting in biblical rains. Here's an excerpt: "...Many people are still catching up with the science, but it is hard to miss the ubiquity of these heavy rainstorms in recent years. People in the Florida Panhandle recently had to dodge flash floods after two feet of rain fell in 26 hours. Torrential rains caused a Washington State hillside to collapse and bury a community earlier this year. Tumultuous rainstorms and floods overwhelmed Colorado last year, and sudden floods swept through Nashville in 2010, and Atlanta in 2009. We’re seeing a pattern here..."
Photo credit above: " Credit Ahn Young-Joon/Associated Press.
Is Climate Change Real? The Pentagon Sure Thinks So. Here's an excerpt of a story at NBC News: "...As climate-change arguments continue at home — including pundits who assert the scientific consensus on the issue is overblown or concocted — current and former Department of Defense officials are mapping future strategies to protect U.S. interests in the aftermath of massive floods, water shortages and famines that are expected to hit and decimate unstable nations. “For DoD, this is a mission reality, not a political debate,” said Mark Wright, a Pentagon spokesman. “The scientific forecast is for more Arctic ice melt, more sea-level rise, more intense storms, more flooding from storm surge, and more drought..."
Climate Change Deemed Growing Security Threat By Military Researchers. The New York Times reports; here's the introduction: "The accelerating rate of climate change poses a severe risk to national security and acts as a catalyst for global political conflict, a report published Tuesday by a leading government-funded military research organization concluded. The Center for Naval Analyses Military Advisory Board found that climate change-induced drought in the Middle East and Africa is leading to conflicts over food and water and escalating longstanding regional and ethnic tensions into violent clashes. The report also found that rising sea levels are putting people and food supplies in vulnerable coastal regions like eastern India, Bangladesh and the Mekong Delta in Vietnam at risk and could lead to a new wave of refugees..." (File photo above: AP).
* Western Antarctic Ice Sheet Collapse Has Already Begun, Scientists Warn. The Guardian has details.
* This Is What A Holy (Crap) Moment For Global Warming Looks Like. It's the unknown unknowns, things like tipping points, that scare climate scientists the most. Chris Mooney has a different perspective at Mother Jones.
Critics Comes With Territory for U. Climate Prof. Jon Tevlin has an interesting interview at The Star Tribune; here's an excerpt that caught my eye: "...I told Bolstad that one poll showed that only about 36 percent of Americans are worried about climate change. He wasn’t surprised. I don’t know why the public believes what it believes,” said Bolstad. “They think it’s related to politics, but it’s not. The earth’s climate doesn’t care what you believe. A lot of people just have more immediate concerns and don’t think about climate much.” He even has a relative who disagrees with him on climate change. “I just say you are wrong on this, but I won’t tell you how to be a dentist, and we agree to disagree...”
What Climate Change is Really Costing You. Here's an excerpt from a story at Fiscal Times and a video clip, courtesy of CNBC:
What's being done: Heat response plans and early warning systems save lives but many municipalities lack such plans...
Scientists Warn of Rising Oceans as Antarctic Ice Melts. I can tell you from first-hand experience that this report, highlighted in Nature, has many climate scientists more alarmed than I've seen them in a long time. Justin Gillis at The New York Times has a good summary; here's an excerpt: "The collapse of large parts of the ice sheet in West Antarctica appears to have begun and is almost certainly unstoppable, with global warming accelerating the pace of the disintegration, two groups of scientists reported Monday. The finding, which had been feared by some scientists for decades, means that a rise in global sea level of at least 10 feet may now be inevitable. The rise may continue to be relatively slow for at least the next century or so, the scientists said, but sometime after that it will probably speed up so sharply as to become a crisis..."
Graphic credit above: " Credit NASA/GSFC Scientific Visualization Studio.
5 Stages of Climate Denial. Thanks to Shauna Theel for passing this one along.
* the last time I checked this remarkable video had gone viral, with over 1 million views. Good for Mr. Oliver.