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Posts Tagged ‘El Niño’

3.5 Million People Affected by Climatic Events in Philippines

Posted by feww on April 25, 2016

Global Disasters/ Significant Events – April 25, 2016

An estimated 3.5 million people have been affected by climatic events, including El Niño, across the Philippines, according to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

As of  April 20, DSWD released US$14.8 million for food assistance and cash-for-work programs, officials said.

Japan

Following the two powerful earthquakes that struck Kumamoto Prefecture on April 14 and 16, an estimated 60,000 people remain in more than 600 evacuation shelters. “The Government has secured apartment units for 8,350 households as temporary accommodation,” said UNOCHA.

The official toll stands at 48 fatalities and more than 1,400 injuries.

Timor Leste

An estimated 120,000 people are in need of water, food sanitation, health, and education support across five municipalities of Lautém, Viqueque, Baucau, Covalima and Oecusse, which have been severely impacted by El Niño-induced drought, said UNOCHA.

Myanmar

High winds, hail and torrential rains have buffeted more than 40 townships across Mandalay and Sagaing regions and Shan, Kachin and Chin states in Myanmar. Destroying or damaging thousands of houses damaged. “As of 25 April, authorities confirmed 14 deaths and 18 people injured due to the severe weather conditions – these figures are expected to change as more information becomes available. In Kachin, strong winds destroyed internally displaced persons (IDP) shelter and camp structures.”  [UNOCHA]

“On 16 and 19 April, fighting reportedly broke out between the military and an armed group identified as part of the Arakan Army in Kyautaw and Rathedaung townships, Rakhine State. Village authorities confirmed that about 80 households (380 people) were displaced. Local authorities and the military provided rice and basic health care services to the displaced people.”

Samoa

Category 2 Tropical Cyclone AMOS brought heavy rains triggering landslides in Upolu Island and flooding low lying coastal areas [April 23 -24.] “Electricity and water supply was temporarily disrupted across the archipelago – power outages affected 70 per cent of the country. No fatalities have been reported.” [UNOCHA]

 

 

Posted in News Alert | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

HUNGER: States of Emergency Declared Across the Sahel

Posted by feww on February 20, 2012

10 million threatened by hunger as Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger declare states of emergency

Niger (pop: ~ 16million) is the worst affected country with almost half of its population left without enough to eat.

Disaster Calendar 2012 – February 20

[February 20, 2012]  Mass die-offs resulting from human impact and the planetary response to the anthropogenic assault could occur by early 2016.  SYMBOLIC COUNTDOWN: 1,486 Days Left to the ‘Worst Day’ in Human History

  • The Sahel, Africa. Ten million people are threatened by hunger across the Sahel, as Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger declare states of emergency.
    • “Nearly half of Niger does not have enough to eat.  The 5.4 million people struggling to stay alive are part of a wider crisis affecting at least 10 million people across the swath across Africa that borders the Sahara, known as the Sahel,” said a spokeswoman for Mercy Corps.
    • “This is the third time in the last decade the people of the Sahel have faced severe food shortages.”

Other Disasters

  • Global.  Wildfires kill about 339,000 people each year, according to a new study.
    • The fires consume about 450 million hectares, an area half the size of Canada.
    • [Notes:
      •  In China alone indoor air pollution kills 2.2 million youths.
      • Urban air pollution kills about 2.4 million people globally each year, said The World Health Organization (WHO); however, the true figure may be 10 times as many.]
    • About 157,000 of the deaths caused by wildfires occur in sub-Saharan Africa, and 110,000 deaths in southeast Asia.
    • The study suggests a link between climate and wildfire mortality.
    • El Niño years, when the surface ocean temperature rises in the tropical eastern Pacific Ocean, claim an average of 532,000 lives, twice as many as the cooler La Niña years, averaging 262,000 deaths per year.

Global Disasters: Links, Forecasts and Background

Drought: Recent Links

Posted in environment, Global Disaster watch, global disasters | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

U-S Drought: Mega Disaster Unfolding

Posted by feww on January 24, 2011

Persistent Drought Plaguing Southern U.S.

Persistent drought conditions to linger in the Southern Plains and Southeast US

Persistent drought conditions are forecast to continue in the Southern Plains and Southeast US through mid to late spring, NOAA’s National Weather Service says. “La Niña has kept storms and most of their precipitation in the north, leaving the South drier than normal.”


US Drought Conditions Growing Like Cancer from the South and Southeast.

“The speed with which the drought developed across the southern United States is rather unusual considering that just last year El Niño dominated the region with abundant precipitation,” said Bill Proenza, director of NOAA’s National Weather Service southern region.“ Then it was as if a switch was flipped during the summer, changing to La Niña conditions.”

Fear of Wildfires

Fearing wildfires, Gov Rick Perry issued a disaster proclamation for 244 counties (all but 10 of Texas counties),  because of the ongoing severe drought in December, as Texas experienced its driest November to December in half a century last year.

“Drought conditions, as Texas is experiencing its driest November to December in about 50 years, can combine with low humidity and gusty winds to produce the wildfires, said Mahlon Hammetter, a fire prevention specialist with the Texas Forest Service.”

Earlier in December, lingering drought had forced USDA to declare natural disaster in 10 counties in South Carolina and 36 in Louisiana.  because of persistent drought. “Counties along the Arkansas state line in Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas were declared secondary disaster areas,” a report said.

Although the drought persists in all of the Gulf Coast states, NOAA says, Texas and Florida are the worst affected. “From October through December, Texas received only five to 50 percent of normal precipitation, with portions of the lower Rio Grande averaging less than five percent of normal. During that period, for example, Brownsville received only 0.14 inches (normal is 6.55 inches) and Del Rio received 0.04 inch (normal is 3.89 inches). To the north in Austin, only 1.55 inches of rainfall was observed, compared to the normal of 8.34 inches.”

At least 42,000 fires consumed more than 775,000 acres throughout the affected southern region during 2010.

“Florida lost more than 400,000 acres to wildfires last year, with more predicted to come. Florida’s Forestry Division notes La Niña is expected to continue at least through spring and again anticipates greater than normal wildfire activity in 2011.”

Impact of  La Niña

A combination of scarce tropical precipitation and the dry conditions brought by La Niña created severe to extreme drought conditions for about a third of the South and Southeast regions by late fall and early winter 2010, NOAA said.

La Niña conditions have occurred 13 times in the past 60 years, with the current La Niña being the 6th strongest, so far. However, climate experts are unable to predict whether it will continue into 2012.

It probably will!

La Niña on Dec. 29, 2010


The La Niña is highlighted by the large pool of blue and purple (cooler than normal) water stretching from the eastern to the central Pacific Ocean, reflecting lower than normal sea surface heights.  Click images to enlarge.

Original Caption: The current state of this season’s La Nina is shown in this Ocean Surface Topography Mission (OSTM)/Jason-2 satellite image of the Pacific Ocean, based on the average of 10 days of data centered on Dec. 26, 2010. The new image depicts places where the Pacific sea-surface height is higher (warmer) than normal as yellow and red, while places where the sea surface is lower (cooler) than normal are shown in blue and purple. Green indicates near-normal conditions. Sea-surface height is an indicator of how much of the sun’s heat is stored in the upper ocean. The La Nina cool waters stretch from the eastern to the central Pacific Ocean. Image credit: NASA JPL Ocean Surface Topography Team.

Sea Surface Height Anomaly (SSHA)


Sea surface height anomaly (SSHA) measurements from the Jason-1 and Jason-2 satellite altimeter missions. Note the two main areas of anomaly across the equatorial Pacific. La Nina lingers on as ENSO continues to drive pools of warm surface water to the west.

Global SST Anomaly Chart January 24, 2011


Click image to update and enlarge.

Related Links:

Mega Disasters:

Posted in mega disaster, Megadrought, US rainfall | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Major Hurricanes in 2010: Twice the Cent Avg

Posted by feww on April 8, 2010

Serial No  1,550. Starting April 2010, each entry on this blog has a serial number. If any of the numbers are missing, it may mean that the corresponding entry has been blocked by the authorities/Google in your country. Please drop us a line if you detect any anomaly/missing number(s).

Twice More Major Hurricanes in 2010 Than the Century Average : Forecasters

As the Colorado State University hurricane forecasting team predicts an above-average hurricane season for 2010, NOAA NWS fails to adopt a user-friendly hurricane scale.


Hurricane Ike bears down onto the upper Texas coastline with category 2 wind speed of 177 km/hr (110 mph), September, 2008. Thanks to the inadequacies of Saffir-Simpson hurricane scale, many could have attested to being hit by a category 3 storm. Image Source: NOAA

ATLANTIC SEASONAL HURRICANE ACTIVITY FOR 2010

The 2010 Atlantic hurricane season will see above-average activity with increased chances of United States and Caribbean major hurricane landfall,  the Colorado State University hurricane forecasting team have predicted.

“We have increased our seasonal forecast from the mid-point of our initial early December prediction due to a combination of anomalous warming of Atlantic tropical sea surface temperatures and a more confident view that the current El Niño will weaken.” They said.

They forecast 15 named storms, including 8 hurricanes, 4 of them major, with a 69 percent probability [long-term average probability is 52 percent] at least one major hurricane making landfall on the U.S. coastline in 2010 Atlantic Hurricane season which officially begins on June 1 and lasts for 6 months.

Major hurricanes are those classified as Category 3a or above on the FEWW New Hurricane Scale with sustained winds of at least 178 km per hour (111 mph).


Atlantic Basin Seasonal Hurricane Forecast For 2010. Source: Department of Atmospheric Science Colorado State University (By Philip J. Klotzbach and William M. Gray)

Probabilities for a minimum of one major hurricane making landfall on the following coastal areas:

  • Entire U.S. coastline – 69% (average for last century:  52%)
  • U.S. East Coast Including Peninsula Florida – 45% (average for last century: 31%)
  • Gulf Coast from the Florida Panhandle westward to Brownsville – 44% (average for last century: 30%)

Probabilities for a minimum of one major hurricane tracking into Caribbeans (10-20°N, 60-88°W)

  • 58% (average for last century: 42%)

The forecasters estimate:

  • 8 hurricanes (average: 5.9),
  • 15 named storms (average: 9.6)
  • 75 named storm days (average: 49.1)
  • 35 hurricane days (average: 24.5)
  • 4  major (Category 3,4 or 5) hurricanes (average: 2.3)
  • 10 major hurricane days (average: 5.0).
  • The probability of U.S. major hurricane landfall is estimated to be about 130 percent of the long-period average.
  • Atlantic basin Net Tropical Cyclone (NTC) activity in 2010 is expected to be  about 160 percent of the long-term average.

Related Links:

Posted in Atlantic hurricane season, hurricane, Philip J. Klotzbach, Tropical storm, William M. Gray | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

El Niño Update [29 March 2010]

Posted by feww on March 30, 2010

ENSO Cycle: Recent Evolution, Current Status and Predictions

El Niño Weekly UPDATE prepared by Climate Prediction Center / NCEP –  29 March 2010

The latest weekly SST departures are:

  • Niño 4   ~  1.0ºC
  • Niño 3.4  ~  1.1ºC
  • Niño 3 ~ 0.7ºC
  • Niño 1+2 ~0.1ºC


El Niño Map. [SOURCE: NOAA/ Climate Prediction Center / NCEP]

SST Departures (ºC) in the Tropical Pacific During the Last 4 Weeks
During the last 4-weeks, equatorial SSTs were more than 1.0°C above average between 165°E and 120°W and near the western S. American coast.

Global SST Departures (ºC)
During the last four weeks, equatorial SSTs were above-average across the Pacific, Indian, and Atlantic Oceans.

Weekly SST Departures (ºC) for the Last Four Weeks

  • During the last four weeks, positive SST anomalies have persisted across the central, east-central, and far eastern Pacific.
  • During the last 30 days, equatorial SST anomalies are nearly unchanged across much of the Pacific.

Global SST Departures (ºC)
During the last four weeks, equatorial SSTs were above-average across the Pacific, Indian, and Atlantic Oceans.

Sub-Surface Temperature Departures  (ºC) in the Equatorial Pacific

  • Since mid-February 2010, the positive subsurface temperature anomalies increased in association with the downwelling phase of an oceanic Kelvin wave
  • Recently, the Kelvin wave has increased temperatures in the east-central equatorial Pacific Ocean.


Click images to enlarge.





Pacific Niño 3.4 SST Outlook

  • A majority of the models indicate that the Niño-3.4 temperature departures will gradually decrease at least into the summer.
  • The models are split with the majority indicating ENSO-neutral conditions by May-July 2010, which persists into the fall. Several models also suggest the potential of continued El Niño conditions or the development of La Niña conditions during the late summer or fall.

SST Outlook: NCEP CFS Forecast Issued 28 March 2010
SST Outlook: NCEP CFS Forecast Issued 28 March 2010The CFS ensemble mean (heavy blue line) predicts El Niño will last through the Northern Hemisphere spring 2010.

Summary

  • El Niño is present across the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
  • Sea surface temperatures (SST) are more than 1.0ºCabove-average across much of the central and eastern equatorial Pacific.
  • Based on current observations and dynamical model forecasts, El Niño is expected to continue at least through the Northern Hemisphere spring 2010.

Unless otherwise stated, information and images on this page are sourced from Climate Prediction Center/NCEP/NOAA. Edited by FEWW

Related Links:

El Niño Updates – Last 6 Weeks:

  • El Niño [Main Page, Links to Weekly Updates Archive]

Posted in Climate Prediction, El Niño update, El Niño update MARCH 2010, ENSO, Oceanic Niño Index | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Your Worst Fears About El Niño

Posted by feww on March 21, 2010

Worst fears about El Niño may come true

The El Niño, formally known as the El Niño-Southern Oscillation, or “ENSO” for short, is the most significant cause of large-scale climate variability in the tropics. El Niño episodes bring warmer than normal waters to the central and eastern Pacific Ocean from Indonesia in the western end to South America in the eastern end of the  ocean, helping to maintain the above-normal sea surface temperatures.

Figure below shows one of these Kelvin Waves progressing across the Pacific in February 2010.

Kelvin Wave Renews El Niño

The globes show sea surface height anomalies, which means places where the water surface is higher (red) or lower (blue) than average. A higher-than-average sea surface height at a given location indicates that there is a deeper-than-normal layer of warm water. Lower-than-average sea surface height indicates a shallower layer of warm water. The globes are based on 10 days of data centered on January 15, January 30, and February 15.

In January (left-hand globe), sea surface heights across the central and eastern equatorial Pacific were elevated (red), but not extremely so, potentially a sign that El Niño was weakening. But in early February, a strong sea level anomaly appeared northeast of Australia (center globe). This swell of deep, warm water is the start of the Kelvin wave, and by late February, it had spread eastward into the central Pacific (right-hand globe) and re-invigorated the current El Niño.

Where do Kelvin waves come from? Under normal conditions, the tropics’ prevailing easterly winds push Sun-warmed surface waters across the Pacific from the Americas toward Indonesia, creating a deep pool of warm water in the western Pacific. During an El Niño, the trade winds falter, and sometimes even reverse, for months. When the winds that maintain the warm pool falter, a large pulse of warm water from the western Pacific slides back toward the east. NASA Earth Observatory images by Jesse Allen, Kevin Ward, and Robert Simmon. Caption by Rebecca Lindsey, based on interpretation provided by Josh Willis and Bill Patzert, NASA JPL.

Related Links

  • El Niño [Main Page, Links to Weekly Updates Archive]

Posted in El Niño episode, ENSO, Equatorial Pacific, Kelvin Waves, Trade winds | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

Unraveling El Niño Mysteries

Posted by feww on March 18, 2010

The following entry is adopted from a NOAA site. They say their researchers have found clues in stratosphere, troposphere and Arctic Vortex that help them unravel El Niño’s ‘mysteries.’

Unraveling El Niño’s Mysteries: New Clues Found in Stratosphere, Troposphere and Arctic Vortex

El Niño’s emergence in the Pacific Ocean creates ripple effects that extend around the globe.

El Niño (Spanish for “the little boy”) is a natural phenomenon that refers to irregular periods of sea surface temperature warming in the tropical Pacific that impacts global weather patterns.


Supercell.
Source NOAA. Click image to enlarge.

El Niño influences our weather:  Ocean temperature, air temperature, ocean currents, winds at various altitudes, air pressure … , and its effects are even more complicated  by human-caused climate change.

El Niño causes weather chaos across the globe:

  • More intense storms in the West Coast of  United States,  but  fewer hurricanes in the Atlantic and Gulf Coast.
  • India, southeastern Africa, northern Brazil, and Australia usually experience dramatically drier conditions. Shifts in patterns are even stronger in other parts of the world.


Layers of the atmosphere. Source: NOAA. Click image to enlarge.

El Niño creates  highly complex “ripples” that alter atmospheric features from the ocean surface right up to the stratosphere, high above the Earth.

The stratosphere,  a layer of the atmosphere beginning about five miles above sea level, influences weather at ground level. The stratospheric layer of the atmosphere is located above the troposphere.

The troposphere begins at the Earth’s surface and extends up to 6-20 km (4-12 miles) high. We occupy this layer.  The stratosphere begins above the troposphere and extends up to 50 km above the Earth’s surface. This layer holds 19 percent of the atmosphere’s gases but very little water vapor.

Researchers say they have recently found a connection between another atmospheric feature, swirling upper-level winds called the Arctic vortex, and colder than average winters in Europe. They have found links between three factors that also influence the Arctic vortex:

  • El Niño
  • Cooling of the tropical stratosphere
  • Warming of the Arctic stratosphere

More information on El Niño :

Posted in Arctic vortex, atmosphere, Pacific Ocean, stratosphere, Supercell | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

El Niño Update [15 March 2010]

Posted by feww on March 17, 2010

ENSO Cycle: Recent Evolution, Current Status and Predictions

El Niño Weekly UPDATE prepared by Climate Prediction Center / NCEP –  15 March 2010

Recent Evolution of Equatorial Pacific SST Departures (ºC)
Since the beginning of June 2009, SST anomalies have been at least +0.5°C across most of the equatorial Pacific. During December 2009, positive SST anomalies increased across much of the equatorial Pacific. From late December 2009 to mid-February 2010, positive SST anomalies decreased across portions of the central and east-central Pacific. Recently, positive SST anomalies are nearly unchanged across the central and east-central Pacific (area pointed to by red arrow in the diagram below).


Y: Time – X: Longitude –  [SOURCE: NOAA/ Climate Prediction Center / NCEP]

The latest weekly SST departures are:

  • Niño 4   ~  1.2ºC
  • Niño 3.4  ~  1.2ºC
  • Niño 3 ~ 0.5ºC
  • Niño 1+2 ~0 (– 0.3ºC)


El Niño Map. [SOURCE: NOAA/ Climate Prediction Center / NCEP]

SST Departures (ºC) in the Tropical Pacific During the Last 4 Weeks
WeeksDuring the last 4-weeks, equatorial SSTs were more than 1.0°C above average between 170°E and 125°W and near the western S. American coast.

Global SST Departures (ºC)
During the last four weeks, equatorial SSTs were above-average across the central and eastern Pacific, Indian, and Atlantic Oceans.

Weekly SST Departures (ºC) for the Last Four Weeks

  • During the last four weeks, positive SST anomalies have persisted across the central, east-central, and far eastern Pacific.
  • During the last 30 days, equatorial SST anomalies are nearly unchanged across much of the Pacific, except for an area of warming west of the Date Line.

Sub-Surface Temperature Departures (ºC) in the Equatorial Pacific

  • In mid January 2010, positive subsurface temperature anomalies increased in the eastern equatorial Pacific in association with the downwelling phase of an oceanic Kelvin wave.
  • Since mid-February 2010, the downwellingphase of another oceanic Kelvin wave has increased temperatures in the east-central equatorial Pacific Ocean.

Summary

  • El Niño is present across the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
  • Sea surface temperatures (SST) are more than 1.0ºCabove-average across much of the central and eastern equatorial Pacific.
  • Based on current observations and dynamical model forecasts, El Niño is expected to continue at least through the Northern Hemisphere spring 2010.

Unless otherwise stated, information and images on this page are sourced from Climate Prediction Center/NCEP/NOAA. Edited by FEWW

Related Links:

El Niño Updates – Last 5 Weeks:

  • El Niño [Main Page, Links to Weekly Updates Archive]

Posted in Climate Prediction, El Niño update, El Niño update MARCH 2010, La Niña episode, SST anomalies | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

El Niño Weekly Update [25 Jan 2010]

Posted by feww on January 26, 2010

ENSO Cycle: Recent Evolution, Current Status and Predictions

El Niño Weekly UPDATE prepared by Climate Prediction Center / NCEP –  25 January 2010

The latest weekly SST departures are:

  • Niño 4   ~  1.4ºC
  • Niño 3.4  ~  1.4ºC
  • Niño 3 ~ 0.8ºC
  • Niño 1+2 ~ 0.1ºC


El Niño Map. [SOURCE: NOAA/ Climate Prediction Center / NCEP]

Weekly SST Departures (ºC) for the Last Four Weeks

  • During the last four weeks, positive SST anomalies have weakened across the eastern half of the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
  • During the last 30 days, equatorial SST anomalies have decreased across the east-central and eastern Pacific.

SST Departures (°C) in the Tropical Pacific During the Last 4 Weeks


During the last 4-weeks, equatorial SSTs were more than 2.0°C above average between 170°W and 145°W.
Click image to enlarge.

Global SST Departures (°C)


During the last four weeks, equatorial SSTs were above-average across the Pacific, Indian, and eastern Atlantic Oceans. Also, above-average SSTs covered large areas of the Northern Hemisphere subtropics.


Click image to enlarge.


Atmospheric Circulation over the North Pacific & North America During the Last 60 Days

From late November to early January, strong mid-latitude westerlies(East Asian and Atlantic jets) were accompanied by troughs over the North Pacific and North America. The troughs contributed to below-average temperatures across the U.S. and southern Canada. At higher latitudes, strong ridging led to above-average temperatures across Alaska and northern Canada. Since early January, the East Asian jet has extended farther east and a trough has strengthened over the eastern Pacific. Over much of N. America, strong ridging has contributed to above-average temperatures across Canada and the northern and western U.S. Troughs and below-average temperatures have prevailed over the southeastern U.S. This recent pattern is typical of ElNiño.


Unless otherwise stated, information and images on this page are sourced from Climate Prediction Center/NCEP/NOAA. Edited by FEWW

For additional information, previous entries and diagrams see links below:

Summary:

  • El Niño is present across the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
  • Sea surface temperatures (SST) are 1.0ºC-3.0ºC above-average across much of the central and east-central equatorial Pacific.
  • Based on current observations and dynamical model forecasts, El Niño is expected to continue at least into the Northern Hemisphere spring 2010.

Related Links:

El Niño Updates:


Posted in El Niño 2010, El Niño impact, Oceanic Niño Index, SST anomalies, Tropical Pacific SST | Tagged: , , , , | 6 Comments »

Tanzania Floods Affect 25,000 People

Posted by feww on January 7, 2010

Tanzania: Days of torrential rain have triggered floods, displacing thousands

Up to 25,000 people have been affected after days of torrential rain which flooded Morogoro and Dodoma, Tanzania, International Federation of Red Cross And Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) reported.

About 25,000 people affected, so far, with more than a thousand people displaced and at least 10 reported killed, most of whom were swept away by raging waters.


UN Map of Tanzania. Click image to enlarge.

“Around 2,000 homes in Kilosa were engulfed by the rising waters and more than half of these were completely destroyed.” IFRC said.

“Some 23 camps each housing up to 100 families have been established across the region to secure safe ground for the displaced families. Many schools have been converted to serve as evacuation centers for the homeless but, with the new term approaching, it is not yet clear where these people will go next.

“The damage to infrastructure has been immense. Roads and connecting bridges have been swept away, and parts of the country’s railway line left impassable hampering the country’s transportation system.

“The waters have submerged acres of crops and pasture lands and flooded many wells that serve as the main water source for communities. As a result, some health centres are already reporting cases of cholera and acute watery diarrhea.” IFRC added

Red Cross disaster management coordinator said: “The biggest problem we need to address is shelter.

“We found hundreds of families huddled together in an open field, stranded and cold. We face an enormous task of meeting their needs, being the first agency on the ground and with the local authorities largely dependent on our response efforts.

“The situation is getting worse and, with more regions such as Shinyanga added to those devastated by the storms, a lot remains to be done,” he added.

“The El Niño rains are not only wrecking havoc in Tanzania but its impact is also being felt in neighbouring Kenya,” said Brennan Banks, IFRC’s disaster operations manager.

“The heavy showers are expected to continue through the whole of next month according to meteorological reports.”

Related Links:

Posted in IFRC, Kenya, Kilosa, Morogoro, Shinyanga | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Kenya Deadly Deluge Wreaks Havoc

Posted by feww on January 5, 2010

Not All Kenyans Born with a Silver Spoon!

Floods in Kenya cause large-scale destruction, displacement and death

News Release from Kenya Red Cross

Torrential rains and floods in Kenya have continued to cause massive destruction, displacement and death. The Kenya Red Cross Secretary General updated the media on the countrywide situation at a press meeting in Nairobi on 5th January 2010.

At least 30,000 people urgently need relief assistance due to the ongoing floods, and an estimated 70,000 people are at risk as the rains are expected to continue until the end of January 2010.


A collapsed mud house. After days of torrential rain, all that remains of a house is a corrogated metal roof. Source: Kenya Red Cross.

Some districts in Kenya are experiencing heavy rains and floods that have caused deaths, destruction of property and displacement of hundreds of people. At least 20 people and thousands of livestock are feared dead due to the current floods that have submerged or swept away swaths of farmlands.

Four districts in Kenya are experiencing heavy rains and floods that have caused deaths, destruction of property and displacement of hundreds of people. At least 20 people and thousands of livestock are feared dead due to the current floods that have submerged or swept away swaths of farmlands.

North Rift

Four districts have been severely affected by floods in the North Rift Region, following the heavy rains experienced over the past two weeks.

In Turkana East District, at least 20,000 people have been affected by floods following heavy rains received in the area, with devastating impact on livestock, farms, infrastructure and households. Katilu and Nakwamoru irrigation schemes are the worst hit, with floods washing away sorghum and maize crops. Five people have been confirmed dead. Some 800 acres of food crops have been destroyed and five bridges washed away, 6,664 houses destroyed, two schools destroyed and two health centres damaged. The livestock deaths include shoats (4,362), cattle (235), donkeys (60) and camels (351).

In East Pokot District, River Nginyang has burst its banks and residents in downstream areas such as Chemolingot have been advised to move to higher grounds.

In West Pokot District floods have affected more than 160 households in Kongelai and destroyed 60 houses. The floods also have cut off the main Kenya-Sudan road. In Marigat area, more than 400 households have been affected by floods. More …

Related Links:

Posted in Climate Change, climate refugees, crop damage, heavy rains in Kenya, West Pokot District floods | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Deadly Landslides in Peru Causes Many Deaths, Injuries

Posted by feww on December 18, 2009

Deadly Landslides in Peruvian city of Ayacucho Kills a Dozen People, Injures Dozens More with Many Missing

Mudslides triggered by heavy rain have killed about a dozen people, injuring dozens more in the southern Peruvian city of Ayacucho.

The death toll is expected to rise, the authorities said.

5 people were reportedly killed when a torrent of mud swept their cars and buried them.

The torrential rainfall, which lasted for about 20 hours, washed thousands of tons of mud and rock from the surrounding hills and filled the streets of Ayacucho, transforming them into rivers of mud, and destroying many structures in their paths.

Bodies are still being dug out of the mud, as meteorologists forecast even more intense  seasonal rains.

Peru is probably experiencing a mild El Nino effect, a number of climatologists have suggested.

Related Links:

Posted in Extreme Rain Events, flood, Human-enhanced-natural-disasters, Landslide, mudslide | Tagged: , , , , | 4 Comments »

Climate Locked into ‘Unending’ El Niño?

Posted by feww on December 15, 2009

El Niño May Continue into Summer 2010 [and Beyond]

El Niño Weekly Update [14 Dec 2009]

ENSO Cycle: Recent Evolution, Current Status and Predictions

UPDATE prepared by Climate Prediction Center / NCEP –  14 December 2009

The latest weekly SST departures are:

  • Niño 4   ~ 1.3ºC
  • Niño 3.4  ~ 1.8ºC
  • Niño 3  ~ 1.6ºC
  • Niño 1+2 ~ 0.2ºC


El Niño Map. [SOURCE: NOAA/ Climate Prediction Center / NCEP]

Recent Evolution of Equatorial Pacific SST Departures (ºC)

  • LongitudeTimeDuring November 2008-February 2009, negative sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies covered the central and east-central equatorial Pacific Ocean.
  • Since the beginning of June 2009, SST anomalies have been at least +0.5°C across most of the equatorial Pacific.
  • During October 2009, positive SST anomalies increased across much of the equatorial Pacific.
  • During November 2009, positive SST anomalies remained nearly unchanged.
  • Recently, positive SST anomalies increased across the east-central Pacific.

SST Departures (ºC) in the Tropical Pacific During the Last 4 Weeks

During the last 4-weeks, SSTs were at least 1.0°C above average across much of the equatorial Pacific east of 170ºE, and more than 2.0°C above average across portions of the eastern half of the Pacific. Click image to enlarge.

Global SST Departures (°C)


During the last four weeks, equatorial SSTs were above-average across the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Also, above-average SSTs covered large areas of the Northern Hemisphere subtropics
. Click image to enlarge.


Click image to enlarge.

Central & Eastern Pacific Upper-Ocean (0-300 m) Weekly Heat Content AnomaliesSince


Since April 2009, the upper-ocean heat content has been above average across the eastern half of the equatorial Pacific Ocean. The heat content was previously below-average from mid-August 2008 through March 2009, with a minimum reached in late December 2008.
Click image to enlarge.

Sub-Surface Temperature Departures (°C) in the Equatorial Pacific


Click image to enlarge.

Atmospheric Circulation over the North Pacific & North America During the Last 60 Days
During the last half of October, a nearly zonal pattern of below-average heights over the mid-latitudes was observed with an anomalous ridging over the higher latitudes. By early November, the anomalous zonal pattern of below-average heights at mid-latitudes had been replaced by strong anomalous ridges across the N. Pacific and much of N. America with below-average heights near Alaska. This pattern led to above-average temperatures across much of Canada and the United States and below-average temperatures in Alaska. Since late November, the pattern has reversed again with below-average heights in the mid-latitudes and above-average heights over Alaska.

SST Outlook: NCEP CFS Forecast Issued 13 December 2009
The CFS ensemble mean predicts El Niño will last at least into the Northern Hemisphere summer 2010.

Summary

  • El Niño is present across the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
  • Sea surface temperatures (SST) are at least 1.0ºC-2.0ºC above-average across much of the central and east-central equatorial Pacific.
  • Based on current observations and dynamical model forecasts, El Niño is expected to continue and last at least into the Northern Hemisphere spring 2010 [and beyond.]

Information and images on this page are sourced from Climate Prediction Center/NCEP/NOAA. Edited by FEWW

Related Links:

El Niño Updates:


Posted in Climate Prediction, ENSO, Oceanic Niño Index, Pacific SST Outlook, SST anomalies | Tagged: , , , , , , | 14 Comments »

Ten Climate Change Lies, Myths and Misconceptions

Posted by feww on December 9, 2009

Climate Change Lie #10

Climategate: Courtesy of rent-a-scientist crowd at UK’s East Anglia University (UEA) who dabble on both sides of the fence

The new, fool the uninformed public disinformation go along the following lines:

What Climate Change? Warm weather anywhere? Ice melting? Drought and Deluge? When was the last time there was even heavy rain other than the Monsoon in India? El Niño was a once in a lifetime affair that occurred in the last century!

David Holland, an electrical engineer [graduated when the mains still carried DC current] saying that it was “like David versus Goliath” as he took on the rest of the British scientific community:

“These guys called climate scientists have not done any more physics or chemistry than I did. A lifetime in engineering gives you a very good antenna. It also cures people of any self belief they cannot be wrong. You clear up a lot of messes during a lifetime in engineering. I could be wrong on global warming – I know that – but the guys on the other side don’t believe they can ever be wrong.”


David Holland, the Lech Walesa of climate change denialland, is seeking prosecutions against some of Britain’s “most eminent academics” for allegedly holding back information in breach of disclosure laws. Photo: DAVID ROSE. Source: The Daily Telegraph, UK
. Image may be subject to copyright.

He’s right about one thing: Don’t buy a second-hand car from the British climatologist, economist, Cambridge physicists, Oxford wranglers, UEA hagglers…

Some of our UK-based colleagues had previously expressed their distrust of

  • British “climatologists” (starting with Lord Stern)
  • The University of East Anglia boffins, especially their climatologists and modelers
  • Some of the senior staff at Hadley Climate Research Unit

Sure enough in the time old James Bond tradition, a spy who came in from the cold, a true professional who was not commercially motivated:

  • Guessed that leading British scientists at the University of East Anglia were manipulating climate change data. [Who told him the boffins were on to something?]
  • Managed to hack the email accounts of two dozen scientists (hacker had nothing to do with the Virgin empire) at UEA. [Who told him how to break into the  UEA computer.]
  • Found incriminating evidence that Climate Change was a great hoax. [Who told him where to find exactly what he was looking for on the computer?]
  • Located a Russian server [somehow that was meant to lend more street cred] to host the stolen emails [And NO! Neither the British mega-business, nor the British govt agents played any part in that.]

Singlehandedly, the Lech Walesa—he was an electrical engineer, too—of climate change denialland, shot a big hole through the climate change theory, mortally wounding the discredited myth [sic.] As a UK blogger proudly put it:

Climategate: the final nail in the coffin of ‘Anthropogenic Global Warming!’

Conclusion: Climate Change Lie #10 is all about doing business as usual.

As Warren Buffett, the Sausage from Omaha, put it:

If the world were falling apart I’d still invest in companies.”

Related Links:

Posted in Anthropogenic Global Warming, climategate, denialland, Global Warming, Hadley CRU | Tagged: , , , , | 5 Comments »

Decadal Temp Avg Up by 74 pct on 1990s

Posted by feww on December 9, 2009

Average decadal temp rose by 74 percent compared with the 1990’s

Decadal temp average rose by 0.4ºC in the last decade (2000 – 2009) compared with 3 decades 1961 to 1990, while the 1990s decade was 0.23 degrees higher.

Global Annual Mean Surface Air Temperature Change
Click images to enlarge

Line plot of global mean land-ocean temperature index, 1880 to present. The dotted black line is the annual mean and the solid red line is the five-year mean. The green bars show uncertainty estimates. [This is an update of Fig. 1A in Hansen et al. (2006)] January-September (9 months) mean is used for 2009 data. Credit: NASA/GISS.

Annual Mean Temperature Change for Hemispheres

Annual and five-year running mean temperature changes for the northern (red) and southern (blue) hemispheres. Credit: NASA/GISS.

Annual Mean Temperature Change for Land and Ocean


Annual and five-year running mean temperature changes for the land (green) and ocean (purple). Credit: NASA/GISS.

Global Mean Surface Temperature vs. Year and Month


Diagram should be self-explanatory. Credit: NASA/GISS.

2009 Likely to Be Fifth Warmest Year  on Record

This year is set to be the fifth warmest, and this decade the hottest ever on record —WMO

WMO head Michel Jarraud, speaking in Copenhagen, said 2009 was likely to be the fifth warmest year on record, and the first decade of this century the hottest ever.  Referring to the world’s worst hotspots, he added that Australia had experienced its third warmest year since 1850, “with three exceptional heatwaves.”

“I could go on. There was the worst drought in five decades which affected millions of people in China, a poor monsoon season in India causing severe droughts, massive food shortages associated with a big drought in Kenya,” he said.

Jarraud also referred to extreme floods throughout the world, including the deluge  in Burkina Faso, which broke a 90-year record, as well as  the third lowest summer Arctic sea ice cover on record, marking the trend for the third consecutive year.

When will a new record be set?

1998 was the hottest year on record, which coincided with a powerful El Nino. 2009 saw a new El Nino developing.

“It’s getting warmer and warmer. The warming trend is increasing.” Jarraud said.  “Its just a matter of years before we break the [1998] record.”

“It’s difficult to say [when a new record will be set] because of the variability. The first time there will be a strong El Nino the temperature will be greater than before.”

“Jarraud rejected a ‘climategate’ row over leaked emails from Britain’s [rent-a-scientist] University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit (CRU), which showed some scientists’ efforts to boost the credibility of climate change at the expense of skeptics.”

The WMO temperature analysis used two U.S. data sources, as well as the British CRU. “The three separately show almost identical results,” said Jarraud.

“The fact that the record for the hottest year has not been broken since 1998 has helped fuel arguments from a small minority of scientists that climate change may not be as severe as feared.” Reuters reported.

UK MetOffice Hadley Centre’s head, Vicky Pope said the temperatures had “climbed slightly” in the past decade. “There hasn’t been a cooling [since the 1998 record.]”

Analyzed on a decadal basis, the temperature rose by 0.4 degrees Celsius in the last decade (2000 – 2009) compared with the average in the three decades 1961 to 1990, while the 1990s decade was 0.23 degrees higher, according to Pope.

“Essentially what’s happened is we’ve gone into [a permanent?] El Niño,” she said.  [El Niño weather pattern can cause havoc in global weather system.]

Related Links:

Posted in Climate Change, climategate, drought and deluge, extreme rain, record heat | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Fewest named hurricanes since 1997

Posted by feww on December 3, 2009

El Niño helped ensure fewest named storms and hurricanes in 13 years

The 2009 Atlantic hurricane season officially ended on November 30 with Nine named storms,  three hurricanes including 2 major hurricanes at Category 3 strength or higher.


2009 Atlantic Storm Tracks – Preliminary. Credit: NOAA

On average, the Atlantic hurricane season clocks up 11 named storms and 6 hurricanes including 2 major hurricanes, NOAA said

“The reduced activity was expected and reflects the development of El Niño during the summer,” said Gerry Bell, Ph.D., lead seasonal hurricane forecaster at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service. “El Niño produced strong wind shear across the Caribbean Sea and western tropical Atlantic, which resulted in fewer and shorter-lived storms compared to some recent very active seasons.”

Although Claudette and Ida, struck the U.S. mainland with tropical storm force winds,  no hurricanes hit the U.S. in 2009, the first time in three years. Only 38 hurricane hunter aircraft reconnaissance missions were flown  over the Atlantic Basin this year compared to 169 in 2008, signifying a less active season, NOAA said.

“El Niño is expected to reach peak strength this winter, and will likely continue into the spring. It is far too early to say whether El Niño will be present next summer,” added Bell.

Related Links:

Posted in Atlantic hurricane season, hurricane, named storm, storm, Tropical storm | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Speaking of El Niño, OLR Anomalies in Australia

Posted by feww on November 19, 2009

Another Human Induced Planetary Antiphase Event

El Niño is experiencing a late-fall resurgence


Recent measurements of sea level height from the Ocean Surface Topography Mission (OSTM)/Jason-2 oceanography satellite showed that a strong wave of warm water, known as a Kelvin wave, had spread from the western to the central and eastern Pacific. This warm wave appears as the large area of higher-than-normal sea surface heights in the area between 170 degrees east and 100 degrees west longitude.

This image was created with data collected OSTM/Jason 2 during a 10-day period centered on November 1, 2009. Red and white areas in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific were 100 to 180 millimeters (4 to 7 inches) above normal. In the western equatorial Pacific, blue and purple areas show where sea levels were between 80 and 150 millimeters (3 and 6 inches) below normal.

Sea surface height is an indication of temperature.The elevated sea levels in the central and eastern Pacific are equivalent to sea surface temperatures more than one to two degrees Celsius above normal (2 to 4 degrees Fahrenheit).

The Kelvin wave was triggered by a large-scale, sustained weakening of trade winds in the western and central equatorial Pacific during October. The change in winds disturbs not only the surface currents but also the deeper ocean circulation. The disturbances reverberate along the thermocline—the boundary between warm, surface water and cold, deep water—as large, slow-moving waves. Similar, weaker events that began in June 2009 initially triggered and have sustained the present El Niño.

NASA image by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory Ocean Surface Topography Team. Caption adapted from the Planetary Photojournal. Edited by FEWW

Related Links:

Posted in eastern Pacific, ENSO, Kelvin wave, thermocline, Trade winds | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Impact of El Niño and La Niña on Rainfall

Posted by feww on October 24, 2009

How El Niño and La Niña affect Rainfall

El Niño 1997
ENSO_sst_rainfall_anomalies_198812

La Niña, 1988
ENSO_sst_rainfall_anomalies_199712

El Niño and its counterpart La Niña alter weather patterns across the world. These images show the strongest El Niño and La Niña events of the past twenty years and their impact on rainfall over North and South America.

The top image pair shows the El Niño event of 1997, and the direct correlation between warm surface waters and rainfall. The 1997 El Niño was unusually strong and brought heavy rain to northwest South America and the southern United States. Cooler ocean temperatures caused drought in Australia and Indonesia, as shown in the 1997 rainfall anomaly image.

The lower image pair shows La Niña in 1988 . La Niña occurs when the eastern Pacific off the coast of South America cools. The unusually cold ocean cools the atmosphere above it. The cool, dense air means less  rain falls over the cold waters in the eastern equatorial Pacific. Image reveals that the drought reached Peru and Ecuador in northwest South America. Globally, La Niña causes unusually heavy rain in India, Southeast Asia, Australia, and southeastern Africa.

NASA Earth Observatory images by Rob Simmon and Jesse Allen, based on data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer and the Global Precipitation Climatology Project at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Caption by Holli Riebeek. [Edited for brevity by FEWW]

Related Links:

Posted in Australian drought, rain in India, South America weather, Southeast Asia rain, southeastern Africa | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

El Niño Update [20 Oct 2009]

Posted by feww on October 22, 2009

ENSO Cycle: Recent Evolution, Current Status and Predictions

The following UPDATE is prepared by

Climate Prediction Center / NCEP –  19  October 2009

The latest weekly SST departures are:

  • Niño 4   ~ 1.2ºC
  • Niño 3.4  ~ 0.9ºC
  • Niño 3 ~ 0.7ºC
  • Niño 1+2 ~ 0.0ºC


El Niño Map. [SOURCE: NOAA/ Climate Prediction Center / NCEP]

SST Departures (°C) in the Tropical Pacific During the Last 4 Weeks
During the last 4-weeks, equatorial SSTs were at least 1.0°C above average between 165°E and 140°W and in small areas in the eastern Pacific.

Global SST Departures (°C)
During the last four weeks, equatorial SSTs were above-average in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Also, above-average SSTs covered large areas of the Northern Hemisphere subtropics.

Weekly SST Departures (°C) for the Last Four Weeks
for the Last Four Weeks•During the last four weeks, equatorial SST anomalies strengthened across the central Pacific Ocean.•During the last month, equatorial SST anomalies decreased over parts of the eastern Pacific and increased over the central Pacific.

trop OLr and wind anom -sml

Atmospheric Circulation over the North Pacific & North America During the Last 60 Days
During mid August through September, an anomalous trough was prevalent in the North Pacific Ocean/Gulf of Alaska. During September, an anomalous ridge was present downstream, focused over Canada and the northern United States. The pattern also featured a weak trough over the central U.S., which contributed to below-average temperatures in the region, while the northern U.S. and Canada remained warmer-than-average. Recently, an anomalous ridge has developed in the Gulf of Alaska with a downstream trough contributing to below-average temperatures across much of the U.S. and Canada.

Pacific Niño 3.4 SST Outlook

  • Most ENSO models indicate El Niño will continue through the Northern Hemisphere winter 2009-10.
  • The models disagree on the eventual strength of El Niño (SST anomalies ranging from +0.5°C to greater than +2.0°C), but a majority indicate at least a moderate strength El Niño (greater than +1.0°C) during November-December-January 2009-10. Figure provided by the International Research Institute (IRI) for Climate and Society (updated 15 Oct 2009).

SST Outlook: NCEP CFS Forecast Issued 18 October 2009
The CFS ensemble mean predicts El Niño will last through Northern Hemisphere winter 2009-10.

Summary

  • El Niño is present across the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
  • Sea surface temperatures (SST) were at least 1.0ºC above-average across much of the central and east-central equatorial Pacific.
  • Based on current observations and dynamical model forecasts, El Niño is expected to strengthen and last through Northern Hemisphere winter 2009-10.

Information and images on this page are sourced from Climate Prediction Center/NCEP/NOAA.

Related Links:

El Niño Updates:

Posted in australia, Climate Prediction, El Niño weekly report, equatorial Pacific Ocean, Global SST anomalies, Indonesia, Malaysia, Oceanic Kelvin waves, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, western tropical pacific ocean | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

El Niño Update [5 Oct 2009]

Posted by feww on October 6, 2009

ENSO Cycle: Recent Evolution, Current Status and Predictions

The following UPDATE is prepared by

Climate Prediction Center / NCEP –  5 Oct 2009

The latest weekly SST departures are:

  • Niño 4   ~ 0.8ºC
  • Niño 3.4  ~ 0.7ºC
  • Niño 3 ~ 0.6ºC
  • Niño 1+2 ~ -0.3ºC


El Niño Map. [SOURCE: NOAA/ Climate Prediction Center / NCEP]

Highlights

SST Departures (ºC) in the Tropical Pacific During the Last 4 Weeks
During the last 4-weeks, equatorial SSTs were at least1.0°C above average across parts of the central and eastern Pacific.

Global SST Departures (ºC)
During the last four weeks, equatorial SSTs were above-average in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Also, above-average SSTs covered large areas of the Northern Hemisphere subtropics and mid-latitudes.

Weekly SST Departures (ºC) for the Last Four Weeks

  • During the last four weeks, SST anomalies remained positive across the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
  • During the last month, SST anomalies decreased over the eastern equatorial SST.

Sub-Surface Temperature Departures (ºC) in the Equatorial Pacific

SSTA - 5 october
Atmospheric Circulation over the North Pacific & North America During the Last 60 Days
During early August through September, an anomalous trough was prevalent in the North Pacific Ocean/Gulf of Alaska. During September, an anomalous ridge was present downstream, focused over Canada and the northern United States. The pattern also featured a weak trough over thecentral U.S., which contributed to cooling in the region, while the northern U.S. and Canada remained warmer-than-average.

WHCEEP 5-10-09

The most recent ONI value (July –September 2009) is +0.8oC.

Summary

  • El Niño is present across the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
  • Sea surface temperatures (SST) were at least 1.0ºC above-average across much of the central and east-central equatorial Pacific.
  • Based on current observations and dynamical model forecasts, El Niño is expected to strengthen and last through Northern Hemisphere winter 2009-10.

Related Links:

El Niño Updates:


    Posted in Climate Prediction, El Niño conditions, El Niño weekly report, equatorial Pacific Ocean, Global SST anomalies, Oceanic Kelvin waves | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

    El Niño Update [14 Sept 2009]

    Posted by feww on September 15, 2009

    ENSO Cycle: Recent Evolution, Current Status and Predictions

    The following UPDATE is prepared by

    Climate Prediction Center / NCEP – 14 Sept 2009

    The latest weekly SST departures are:

    • Niño 4   ~ 0.8ºC
    • Niño 3.4  ~ 0.9ºC
    • Niño 3 ~ 0.8ºC
    • Niño 1+2 ~ 0.5ºC


    El Niño Map.
    [SOURCE: NOAA/ Climate Prediction Center / NCEP]

    Niño Region SST Departures (ºC) –  Recent Evolution
    SST anom 14-sept-09

    Weekly SST Departures (ºC) for the Last Four Weeks

    • During the last four weeks, SST anomalies have increased in some areas of the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
    • During the last month, the change in equatorial SST

    Central & Eastern Pacific Upper-Ocean (0-300 m) Weekly Heat Content Anomalies
    Since April 2009, the upper-ocean heat content has been above average across the eastern half of the equatorial Pacific Ocean. The heat content was previously below-average from mid-August 2008 through March 2009, with a minimum reached in late December 2008.

    Weekly Heat Content Evolution in the Equatorial Pacific

    EQ Upper-Ocean Heat anoms  -14sept09

    1. During September 2008 –January 2009, negative heat content anomalies returned and then strengthened in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific as La Niña conditions redeveloped.

    2. The negative anomalies weakened during January-March 2009, with anomalies becoming positive since late March.

    In April 2009, the combined effects of an oceanic Kelvin wave and weaker easterly trade winds contributed to an increase in the upper-ocean heat content anomalies across the Pacific Ocean.

    Since April 2009, heat content anomalies have remained above-average.

    3. Recently, the downwelling phase of a Kelvin wave has shifted eastward.

      Oceanic Kelvin waves have alternating warm and cold phases. The warm phase is indicated by dashed lines. Down-welling and warming occur in the leading portion of a Kelvin wave, and up-welling and cooling occur in the trailing portion.

      SST Outlook: NCEP CFS Forecast Issued 13 September 2009
      El Niño will last through Northern Hemisphere winter 2009-10.

      Summary

      • El Niño is present across the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
      • Sea surface temperatures (SST) remain +0.5 to +1.5ºC above-average across much of the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
      • Based on current observations and dynamical model forecasts, El Niño is expected to strengthen and last through Northern Hemisphere winter 2009-10.

      Information and images on this page are sourced from Climate Prediction Center/NCEP/NOAA.

      For additional information see following links.

      Relate Links:

      El Niño Updates

      Posted in Climate Prediction, El Niño weekly report, equatorial Pacific Ocean, Global SST anomalies, Oceanic Kelvin waves | Tagged: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

      Vanishing Fred & Atlantic Hurricane Season 2009

      Posted by feww on September 11, 2009

      Wondering what happened to the Atlantic Hurricane Season?

      As [tiny] Fred begins to fizzles out of its hurricane status in the Atlantic ocean about 1,190 km (740 miles) west of Cape Verde Islands, mot everyone must be thinking whatever happened to the 2009 Atlantic hurricane season.

      jsl-l - Fred
      Hurricane Fred. GOES Floater Imagery – Still Image – See inset for date and time. Click image to enlarge and update.

      Summary of Hurricane Fred Status: Fred is weakening further as it slows down more.
      AT 11:00 PM AST Thu Sep 10, Fred was located at 17.4°N 35.1°W, at max sustained wind speeds of about  140 km/h (85 mph) moving north at a forward speed of 5 km/h
      (3 mph) with a min pressure of 735.1 mmHg (80 mb), NHC/NOAA said, expecting it to downgrade to a tropical storm within the next 24 hrs.

      For one thing, it’s not over yet, at least not until the “fat lady” strikes. The peak months are August to October.

      For another, the strengthening El Niño episode seems to be disrupting storm formation in the Main Hurricane Development Region, the Atlantic basin, AND forcing the storms away from land.

      In fact, NOAA’s updated 2009 Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook predicts a 90% chance of a near-normal or below normal hurricane season.

      NOAA recounts two competing climate factors.

      1. The persisting “multi-decadal signal” that has been “associated with elevated levels of Atlantic hurricane activity since 1995, along with warmer than average sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the tropical North Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea.”

      2. The El Niño episode, which is  “producing increased wind shear in the Main Hurricane Development Region.”

      Based on these mix of climatic factors, NOAA updated prediction for the 2009 hurricane season is

      • 50% chance of a near-normal season
      • 40% chance of a below normal season
      • Only an unlikely 10% chance of an above-normal season

      The outlook indicates a 70% probability for each of the following seasonal ranges: 7-11 named storms, 3-6 hurricanes, 1-2 major hurricanes, and an ACE range of 60%-110% of the median. Most of this activity is expected during the upcoming peak months (August-October) of the hurricane season.

      For an in-depth analysis by NOAA see: 2009 Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook Update

      Related Links:

      Posted in Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook, Caribbean Sea, El Niño, ENSO, multi-decadal signal, sea surface temperatures, tropical North Atlantic Ocean | Tagged: , , , , | 4 Comments »

      The Day Temps Plunged by 22°C

      Posted by feww on September 8, 2009

      Temp in Paraguay capital Asuncion plunged from 35°C to 12°C.

      As a ferocious storm devastated parts of  northern Argentina and southern Brazil, temperature in Paraguay capital Asuncion plunged from 35°C to 12°C.

      power cut due to a heavy storm in Brazil
      A traffic warden (C) stands in an intersection following a power cut due to a heavy storm in Brazil. Photo: AFP. Image may be subject to copyright.

      Winds of 120km/h, torrential rain and hail destroyed homes and crops killing about 20 people and injuring dozens more in Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. Uruguay was also hit by the freak storm.

      Meteorologists said a severe depression caused by collision between tropical warm air and frosty air caused the freak storm.

      In Argentina, the towns of Pozo Azul, San Pedro, Santa Rosa and Tobuna were reported as the worst affected areas, where a senior official called the devastation “incredible.”

      Torrential rains flooded many areas across the entire region destroying hundreds of homes, causing traffic problems and cutting off electricity and phone service. Landslides were also reported.

      “We’ve always had very strong winds and torrential rains here. But this was a phenomenon never seen before. Houses were completely destroyed,” a Brazilian official said.

      “Damage was registered in the areas of Neembucu, San Pedro, Paraguari, Cordillera, Canindeyu and Caaguazu. Many crops were damaged,” an official in Paraguay told reporters.

      “Whole houses disappeared,” a rescue official in Santa Rosa, Argentina said. “There are posts down, trees down, and there are more than 50 injured.”

      Related Links:

      Posted in drought and deluge, extreme rain, landslides, mudslide, Pozo Azul, San Pedro, Santa Rosa, Uruguay | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

      El Niño Update [31 Aug 2009]

      Posted by feww on September 1, 2009

      Special Issue with the EN Doubters in Mind!

      ENSO Cycle: Recent Evolution, Current Status and Predictions

      The following UPDATE is prepared by

      Climate Prediction Center / NCEP – 31 August 2009

      The latest weekly SST departures are:

      • Niño 4   ~ 0.9ºC
      • Niño 3.4  ~ 0.9ºC
      • Niño 3 ~ 1.0ºC
      • Niño 1+2 ~ 0.8ºC

      El Niño Map. [SOURCE: NOAA/ Climate Prediction Center / NCEP]

      Niño Region SST Departures (ºC) –  Recent Evolution
      aug 31 sst anom

      Global SST Departures
      During the last four weeks, equatorial SSTs were above-average in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Also, above-average SSTs covered large areas of the Northern Hemisphere mid-to-high latitudes.

      SST Departures (°C) in the Tropical Pacific During the Last 4 Weeks:
      During the last 4-weeks, equatorial SSTs were at least 0.5°C above-average across the Pacific Ocean and at least 1.0°C above average near the Date Line and in the eastern Pacific.

      Weekly SST Departures for the Last Four Weeks

      • During the last four weeks, SST anomalies have increased in some areas of the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
      • During the last month, the change in equatorial SST anomalies was slightly positive.

      Central & Eastern Pacific Upper-Ocean (0-300 m) Weekly Heat Content Anomalies
      Since April 2009, the upper-ocean heat content has been above average across the eastern half of the equatorial Pacific Ocean. The heat content was previously below-averagefrom mid-August 2008 through March 2009, with a minimum reached in late December 2008.

      Sub-Surface Temperature Departures in the Equatorial Pacific

      • During early July through late August 2009, positive sub-surface temperature anomalies weakened in the eastern half of the Pacific Ocean. Meanwhile, positive anomalies in the western Pacific have shifted eastward.
      • The most recent period (below) shows positive anomalies across the equatorial Pacific, with the largest anomalies near 125m depth in the central Pacific.

      Weekly Heat Content Evolution in the Equatorial Pacific

      • During September 2008 –January 2009, negative heat content anomalies returned and then strengthened in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific as La Niña conditions redeveloped.
      • The negative anomalies weakened during January-March 2009, with anomalies becoming positive since late March.
      • In April 2009, the combined effects of an oceanic Kelvin wave and weaker easterly trade winds contributed to an increase in the upper-ocean heat content anomalies across the Pacific Ocean.
      • Since April 2009, heat content anomalies have remained above-average.
      • Recently, the downwelling phase of a Kelvin wave has shifted eastward.

      Outgoing LongwaveRadiation (OLR) Anomalies
      From February 2007-May 2009, convection has been suppressed across the central equatorial Pacific Ocean. Convection has occasionally been enhanced over the western equatorial Pacific and central Indian Ocean. Since mid-May 2009, convection has remained mostly suppressed over the eastern Indian Ocean and Maritime Continent. During July 2009, convection was enhanced near the Date Line and over the western Pacific.

      Pacific Niño 3.4 SST Outlook

      • Most ENSO models indicate El Niño will continue through Northern Hemisphere winter 2009-10.
      • The models disagree on the eventual strength of El Niño (SST anomalies ranging from +0.5°C to +2.0°C), but a majority of the models indicate at least a moderate strength El Niño (greater than +1.0°C) during November-December-January 2009-10.


      Figure provided by the International Research Institute (IRI) for Climate and Society (updated 18 Aug 2009).

      Summary

      • El Niño is present across the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
      • Sea surface temperatures (SST) remain +0.5 to +1.5 above-average across much of the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
      • Based on current observations and dynamical model forecasts, El Niño is expected to strengthen and last through Northern Hemisphere winter 2009-10.

      Typical US Temperature, Precipitation and Jet Stream Patterns during El Niño Winters
      Typical Winter Pattern During El Nino
      All images on this page are sourced from Climate Prediction Center/ NCEP/ NOAA.

      See  El Niño Home Page for previous entries and related links.

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