Thursday, July 9, 2009

Bill O'Reilly "believes" in global warming

From the article at Huffington Post:

Later, O'Reilly stated that he himself believes in global warming, getting into a tough argument with guest Laura Ingraham, who proudly touted that she was "stockpiling SUVs... I'm buying as many as I can."

When Ingraham claimed that the planet was getting cooler - O'Reilly cut her off and said, "Well, that's not what the temperature says."

(I know, the seventh seal has been broken. A sign of the Apocalypse? Perhaps, but newsworthy nonetheless). For the complete article/video click here.

Winter, like guest uninvited, drops in

A hailstorm left three feet of ice and debris in Grace Martini’s basement in Yonkers, practically burying her washer and dryer.

The calendar says it is July — a natural time to break out the snow shovels and for children to reach for their sleds.


Well, in a season of meteorological extremes, perhaps it should not come as a great surprise to see several inches of hail accumulate in Yonkers on Tuesday night, creating scenes of winterlike wonder that residents were still dealing with on Wednesday.

Grace Martini, 89, found her basement in Yonkers buried under three feet of ice after Tuesday’s storm, which left about 21,000 customers without power. The hail had rolled down her steep, sloped driveway and into the garage and the basement, said Nancy Valedes, Mrs. Martini’s sister.

The Yonkers Fire Department was called in to help clear the hail, which ruined the washer and dryer and covered the furnace in ice, Ms. Valedes said.

“When I called the insurance company, they said they need some proof,” she said. “Well, I think they’re going to have plenty of proof. This is something you have to see to believe.”

(No, this wasn't a true wintry form of precipitation: sleet, same thing as ice pellets. It was hail, from persistent, unusually strong thunderstorms. Frankly, this could have happened anywhere, much more common on the High Plains than metro New York). The New York Times article is here.

5 signs global warming is here

Sea squirts are smothering Connecticut's shellfish industry.

Sea squirts, poison ivy and other evidence that climate change is altering Connecticut's environment

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Sea squirts are smothering Connecticut's shellfish industry.In the film The Day After Tomorrow, global warming looks like hell on Earth.

Polar ice caps melt, causing sea levels to rise and swallow Manhattan in a single tidal surge. Hail stones as big as footballs pummel Tokyo. Twisters rip through Los Angeles, destroying skyscrapers and shredding the Hollywood sign. Then comes a deep freeze, and the world is consumed in a second Ice Age.

In real life, global warming looks like a harmless yellow sea sponge. Non-native sea squirts, also known as Tunicate or sea pork, are proliferating in Long Island Sound and elsewhere as water temperatures rise. Marine scientists at the University of Connecticut found that warmer winters are causing the invasive invertebrates to explode in population. Sea squirts reproduce rapidly and compete with shellfish for food and space, threatening Connecticut's shellfish industry.

Like sea squirts, the early signs of global warming mostly fall into the non-life-threatening category: fast-spreading poison ivy and clinging kudzu vines. But that's just a preview of what's to come.

The complete article in is here.

Have you invested in a NOAA Weather Radio yet?

As of June 1 it is officially hurricane season here in the US. Though the Atlantic hurricane season is getting off to the slowest start in at least five years, the hurricanes will start to appear sooner or later. These hurricanes bring with them the potential for life threatening weather in many parts of the country. When severe weather approaches time can be the difference between life and death or serious injury. A weather radio can buy you the extra time you need to prepare or evacuate.

NOAA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, believes that NOAA weather radios should be as common in houses and places of business as smoke detectors are. Unfortunately, weather radios are nowhere near as ubiquitous as smoke detectors. I believe part of the reason is people don't know they exist, what they do, or how they can save lives.

Here's how weather radios work: NOAA operates a nationwide network of around 1000 radio stations known as NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards (NWR). Coverage is for all 50 states, adjacent waterways, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The NWR works with the FCC to broadcast weather service warnings, forecasts and other information about hazards and they do this 24/7.

(It's still the cheapest life insurance you'll ever find. Consider one for home, maybe one for each floor of your house. I have in my office as well. If there is a tornado warning at 3 am [rare, but not impossible] this will be the ONLY method that wakes me up, giving me time to get to the basement). For more on NOAA Weather Radio click here.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

El Nino weather menace looms for frail economies

Cross-section of Pacific Ocean water temperatures in March, 1998, during the strongest El Nino in modern-day records. (courtesy NOAA).

By Rene Pastor
NEW YORK, July 6 (Reuters) - A nascent El Nino weather cycle threatens to wreak more economic havoc and disrupt raw material production across a wide swath of the world, evoking memories of the killer edition of 1998.
The timing could not be worse. This El Nino appears to be developing as the world is struggling to emerge from the worst economic conditions since the Great Depression. Eleven years ago, a damaging El Nino occurred in the middle of the Asian financial crisis which roiled financial markets.

"El Nino is a little bit like recession: you are in it before you can say you have one. If it continues as it is now, the historians will say the El Nino started in May," said David Jones, head of climate analysis in Australia's Bureau of Meteorology. Jones said they could declare an El Nino in weeks.
During El Nino, an abnormal warming of the waters of the equatorial Pacific unhinges weather patterns in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond. A La Nina weather pattern, in which waters cool, was in place last year.

In 1998, El Nino-related storms, floods, tornadoes and mudslides killed more than 2,000 people and caused billions of dollars in damage to crops, infrastructure and mines.
Michelle L'Heureux, head of the U.S. Climate Prediction Center which tracks El Nino, said this version may not approach the one in 1998, the strongest weather anomaly in 150 years. The CPC is an office under the U.S. National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration.

The complete article at the U.K.'s Guardian newspaper is here.