Extreme Weather Whiplash: 106° in Iowa on the Heels of Record May Snows

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posted on May, 16 2013 @ 05:49 AM
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wunderground.com

Dr. Jeff Masters, PhD Meteorology


Does not compute! That must be what residents of Iowa and the Midwest have have been saying to themselves on Tuesday as a ferocious heat wave unprecedented in intensity for so early in the year sent temperatures soaring as high as 108°. Just two weeks ago, the deepest snowfall ever measured during any May of record buried a wide swath from Arkansas to Minnesota, with Iowa breaking its all-time snowfall record for May (13” accumulation at Osage on May 1 - 3.)


From 13 inches of snow to 108° in two weeks... crazy. Other areas saw similar extremes.


- Chicago, Illinois hit 91°, after hitting a low of 36° the previous morning. The 1-day temperature swing of 52° was the city's greatest on record for the month of May.

- Rochester, Minnesota, where 14.5” of snow fell just 10 - 12 days ago (4th greatest snowstorm for any month on record), saw an all-time early season heat record of 97° on May 14th. The previous day, May 13th, it was 32° in Rochester--a 65° rise in temperature over the course of 36 hours.

- Omaha, Nebraska hit 101°, the earliest 100° on record (old record 102° on May 29, 1934). It was 32° in Omaha on May 12th! That tied for the coldest so late in the season with 32° on 5/13/1997 and also on 5/15/1983.

- Albert Lea and St. James, Minnesota hit 102° (hottest in the state on Tuesday.) Both cities had May snow less than two weeks previously. Tuesday morning, it was 27° at Crane Lake and Silver Bay, for a same-day state temperature spread of 75° in Minnesota. This is a relatively common figure for California or Texas, but almost unprecedented for a Midwestern state.

- Minneapolis hit 98°, the hottest so early in season (next is 99° on May 22, 1925). May record is 106° on May 31, 1934 (the only time 100° has been measured during May).

- Norfolk, Nebraska hit 103°, the hottest temperature ever measured so early in the year (previous record: 103° on May 25, 1967. A daily record low of 29° was recorded on May 12th, just two days previous.


Dr. Masters goes on to state that the jet stream is to blame for the chaotic weather many people in the Northern Hemisphere are experiencing, following the links highlighted in his article I came across another article he wrote about the Arctic Oscillation and the jet stream.


However, a number of papers have been published since 2009 theorizing that the record loss of Arctic sea ice in recent years may be significantly altering Northern Hemisphere jet stream patterns (I list eleven of these papers below.) Many of these studies show a link between Arctic sea ice loss and an increasingly negative AO and NAO index in winter. Dr. Jennifer Francis of Rutgers has authored several of these papers, and wrote a very readable explanation of the theory linking Arctic sea ice loss to extreme weather in the mid-latitudes for our Earth Day 2013 microsite. Her post was called, "The Changing Face of Mother Nature."


The Changing Face of Mother Nature


Recent research has also revealed some less intuitive links between climate change and the escalation of extreme weather. For example, the Arctic is warming two to three times faster than the rest of the northern hemisphere owing primarily to sea-ice loss, earlier snow melt on Arctic land in spring, and an increase in the northward transport of moisture into the Arctic. This so-called "Arctic amplification" means that the temperature difference between the Arctic and mid-latitudes is weakening. This is important because the west-to-east winds of the jet stream are driven by that temperature difference. The jet stream is a fast river of wind high in the atmosphere that takes on a wavy path as it encircles the northern hemisphere, forming the boundary between warm air to the south and cold air to the north. As its westerly flow weakens, the waves in its trajectory tend to take larger north-south swings. These waves control weather systems on the surface: conditions tend to be clear and dry in the part of the wave where winds blow from the northwest, and it's generally stormy where winds come from the southwest. As the waves increase in size because of Arctic amplification, they are expected to progress eastward more slowly, which means that the weather associated with those waves lasts longer in any particular location. Larger waves are also more likely to form "blocks," which are like back-eddies in a stream that tend to prevent the jet-stream waves on either side—and the weather associated with them—from moving at all.


If you're curious as to how a warming planet can mean colder, snowier winters these articles give a great explanation, in simple terminology, as to how global warming affects weather systems over the whole planet and just how important the arctic ice cap is, soon to be was... to giving us the weather we evolved in, that we are adapted to. If we want to survive this, it's really time to start paying attention.

Even if you think it's the sun or the patch of the galaxy we're passing through, even if you think Al Gore is a moron and that climate science begins and ends with him, even if you think us 'alarmists' are religious fanatics running around pulling our hair out and screaming... the weather all over the planet is changing. The changes will affect global food supplies and cause mass human migration, start paying attention it's not going to be a smooth ride.




posted on May, 16 2013 @ 06:00 AM
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Mother Nature is about to give mankind a lesson. I have a feeling most will fail the first part - survival 101.

It is time for an ice age. All the records point to this fact. Puny little mankind will be helpless.

If we put all of our resources into preparing for a planetary emergency rather than into weapons of war, we would stand a chance. But we don't! We will pay the price of our own shortcomings.

P



posted on May, 16 2013 @ 06:17 AM
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Food Supply Under Assault as Climate Heats Up


American eaters, let’s talk about the birds and the bees: The U.S. food supply – from chickens injected with arsenic to dying bee colonies – is under unprecedented siege from a blitz of man-made hazards, meaning some of your favorite treats someday may vanish from your plate, experts say.

Warmer and moister air ringing much of the planet – punctuated by droughts in other locales – is threatening the prime ingredients in many daily meals, including the maple syrup on your morning pancakes and the salmon on your evening grill as well as the wine in your glass and the chocolate on your dessert tray, according to four recent studies.

At the same time, an unappetizing bacterial outbreak in Florida citrus droves, largely affecting orange trees, is causing fruit to turn bitter. Elsewhere, unappealing fungi strains are curtailing certain coffee yields and devastating some banana plantations, researchers report.

Now, mix in the atmospheric misfortunes sapping two mainstays of American farming — corn and cows. Heavier than normal spring rains have put the corn crop far behind schedule: Only 28 percent of corn fields have been planted this year compared with 85 percent at this time in 2012, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Meanwhile, drought in the Southeastern plains and a poor hay yield have culled the U.S. cattle and calf herd to its lowest level since 1952, propelling the wholesale price of a USDA cut of choice beef to a new high on May 3 — $201.68 per 100 pounds, eclipsing the old mark of $201.18 from October 2003, the USDA reports.


edit on 16-5-2013 by Kali74 because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 16 2013 @ 08:42 AM
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When I hear people say "We need to save the Earth" I laugh a bit. The Earth will continue on long after it boots us tiny parasitic humans off. We rely on a rather narrow window of environmental conditions to survive. It will not take much more "Change" before we start living on the edge (or past) those conditions.

Food supplies will be affected on all levels. Heck even in my tiny little world of Norther California the drought this winter had so much impact that ranchers are all moving their cows to high country as there was not enough feed grown this winter to keep them down here. The few small ranchers that can't move to high country are spending a small fortune in feed. This of course affects the price of beef significantly.

I truly believe we past the "Tipping Point a couple of years ago. Dramatic changes to the weather we are all used to are on the way.



posted on May, 16 2013 @ 08:46 AM
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reply to post by Kali74
 


While there is still argument if global warming is (primarily) man-made or not, we do know that wasting almost half of the global food supply definitely is. I don't want to turn this, by any means, into a climate change debate, just want to point out that this is a very real problem, that tends to take a backseat in the whole discussion.

In a way, this is like throwing have of what you have in the dumpster, while complaining that you might not be able to do so when the winter is coming (or very hot summers).




Today, we produce about four billion metric tonnes of food per annum. Yet due to poor practices in harvesting, storage and transportation, as well as market and consumer wastage, it is estimated that 30–50% (or 1.2–2 billion tonnes) of all food produced never reaches a human stomach.

Furthermore, this figure does not reflect the fact that large amounts of land, energy, fertilisers and water have also been lost in the production of foodstuffs which simply end up as waste. This level of wastage is a tragedy that cannot continue if we are to succeed in the challenge of sustainably meeting our future food demands.

Feeding the Billions


Food Waste



posted on May, 16 2013 @ 06:38 PM
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wow. i hadn't heard about those recent extremes. that sort of thing is going to wreak havoc on crops and the next 10 years are going to be a serious wake up call. personally, i think we are too far gone and we can't act fast enough to prepare for what's coming. i think about this almost every day.



posted on May, 16 2013 @ 06:58 PM
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in england they are having the same freaky weather patterns as the u.s record heat then snow the animals are more confused than the humans ?



posted on May, 16 2013 @ 07:00 PM
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reply to post by Kali74
 


The UN says get ready to eat bugs........



I am sure food prices will go through the roof, if extreme weather is going to rear its head this summer.

S&F



posted on May, 16 2013 @ 07:55 PM
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Originally posted by talklikeapirat
reply to post by Kali74
 


While there is still argument if global warming is (primarily) man-made or not, we do know that wasting almost half of the global food supply definitely is. I don't want to turn this, by any means, into a climate change debate, just want to point out that this is a very real problem, that tends to take a backseat in the whole discussion.

In a way, this is like throwing have of what you have in the dumpster, while complaining that you might not be able to do so when the winter is coming (or very hot summers).




Today, we produce about four billion metric tonnes of food per annum. Yet due to poor practices in harvesting, storage and transportation, as well as market and consumer wastage, it is estimated that 30–50% (or 1.2–2 billion tonnes) of all food produced never reaches a human stomach.

Furthermore, this figure does not reflect the fact that large amounts of land, energy, fertilisers and water have also been lost in the production of foodstuffs which simply end up as waste. This level of wastage is a tragedy that cannot continue if we are to succeed in the challenge of sustainably meeting our future food demands.

Feeding the Billions


Food Waste



Star for you! Well stated!

Anything that interferes with food production on a global scale could send a few BILLION people to there deaths.

Once food even looks like being scarce, Nations and individuals will start to hoard it. Imagine a country such as India running out of food. What happens is that people on mass will consume the last crumbs in a "I need some too" kind of way. Parents would do anything to feed their children and since we are talking about India, will they start killing off girls so boys have a better chance.

Once 1.6 Billion people start to starve anything could happen and probably would. All it would take is two growing seasons in a row and this affect would start.

In the West, our cities only have 30 days worth of food at any one time. Think about that fact, it should sober you up.

P



posted on May, 17 2013 @ 08:26 AM
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Thanks everyone for the replies, I think one thing we can do that leaves the false political debate out of it is to write to our respective elected officials asking what they intend to do to address the issue of food and water shortages and/or climate refugee's should our crops etc star failing.



posted on May, 17 2013 @ 09:05 AM
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reply to post by pheonix358
 


yup yup cuz humanity didn't live through the last ice age without the 'right technology' to do it


no one even knows how fast the ice comes. what if it takes 30 years to cover your house with ice? is it that bad?



posted on May, 17 2013 @ 11:11 AM
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reply to post by Kali74
 


Very well written thread and yes the Wx is crazy in many parts of the world not to mention the states. “From April 22 to May 5th there were 3,129 snow and cold records broken.”

“That’s 12,793 Snow and Cold records broken in less than 2 months.”

Yet as you posted there are record high temps in some cases the very next day/week.

Not all countries are as fortunate or as bad with available food stocks as the USA.

I heard on the radio that due to non-warehousing of food stocks for our grocery stores they do not even have 3 days of food stocks if the transportation/delivery breaks down. Also one of the broadcast or articles I read last year said many in America will be unable to purchase food because the prices will be prohibitive. Fear Porn....not really; many can not afford quality food products now and it is liable to get much worse over the next few years because of changing weather, regs, and growing seasons for our crops.

Some rice growers who also have part of their GDP tied to the export of rice have warehouses full of rice because their money is so strong against the dollar they can not sell the rice. Thailand (once the rice basket of S.E. Asia) being one example where they are running out of storage room for their unsold rice. If they miss one rainy season those warehouses will be emptied rather quickly IMO. If I remember correctly there are 7 provinces in the North which are suffering under drought conditions now due to lack of rain.....

USA
www.cnbc.com...

On a year-over-year basis, meat prices are up more than 6 percent. Eggs are 11 percent more expensive. Even fruits and vegetables, which had seen a deflationary trend, have become more expensive, albeit at a much slower rate than meat and eggs.


Which anyone who has been to a grocery store lately might think those number are low?

The semi-predictable weather patterns we have experienced over the last 50 years have been changing and as in anything there will be winners and losers. It will get even more serious for the world's population in the future as changing weather patterns dictate what crops and when they can be planted. Adapt or perish....

If the rainy season in Asia did not show up considering many residents are subsistence farmers then a a culling on a scale much like parts of Africa will take place with people trying to secure something to eat. No doubt war in many parts of the world will increase over water and food shortages.

www.washingtonpost.com...
QUOTE:
Saturday, April 26, 2008; 6:16 PM

This series explores the causes and effects of the world's worst food crisis since the 1970s. A complex combination of poor harvests, competition with biofuels, higher energy prices, surging demand in China and India, and a blockage in global trade is driving food prices up worldwide. Some countries, especially in Africa, are facing an increasingly dire situation while even consumers in wealthy nations are being forced to adjust. END QUOTE:

The above article was from 2008 and it has not gotten better with the weather patterns we are seeing today.
Another factor with prices for some food stapes in the USA

Corn: Congress and President Bush have set mandates for corn-based ethanol use. But the linking of food and fuel is creating problems for livestock and poultry farmers and consumers


Ethanol blended fuels of 10 to 15% get somewhere between 15 and 20% (articles say 15 to 30%) less mileage per gallon of fuel burned. Some states (Okla.) have both blended and unblended fuel and it is a simple matter to check your own mileage and see the results you get. I have checked my mileage many times when non-blended fuel was available and my mileage (per gallon) ran about 3 to 5 miles per gallon increase depending on the vehicle. More fuel pumped with the taxes per gallon going to the federal tax base...Smart way for a hidden tax increase?

Anyway thanks for the post; to say everything is interconnected is an understatement.





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