Drought Update

The latest drought monitor update came out last Thrusday, and we have seen increases in the amount of areas under abnormally dry and moderate drought conditions across the state. Most of this is occurring over northern Minnesota, although there is a small area of abnormally dry conditions just southeast of the Twin Cities. The latest numbers show that 18.11% of the state is under abnormally dry conditions (up from 14.09% the previous week), and 3.01% is under moderate drought conditions (up from 0% the previous week).

As we take a look at the rainfall departure map since the beginning of the year, the areas under at least abnormally dry conditions match up pretty well with where we have received below average precipitation. International Falls is 2.00" below average so far this year and 1.57" below average since June 1st. Closer to home, both the Twin Cities and St. Cloud are also below average so far this year, but by less than an inch. Meanwhile... Sioux Falls is 7" above average.

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Smoke Filtering Into Minnesota Saturday

Here's a look at that smoke that continued to filter into Minnesota Saturday, leading to hazy, smoky skies and poor air quality. Loop courtesy of AerisWeather.

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I Credit My Career to Curiosity - and Study Hall
By Paul Douglas

It's interesting (and random) how careers get started. My unlikely media run began in an 11th grade study hall (which I excelled in). I leaned over to a guy who had his own radio show. "Why don't you have your own weatherperson delivering forecasts?" I asked, presumptuously. He looked at me like I had horns, thought about it, then said "Great idea! Let's talk to my boss". From a small 500 watt AM station to WCCO Radio today, I love the medium. Not being dependent on video - but words and stories to paint a unique, personalized picture in every listener's mind? Radio is the original social media.

Friday I did my show with Jordana Green from our cabin on Pelican Lake. I couldn't see across the lake, the smoke was so thick. I suspect smoke kept temperatures a couple of degrees cooler, too.

Another crack at 90F, today before a  lonely thundershower arrives Tuesday, but most storms prowl just south of Minnesota this week; the best chance of thunder Thursday night.

The State Fair is around the corner. So is another hot front. ECMWF predicts 90F next Saturday. Hang on summer!

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Extended Twin Cities Forecast

MONDAY: Hot sunshine, dry. High 91. Low 69. Chance of precipitation 10%. Wind SW 10-15 mph.
TUESDAY: Cooler, stray T-shower possible. High 86. Low 67. Chance of precipitation 30%. Wind NW 7-12 mph.
WEDNESDAY: Partly sunny, more comfortable. High 83. Low 64. Chance of precipitation 20%. Wind NE 5-10 mph.
THURSDAY: Lukewarm sun, few storms southern MN? High 84. Low 67. Chance of precipitation 30%. Wind E 5-10 mph.
FRIDAY: Ample sunshine, warming up. High 87. Low 66. Chance of precipitation 20%. Wind NE 5-10 mph.
SATURDAY: Looks good right now. Warm sunshine. High 90. Low 69. Chance of precipitation 10%. Wind S 3-8 mph.
SUNDAY: Less sun, risk of thunder up north. High 89. Low 65. Chance of precipitation 30%. Wind W 7-12 mph.

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This Day in Weather History
August 13th

1964: Minnesota receives a taste of fall, with lows of 26 in Bigfork and 30 in Campbell.

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Average Temperatures & Precipitation for Minneapolis
August 13th

Average High: 81F (Record: 98F set in 1880)
Average Low: 63F (Record: 48F set in 1997)
Average Precipitation: 0.14" (Record: 2.05" set in 2007)

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Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
August 13th

Sunrise: 6:12 AM
Sunset: 8:22 PM

*Length Of Day: 14 hours, 9 minutes and 49 seconds
*Daylight Lost Since Yesterday: ~2 minute and 43 seconds

*Next Sunrise Of 6:30 AM Or Later: August 28th (6:30 AM)
*Next Sunrise Of 8:00 PM Or Earlier: August 26th (8:00 PM)

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Minnesota Weather Outlook

Another mainly sunny and warm day is expected across Minnesota on Monday, with the best chance of a few clouds across northern parts of the state. Highs are expected to be in the 80s and 90s.

Highs will once again be a good 5-15 degrees above average across the state Monday.

Monday will be the last day of this 90-degree stretch as temperatures cool a bit with a cold front moving though on Tuesday. This will knock temperatures back closer to average for the middle of the week before we see slightly warmer highs once again heading into next weekend.

We now see a couple of rain chances in the forecast over the next seven days. The first will be as the cold front moves through on Tuesday, but that chance looks slight at the moment. The other chance - sometime next weekend - could be minimal across the region as well.

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National Weather Forecast

A somewhat-stationary front will continue to bring the chance of showers and storms from the Northeast to the Southeast. An upper level low will also continue to produce more rain across parts of the Southern Plains, with heavy amounts possible in parts of Texas and Oklahoma. A cold front extending from northern Minnesota back into the Great Basin by Monday evening will help produce some showers and storms. Meanwhile, monsoonal moisture will continue to bring chances of rain during the afternoon and evening hours in the Southwest.

Here's a look at the rainfall forecast across the nation through Friday morning. Heavy rain will continue over parts of the Southern Plains over the next couple days, with the potential of 2-4"+ of rain across parts of Oklahoma just through Wednesday morning. An additional 0.50-2.50" of rain will be possible across parts of the Northeast as well, with most of that falling Monday and Tuesday.

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Temperature readings are higher at Sea-Tac than Seattle this summer. What’s the deal?

More from the Seattle Times: “We’re on pace for the second-hottest summer in Seattle’s history. But has it really felt that way?  Thursday marks the 10th day Seattle has recorded a temperature of 90 degrees or higher this summer, trailing only the sweltering summer of 2015, which had 12 days reach 90-plus degrees. The city has also recorded 27 days of 85-plus-degree days this year, which ties the record set last year.  July’s average temperature of 70.7 also is second only to 2015’s 71.2, according to National Weather Service data. But, close weather watchers have noticed something off about the official temperatures this summer. As it turns out, on warm days, the temperature readings at Sea-Tac Airport have been several degrees higher than nearby locations.

California Wildfires Are Causing Billions in Damage. Who Will Pay?

More from TIME: "In the past few decades, wildfire season in California has expanded from a few months each year to a year-long phenomenon. This summer’s Carr and Mendocino Complex fires — which together have burned more than 400,000 acres of land in Northern California — follow a string of smaller but still disastrous blazes earlier this year and last. From a scientific perspective, this new reality is made much more likely by climate change, which raises temperatures and makes drought more persistent. But climate policy experts say the law hasn’t caught up when it comes to people, businesses and communities on the ground who need to recoup the billions in damage caused by the fire. In California, government investigators say the local electric utility Pacific Gas & Electric is responsible for 12 fires that caused billions in damage late last year because the fires were sparked by power lines, in most cases, coming into contact with trees. The utility points to climate change as the true culprit: the warming planet created conditions that makes such fires all but inevitable."

Costs of Extreme Heat Are Huge, But Hard to Quantify

More from Climate Liability News: "The blistering heat currently scorching much of the planet—from Japan to Europe to the United States—is the climate change impact that scientists can most definitively link to global warming. But unlike hurricanes or wildfires that mostly damage property, the costs of those heat waves are much harder to quantify because the impacts are absorbed primarily by people and not by property. Understanding those costs, however, is crucial for cities and states trying to protect their residents from climate impacts. They are working to calculate the toll of extreme heat, from decreasing outdoor worker productivity, to crop failures, cancelled flights and students’ decreasing ability to learn. Many of the estimates come from cities that have filed climate liability suits, seeking to hold the fossil fuel industry accountable for those costs. New York City, for one, estimates in its complaint that its heat mitigation initiative, Cool Neighborhoods NYC, will cost more than $100 million and it tallies another $100 million in related public health care costs."

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Thanks for checking in and have a great Monday! Don't forget to follow me on Twitter (@dkayserwx) and like me on Facebook (Meteorologist D.J. Kayser)!

 - D.J. Kayser

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A Risk of Smoke and Overheating Into Monday

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Cooler Midweek Weather - Near 90 By Saturday Again