Ten years ago, we showed you a method for baking cookies on your car dashboard on hot days while you're at work, filling your car with delicious baking smells and a tray of warm cookies for the commute home. Read the rest
Here in Alberta, Canada, it's been a frigging miserable summer so far: cold, full of rain and precious little sun. For weeks, I've been mumbling under my breath, in tooth-grinding resentment, that I should have stayed in Mexico for the rest of the year. I'm not asking for much, just a few weeks of clear skies and a temperature that peaks over 20°C for a few days in a row. Not everyone in the world, however, have the same aspirations. According to data interpreted by the Copernicus Climate Change Service (a European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts joint,) This past month was the hottest June in recorded European history.
From The CCCS:
Summer has barely begun, but temperature records are already being broken. Data released today show that the European-average temperature for June 2019 was higher than for any other June on record. Average temperatures were more than 2°C above normal and it has become the hottest June ever recorded.
Although not as persistent as that of summer 2018, this short heat wave, caused by a mass of hot air coming from the Sahara Desert, was intense. The five days of unusually high temperatures followed days with record-breaking temperatures further east in Europe. This led to the month as a whole being around 1°C above the previous record for June, set in 1999, and about 1°C higher than expected from the trend in recent decades.
The report goes on to mention that linking the temperature increase directly to climate change is a bit tricky as "...such extreme weather events are expected to become more common as the planet continues to warm under increasing greenhouse gas concentrations." So uh, yeah... Read the rest
In this footage from 2016, tornado-hunters get rather too close to a big'un near Wray, Colorado: "we're out of gas!" Read the rest
While 5G mobile networks promise to provide tremendous wireless speeds with low latency, they may also make it more difficult for meteorologists to provide weather forecasts. That's because 5G's neighboring frequencies are used by satellites that detect water vapor in the atmosphere, data that informs weather models used by meteorologists. From Nature:
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Astronomers, meteorologists and other scientists have long worked to share the spectrum with other users, sometimes shifting to different frequencies to prevent conflicts. But “this is the first time we’ve seen a threat to what I’d call the crown jewels of our frequencies — the ones that we absolutely must defend come what may”, says Stephen English, a meteorologist at the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts in Reading, UK.
They include the 23.8-gigahertz frequency, at which water vapour in the atmosphere emits a faint signal. Satellites, such as the European MetOp probes, monitor energy radiating from Earth at this frequency to assess humidity in the atmosphere below — measurements that can be taken during the day or at night, even if clouds are present. Forecasters feed these data into models to predict how storms and other weather systems will develop in the coming hours and days.
But a 5G station transmitting at nearly the same frequency will produce a signal that looks much like that of water vapour. “We wouldn’t know that that signal is not completely natural,” says Gerth.
The composition of the shot is perfect. You know it's going to happen. And when it does, it's delightful rather than horrible. I'd spend at least an hour sliding down again and again, and might even install a rope and traffic barriers to expedite and ensafen the joy. Read the rest
Cold is slow to worsen. Then it's fast.
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A large ice jam formed and released on the Ausable River at Au Sable Forks, NY on January 12, 2018. The ice jam was caused by a combination of rapid snow melt with moderate rain in abnormally warm temperatures. The gauge peaked at 13.27 ft and the gauge data showed that the river rose exactly 7.75 ft in 14 minutes during the peak rise meaning the river rose at just over half a foot a minute at that time.
Meanwhile, in the southern hemisphere,
Australia recorded its hottest month ever in January, with average temperatures exceeding 30C (86F) for the first time. According to the Bureau of Meteorology, the extreme heat was "unprecedented" during the country's summer period. At least five January days were among the 10 warmest on record, with daily national temperature highs of 40C.
Starting Sunday evening, Jan. 20, 2019, North and South America will have a chance at seeing 2019's only total lunar eclipse, from start to finish.
Our Earth, Moon and Sun line up on Sunday night for the only total lunar eclipse of of the year. Catch it if you can. Read the rest
Venice, Italy was hit with a storm that put three-quarters of the city under water. Read the rest
There's something about the detail and dimensionality of this animation that really sends a shiver down my spine. Read the rest
If I weren't in Ontario on assignment right now, I'd be home swearing under my breath at the foot-deep blanket of snow that ambushed Alberta. Jens Lindemann wasn't lucky enough to dodge the storm.
Lindemann, who grew up in Alberta, is a world-class trumpeter who's played for Queen Elizabeth II and soloed at Carnegie Hall. He, along with scores of other travelers, was stranded in the snow on the highway between Calgary and Canmore for close to ten hours with no help from emergency service personnel. It's not that no one in our provincial government gives a shit, rather, they're currently overwhelmed. We were hit so hard and so early by a massive snowstorm that Calgary had to request other cities from around the province to send in plows and personnel to help it dig out. It's that bad.
To make being stuck on the road and, in some cases, in the ditch, a little less miserable, Lindemann popped out of his car with a trumpet and plastic mouthpiece (lips sticking to metal are no fun) to serenade his fellow travelers. If the honking horns are any indication, the performance was appreciated. Read the rest