WeatherNation Blog

Soaking Rain Events On The Way – March Relapse Next Week

A Healthy Dousing

We’ve had a few warm blips (Easter Sunday was a balm for the senses) but overall a cool bias is forecast to linger into May. This, in turn, increases temperature contrasts over the lower 48 states, whipping up stronger storms, capable of pulling moisture north from the Gulf of Mexico.

Another factor: El Nino, forecast to kick in by summer, which also tends to favor cooler and wetter weather. With any luck meteorologists won’t be dragging around the D-word (drought) much longer.


Waves of Rain. GFS guidance shows heavy showers and a few T-storms pushing across the Midwest later today and Thursday; a second storm spinning up over the Midwest, Great Lakes and Ohio Valley late in the weekend and early next week. California is still too dry, but much of America east of the Rockies will see plenty of rain in the coming days.


April Drenching. Some 3-4″ rains are predicted from Omaha to near Des Moines over the next 5 days, with over 1″ of rain by Sunday evening for much of Minnesota. The Pacific Northwest sees soaking 2-5″ rains capable of flash flooding. Source: NOAA HPC.


Severe Risk. NOAA SPC predicts a “slight risk” of severe storms from near Lincoln southward to Oklahoma City, Midland and Wichita Falls, Texas later today, including a few isolated tornadoes.


Slowest Start To U.S. Tornado Season On Record. It’s a little premature to get too complacent about a lack of major tornado outbreaks (93 so far nationwide, less than a quarter of “average”, to date). That’s the topic of today’s edition of Climate Matters: “WeatherNationTV Chief Meteorologist Paul Douglas goes over this years tornado stats. So far, we’ve been extremely lucky to see only 93 tornadoes. But in all things weather, it can change on a dime. Peak tornado months are May followed closely by June. So don’t write off tornado season yet, this could be just the beginning.”


Quietest Start To Tornado Season In 60+ Years? So says NOAA SPC. Details from the Storm Prediction Center here.


Experts: Civilians Not Ready For EMP-Caused Blackout. No kidding. Watchdog.org has the details; here’s the introduction: “The catastrophic effects of an electromagnetic pulse-caused blackout could be preventable, but experts warn the civilian world is still not ready. Peter Vincent Pry, executive director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security and director of the U.S. Nuclear Strategy Forum, both congressional advisory boards, said the technology to avoid disaster from electromagnetic pulses exists, and upgrading the nation’s electrical grid is financially viable. “The problem is not the technology,” Pry said. “We know how to protect against it. It’s not the money, it doesn’t cost that much. The problem is the politics. It always seems to be the politics that gets in the way….”

Photo credit above: Wikipedia. “They’re Testing: The government testing electromagnetic pulses uses a simulator hanging over an airborne command post.”


Space Weather Prediction CenterHere is NOAA SWPC’s new (beta) web site with a host of resources and tracking tools to keep an eye on the greatest potential source of dangerous EMP-like CME’s or coronal mass ejections, capable of bringing down communication systems and portions of the grid.


Waste of Space. 135 million pieces of space junk? The amount of garbage hurtling around the Earth is almost incomprehensible. If this keeps up we may resemble Saturn before long. Here’s a clip from Foreign Policy: “…There are some pertinent facts about space debris that demonstrate the pressing danger. Roughly three-quarters of all space debris — 23,000 items over 10 centimeters across, 300,000 measuring between 1 and 10 centimeters, and over 135,000,000 fragments less than 1 centimeter — is presently found in low earth orbit (LEO), the area extending from 99 to 1,200 miles above the Earth. Traveling at an average speed of 18,000 miles per hour, even small pieces of debris can damage or destroy satellites and spacecraft...”


The Brain Injury That Made Me A Math Genius. Amazing, but apparently true. Salon has the remarkable story – here’s a clip: “…Because of a traumatic brain injury, the result of a brutal physical attack, I’ve been able to see these patterns for over a decade. This change in my perception was really a change in my brain function, the result of the injury and the extraordinary and mostly positive way my brain healed. All of a sudden, the patterns were just . . . there, and I realize now that my injury was a rare gift. I’m lucky to have survived, but for me, the real miracle—what really saved me—was being introduced to and almost overwhelmed by the mathematical grace of the universe…”


Does The Moon Influence Human Behavior? Some new research is emerging that suggests the answer is yes – staring with our sleep habits. Here’s an excerpt from a long but excellent story at Aeon: “…When volunteers in their study, whether old or young, stayed in the lab during the three or four days around the full moon, they spent five minutes longer trying to fall asleep than those who stayed in the lab during other times of the lunar month. Their full-moon sleep was 20 minutes shorter, they felt less rested, and slept 30 per cent less deeply than those who visited the lab during other times. They couldn’t see the Moon, and the researchers hadn’t even noted the Moon phase at the time…”


Which Cities Sleep In, And Which Get To Work Early? Here’s a clip from Nate Silver at FiveThirtyEight: “…How much do American cities differ in when they begin work? The Census Bureau collects data on this through the American Community Survey. This data isn’t especially user-friendly, but I figured out the median time Americans begin their workday in each metro area. All the figures that I’ll describe here refer to the location of work — not the location of residence for the workers — since some Americans commute between metro areas for their jobs…”



Climate Stories….

Preparing The U.S. Military For The “Threat Multiplier” Of Climate Change. Here’s a snippet from a story at Stars and Stripes that caught my eye: “…Climate change worsens the divide between haves and have-nots, hitting the poor the hardest. It can also drive up food prices and spawn mega-disasters, creating refugees and taxing the resiliency of governments. When a threat like that comes along, it’s impossible to ignore. Especially if your job is national security. In a recent interview with the blog Responding to Climate Change, retired Army Brig. Gen. Chris King laid out the military’s thinking on climate change: “This is like getting embroiled in a war that lasts 100 years. That’s the scariest thing for us. There is no exit strategy that is available for many of the problems.…”

Photo credit above: “An F/A-18 from the Blue Angels flight demonstration squadron is fueled with a 50-50 blend of biofuel and jet fuel. Experimenting with biofuels is part of the military’s push to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels.” Kiona Miller – U.S. Navy.


Interactive Map Shows How The U.S. Has Warmed Since The First Earth DayMashable has the article and interactive graphic – here’s a clipper: “Since the very first Earth Day was celebrated in the United States in 1970, average temperatures across the U.S. have increased markedly. A new interactive graphic from Climate Central, a nonprofit research and journalism organization, shows a state-by-state breakdown of those temperature trends. According to Climate Central, average temperatures in the lower 48 states have increased at a rate of about 0.13 degrees Fahrenheit per decade…”


Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize that we can not eat money.” – Costa Rican saying


NOAA Releases Arctic Action Plan. Details from NOAA: “Earlier this year, President Obama released a plan for moving forward on his national strategy to advance U.S. security and stewardship interests in the Arctic. Today, in keeping with the goals and tenets of his strategy, NOAA unveils its Arctic Action Plan—a document that provides NOAA scientists, stakeholders and partners a roadmap to make shared progress in monitoring, understanding, and protecting this vast, valuable, and vulnerable region. Climate change is making the Arctic a greener, warmer, and increasingly accessible place for economic opportunity. However, climate impacts such as sea ice loss and rising ocean acidification are straining coastal community resilience and sound resource stewardship. Impacts are also being studied outside the Arctic, as NOAA scientists and colleagues work to better understand the region’s influence on global weather and climate patterns…”


Ancient Tundra Discovered Under Greenland Ice Sheet. Extreme melting is leading to some interesting discoveries, under the ice. Here’s a video clip and explanation from The Wall Street Journal: “A team of scientists have found organic soil that has been frozen to the bottom of the Greenland Ice Sheet for 2.7 million years, providing strong evidence that the ice sheet has survived many periods of global warming.” WSJ’s Niki Blasina reports. Photo: Joshua Brown, University of Vermont.


 

Column: Get Past Fake Debate On Global Warming. Here’s an excerpt of an Op-Ed from The Wasau Daily Herald: “… It is obvious now that no amount of scientific evidence and no degree of consensus among climate experts can shake the true denialist. It’s as if there are two parallel universes. For the denialists there is the universe created by Fox News and the Heartland Institute, and news from that world is reported Charles Krauthammer, Rush Limbaugh, and many others. In this world climate models don’t work, global warming has stopped, but if there is warming it is from natural causes, there is no scientific consensus, but if there is, tens of thousands of scientists from different countries and diverse fields are all conspiring together to create the greatest hoax the world has ever seen…”

_______________________________________________________________

My Photo

Welcome to the WeatherNation blog. Every day I sift through hundreds of stories, maps, graphics and meteorological web sites, trying to capture some of the most interesting weather nuggets, the stories behind the forecast. I’ll link to stories and share some of the web sites I use. I’m still passionate about the weather, have been ever since Tropical Storm Agnes flooded my home in Lancaster, PA in 1972. I’ve started 5 weather-related companies. “EarthWatch” created the world’s first 3-D weather graphics for TV stations – Steven Spielberg used our software in “Jurassic Park” and “Twister”. My last company, “Digital Cyclone”, personalized weather for cell phones. “My-Cast” was launched in 2001 and is still going strong on iPhone, Android and Blackberry. I sold DCI to Garmin in 2007 so I could focus on my latest venture: WeatherNation. I also write a daily weather column for The Star Tribune startribune.com/weather And if you’re on Twitter, you’ll find me @pdouglasweather.

Happy Earth Day!! Simple Ways You Can Help Save the Earth

Earth is a pretty cool place don’t you think? So why not take care of it… After all, it’s our home!

NASA has a nice list of 10 things you need to know about Earth:

1.) If the sun were as tall as a typical front door, Earth would be the size of a nickel.

2.) Earth is the third planet from the sun at a distance of about 150 million km (93 million miles) or one AU.

3.) One day on Earth takes 24 hours (this is the time it takes the Earth to rotate or spin once). Earth makes a complete orbit around the sun (a year in Earth time) in about 365 days.

4.) Earth is a rocky planet, also known as a terrestrial planet, with a solid and dynamic surface of mountains, valleys, canyons, plains and so much more. What makes Earth different from the other terrestrial planets is that it is also an ocean planet: 70 percent of the Earth’s surface is covered in oceans.

5.) The Earth’s atmosphere is made up of 78 percent nitrogen (N2), 21 percent oxygen (O2) and 1 percent other ingredients — the perfect balance for us to breathe and live. Many planets have atmospheres, but only Earth’s is breathable.

6.) Earth has one moon. Another name for a moon is satellite.

7.) Earth has no rings.

8.) Many orbiting spacecraft study the Earth from above as a whole system and together aid in understanding our home planet.

9.) Earth is the perfect place for life.

10.) Earth’s atmosphere protects us from incoming meteoroids, most of which break up in our atmosphere before they can strike the surface as meteorites.

Read more from NASA.gov HERE:

4.22 earth

Why Celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd?

EarthSky.org has a great article on why we observe Earth Day on April 22nd…

“The first Earth Day – April 22, 1970 – marked the beginning of the modern environmental movement. Approximately 20 million Americans, especially on college campuses, participated in a national teach-in on environmental issues and protests against environmental deterioration on the first Earth Day. It’s hard to imagine it now, but the first Earth Day was a revelation to many, a way not only of raising consciousness about environmental issues but also of bringing together separate groups that had been fighting separately against issues including oil spills, pollutions from factories and power plants, raw sewage, toxic dumps, pesticides, the loss of wilderness, air pollution and more. Since then, Earth Day is always celebrated on April 22. But why April 22?

Bottom line: Why do we celebrate Earth Day on April 22? The date stems from an earlier observance, Arbor Day. And the date of Arbor Day was set due to the birthday of J. Sterling Morton, a Nebraska pioneer and journalist, who launched the first Arbor Day in 1872.”

Read more from EarthSky.org HERE:

(Image courtesy: www.arborday.org)
4.22 Tree

Simple Things You Can do to Save the Planet

The EPA.gov has a nice list of ways you can help save the planet in your everyday life. See more below:

See more from EPA.gov HERE:

4.22 Earth at Home 4.22 Earth at School 4.22 Earth on the Road 4.22 Earth at Work 4.22 Earth Everywhere

Thanks again for checking in and have a great rest of your week! Don’t forget to check me out on Twitter @TNelsonWNTV

WNTV TODD NELSON

 

 

Sliding into a Cooler, Wetter Pattern – Earth Day 2014: Going Green To Save Green

Saving Green

We’re all environmentalists – some of us just don’t know it yet. On Earth Day 2014 America’s air and water is dramatically cleaner than it was 40 years ago. But greenhouse gases continue to spike at an alarming rate, worldwide.

Who cares? As I gently remind my friends on the right: conservatism shouldn’t be a la carte. It should apply to the very thing that sustains us, the amazing gift we’ve been loaned. We’re all stewards of God’s Creation.

I have yet to meet anyone who doesn’t like to save money. Skeptics may perk up when they realize clean energy options will eventually put more green in their wallets. Solar power is catching on as innovation causes prices to fall dramatically, but that’s just the beginning.

Last year I traded in 2 gas-powered cars for a Tesla Model S, an all electric vehicle that I charge up every night in my garage. It has a range of 200 miles and is continually connected to the Internet, allowing streaming media on a super-sized iPad-like center console. Software upgrades are sent automatically, making it the rough equivalent of an iPhone on wheels. I’m a car nut, and I can safely say this is the most fun I’ve had in a vehicle in 40 years. The best part: I’m saving $600/year on insurance and my electricity rates have yet to blip upward. The dream is to drive for free, powered by the sun. Some day soon.

Future Radar. NOAA’s 12km NAM guidance shows heavy showers and a few embedded T-storms pushing across the Upper Midwest into the Great Lakes as the eastern USA dries out; waves of moderate to heavy rain sweeping into the Pacific Northwest. 84-hour loop: HAMweather.


7-Day Rainfall Amounts. As much as 5″ of rain may soak the Pacific Northwest over the next week as a series of impulses push inland. Heavy showers and T-storms may drop some 2-3″ amounts from near Kansas City to Little Rock, with as much as 1″ for portions of southern MInnesota Wednesday and Thursday. Source: NOAA.


Burning Restrictions In Effect For All of Minnesota. Until we get to statewide spring green-up conditions will remain ripe for spotty brushfires. Here’s a video and story excerpt from northlandsnewscenter.com: “In a quicker than anticipated time frame, burning permit restrictions for Minnesota now cover the entire state. According to the Minnesota DNR, burning permits are now required for anyone in the state wanting to burn small amounts of dry leaves, plant clippings, brush, and untreated, unpainted wood as long as weather conditions do not pose an immediate fire hazard...”


Slowest Start To U.S. Tornado Season On Record. It’s a little premature to get too complacent about a lack of major tornado outbreaks (93 so far nationwide, less than a quarter of “average”, to date). That’s the topic of today’s edition of Climate Matters: “WeatherNationTV Chief Meteorologist Paul Douglas goes over this years tornado stats. So far, we’ve been extremely lucky to see only 93 tornadoes. But in all things weather, it can change on a dime. Peak tornado months are May followed closely by June. So don’t write off tornado season yet, this could be just the beginning.”


Quietest Start To Tornado Season In 60+ Years? So says NOAA SPC. Details from the Storm Prediction Center here.


Experts: Civilians Not Ready For EMP-Caused Blackout. No kidding. Watchdog.org has the details; here’s the introduction: “The catastrophic effects of an electromagnetic pulse-caused blackout could be preventable, but experts warn the civilian world is still not ready. Peter Vincent Pry, executive director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security and director of the U.S. Nuclear Strategy Forum, both congressional advisory boards, said the technology to avoid disaster from electromagnetic pulses exists, and upgrading the nation’s electrical grid is financially viable. “The problem is not the technology,” Pry said. “We know how to protect against it. It’s not the money, it doesn’t cost that much. The problem is the politics. It always seems to be the politics that gets in the way….”

Photo credit above: Wikipedia. “They’re Testing: The government testing electromagnetic pulses uses a simulator hanging over an airborne command post.”


Space Weather Prediction CenterHere is NOAA SWPC’s new (beta) web site with a host of resources and tracking tools to keep an eye on the greatest potential source of dangerous EMP-like CME’s or coronal mass ejections, capable of bringing down communication systems and portions of the grid.


“Fukushima Radiation Killing Our Children, Government Hides Truth, Says Former Mayor” Not sure what to make of this one, but the fact that authorities are telling locals that it’s safe to come home seems questionable, under the circumstances. Another Chernobyl? I sure hope that’s just an exaggeration. Here’s a clip from RT.com: “…According to Idogawa there are about two million people residing in the prefecture who are reporting “all sorts of medical issues,” but the government insists these conditions are unrelated to the Fukushima accident. Idogawa wants their denial in writing. “I demanded that the authorities substantiate their claim in writing but they ignored my request.” Once again, Idogawa alludes to the nuclear tragedy that hit Ukraine on April 26, 1986, pleading that the Japanese people “never forget Chernobyl.” Yet few people seem to be heeding the former government official’s warning. “They believe what the government says, while in reality radiation is still there. This is killing children. They die of heart conditions, asthma, leukemia, thyroiditis… Lots of kids are extremely exhausted after school; others are simply unable to attend PE classes. But the authorities still hide the truth from us, and I don’t know why….”


Poll: Big Bang A Question For Most Americans. Here’s an excerpt of a story from Associated Press: “…On some, there’s broad acceptance. Just 4 percent doubt that smoking causes cancer, 6 percent question whether mental illness is a medical condition that affects the brain and 8 percent are skeptical there’s a genetic code inside our cells. More — 15 percent — have doubts about the safety and efficacy of childhood vaccines. About 4 in 10 say they are not too confident or outright disbelieve that the Earth is warming, mostly a result of man-made heat-trapping gases, that the Earth is 4.5 billion years old or that life on Earth evolved through a process of natural selection, though most were at least somewhat confident in each of those concepts. But a narrow majority — 51 percent — questions the Big Bang theory.…”

Image credit here.


The Brain Injury That Made Me A Math Genius. Amazing, but apparently true. Salon has the remarkable story – here’s a clip: “…Because of a traumatic brain injury, the result of a brutal physical attack, I’ve been able to see these patterns for over a decade. This change in my perception was really a change in my brain function, the result of the injury and the extraordinary and mostly positive way my brain healed. All of a sudden, the patterns were just . . . there, and I realize now that my injury was a rare gift. I’m lucky to have survived, but for me, the real miracle—what really saved me—was being introduced to and almost overwhelmed by the mathematical grace of the universe…”


Climate Stories….

Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize that we can not eat money.” – Costa Rican saying


NOAA Releases Arctic Action Plan. Details from NOAA: “Earlier this year, President Obama released a plan for moving forward on his national strategy to advance U.S. security and stewardship interests in the Arctic. Today, in keeping with the goals and tenets of his strategy, NOAA unveils its Arctic Action Plan—a document that provides NOAA scientists, stakeholders and partners a roadmap to make shared progress in monitoring, understanding, and protecting this vast, valuable, and vulnerable region. Climate change is making the Arctic a greener, warmer, and increasingly accessible place for economic opportunity. However, climate impacts such as sea ice loss and rising ocean acidification are straining coastal community resilience and sound resource stewardship. Impacts are also being studied outside the Arctic, as NOAA scientists and colleagues work to better understand the region’s influence on global weather and climate patterns…”


Ancient Tundra Discovered Under Greenland Ice Sheet. Extreme melting is leading to some interesting discoveries, under the ice. Here’s a video clip and explanation from The Wall Street Journal: “A team of scientists have found organic soil that has been frozen to the bottom of the Greenland Ice Sheet for 2.7 million years, providing strong evidence that the ice sheet has survived many periods of global warming.” WSJ’s Niki Blasina reports. Photo: Joshua Brown, University of Vermont.


 

Column: Get Past Fake Debate On Global Warming. Here’s an excerpt of an Op-Ed from The Wasau Daily Herald: “… It is obvious now that no amount of scientific evidence and no degree of consensus among climate experts can shake the true denialist. It’s as if there are two parallel universes. For the denialists there is the universe created by Fox News and the Heartland Institute, and news from that world is reported Charles Krauthammer, Rush Limbaugh, and many others. In this world climate models don’t work, global warming has stopped, but if there is warming it is from natural causes, there is no scientific consensus, but if there is, tens of thousands of scientists from different countries and diverse fields are all conspiring together to create the greatest hoax the world has ever seen…”

_______________________________________________________________

My Photo

Welcome to the WeatherNation blog. Every day I sift through hundreds of stories, maps, graphics and meteorological web sites, trying to capture some of the most interesting weather nuggets, the stories behind the forecast. I’ll link to stories and share some of the web sites I use. I’m still passionate about the weather, have been ever since Tropical Storm Agnes flooded my home in Lancaster, PA in 1972. I’ve started 5 weather-related companies. “EarthWatch” created the world’s first 3-D weather graphics for TV stations – Steven Spielberg used our software in “Jurassic Park” and “Twister”. My last company, “Digital Cyclone”, personalized weather for cell phones. “My-Cast” was launched in 2001 and is still going strong on iPhone, Android and Blackberry. I sold DCI to Garmin in 2007 so I could focus on my latest venture: WeatherNation. I also write a daily weather column for The Star Tribune startribune.com/weather And if you’re on Twitter, you’ll find me @pdouglasweather.

Severe Weather Awareness: When is *your* severe weather awareness week?

Scanning through the various National Weather Service websites prior to writing this blog, I came across the Minneapolis/St. Paul office’s site – and they are announcing that today is the first day of Severe Weather Awareness Week for Minnesota & South Dakota.

 

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The goal with these weeks is to draw attention to the upcoming severe weather season, and hopefully provide people with safety insights and the idea to keep an eye on things in the sky.

A quote from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety sums it up well: “Are you ready for severe weather? The week of April 21-25 is a great time to make and practice your emergency plan and build an emergency kit.”

So when is YOUR severe weather awareness week?  Southern regions tend to do them earlier, closer to the end of winter, because they get big severe weather events earlier – while northern states can do them closer to spring.

National Severe Weather Preparedness Week: March 2-8 2014 (earlier this year)

 

 

 

Alabama

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Flood Awareness Week

Hurricane Awareness Week

Fall Severe Weather Awareness Day

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Feb
16-21, 2014*

Mar 16-22, 2014

May 25-May 31, 2014

Oct 16, 2013

Nov 17-22, 2013

Alaska

Tsunami
Preparedness Week

Flood Awareness Week

Winter Weather Preparedness Week

Mar
23-29, 2014

April 14-18 in 2014

TBD

American
Samoa

National
Tsunami Awareness Week American Samoa Hurricane Preparedness Week

Mar
23-29, 2014

TBD

Arkansas

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Flood Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar
2-8, 2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

Nov 11-15, 2013

Arizona

Flood Awareness Week

Monsoon Awareness Week

Wildfire Awareness Week:

Lightning Awareness Week

Mar
16-22, 2014

June 8-13, 2014

Mar 30-Apr 4, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

California

Lightning Awareness Week

Flood Preparedness Week

Tsunami Awareness Day

Jun
22-28, 2014

Nov 4-9, 2013

March 26, 2014

Colorado

Flood and
Wildfire Awareness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Lightning Safety Preparedness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

March
16 -22, 2013

Apr 13-19, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Oct 19-25, 2014

Connecticut

Flood Preparedness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Safe Boating Week

Break the Grip of the Rip Awareness Week

Lightning Safety Preparedness Week

Hurricane Preparedness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar
17-21, 2014

Apr 28-May 2, 2014

May 17-23, 2014

Jun 1-7, 2014

Jun 23-27, 2014

July 14-18, 2014

Nov 3-7, 2014

Delaware

no
events

 

Florida

Severe
Weather Awareness Week

Tornado Drill

Feb
24-28, 2014

Feb 27, 2014: 10:10 am

Georgia

 

Flood
Awareness Week

Lightning Awareness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Tornado Drill

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar
16-22, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Feb 3-7 2014

Feb 5 2013

Dec 2-6, 2013

Guam/N.
Marianas

no
events

 

Hawaii

Tsunami
Awareness Month

Hurricane Preparedness Week

Ocean Awareness Week

April
2014

May 25-31, 2014

Oct 20-24, 2014

Idaho

Flood/Flash Flood Awareness Week

Pacific NW Severe Wx Awareness Week

Lightning Awareness Week

PacNW Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar
16-22, 2014

Apr 27-May 3, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Oct 19-25, 2014

Illinois

Severe Weather Prep Week

Tornado Drill Day

Flood Awareness Week

Lightning Awareness Week

Tornado Drill Day

Winter Weather Prep Week

Mar 2-8, 2014

Mar 4, 2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Mar 4, 2013, 10 am

Nov 16-22, 2014

Indiana

Flood Awareness Week

Severe Weather Preparedness Week

Tornado Drill

Lightning Awareness Week

Winter Weather Week

Mar 16-22, 2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

March 20, 2014.10:15 am EDT and 7:35 PM EDT.

Jun 22-28, 2014

Nov 16-22, 2014

Iowa

Flood Awareness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Tornado Drill

Heat Awareness Day

Lightning Awareness Week

Winter Weather Day

Mar 16-22,
2014

Mar 24-28, 2014

Mar 26, 2014

June 12, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Nov 6, 2014

Kansas

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Tornado Drill

Flood Awareness Week

Lightning Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Day

Mar
3-7, 2014

Mar 4, 1:30 pm

Mar 16-22, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Kentucky

Severe Weather Awareness Month

Tornado Drill

Flood Awareness Week

Lightning Safety Preparedness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

March
2-8, 2014

Mar 5, 9:07 am

Mar 16-22, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

TBD

Louisiana

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Flood Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Feb
16-22, 2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

TBD

Maine

Flood Preparedness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Safe Boating Week

Break the Grip of the Rip Awareness Week

Lightning Safety Preparedness Week

Hurricane Preparedness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar
16-22, 2014

Apr 28-May 2

May 17-23, 2014

Jun 1-7, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Jul 14-18, 2014

Nov 3-7, 2014

Maryland

Severe
Storms Awareness Week

Statewide Tornado Drill

TBD

Massachusetts

Flood Preparedness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Safe Boating Week

Break the Grip of the Rip Awareness Week

Lightning Safety Preparedness Week

Hurricane Preparedness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar
17-21, 2014

Apr 28-May 2, 2014

May 17-23, 2014

Jun 1-7, 2014

Jun 23-27, 2014

July 14-18, 2014

Nov 3-7, 2014

Michigan

Weather Radio Awareness

Flood Safety Awareness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Air Quality Week

Safe Boating Week

Heat Safety Day

Lightning Safety Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

February 5,
2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

Apr 6-12, 2014

Apr 28-May 2, 2014

May 17-23, 2014

May 23, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Nov 2-8, 2014

Minnesota

Flood Awareness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Tornado Drill

Lightning Safety Week

Winter Hazard Awareness Week

Mar 16-22, 2014

Apr 21-25, 2014

Apr 14, 2013, 1:45 pm

Jun 22-28, 2014

Nov 10-14, 2014

Mississippi

Flood
Safety Awareness Week

Severe Weather Preparedness Week

Mar
16-22, 2014

Feb 4-8, 2013

Missouri

Severe Weather
Awareness Week

Statewide Drill

Winter Weather Awareness Day

Summer Weather Safety Week

Mar 2-8, 2014

Mar 4, 2014, 1:30 pm

Nov 20, 2013

June 22-28, 2014

Montana

Ice Jam
Awareness Day

Flood Awareness Week

Lightning Awareness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Jan 9, 2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Apr 21-25, 2014

Oct 20-24, 2014

Nebraska

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Tornado Drill

Lightning Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Day

Mar
24-28, 2014

Mar 26, 2014, 10 am

Jun 22-28, 2014

TBD

Nevada

Flood
Awareness Week

Mar
16-22, 2014

New Hampshire

Flood Preparedness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Safe Boating Week

Break the Grip of the Rip Awareness Week

Lightning Safety Preparedness Week

Hurricane Preparedness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar
16-22, 2014

Apr 28-May 2

May 17-23, 2014

Jun 1-7, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Jul 14-18, 2014

Nov 3-7, 2014

New Jersey

No
Events

 

New Mexico

Severe
Weather Awareness Week

Monsoon Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Wildfire Awareness Week

Mar 30-Apr 4,
2014

Jun 8-14, 2014*

Oct 27-31, 2014

Mar 30-Apr 4, 2014

New York

Flood Awareness Week

heat Safety Day

Hurricane Awareness Week

Lightning Awareness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar 16-22, 2014

May 23, 2014

May 25-May 31, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Apr 28 – May 2, 2014

Nov 3-7, 2014

North Carolina

 

Severe
Weather Awareness Week

Tornado Drill

Air Quality Awareness Week

Flood Awareness Week

Safe Boating Week

Heat Awareness Day

Hurricane Preparedness Week

Rip Current Awareness Week

Lightning Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

March 2-8, 2014

Mar 5, 2014

Apr 28-May 2, 2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

May 17-23, 2014

May 23, 2014

May 25-May 31, 2014

Jun 1-7, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Dec 8-14, 2013

North Dakota

Severe
Weather Awareness Week

Tornado Drill

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Apr
28-May 2, 2014

Apr 30:11:15 AM to 11:30

TBD

Oklahoma

Severe
Weather Awareness Week

Flood Awareness Week

Air Quality Awareness Week

Lightning Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Day

March
2-8, 2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

Apr 28-May 2, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Nov 13, 2013

Ohio

Severe Weather Preparedness Week

Flood Awareness Week

Lightning and Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar 2-8, 2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

November 17-23,. 2013

Oregon

 

Flood/Flash Flood Awareness Week

Pacific NW Severe Wx Awareness Week

Lightning Awareness Week

PacNW Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar
16-22, 2014

Apr 27-May 3, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Oct 19-25, 2014

Pennsylvania

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Flash Floods and Flood Safety

Lightning Safety Awareness Week

Winter Awareness Week

Mar 3-7, 2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Nov 10-15, 2013

Puerto Rico

Flood
Preparedness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Safe Boating Week

Hurricane Preparedness Week

Break the Grip of the Rip Awareness Week

Lightning Safety Preparedness Week

Mar
16-22, 2014

Mar 2-8, 2014

May 17-23, 2014

May 25-May 31, 2014

Jun 1-7, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Rhode
Island

 

Flood Preparedness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Safe Boating Week

Break the Grip of the Rip Awareness Week

Lightning Safety Preparedness Week

Hurricane Preparedness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar
17-21, 2014

Apr 28-May 2, 2014

May 17-23, 2014

Jun 1-7, 2014

Jun 23-27, 2014

July 14-18, 2014

Nov 3-7, 2014

South
Carolina

Flood Safety Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Tornado Drill

Safe Boating Week

Heat Awareness Day

Hurricane Awareness Week

Lightning Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar 16-22, 2014

Mar 2-8, 2014

Mar 4, 2014

May 17-23, 2014

May 23, 2014

Jun 1-7, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Dec 2-6, 2013

South
Dakota

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Lightning Safety Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Day

Apr 21-25, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Oct 22, 2014

Tennessee

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Flood Awareness Week

Hurricane Awareness Week

Fall Severe Weather Awareness Day

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Feb
15-22

Mar 16-22, 2014

May 25-May 31, 2014

Oct 15, 2014

Nov 17-22, 2013

Texas

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Flood Safety Awareness Week

Safe Boating Week

Heat Awareness Day

Hurricane Awareness Week

Lightning Awareness Week

Texas Winter Weather Awareness Day

Mar 2-8, 2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

May 17-23, 2014

May 23, 2014

May 25-May 31, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Nov 13, 2013

Utah

Severe Weather Preparedness Week

Flood Safety Awareness Week

Air Quality Awareness Week

Safe Boating Week

Heat Awareness Day

Break the Grip of the Rip Awareness Week

Lightning Safety Awareness Week

Winter Weather Preparedness Week

March 2-8, 2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

Apr 28-May 2, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

May 23, 2014

Jun 1-7, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Oct 19-25, 2014

Vermont

 

Flood Preparedness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Safe Boating Week

Heat Safety Awareness Day

Hurricane Flooding Awareness Day

Lightning Safety Preparedness Week

Winter Weather Preparedness Week

Mar
16-22, 2014

Apr 28-May 2, 2013

May 23, 2014

May 23, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

July 16, 2014

Nov 3-7, 2014

Virginia

Tornado Preparedness Day and Drill

Flood Preparedness Week

Break the Grip of the Rip Awareness Week

Lightning Safety Preparedness Week

Hurricane Dangers-Inland Flooding

Winter Weather Preparedness Week

Mar 11, 2014,
Drill: 9:45 am

Mar 16-22, 2014

Jun 1-7, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

May 25-May 31, 2014

December 1-7, 2013

Washington

Flood/Flash Flood Awareness Week

Pacific NW Severe Wx Awareness Week

Lightning Awareness Week

PacNW Winter Weather Awareness Week

Mar
16-22, 2014

Apr 27-May 3, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Oct 19-25, 2014

West
Virginia

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Flood Awareness Week

Air Quality Awareness Week

Safe Boating Week

Heat Awareness Day

Lightning Awareness Week

Winter Weather Awareness Week

Dec 1-7, 2013

Mar 2-8, 2014

Mar 16-22, 2014

Apr 28-May 2, 2014

May 17-23, 2014

May 23, 2014

Jun 22-28, 2014

Nov 9-15, 2014

Wisconsin

 

Flood Awareness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Tornado Drill

NOAA All Hazard Radio Awareness

Heat Awareness Day

Winter Weather Week

Mar 16-22, 2014

Apr 21-25, 2014

Apr 24

May 7, 2014

June 12, 2014

Nov.10-14, 2014

Wyoming

Flood
Awareness Week

Severe Weather Awareness Week

Tornado Drill

Winter Weather Awareness Day

Mar 16-22, 2014

Apr 21-25, 2014

Apr 23, 2014

Oct 8, 2014

 

 

One of the big themes of all severe weather awareness weeks?  Buying a weather radio!  If you don’t have one, now is the time to get one so you can rest easier knowing you’ll be awoken if severe weather takes place.Stay tuned & stay safe this season!  We have severe weather coming to Texas today, and more spots in the Midwest/Central Plains/South Wednesday.WeatherNation Meteorologist Aaron Shaffer @ashafferWNTVAaron Out web2

Manic April: Slushy Mix 1 Week from Today?

Minor Miracle

Yesterday was a WOW moment, an atmospheric daydream; a healing gift from on high. We set out the Adirondack chairs and reintroduced ourselves to dazed, long-lost neighbors. Our dog, Leo, took us on a nice long walk.

You could almost see lawns greening up before your eyes; no small feat after the winter we just experienced. Based on the WMI, the Winter Misery Index, which measures snow amounts and severity of cold it was the toughest winter in a generation. You have to go back to 1983-84 to find a more severe winter overall. Yes, we were due for a perfect spring day, and I’m glad it came on Easter Sunday.


GFS Solution. Although not as aggressive (or ominous) as ECMWF guidance for early next week, NOAA’s GFS model brings heavy showers into Minnesota by Wednesday; heavier/steadier rain possible Thursday, followed by a colder wind by late week. Ah, the joys of April. Model guidance: HAMweather.


Landscape “Transition Zones” May Influence Where Tornadoes Strike. I’ve heard anecdotal evidence of this for a few decades now, tornadoes following river valleys, or more prone to spin up in one area than another 10 miles away. Now there may be evidence that there’s something to this. Here’s a clip from at joplinstockyards.com: “Areas where landscape shifts from urban to rural or forest to farmland may have a higher likelihood of severe weather and tornado touchdowns, a Purdue University study says. An examination of more than 60 years of Indiana tornado climatology data from the National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center showed that a majority of tornado touchdowns occurred near areas where dramatically different landscapes meet – for example, where a city fades into farmland or a forest meets a plain. Forecasters and city planners may need to pay closer attention to these “transition zones” to better understand tornado risk, said Olivia Kellner, doctoral student in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences and first author of the study…”


Lowest Tornado Count, To Date, In 53 Years? NOAA SPC shows only 92 tornadoes as of April 19, on track with some of the least active tornado seasons on record in the USA. A symptom of the Polar Vortex and unusual chill much of March and early April? We’ll see, but it’s probably premature to write off tornado season at this early date.



Climate Stories…

Conservative Heavyweights Have Solar Industry In Their Sights. Big Money and entrenched interests teaming up to prevent new and affordable choices on the energy front, namely zero-cost solar power? A proposed tax on the solar panels on your own roof? I’m shocked. Here’s a clip from a story at the Los Angeles Times: “The political attack ad that ran recently in Arizona had some familiar hallmarks of the genre, including a greedy villain who hogged sweets for himself and made children cry. But the bad guy, in this case, wasn’t a fat-cat lobbyist or someone’s political opponent. He was a solar-energy consumer. Solar, once almost universally regarded as a virtuous, if perhaps over-hyped, energy alternative, has now grown big enough to have enemies…”


Judge Strikes Down Minnesota’s Anti-Coal Energy Law. The Star Tribune has the story – here’s a clip: “A federal judge on Friday struck down a landmark 2007 Minnesota law that bans new power generation from coal, saying it regulates business activities of out-of-state utilities in violation of the U.S. Constitution’s commerce clause. U.S. District Judge Susan Richard Nelson enjoined the state from enforcing key sections of the law, which North Dakota coal and utility interests said hampered their ability to find buyers for power from existing coal-fired generating plants or to plan for new ones….”

File photo: John Giles, AP.


Climate Changes Visible By ZIP Code With New Online Tools. The focus is on rising sea levels, with new resources becoming available that will help homeowners and business owners better quantify risk for their specific locations. USA Today has the story; here’s an excerpt: “With the click of a computer mouse, the potential risks of rising sea levels will soon be searchable — by ZIP code — for all U.S. coastal communities. An online mapping tool will show how much sea levels are expected to rise in each area, as well as the number of residents and buildings that could be flooded. Initially launched in March 2012 for New York, New Jersey and Florida, it will expand to cover New England on Wednesday, the Pacific states later this spring and the rest of the coastal U.S. by the end of summer...”


Running Out Of TimeThe New York Times ran an Op-Ed on the need to tackle this problem now, and not kick the can down the road for future generations to grapple with, when costs may be exponentially higher. Here’s a clip: “…Avoiding that fate will require a reduction of between 40 percent and 70 percent in greenhouse gases by midcentury, which means embarking on a revolution in the way we produce and consume energy. That’s daunting enough, but here’s the key finding: The world has only about 15 years left in which to begin to bend the emissions curve downward. Otherwise, the costs of last-minute fixes will be overwhelming. “We cannot afford to lose another decade,” says Ottmar Edenhofer, a German economist and co-chairman of the committee that wrote the report. “If we lose another decade, it becomes extremely costly to achieve climate stabilization...”


Climate Change Demands Action. Here’s an excerpt of an Op-Ed from The Baltimore Sun: “…Meanwhile, there are enormous dividends to be had from less consumption of fossil fuels — reducing air pollution and dependence on foreign oil. The United States even possesses a significant advantage in clean energy development through our tradition of innovation and entrepreneurship and the availability of natural gas, which can help smooth the transition. Make no mistake, the challenge is significant. The IPCC panel sticks to a goal of limiting global warming to just 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit, and considering that greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise (growing 2.2 percent annually over the past decade compared to 1.3 percent annually the previous three decades), the mandate is to take decisive action now.


Setbacks Aside, Climate Change Is Finding Its Way Into The World’s ClassroomsThe New York Times reports; here’s a clip: “…In the United States, new science standards drawn up by 26 states and scientists’ and teachers’ groups call for introducing climate change to students in middle school and exploring it in greater detail in high school. That has stirred opposition in states like Wyoming, a coal and oil producer. Lawmakers there last month blocked funding for the standards, saying teaching climate change could hurt the local economy. “A lot of science teachers essentially say, ‘This doesn’t feel like a very safe topic to teach. The science is conceptually difficult, and it’s controversial. I might get complaints from parents and it’s not part of my current curriculum, and so I’m not going to take it on,”’ said Charles Anderson, a professor of teacher education at Michigan State University, who advised on the new standards


Why Climate Deniers Are Winning: The Twisted Psychology That Overwhelms Scientific Consensus. Debating the consensus and conspiracy ideation (if you believe 9-11 was an “inside job” or NASA faked the moon landings you’re more likely to believe climate change is a hoax) takes center stage in this long, but excellent article. Here’s a clip from a story at Salon: “…It’s a simple fact that your typical scientist already knows intuitively: Uncertainty grows with risk, exposure and potential loss, especially with complex nonlinear systems, like the global climate system. In fact, it’s not even possible to calculate how much damage could come from worst-case climate scenarios, as Working Group III lead co-author Christopher Field pointed out at the press conference for their report. The relationship between greater uncertainty and risk is both obvious to those in the know and invisible to those who aren’t. So it’s never been properly talked about — or even rigorously analyzed — until now…”

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Welcome to the WeatherNation blog. Every day I sift through hundreds of stories, maps, graphics and meteorological web sites, trying to capture some of the most interesting weather nuggets, the stories behind the forecast. I’ll link to stories and share some of the web sites I use. I’m still passionate about the weather, have been ever since Tropical Storm Agnes flooded my home in Lancaster, PA in 1972. I’ve started 5 weather-related companies. “EarthWatch” created the world’s first 3-D weather graphics for TV stations – Steven Spielberg used our software in “Jurassic Park” and “Twister”. My last company, “Digital Cyclone”, personalized weather for cell phones. “My-Cast” was launched in 2001 and is still going strong on iPhone, Android and Blackberry. I sold DCI to Garmin in 2007 so I could focus on my latest venture: WeatherNation. I also write a daily weather column for The Star Tribune startribune.com/weather And if you’re on Twitter, you’ll find me @pdouglasweather.

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