Something has gone wrong with the global weather pattern...

I first knew something had gone awry when we reached a high of 59 degrees on Christmas Day in northern Colorado. :? With each passing day of this continued abnormal warmth, I am more and more convinced that something has gone wrong with the global weather pattern. While the majority of the United States is experiencing a prolonged wave of record warmth that makes it feel more like late March than late January, Russia, Siberia and Scandinavia are experiencing an unrelenting deep freeze that has claimed the lives of over a hundred people. An unprecedented record snowstorm blasted Athens over the weekend, bringing several inches of snow and howling winds to a city that has seen snow of any significance maybe a dozen times in the last couple of centuries. :shock: Australia is being burned by record smashing heat and raging brushfires. Much of eastern Asia's higher elevations have been buried by record setting snowfall. A tropical depression lingers off the coast of Vietnam; it is not supposed to be there. It is the wrong time of year. Spring flowers are blooming in Montana and Wyoming, and birds are migrating northwards. And don't forget Tropical Storm Zeta, which dissipated only a few weeks back after becoming the longest lived out-of- season Atlantic tropical cyclone. Something is very, very wrong with the weather pattern. What is happening now reminds me of the description of the weather pattern in the first chapter of the book "The Coming Global Superstorm", which was later made into "The Day After Tomorrow. It's very creepy. :shock: I don't necessarily believe there is a global superstorm imminent, but I have a feeling if the weather continues to slide further out of whack as time goes on, we could all be in serious trouble. Maybe someone should check to see if the North Atlantic current has finally made its long predicted shift to the south...
Comments and discussion welcome.
 
Ah....and all of this is called the weather. Unless you live in places like Seattle or Honolulu this is exactly what to expect. What I am trying to say is that experiencing the average conditions is actually quite abnormal. This is what happens in the mid-latitudes. Sometimes its above normal, sometimes its below. This January in the northeast is shaping up to be very warm, the last two were very cold. Its been cold in Moscow and eastern Europe, but that happens. As far as Siberia, I haven't seen anything that impressive. I haven't seen any -80F type stuff, which is common every few years.

Record snowfall you saw on tv in Japan? Those places are known as the snowiest cities/sea level locations in the world. No surprise there. They get so much snow their streets are heated. City streets, not just driveways.

Heat in Australia? Not shocked there, its generally pretty warm there and its summer after all. Records have to get broken somehow.

Snow in Athens? Sounds bad, but that does happen. I did see some photos of snowplows on the streets. They had those snowplows for a reason. Actually, Greece gets some serious winter storms.

I've noticed that the media is calling this "some wild weather." They say that at least 12 times a year. If something happens that frequently I wouldn't call it wild. I should keep track of how often the guy on my local Fox channel calls it wild weather.

Now, the North Atlantic Current shutting down. That is interesting. Some recent research states that it has significantly slowed over the past few decades.
 
I used to feel like this until I realized I was posting things to weather lists every few months with some 'unprecedented' event that I saw. After a few years I started to realize, hey, this weird stuff is happening all the time and has been happening throughout history. This winter we've had numerous thunderstorms from November through January. Normally that's something that I'd be floored about. But I've seen it before. Nothing surprises me anymore. In fact I would be more surprised if things were normal for an extended period of time.

One thing that chasing has taught me is that there really isn't an off-season that you can relax and forget about missing anything. Just about anything can happen year-round.
 
Re: Something has gone wrong with the global weather pattern

Originally posted by Mark Farnik
A tropical depression lingers off the coast of Vietnam; it is not supposed to be there. It is the wrong time of year.
There was a weak tropical disturbance (strong emphasis on weak) that sort of developed in the South China Sea, but it never had winds over 20 knots, and was ripped apart by the northeast monsoon (which is normal and has been in place as normal this year).

Tropical cyclones can happen any month of the year in the west Pacific, but I agree, this time of year is their minimum. Of course, Singapore got hit with a typhoon this time of year back in 2001.
 
B Ozanne said:
Ah....and all of this is called the weather. Unless you live in places like Seattle or Honolulu this is exactly what to expect. What I am trying to say is that experiencing the average conditions is actually quite abnormal. This is what happens in the mid-latitudes. Sometimes its above normal, sometimes its below. This January in the northeast is shaping up to be very warm, the last two were very cold. Its been cold in Moscow and eastern Europe, but that happens. As far as Siberia, I haven't seen anything that impressive. I haven't seen any -80F type stuff, which is common every few years.

Record snowfall you saw on tv in Japan? Those places are known as the snowiest cities/sea level locations in the world. No surprise there. They get so much snow their streets are heated. City streets, not just driveways.

Heat in Australia? Not shocked there, its generally pretty warm there and its summer after all. Records have to get broken somehow.

Snow in Athens? Sounds bad, but that does happen. I did see some photos of snowplows on the streets. They had those snowplows for a reason. Actually, Greece gets some serious winter storms.

I've noticed that the media is calling this "some wild weather." They say that at least 12 times a year. If something happens that frequently I wouldn't call it wild. I should keep track of how often the guy on my local Fox channel calls it wild weather.
Yes, there are always deviations in the weather pattern. It happens. But it's when the deviations are extreme that it is unsettling. I'm willing to bet that the entirety of the Great Plains haven't seen such a prolonged winter "heat wave" in at least a hundred years, and probably a lot longer than that. When spring flowers begin blooming three months early, and migratory birds, who aren't easily fooled, are flying north, you know something is amiss. The fact that Fargo, North Dakota has not dropped below zero in almost two months is very bizarre. Also consider that much of southern Canada has been running above average temps, since the polar jetstream is locked in over the far northern stretches of that country. This type of unrelenting Pacific zonal flow is just downright wrong for the dead of winter. If not the world, the U.S. will likely be experiencing even more extremely deviant weather as we progress through 2006. And yes, Scott, the normal is nothing but a mean of extremes. Well said, my friend.
 
The big climate debate continues and will probably go on and on ...

The weather has changed. The fact that folks would rather pretend it's part of the status quo has not.

Whether owed to normal, cyclical solar or earthly fluctuations or to the escalation in greenhouse gasses by man, there is no more denying that climate is going through a noticeable overhaul right now. My biggest question is the same asked by the author of this thread ... whether the large-scale global changes are now having a more noticeable effect on some of the things noted in this thread and localized, 'extreme' weather events. It's true ... abnormalities and things we consider to be 'extreme' have always been around (and the point that "normal" is defined by a mean of extremes is well-taken) ... but at least on the surface they do seem to be increasing in quantity and severity as time goes on, and they are affecting larger numbers of people. I'm sure we'll continue to hear more about it ...

From http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/globalwarming.html :

... the concern is not with the fact that we have a greenhouse effect, but whether human activities are leading to an enhancement of the greenhouse effect. ...

... Is the climate warming? Yes. Global surface temperatures have increased about 0.6?C (plus or minus 0.2?C) since the late-19th century, and about 0.4?F (0.2 to 0.3?C) over the past 25 years (the period with the most credible data). ...

... Indirect indicators of warming such as borehole temperatures, snow cover, and glacier recession data, are in substantial agreement with the more direct indicators of recent warmth. ...

...Arctic sea ice has decreased between 1973 and 1996 at a rate of -2.8 +/- 0.3%/decade...

...Northern Hemisphere annual snow cover extent has consistently remained below average since 1987, and has decreased by about 10% since 1966. This is mostly due to a decrease in spring and summer snowfall over both the Eurasian and North American continents since the mid-1980s. ...

...on regional scales, there is clear evidence of changes in variability or extremes. ...

On the question of what the future holds:

According to the range of possible forcing scenarios, and taking into account uncertainty in climate model performance, the IPCC projects a global temperature increase of anywhere from 1.4 - 5.8?C from 1990-2100. However, this global average will integrate widely varying regional responses, such as the likelihood that land areas will warm much faster than ocean temperatures, particularly those land areas in northern high latitudes (and mostly in the cold season).

Precipitation is also expected to increase over the 21st century, particularly at northern mid-high latitudes, though the trends may be more variable in the tropics.

Snow extent and sea-ice are also projected to decrease further in the northern hemisphere, and glaciers and ice-caps are expected to continue to retreat.
 
When things return more to "normal" over the next year's cycle, this year won't matter. I remember a little thing in the 30s called the Dust Bowl. That was a years-long era of unusually dry and arid conditions. But somehow the climate survived and things returned to "normal". What I mean to say is, if anyone thinks this year is an indication of what will be "normal" from now on, they are quite mistaken IMO. Folks can label me 'in denial' or whatever, but I just don't buy the "Day After Tomorrow" global warming thing.

I can remember 70-degree days in December twenty years ago. I remember the drought/heat wave of 1980. I saw the longest OK tornado drought in history in 2002-2003, after experiencing the state's most active tornado season on record just four years prior. Fluctuations happen, otherwise "normal" wouldn't exist.
 
Originally posted by Mike Peregrine

Whether owed to normal, cyclical solar or earthly fluctuations or to the escalation in greenhouse gasses by man, there is no more denying that climate is going through a noticeable overhaul right now.

Last time I made a similar statement I was quickly reminded of variability and a document by Doswell. Check out Dr Chuck's words here:
http://www.cimms.ou.edu/~doswell/Normals/normal.html

He notes that variability is the norm, and in particular that our records don't go back very far so we aren't really in position to know what is normal.

Additionally I would like to point out that it only takes once good volcano eruption to dwarf anything man has done ever to the atmosphere. Eruptions of the past have had significant effect on green house gases and caused global stagation / destruction of growing seasons including extinctions. On another note we are "due" for super volcano Yellowstone to erupt. Now that would be a real problem.
 
The period of warmth has been longer than usual, but looking at Wichita's F6s for January and Februrary, there have been some January's and Februrary's that have looked like this in the past (most notably, look at Februrary 1999 in the midst of a La Nina). Although, seeing the lowest high temperature in Wichita this month being 40 and only below 20 once, there is a uniqueness to this pattern.

I also found out severe weather can occur in January in northern KS. Until this past weekend, the earliest I remember severe weather occurring in the year was Feb. 17th in 2000, when some hail, possibly up to golfball size at times as I recall, fell when the temperature was hovering around 40 degrees at 9 PM.
 
Originally posted by John MacKay
The period of warmth has been longer than usual, but looking at Wichita's F6s for January and Februrary, there have been some January's and Februrary's that have looked like this in the past (most notably, look at Februrary 1999 in the midst of a La Nina). Although, seeing the lowest high temperature in Wichita this month being 40 and only below 20 once, there is a uniqueness to this pattern.

I also found out severe weather can occur in January in northern KS. Until this past weekend, the earliest I remember severe weather occurring in the year was Feb. 17th in 2000, when some hail, possibly up to golfball size at times as I recall, fell when the temperature was hovering around 40 degrees at 9 PM.

If all you had to do was look back to 1999 this thread is pretty much wrapped up then.

BTW, some very cold air is now moving into interior Alaska. Fort Yukon is now at -52F, off their low of -56F a few hours ago. Tonight promises to be a little colder. Armed with a trusty alcohol thermometer and knowledge of the local cold spots you could make a run at the North American record low tonight. Well, maybe not, but worth watching.
 
Originally posted by B Ozanne+--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(B Ozanne)</div>
<!--QuoteBegin-John MacKay
The period of warmth has been longer than usual, but looking at Wichita's F6s for January and Februrary, there have been some January's and Februrary's that have looked like this in the past (most notably, look at Februrary 1999 in the midst of a La Nina). Although, seeing the lowest high temperature in Wichita this month being 40 and only below 20 once, there is a uniqueness to this pattern.

I also found out severe weather can occur in January in northern KS. Until this past weekend, the earliest I remember severe weather occurring in the year was Feb. 17th in 2000, when some hail, possibly up to golfball size at times as I recall, fell when the temperature was hovering around 40 degrees at 9 PM.

If all you had to do was look back to 1999 this thread is pretty much wrapped up then.

BTW, some very cold air is now moving into interior Alaska. Fort Yukon is now at -52F, off their low of -56F a few hours ago. Tonight promises to be a little colder. Armed with a trusty alcohol thermometer and knowledge of the local cold spots you could make a run at the North American record low tonight. Well, maybe not, but worth watching.[/b]

From what I've seen, the North America record is -81.4F at Snag in Canada's Yukon Territory (Feb. 3, 1947). They have another VERY tough 30 degrees to drop before breaking that record. They may have a tough time with the lower-48 record of -70F. LOL Point taken however -- it's cold up there right now!
 
Originally posted by Jeff Snyder

From what I've seen, the North America record is -81.4F at Snag in Canada's Yukon Territory (Feb. 3, 1947). They have another VERY tough 30 degrees to drop before breaking that record. They may have a tough time with the lower-48 record of -70F. LOL Point taken however -- it's cold up there right now!

You're right, 30 degrees is a lot. I was thinking about large diurnal swings, which they really don't have up there right now. I do think -60 is in range though, especially if you went out looking for that mark. Again, very cold up there, even for Alaska.
 
Originally posted by Shane Adams
When things return more to "normal" over the next year's cycle, this year won't matter. I remember a little thing in the 30s called the Dust Bowl. That was a years-long era of unusually dry and arid conditions. But somehow the climate survived and things returned to "normal". What I mean to say is, if anyone thinks this year is an indication of what will be "normal" from now on, they are quite mistaken IMO. Folks can label me 'in denial' or whatever, but I just don't buy the "Day After Tomorrow" global warming thing.

I can remember 70-degree days in December twenty years ago. I remember the drought/heat wave of 1980. I saw the longest OK tornado drought in history in 2002-2003, after experiencing the state's most active tornado season on record just four years prior. Fluctuations happen, otherwise "normal" wouldn't exist.

I couldn't agree more.

I was amazed how the news media tried to use the Global Warming angle to explain why last year's hurricane season was so active, despite experts from the NHC telling them that we were simply in an active cycle and citing other periods with a similar level of activity.

And remember 1998, when El Nino was blamed for all of the tornado outbreaks? Come to think of it, El Nino was blamed for just about everything under the sun.

Some things may going on as far as climate change. But I think many people are really jumping the gun and reaching to suggest many of the extreme weather events are somehow related to Global Warming.
 
http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2005/hurricanes.html

Kerry Emanuel is a well-respected professor of meteorology at MIT. The findings of his work concerning global warming have been and continue to be hotly debated. Of course, we aren't scientifically establishing anything by our conversations in Stormtrack, but it is still certainly within the limits of our shared interest to at least talk about why global warming may or may not lay a reasonable groundwork for the explanation of various events. Global warming is a fact. What causes it and the extent of its affects are both what result in the focus for the current debate.
 
Not trying to start anything, as most of you probably have more knowledge than I about this (so I really shouldn't say anything, but meh)

I think people in general like to blame things on media hype. El Nino, Global Warming. There isn't enough research to say for sure what causes these drastic changes, as we don't have records back far enough to compare. While these could be at fault, they might also have little or nothing to do with how the weather is acting. I just don't think we have enough evidence to support either argument, while the 'facts' can be strewed to prove either point.

Weather is like politics. Multiple groups, all with their own 'facts' and arguments to prove their points, when really it's just a lot of wasted time. I just can't blame changes on what the media throws out there, or what either side has to prove. Simple fact is, 2005 broke hurricane RECORDS (that is only about 55 years of data). I'm sure down the road we will have a year that breaks 2005. What will it be then?
 
Originally posted by Scott A. Kampas
Normal? What is normal but a mean of extremes?

Exactly. An "average high" is now what the temperature is 'supposed to be' .. but just an average of all the past high temperatures.. There is no "normal"
 
The only thing I can say about global warming is this. Ofcourse the earth is getting warmer. it has been getting warmer since the end of the ice age. That is why the ice age ended.

People scream about polar caps and glaciers melting. They have been melting for centuries. Much of North America was covered in ice during the ice age but it has now melted just like it is still melting. I dont buy that we have caused this global warming. It is a natural process. Should we have started freaking out when the glaciers in Yellowstone melted?

As for weather patterns being extreme. This is just another dip in a pattern we dont understand becuase our records dont go back that far. We have had hot winters and droughts before. 99, 80, etc.. So if next year is extremely cold and wet then is that a major shift in global patterns and warming or is it just another fluctuation in the pattern that gives us our "norms"?
 
Everyone's saying about the same thing. The e-a system is bounded chaotic, but science has pretty well established that the system is being forced by greenhouse gas warming. Will this mean more variability? They dunno. But can the warm extreme phenomena expect to be favored by a thumb on the scale -- very likely.

The telling thing for me is that the measured effects seem to be tracking the high end of the modeled effects very well. Ft. Yukon may be cold at the moment but the odds are that when all is said and done the disproportionate warming of the arctic regions will persist and increase.

And because it's a bounded chaotic system it's hard to predict how the global forcing will manifest itself in local extremes, or even (God forbid!) under what circumstances some aspects could settle into very different stability ranges. Many scientists are saying that the earth is entering a warm era that hasn't manifested for hundreds of thousands of years. That's getting into a geologic time frame and gets my attention!

I'd hate for our descendents to experience a global hiccup such as large-scale arctic tundra and undersea methane release. The effects would likely be a blip on the geologic time scale and soon mitigated by countervailing effects. But human civilization as we've come to know it might not survive.
 
But thats the whole point David. these are geological cycles. Maybe things will change where we as humans have a difficult time surviving. Maybe we arent suppose to just like the dinasaurs didnt. I dont think it is manmade though. Greenhouse gasses are releases not only by man but naturally. The arctic has been warming and melting for centuries. There is far less ice now than there was 500 years ago and there is no way to dipsute that. there was less ice 500 years ago than 5000 years ago. Does that mean man caused that too? if so how? it was before machinery and gas emitions.

All of this is part of earths natural cycle. some parts of the wrold are warming while other parts are cooling. The world constantly changes which is what gives us weather in the 1st place. No way for us to control it.
 
So where is the CO2 coming from that's natural? All evidence points to CO2/ Methane etc coming from human intervention. There haven't been that many Volcanic eruptions!

Aaron
 
Originally posted by Aaron Kennedy
So where is the CO2 coming from that's natural? All evidence points to CO2/ Methane etc coming from human intervention. There haven't been that many Volcanic eruptions!

Aaron

Here is one possible explaination.
The methane in gas hydrates is dominantly generated by bacterial degradation of organic matter in low oxygen environments. Organic matter in the uppermost few cm of sediments is first attacked by aerobic bacteria, generating CO2, which escapes from the sediments into the water column.......
http://ethomas.web.wesleyan.edu/ees123/clathrate.htm
http://www.sciencenews.org/pages/sn_arch/1...1_9_96/bob1.htm
 
I am not saying man hasnt contributed situation with C02 and with deforesting the CO2 will only get worse but I think the warming is also a natural process that has been going on for thousands of years since the end of the ice age.

And I dont think we can be certain exactly how much we have warmed in the past century. i dont think they could accurately measure tempurature to the .10 degree back in 1900
 
Back
Top