Paul Douglas is a nationally respected meteorologist with 33 years of television and radio experience. A serial entrepreneur, Douglas is Senior Meteorologist for WeatherNation TV, a new, national 24/7 weather channel with studios in Denver and Minneapolis. Founder of Media Logic Group, Douglas and a team of meteorologists provide weather services for media at Broadcast Weather, and high-tech alerting and briefing services for companies via Alerts Broadcaster. His speaking engagements take him around the Midwest with a message of continuous experimentation and reinvention, no matter what business you’re in. He is the public face of “SAVE”, Suicide Awareness, Voices of Education, based in Bloomington. | Send Paul a question.

Hottest Day Since 1988 (record-smashing 103 F at MSP)

Posted by: Paul Douglas Updated: June 7, 2011 - 5:19 PM

Excessive Heat Warning. 103 in the Twin Cities - it's official, this is now the hottest day since August 1, 1988. Amazing. The heat has already peaked; it should break tomorrow as winds shift to the west/northwest - Wednesday will be about 20 degrees cooler.

 

The high of 103° observed at Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport:

  • Breaks the previous June 7th record of 95° set in 2004.
  • Was the first 100°+ reading since July 31, 2006.
  • Was the first 103°+ reading in almost 23 years, since July 31, 1988.
  • Was the second earliest on record that 103° had occurred, only behind May 31, 1934.
  • Fell 1° short of the all-time June record of 104° set on June 27th, 1934.
* Data courtesy of the local NWS office - more more details here.

 

 

"Hot Enough 'Fer 'Ya?" I think the polite answer is yes. I prefer a Venus-like 285 F, but yesterday was close enough. Today should even be a few degrees hotter, the century mark in danger of being eclipsed. Map courtesy of Ham Weather, a division of WeatherNation.

 

Minneapolis/St. Paul broke their record high on Monday with a temp of 97, besting the old record of 95. If the Cities were to reach 100 today...

If it were to happen, this would not be the earliest 100 degree day. That belongs to May 31, 1934 when it was 106 (via the information found at http://threadex.rcc-acis.org/, which is part of the NOAA network)

* July 31, 2006 was the last time with a high of 101. This is the only time in the 21st century (so far) 

http://climate.umn.edu/doc/journal/100degreesmsp.htm (thanks to Pete Boulay from the MN State Climate Office)

* Thanks to WeatherNation meteorologist D.J. Kayser for these hot-weather nuggets.

** No, today's low-100 degree heat is not "proof" of global warming. By now you probably know where I stand on the subject of AGW, anthropogenic climate change. I happen to believe the 97% of peer-reviewed climate scientists who attribute SOME or MOST of the recent warming to man-made greenhouse gases, which have spiked 40% since the beginning of the 20th century. But no one day, one week, or one year's weather proves anything. If climate change theory is, in fact, becoming reality - we can expect to see more hot days like today in the future, but pinning any one weather event, front or storm on climate change is problematic.

 

Excessive Heat Warning. The NWS has issued warnings for the immediate Twin Cities area (Hennepin and Ramsey counties). All that asphalt and concrete will create afternoon temperatures at least 5 degrees warmer than the suburbs. A Heat Advisory is posted for all of southeastern Minnesota and southwestern Wisconsin. Wind advisories are in effect for much of central and southwestern Minnesota through the nighttime hours - winds gusting over 40 mph (from the south).

URGENT - WEATHER MESSAGE

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TWIN CITIES/CHANHASSEN MN

821 PM CDT MON JUN 6 2011

HOT AND HUMID CONDITIONS THROUGH TUESDAY...

AN EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR HENNEPIN AND RAMSEY COUNTIES UNTIL 7 AM ON WEDNESDAY...AND A HEAT ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR MUCH OF SOUTH CENTRAL MINNESOTA AND WEST CENTRAL WISCONSIN FROM NOON TO 8 PM TUESDAY.

HOT AND HUMID CONDITIONS WILL PREVAIL OVER THE AREA TONIGHT THROUGH TUESDAY NIGHT. OVERNIGHT LOWS WILL ONLY DROP TO THE LOW TO MIDDLE 70S...AND THE HEAT WILL RETURN TUESDAY AFTERNOON WITH HIGH TEMPERATURES CLIMBING TO THE MIDDLE 90S. HEAT INDEX VALUES WILL MEET OR EXCEED 100 DEGREES FOR A FEW HOURS.

HENNEPIN-RAMSEY-

INCLUDING THE CITIES OF...MINNEAPOLIS...ST. PAUL

821 PM CDT MON JUN 6 2011

EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 7 AM CDT WEDNESDAY...

AN EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 7 AM CDT WEDNESDAY.

 

* TEMPERATURE...OVERNIGHT LOWS WILL ONLY FALL IN THE MID 70S...

  FOLLOWED BY HIGHS IN THE MIDDLE 90S TUESDAY AFTERNOON. HEAT

  INDEX VALUES ON TUESDAY WILL CLIMB TO AROUND 100 DEGREES.

 

* IMPACTS...THESE HOT AND HUMID CONDITIONS WILL LEAD TO A

  HEIGHTENED RISK OF HEAT RELATED STRESS AND ILLNESSES. THIS

  WILL BE ESPECIALLY TRUE FOR THE CENTRAL URBANIZED AREAS OF THE

  TWIN CITIES METRO.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

AN EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING MEANS THAT A PROLONGED PERIOD OF DANGEROUSLY HOT TEMPERATURES WILL OCCUR. THE COMBINATION OF HOT TEMPERATURES AND HIGH HUMIDITY WILL COMBINE TO CREATE A DANGEROUS SITUATION IN WHICH HEAT ILLNESSES ARE LIKELY. DRINK PLENTY OF FLUIDS...STAY IN AN AIR-CONDITIONED ROOM...STAY OUT OF THE SUN...

AND CHECK UP ON RELATIVES AND NEIGHBORS.

 

Heat Index. When dew points rise into the 70s and there is SO much water in the air, your body can't cool itself naturally by evaporating sweat off your skin. It's easy to overheat. This afternoon, with air temperatures in the mid to upper 90s, and a relative humidity in the 40-50% range, it will FEEL like 100-110 F.

 

Air Quality Alerts. Stagnant, polluted air is a problem from Grand Rapids, Michigan and Indianapolis to Atlanta, Raleigh, Washington D.C. and New York City.

 

"Hot Zone". By 1 pm today the NAM model shows an area of low pressure over northeastern South Dakota, a strong south wind pumping tropical air into Minnesota, storms limited to far northern Minnesota, along the warm frontal boundary.

 

Dry Into Friday Morning? The NAM prints out a few hundredths of an inch of light showers late Thursday, but the bulk of the rain probably won't arrive until late Friday, Friday night and Saturday morning. Sunday still looks like the sunner, warmer day next weekend.

 

Team Of Scientists Looking For Lessons In Storm's Aftermath. The Joplin Globe has more details on the massive EF-5 tornado that was on the ground for near 14 miles, more than a mile wide at times. Researchers are on the ground, trying to learn more about what made this tornado so intense, destructive and deadly: "No matter how well-protected people thought they were, their homes were by and large no match for the EF-5. Some were blown as much as 10 feet off their foundations. Cars were lifted off the ground and dropped on roofs. In a storm such as that, there is “some degree of luck” to surviving an EF-5, said Runnels, with the National Weather Service. There were people in third-floor bathrooms who emerged to find every other room gone, and there were people who found shelter in basements then died when the building fell in on them. While there are no guarantees in a storm that can shift concrete parking stops secured to the ground with rebar, the best way to improve the odds of survival, Runnels said, is to have a storm shelter and a plan, and to take warnings seriously. Warnings are another key part of what happened that day. There actually were two: the first at 5:11, according to the city, and the second about 15 minutes later. Keith Stammer, director of emergency management for Joplin and Jasper County, said the sirens are designed to warn people outside of approaching danger. They are not necessarily intended to warn people inside houses. Houses are built too tight today, and too many people have too many electronics going or ear buds in to hear the sirens when they are indoors. Stammer said the best heads-up for people in a home is a weather radio, which can send a loud signal throughout a house day or night when severe weather is imminent, and can trip on automatically to relay details about a watch or warning."

Photo Credit: "Partha Sarkar (left) and Bill Gallus, both Iowa State University professors, and graduate student Chris Karstens last week inspect destruction in the auditorium at Joplin High School. The team is compiling data and images to be studied at Iowa State."

 

Having A Plan Can Save Lives During A Weather Disaster. The Williamsburg Yorktown Daily has some good advice about preparations BEFORE a major weather disaster, steps you can take to lower stress and chaos ahead of the storm: "He added that hurricanes often spawn tornadoes, and families should plan for both during hurricane season. “Families should include information on how to reunite with their families if they become separated due to a hurricane or tornado,” he said. To begin the planning process, consider what effect storms have had in your neighborhood in the past. If it’s prone to flooding or storm surge, plan to leave your home. If it’s more prone to power failures or downed trees, make sure you’re stocked to stay home for a few days, possibly without power. Media outlets can help keep residents informed when there is a weather threat, but Long said a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio is one of the best investments a family can make. A NOAA weather radio, which costs between $20 and $80, will broadcast watch and warning alerts, along with updates on a storm’s path. “Those things have saved countless lives across the nation,” he said. Long said part of putting together a kit is knowing how your family would react to an emergency. “Once you know what you’re going to do, make sure you have the resources and capabilities,” he said. “Know where you’re going, leave contact information with someone that may be staying behind, make sure you have enough fuel and cash, along with animal supplies, prescription medications and nonperishable food.”

 

New Storms, Prior Disasters Burden FEMA's Budget. The story from NPR: "As the government copes with this spring's plague of tornadoes and flooding in the Midwest and South, it is still responding to disasters of previous years. The Federal Emergency Management Agency continues to fund rebuilding projects related to Hurricane Katrina and other major storms in the past. This has caused some cash flow problems at FEMA. In Laurel, Miss., Jones County Emergency Management Director Don McKinnon recently presided over a ground breaking for an emergency hurricane shelter. It's designed to protect up to 1,000 people at a time in winds of up to 250 mph. "We always have people evacuating from the coast, from our coast from Louisiana, and we can't leave 'em in a car in a parking lot someplace, so we just never felt comfortable with trying to shelter these folks while they were in our care," McKinnon said. "This is going to meet that need."

Weather Videos:

Chile volcano:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oFGjSpZNHNs
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ib2wk2CUeHU

AZ wildfire:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OsY1stpHB0U

Smoke in NM:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZMgsnHnQYwA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qmxz85_xp34

Smoke on the water:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MSyFA84u48

MO river flooding in MO:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36LLS2UsvzQ&hd=1

MO river flooding in ND:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tgflgd9OucU&hd=1

 

Killer Tornado In Mexico. Yes, another instance of (large/violent) tornadoes in unusual places. From the "Mad Weather" blog: "A rare tornado occurred on May 30th at Jocotitlan, Mexico (see map above), which is just north of Mexico City. The photo above is snipped from from a video that is online. The tornado caused significant damage and resulted in two deaths."

 

Mexican Tornado. Here is YouTube footage of the twister responsible for fatalities in central Mexico.

 

Arizona Wildfire Triggers New Evacuation Orders. YouTube and AP have the latest: "One of the biggest wildfires ever in Arizona grew even larger Sunday and authorities ordered more people in the area to abandon their homes as the 287-square-mile blaze burned toward more buildings. (June 6)"

 

Pokin Around: I'm Tired Of The High-Tech Wizardry Of TV Weather. Steve Pokin from the St. Louis Suburban Journals has had enough of all the flashy maps and Doppler-speak. Here is his eloquent appeal for sanity. Time to go back to an era of magic markers? "Follow the swirling arrows, the crisscross of giant L's and H's, the flashing lights, the lava-lamp colors that bulge across the Midwest and the advancing blue and red arcs. On any night, watch the TV weather graphics and you'd conclude one of two things.

1. The Earth's molten core will rise up tomorrow and cover Warren County.

2. You've inadvertently switched to the History Channel and what you're actually watching is a re-enactment of the battle of Gettysburg.

Me: "Look at how fast that low pressure front is moving into St. Louis!" My wife: "That's Pickett's charge." Enough, already, with the weather graphics! Scale back. You don't have to use all your high-tech toys. With all these neon, pulsing graphics, I'm sure, somebody, somewhere, is being induced into a seizure. A good attorney should be able to find this poor soul, this victim of Isobar Gone Too Far. I'm most familiar with the weather forecast of KMOV Channel 4. I'm the Journal staffer responsible for checking to see if Channel 4 — home of the Super Predictor! — has any St. Charles County news we need to chase."

 

Weiner-Gate And The New Media. In a world of me-too stories, this one really sticks out. CNBC.com tells you why you may want to think twice about hitting the "SEND" command: "No story exemplifies the dominance of new media in our cultural conversation more than the saga of Rep. Anthony Weiner. He sent pictures over Twitpic. He texted over his BlackBerry. He was outed by a blog. Rep. Weiner told journalists Monday that he used "Twitter, Facebook and occasionally the phone" in talking with women "I have met online." Notice he only used the phone "occasionally." Twitter, Facebook ... he used those more than occasionally. Back in the olden days of Bill Clinton and John Edwards, you had to meet a woman in person to get in trouble. If you did err, it was considered outside the mainstream to be busted by The National Enquirer. That is so ... two years ago. Now you can get in trouble virtually, and your sins can be revealed by anyone with a cellphone. The mainstream media is almost always a step behind. The fallout may be different now as well. Is Rep. Weiner ruined? "If he'd had an affair, he'd probably survive it," one person told me, "but this is just stupid." Stupid, yes, but Weiner is not resigning. For one thing, he says there was no affair. "I have never met any of these women or had physical relationships at any time."

 

Plains Milky Way. Here's a great timelapse of the Milky Way galaxy from Talking Science: "For this amazing video of the Milky Way traversing the South Dakota sky, photographer Randy Halverson shot hundreds of photographs of the night sky using a robotic camera rig. Each second of the video spans about 14 minutes of actual time. In an interview with Wired, Halverson explains what draws him to astrophotography: “It takes a lot of trial and error to get right, but it’s worth it,” he said. “It shows motion into the stars you don’t normally notice. When you look up at them, you often don’t realize how much they’re moving.”

 

Sudden Urge For Mexican Food. O.K. Anyone can make a typo in the heat of battle - I feel bad for this guy. It's "Fujita", not "Fajita". One little letter goes a long way. Thanks to failblog.org for bringing this to our attention.

 

Record-Setting Heat. At 97 the Twin Cities broke a record on Monday (the old record was 95 in 1987). HIghs ranged from 62 at Grand Marais (summer nowhere in sight) to 94 at St. Cloud, 97 at Rochester and a blazing 98 at Redwood Falls. Today may be a couple degrees hotter.

 

 

Paul's Star Tribune Outlook for the Twin Cities and all of Minnesota:

 

TODAY: Excessive Heat Warning. Hot sun, potentially dangerous levels of heat & humidity. T-storms up north. Winds: S 15-30. High: 98 (feels like 105-110 by mid afternoon).

 

TUESDAY NIGHT: T-storms up north - probably dry in the metro area. Low: 74

 

WEDNESDAY: Partly sunny, cooler, much less humid. Low: 72. High: 81

 

THURSDAY: Mix of clouds & sun, comfortably cool. Low: 52. High: 69

 

FRIDAY: Clouds increase. PM showers, storms. Low: 55. High: 71

 

SATURDAY: Damp start, slow PM clearing. Low: 58. High: 74

 

SUNDAY: More sun, nicer day of the weekend? Low: 60. High: 81

 

MONDAY: Few showers, T-storms. Low: 63. High: 82

 

Hot Front!

Welcome to Dubai (with lakes). A few weeks ago we were all shivering, roaming the streets in jackets, shaking our fists at a March-like sky. Summer came reluctantly, but now we got what we wished for, and then some.

An Excessive Heat Warning will probably be extended today; the combination of mid to upper 90s and dew points in the 70s will make it FEEL like 105 by mid afternoon. There's at least a 1 in 3 chance that the official (MSP high will reach 100 or higher, for the first time since 2006.

Here's the problem: when there's this much water in the air your body can't cool itself naturally via perspiration. Evaporation of sweat off your skin has a cooling effect (that's why you feel chilled stepping out of the shower). But with jungle-like humidity levels your body can easily overheat. Nausea, dizziness, cool, clammy skin are symptoms of heat exhaustion. Shallow breathing, rapid heartbeat and disorientation are symptoms of heat stroke, which can be fatal if not treated immediately. Slow down, take it easy out there - relief is 24 hours away.

A few storms over northern Minnesota may turn severe today, the cool front sailing through the metro area dry. 70s by Wednesday, 60s on Thursday; we'll all be breathing easier. Rain Friday night gives way to slow Saturday clearing; another fine Sunday on tap!

 

Climate Change Picks Up Faster With Carbon Emissions. 2010 set a record for the most CO2 and other greenhouse gases being released into the atmosphere. USA Today has the story: "Carbon is now being released into the atmosphere 10 times faster than during a period of high temperatures 55.9 million years ago, and ecosystems may not be able to adapt quickly enough, an international team of geologists reports. The scientists used a computer model to calculate emission rates based on rock cores discovered in Spitsbergen, Norway, from the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM), an era when global temperatures had also spiked. "Rather than the 20,000 years of the PETM which is long enough for ecological systems to adapt, carbon is now being released into the atmosphere at a rate 10 times faster," Lee R. Kump, professor of geosciences at Penn State University said in announcing the findings, published in the current issue of Nature Geoscience. "It is possible that this is faster than ecosystems can adapt."

 

Climate Change Skeptics Endangered. Austalia's Gold Coast Mail has the story: "CLIMATE change sceptics are an endangered species in Australia, a national survey shows. The survey of almost 3100 Australians found 74 per cent believe the world's climate is changing. When asked a different question about the causes of climate change, which removed the reference to personal beliefs, 90 per cent of respondents said human activity was a factor. Just five per cent said climate change was entirely caused by natural processes. Overall, less than six per cent of respondents could reasonably be classified as true climate change sceptics, the study by Griffith University researchers found. "It's clear that people want the government to do something about climate change and they also feel they have a personal responsibility to act," environmental and social psychologist Professor Joseph Reser told AAP. The survey was carried out in June and July last year, with the results released on Friday. Prof Reser said the survey was one of the few in-depth studies that really drilled down into public perceptions and understandings about climate change."

 

Natural Disasters Displaced 42 Million In 2010; Climate Change Could Be Factor, Experts Say. The Huffington Post has the story: "OSLO, Norway — About 42 million people were forced to flee their homes because of natural disasters around the world in 2010, more than double the number during the previous year, experts said Monday. One reason for the increase in the figure could be climate change, and the international community should be doing more to contain it, the experts said. The Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre said the increase from 17 million displaced people in 2009 was mainly due to the impact of "mega-disasters" such as the massive floods in China and Pakistan and the earthquakes in Chile and Haiti. It said more than 90 percent of the disaster displacements were caused by weather-related hazards such as floods and storms that were probably impacted by global warming, but it couldn't say to what extent. "The intensity and frequency of extreme weather events is increasing, and this trend is only set to continue. With all probability, the number of those affected and displaced will rise as human-induced climate change comes into full force," said Elisabeth Rasmusson, the secretary general of the Norwegian Refugee Council. The monitoring center and refugee council presented the report at an international conference about climate change and displacement in Oslo. The number of people displaced last year – about 42 million – is roughly the size of Argentina's entire population, and the onslaught of natural disasters so far this year also has been grim."

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