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Weekend Chill - Warming Up for Thanksgiving - NOAA Models: Toasty December

Snow for Thanksgiving? Weather Models Say No

Welcome to the Dark Days, when the sun seems to set shortly after lunch. Seasonal Affective Disorder? Seasonal Shopping Disorder. On those rare occasions the sun does break through the murk I want to take a photo.

November is running about 6F colder than average. Does this mean a bitter, pioneer winter is imminent? Nope. No correlation between early cold fronts and the winters that follow.


Exhibit A: 1991. Almost 30 inches around Halloween was followed by subzero records in early November. And yet the following December - February was the 11th warmest and 93 snowiest since 1872. Don't assume a worst-case scenario.

Roughly 1 in 3 Thanksgivings have an inch or more of snow on the ground. This won't be one of them. Model guidance builds a dry, relatively mild ridge of high pressure over the central USA next week; good news for travelers within 500 miles. Expect 40s Thanksgiving Day; maybe 50F on Black Friday. "I'd like a warm front to go, please."

NOAA models are predicting a MUCH warmer than average December. I'm skeptical, but at this point precious little surprises me anymore.


40s on Thanksgiving. The chance of (relative) warmth late next week is increasing over time. ECMWF (European) guidance hints at 50F for Black Friday in the Twin Cities late next week. Hardly a warm front, but it may feel pretty good out there for late November. Source: WeatherBell.



Remarkable Anomalies. 24-28F warmer than average over Hudson Bay in December? 15-18F warmer than average over Minnesota? NOAA's CFSv2 climate outlook for December is consistently toasty for much of North America. We'll see.



Thanksgiving Day Climatology in the Twin Cities. Here's a clip from The Minnesota DNR: "Measurable snow fell on 29 of the past Thanksgivings back to 1884, about every five years or so. The most snow that fell on Thanksgiving was five inches in 1970. The last time there was measurable snow on Thanksgiving was in 2015 with 1.3 inches of snow. Historically, about one in three Thanksgivings have at least one inch of snow on the ground. The deepest snow pack is a tie with 1921 and 1983, both with 10 inches on the ground by Turkey Day. It occasionally rains on Thanksgiving Day as well. In 1896, a two-day event in the Twin Cities doused Thanksgiving travelers with nearly three inches of rain..."


7 Odd Things That Happen To Your Body When It's Cold Outside. HuffPost has the story: "Unless you’re blessed to live in a magically warm climate all year round (looking at you, Californians and Floridians), frostier weather is rapidly approaching. And that can come with some unexpected mental and physical side effects. Changes in weather come with a lot of changes in your body and mind, according to Dr. Albert Ahn, a clinical instructor of internal medicine at NYU Langone Health. These shifts are important to keep in mind so you stay healthy all season long. We chatted with Ahn about how the winter affects your body so you know what to look out for when the temperature drops. Below are some changes you may not have realized are happening..."


Cold, Snowy Starts Don't Mean The Entire Winter Will Be Cold and Snowy. Exhibit A: 1991, when 28" of snow fell in late October, followed by subzero, record cold in early November. But it didn't last. The rest of the winter (December through February) was the 11th warmest and 93rd snowiest since 1872, according to the Minnesota DNR and State Climatology Office. I wish it was that simple...


La Nina is Officially Here, and Favors a Cold Winter for Northern USA. Capital Weather Gang reports: "...La Niña is not the only control on winter weather, however. In the eastern United States, the character of the winter is often defined by whether and how frequently areas of strong high pressure develop near Greenland, sometimes referred to as blocking patterns, which force cold air in Canada to spill southward. These patterns usually can’t be predicted more than one to two weeks ahead of time. The Weather Service says there is a 65 to 75 percent chance La Niña will persist through the winter, and probably through at least April. Should La Niña last into the spring, it could portend more violent thunderstorms across the nation. La Niña conditions tend to trigger ingredients in the atmosphere that lead “to an increase in tornado and hail reports,” wrote researchers Michael K. Tippett and Chiara Lepore for Climate.gov last spring..."
 
Map credit:  "Temperature difference from normal over the tropical Pacific Ocean. Blue areas indicate cooler than normal, signaling La Niña." (Climate.gov).

Reports of  "Biblical Flooding" in Greece. Huffington Post has the story: "Flash flooding hit the outskirts of Greece’s capital on Wednesday after a night of severe rainfall. At least 14 people died, according to media reports, and the water left roadways clogged with mud and debris. The floods largely affected the towns of Mandra, Nea Peramos and Megara, on the western outskirts of Athens. Schools in those suburbs were closed after local authorities declared a state of emergency and urged citizens not to travel to the affected areas. “This is a biblical disaster,” Yianna Krikouki, the mayor of Mandra, told state broadcaster ERT. “Everything is gone...”
 
CNN has additional perspective on severe flooding outside Athens.

The U.S. Flooded One of Houston's Richest Neighborhoods to Save Everyone Else. Bloomberg BusinessWeek has a remarkable story about what really happened during Hurricane Harvey; here's the intro: "The Army Corps of Engineers sent water cascading into West Houston’s Energy Corridor to avoid a catastrophic reservoir failure during Hurricane Harvey. Now a web of lawsuits could change how the government handles extreme weather...."
 
Image credit: "Featured in Bloomberg Businessweek, Nov. 20, 2017." Photographer: Philip Montgomery for Bloomberg Businessweek.

Elon Musk Unveils the Tesla Truck. Forbes has details: "The all-electric semi is rumored to be powered by two electric motors and batteries weighing nearly 10 tons. It may also have some autonomous driving abilities; Musk called it “unreal.” The powertrain, though, will be unlike anything on the road today. Powered by at least two electric motors and some big batteries, there won't be a hood to house all of the bits. The truck's range, some say, will be 200-300 miles, but Musk says the specs are, "better than anything I've seen reported so far..."  

BMW Dumps Coal in Pledge for 100% Renewable Power. Bloomberg has details: "BMW AG’s plan to switch exclusively to green electricity finds it tapping some unusual power sources, including a South African biomass plant that runs on cow dung and chicken droppings. The arrangement is part of the carmaker’s bid to shift all its external power purchases to renewables by 2020, up from 63 percent last year, head of procurement Markus Duesmann said in a speech at the United Nations climate conference in Bonn. Meeting the target means the carmaker will buy local clean power for all its 31 production sites in 14 countries, said Duesmann. BMW is already getting power from diverse sources such as wind turbines at its plant in Leipzig, Germany. It’s also getting methane gas from a landfill near its Spartanburg operation in South Carolina, he said..."


Where Do You Watch Netflix? A story at Quartz caught my eye: "Streaming-video giant Netflix found that more people are watching video outside their homes. About 67% of people now watch movies and TV shows in public, according to an online survey it commissioned of 37,000 adults around the world… The most popular public places to stream are on planes, buses, or commuting, the survey found. But 26% of respondents also said they’ve binged shows and movies at work… The most popular public places to stream are on planes, buses, or commuting, the survey found. But 26% of respondents also said they’ve binged shows and movies at work. A small group—about 7% worldwide—said they’ve watched movies and TV shows in public restrooms (to say nothing of those who have streamed from the privacy of their own bathrooms)..."

Photo credit: "I will stream it anywhere." (Netflix)


TV Stations Are About to Track You, Much Like Google and Facebook Do. The Washington Post reports: "The same, weirdly specific ads you see online that are tailored to your behavior could soon appear on your local television network, thanks to looming policy changes by federal regulators. The Federal Communications Commission is expected to vote Thursday on rules designed to promote the spread of what it calls Next Gen TV, a new technology that, among other things, will enable television broadcasters to collect data about your viewing habits. That information will give broadcasters the ability to sell targeted advertising against their programming, something that's become common practice among ad giants such as Google and Facebook. Other industries have also been racing to adopt data-driven ad targeting, too, including Internet providers such as Verizon and AT&T… Not all stations are likely to adopt Next Gen TV immediately. The FCC proposal would allow stations to start using the standard on a voluntary basis. Those that do could provide viewers with other benefits, such as better video and audio quality on their broadcasts..."


The Most Dedicated Music Fans? Country? Rock? Hip Hop? Nope. A story at Quartzy explains: "It is metal—yes, metal, meaning decades-old groups like Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, and Kiss—that actually has the most loyal fans, it turns out. That’s per Spotify data analyzing the genres with the highest global loyalty, measured by the number of streams divided by the number of listeners per artist. Metal is number one by far on the list, ahead of genres like hip-hop, country, and rock by as much as 50%. In the US alone, metal has about twice as much listener loyalty as EDM, rap, or jazz…Why does metal has such loyal fans? It likely comes down to a combination of niche attraction, the intensity of the music itself and the types of relationships that listeners tend to form with it—and metal’s aging community of fans, who have now hit the prime point of exquisite cultural nostalgia…"



TODAY: Gray, few rain showers. Winds: S 7-12. High: 42

FRIDAY NIGHT: Showers taper. Low: 31

SATURDAY: Canadian exhaust, cooling off. Gusty. Winds: NW 15-25. High: 36

SUNDAY: Risk of a rare sunshine sighting. Winds: SE 5-10. Wake-up: 19. High: 38

MONDAY: Sunny intervals, milder breeze. Winds: S 7-12. Wake-up: 29. High: near 50

TUESDAY: Blue sky, cooling off again. Winds: NW 10-15. Wake-up: 29. High: 34

WEDNESDAY: Blue sky, light winds - not bad. Winds: S 5-10. Wake-up: 18. High: 36

THANKSGIVING: Giving thanks for a milder front. Winds: SW 7-12. Wake-up: 31. High: 46


Climate Stories...

Democrats are Shockingly Unprepared to Fight Climate Change. The Atlantic explains why: "There’s a wrinkle in how the United States talks about climate change in 2017, a tension fundamental to the issue’s politics but widely ignored. On the one hand, Democrats are the party of climate change. Since the 1990s, as public belief in global warming has become strongly polarized, the Democratic Party has emerged as the advocate of more aggressive climate action. The most recent Democratic president made climate policy a centerpiece of his second term, and the party’s national politicians now lament and oppose the undoing of his work. Concern for the climate isn’t just an elite issue, either: Rank-and-file Democrats are more likely to worry about global warming than the median voter. On the other hand, the Democratic Party does not have a plan to address climate change..."

Image credit: Gino Santa Maria / Shutterstock / Eric Thayer / Aaron P. Bernstein / Reuters / Paul Spella / The Atlantic.


Climate Change is Here: Wisconsin Is Seeing Earlier Springs, Later Falls, Less Snow and More Floods. Here's a clip from a story at madison.com: "...Badger State folks have a front-row seat to the effects of global warming, which are significantly more pronounced in northern latitudes. In Wisconsin, more than states to the south, climate change is ushering in earlier springs, later falls, less snow, less lake ice, more floods, more drought, more algae. More heat. Scientists with the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Initiative on Climate Change Impacts — an effort to identify climate change fallout and offer coping strategies — believe that the effects can be mitigated with reduced greenhouse gas emissions. They believe that policy makers and public agencies can take measures to adapt. But those measures are on indefinite hold..."

Map credit: U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, PRISM Climate Group, Oregon State University


These Are The Melting Glaciers That Might Someday Drown Your City, According to NASA. Chris Mooney reports for The Washington Post: "New York City has plenty to worry about from sea level rise. But according to a new study by NASA researchers, it should worry specifically about two major glacier systems in Greenland’s northeast and northwest — but not so much about other parts of the vast northern ice sheet. The research draws on a curious and counterintuitive insight that sea level researchers have emphasized in recent years: As ocean levels rise around the globe, they will not do so evenly. Rather, because of the enormous scale of the ice masses that are melting and feeding the oceans, there will be gravitational effects and even subtle effects on the crust and rotation of the Earth. This, in turn, will leave behind a particular “fingerprint” of sea level rise, depending on when and precisely which parts of Greenland or Antarctica collapse..."

Image credit: "This NASA Earth Observatory image obtained July 27, 2012, shows a massive ice island as it broke free of the Petermann Glacier in northwestern Greenland." (Jesse Allen and Robert Simmon/NASA Earth Observatory via AFP)

Trump Ignoring Feds Own Science. Here's an excerpt of an Op-Ed from the Editorial Board at San Antonio's Express News: "...The science of climate change can make the eyes glaze over — the charts, the dry language and the number soup — but this is an intrinsically human issue, caused by humans and affecting human lives in the form of coastal flooding, extreme weather, drought and famine. And it will have potentially profound effects on future generations. Our young children and their children will live with the policy decisions we make today. The United States, which is the world’s second-largest emitter of carbon, is withdrawing from the Paris climate agreement. We are the only country in the world not participating in the accord. The other holdouts, Nicaragua and war-torn Syria, have signed on. We stand alone. It’s not a choice informed by science. That’s a tough one to explain to our children and grandchildren."

Photo credit: Branden Camp /Associated Press.


CLIMATE IMPACTS: Climate Nexus has linked to the following stories: "Here’s what climate change is doing to the West (Mother Jones), a tiny island prepares the world for a climate refugee crisis (Bloomberg), climate change is turbocharging growth of city trees--and that's really bad news (Newsweek, Earther), how climate change could lead to more wars in the 21st century (Vox), in storm-hit St. Lucia, insurance creates a buzz (Thomson Reuters Foundation), atmospheric river brings storm and flash flood warnings to fire-ravaged wine country." (LA Times $)


How a North Carolina Meteorologist Abandoned His Climate Change Skepticism. Greg Fishel is a friend (since my high school days). He's a smart guy and a gifted meteorologist; here is his story at Columbia Journalism Review: "...But this search sparked a flurry of other questions. Why was the country so polarized on issues of science, and why did it appear that religion was at war with science? I argued vehemently that we discuss politics and religion within our documentary. I’ll never forget the look on our producer’s face when I first made the pitch. But we did it.  Out of that research and filming, one primary culprit for this polarization emerged: unconditional loyalty to one’s tribe, a quality that is remarkably common. We believe what the people we align ourselves with believe, and rather than look for common ground with those who fall outside of that tribe, we seek the disparities..."


Climate Change Bringing "Biblical" Rains to Texas: From Climate Nexus Hot News: "The chances of a Hurricane Harvey-scale hurricane in Texas have increased sixfold since 1980, and climate change will make massive storms in the area much more likely by the end of the century, according to new research. A study published Monday in the journal Proceedings of the Natural Academy of Sciences from MIT's Kerry Emmanuel finds that warming upped the odds of an over-20 inch rainfall from a once-in-100-years event in Texas between 1980 and 2000 to a once-in-16-years event in 2017. Emmanuel's study projects the chances of this type of extreme rainfall in Texas to rise to once every 5.5 years by the end of the century. "There are folks down in Texas who are having to rebuild infrastructure, and I think they need to have some idea of what kind of event they’re building for," Emmanuel told the Washington Post." (Washington Post $, AP, BloombergLA Times $, The Atlantic, Ars Technica)

File photo: AP.

Thawing Turkeys Next Week? No Weather Drama Next 10 Days

 
Touch of Indian Summer In Time for Thanksgiving?

The winter forecast is an enigma, wrapped in a riddle. We want so badly to know how cold, how snowy, how fierce - but the science of looking out 2-5 months with any confidence or accuracy is just not there yet.
 
A La Nina cooling phase of the Pacific may tilt the odds in favor of a colder winter for the northern tier of the USA, but there are more factors in play, like the NAO and the Arctic Oscillation.
 
Will a high amplitude (ultra-wavy) jet stream cause polar air to stall nearby for month after month, just like 4 winters ago? It's possible, but I wouldn't bet on it. Even the La Nina years are trending warmer these days.
 
Speaking of warmer, long-range models show a burst of 40s and 50s in time for Thanksgiving and Black Friday power-shopping next week. November got off to a cold start; maybe it'll end on the mild side.
 
A rare sunshine sighting is possible today, but rain showers return for Friday, ending as flurries first thing Saturday. The weekend will bring highs in the 30s, but the maps are strongly hinting at Indian Summer the latter half of next week. Bring it on!

Thursday Weather Map. NOAA guidance shows snow showers for New England, the Great Lakes and northern Minnesota, wiith steadier/heavier snow for much of the mountainous western USA today; over a foot for the highest terrain from near Yellowstone annd the Grand Tetons to the Cascades of Washington and Oregon. Map: NOAA.

Not Quite Indian Summer, But It'll Have to Do. A chilly weekend is on tap with highs in the 30s, but a relatively warm ridge of high pressure builds over the central USA next week, with a few days in the 40s; even a 50F high or two, according to ECMWF guidance for the Twin Cities. Graphic: WeatherBell.

December Preview. Confidence levels are low, but NOAA's longer-range climate model (CFSv2) shows a warm bias for much of the USA next month, especially Upper Midwest into New England. I wouldn't bet the farm on this forecast, but it's interesting to ponder. A warmer trend in spite of La Nina?

La Nina is Officially Here, and Favors a Cold Winter for Northern USA. Capital Weather Gang reports: "...La Niña is not the only control on winter weather, however. In the eastern United States, the character of the winter is often defined by whether and how frequently areas of strong high pressure develop near Greenland, sometimes referred to as blocking patterns, which force cold air in Canada to spill southward. These patterns usually can’t be predicted more than one to two weeks ahead of time. The Weather Service says there is a 65 to 75 percent chance La Niña will persist through the winter, and probably through at least April. Should La Niña last into the spring, it could portend more violent thunderstorms across the nation. La Niña conditions tend to trigger ingredients in the atmosphere that lead “to an increase in tornado and hail reports,” wrote researchers Michael K. Tippett and Chiara Lepore for Climate.gov last spring..."
 
Map credit:  "Temperature difference from normal over the tropical Pacific Ocean. Blue areas indicate cooler than normal, signaling La Niña." (Climate.gov)

Is Light Snow More Dangerous for Drivers Than Major Snowstorms? An article at The Weather Channel caught my eye: "...There seems to be a critical time of accumulations first occurring on untreated roads with some drivers not yet realizing the roads have become slick, maintaining their near-normal speeds until a slideoff or wreck occurs,” said weather.com senior meteorologist Jonathan Erdman. From 2004 to 2013, nearly a quarter of all traffic crashes in the U.S. were caused by weather, according to 10-year averages released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Of those, 17 percent occurred during snow or sleet, 13 percent on icy pavement and 14 percent on snowy or slushy pavement. Walker Ashley, associate professor of meteorology at Northern Illinois University, contends that "minor" winter events are more deadly (on Midwestern roads, at least) than notable winter storms due to heavier traffic on roads and possibly more dangerous road and visibility conditions than perceived by drivers..."


BMW Dumps Coal in Pledge for 100% Renewable Power. Bloomberg has details: "BMW AG’s plan to switch exclusively to green electricity finds it tapping some unusual power sources, including a South African biomass plant that runs on cow dung and chicken droppings. The arrangement is part of the carmaker’s bid to shift all its external power purchases to renewables by 2020, up from 63 percent last year, head of procurement Markus Duesmann said in a speech at the United Nations climate conference in Bonn. Meeting the target means the carmaker will buy local clean power for all its 31 production sites in 14 countries, said Duesmann. BMW is already getting power from diverse sources such as wind turbines at its plant in Leipzig, Germany. It’s also getting methane gas from a landfill near its Spartanburg operation in South Carolina, he said..."


Will Electric Vehicles Replace Gas-Powered Ones? Here's an excerpt of an interview with one of 3 experts at The Wall Street Journal: "...By 2030, 95% of U.S. automobile miles traveled will be in on-demand, autonomous electric-vehicle fleets, in a new business model called transport as a service. This disruption isn’t going to be one where individuals simply trade in their gasoline or diesel vehicles for electric vehicles. Both gasoline/diesel vehicles and the individual ownership of automobiles will be disrupted. By 2030, 60% of light-duty vehicles are expected to be owned by fleets that provide transport-as-a-service—think electric, autonomous versions of Uber, Lyft or Didi—and only 40% to be individually owned. However, since fleet vehicles will drive 100,000 miles a year apiece, they will contribute 95% of the total miles driven in the U.S., while individuals will only contribute 5% of the miles. Also, the total number of vehicles in the U.S. will shrink by 80%, because individuals will stop buying cars for themselves and opt for these services instead..."

Photo credit: "Tesla’s Model S electric car, shown in production in Fremont, Calif., was Motor Trend’s Car of the Year in 2013." Photo: Jeff Chiu/Associated Press


Don't Slow Clean Energy Job Growth in the Heartland. An Op-Ed at The Des Moines Register had a few interesting nuggets: "...Wind energy is now the cheapest source of energy in many states, making it the common-sense choice when new electricity is needed. This is obviously great news for ratepayers and cleaner air, but it’s also vital to the economic well-being of my neighbors in rural America. In my company, we proudly employ rural Americans with wind occupations — technicians, engineers and executives, among many other jobs, in communities across the nation where wind is a real economic force. In fact, wind turbine technicians are the fastest growing jobs in the U.S. There are nearly 1,500 Americans employed by the wind industry in South Dakota, more than the oil industry. Wind employment in neighboring states is also growing: 1,740 in North Dakota, 3,859 in Iowa, almost 2,000 in Minnesota, and 1,981 in Kansas..."

File photo: Yale Environment 360.


Lyme Disease Is Slowly Spreading Across the U.S. East Coast. Minnesota and Wisconsin are also seeing an uptick in ticks, according to Gizmodo: "Lyme disease is the most common vectorborne disease in the United States, but it’s also mostly confined to a small swath of the country running down the eastern seaboard to the Mid Atlantic and along the Great Lakes. But while it was once thought that Lyme disease rarely occurred outside of the Northeast, a new report from the Centers for Disease Control confirms that Lyme is slowly expanding its geographic footprint. In 11 states that neighbor the 14 states where Lyme disease occurs frequently, the report found a significant increase in the number of confirmed Lyme cases..."

Map credit: "Average annual Lyme cases from 2008-2015, by county. Each dot represents one confirmed case." Image: CDC.


Where Do You Watch Netflix? A story at Quartz caught my eye: "Streaming-video giant Netflix found that more people are watching video outside their homes. About 67% of people now watch movies and TV shows in public, according to an online survey it commissioned of 37,000 adults around the world… The most popular public places to stream are on planes, buses, or commuting, the survey found. But 26% of respondents also said they’ve binged shows and movies at work… The most popular public places to stream are on planes, buses, or commuting, the survey found. But 26% of respondents also said they’ve binged shows and movies at work. A small group—about 7% worldwide—said they’ve watched movies and TV shows in public restrooms (to say nothing of those who have streamed from the privacy of their own bathrooms)..."

Photo credit: "I will stream it anywhere." (Netflix)


TV Stations Are About to Track You, Much Like Google and Facebook Do. The Washington Post reports: "The same, weirdly specific ads you see online that are tailored to your behavior could soon appear on your local television network, thanks to looming policy changes by federal regulators. The Federal Communications Commission is expected to vote Thursday on rules designed to promote the spread of what it calls Next Gen TV, a new technology that, among other things, will enable television broadcasters to collect data about your viewing habits. That information will give broadcasters the ability to sell targeted advertising against their programming, something that's become common practice among ad giants such as Google and Facebook. Other industries have also been racing to adopt data-driven ad targeting, too, including Internet providers such as Verizon and AT&T… Not all stations are likely to adopt Next Gen TV immediately. The FCC proposal would allow stations to start using the standard on a voluntary basis. Those that do could provide viewers with other benefits, such as better video and audio quality on their broadcasts..."


How Nazi Art Wound Up on an Army Base in Virginia. Washingtontonian has the fascinating tale: "...This particular bust came into Uncle Sam’s possession seven decades ago. At the end of World War II, Allied soldiers seized it from the Eagle’s Nest, the Führer’s Austrian mountaintop redoubt. It was more than a simple piece of war booty. Seventy-two years after V-E Day, the Army still owns the statue as well as hundreds of other pieces of German propaganda and wartime art—all of which reside on post at Fort Belvoir. The collection includes four watercolor paintings by Hitler himself. They’re under lock and key in a flat file inside a vault. It’s not easy to get to the Army’s Nazi-art stash. My visit took months to arrange. The Center of Military History, which oversees the Army’s art collection, does little to publicize the Nazi pieces in its possession. They’ve been loaned out only twice in the last decade...Given concerns about the resurgence of far-right groups in America, the military has some reason to keep these relics of the Third Reich hidden..."

Image credit: "Hitler liked this piece so much that he bought it himself. It now resides just off Route 1 in Woodbridge."


Minnesota North Shore Hopes Dark Sky Will Spark Tourism. KSTP.com reports: "Visit Cook County in Grand Marais has created an ad campaign to see the stars. The area is one of the darkest places east of the Mississippi River. The tourism bureau has created a map of the best locations around the county to star-gaze. Visit Cook County in Grand Marais has created an ad campaign to see the stars. The area is one of the darkest places east of the Mississippi River. The tourism bureau has created a map of the best locations around the county to star gaze..."

Image credit: Dark Site Finder.


The Most Dedicated Music Fans? Country? Rock? Hip Hop? Nope. A story at Quartzy explains: "It is metal—yes, metal, meaning decades-old groups like Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, and Kiss—that actually has the most loyal fans, it turns out. That’s per Spotify data analyzing the genres with the highest global loyalty, measured by the number of streams divided by the number of listeners per artist. Metal is number one by far on the list, ahead of genres like hip-hop, country, and rock by as much as 50%. In the US alone, metal has about twice as much listener loyalty as EDM, rap, or jazz…Why does metal has such loyal fans? It likely comes down to a combination of niche attraction, the intensity of the music itself and the types of relationships that listeners tend to form with it—and metal’s aging community of fans, who have now hit the prime point of exquisite cultural nostalgia…"


Useless Trivia: Yes, You Can Cook Your Turkey in Your Dishwasher. You might make a mess in the process, but it is possible, according to this source.


46 F. high in the Twin Cities Wednesday.

41 F. average high on November 15.

55 F. high on November 15, 2016.

November 16, 1933: Record lows are set in a few locations including Farmington with a low of 11 degrees below zero, Little Falls at 10 degrees below zero, Chaska at 9 below and Milaca at 8 degrees below.

November 16, 1931: A tornado touches down near Maple Plain in Hennepin County. The tornado damage path was five miles long.


TODAY: More clouds than sun. Winds: SE 8--13. High: 37

THURSDAY NIGHT: Partly cloudy. Low: 35

FRIDAY: Windy with a few rain showers likely. Winds: S 10-15. High: 46

SATURDAY: Flurries taper, clouds linger. Gusty. Winds: NW 10-20. Wake-up: 31. High: 35

SUNDAY: Partly sunny, nicer day of the weekend. Winds: SW 5-10. Wake-up: 19. High: 39

MONDAY: Intervals of sun, not bad for a Monday. Winds: S 8-13. Wake-up: 32. High: near 50

TUESDAY: Mostly cloudy, cooler breeze. Wwinds: NW 10-15. Wake-up: 33. High: 38

WEDNESDAY: Plenty of sunshine, still brisk. Winds: S 5-10. Wake-up: 21. High: 37

Thanksgiving Day may bring highs well up into the 40s.


Climate Stories...

Trump Ignoring Feds Own Science. Here's an excerpt of an Op-Ed from the Editorial Board at San Antonio's Express News: "...The science of climate change can make the eyes glaze over — the charts, the dry language and the number soup — but this is an intrinsically human issue, caused by humans and affecting human lives in the form of coastal flooding, extreme weather, drought and famine. And it will have potentially profound effects on future generations. Our young children and their children will live with the policy decisions we make today. The United States, which is the world’s second-largest emitter of carbon, is withdrawing from the Paris climate agreement. We are the only country in the world not participating in the accord. The other holdouts, Nicaragua and war-torn Syria, have signed on. We stand alone. It’s not a choice informed by science. That’s a tough one to explain to our children and grandchildren."

Photo credit: Branden Camp /Associated Press.


CLIMATE IMPACTS: Climate Nexus has linked to the following stories: "Here’s what climate change is doing to the West (Mother Jones), a tiny island prepares the world for a climate refugee crisis (Bloomberg), climate change is turbocharging growth of city trees--and that's really bad news (Newsweek, Earther), how climate change could lead to more wars in the 21st century (Vox), in storm-hit St. Lucia, insurance creates a buzz (Thomson Reuters Foundation), atmospheric river brings storm and flash flood warnings to fire-ravaged wine country." (LA Times $)


How a North Carolina Meteorologist Abandoned His Climate Change Skepticism. Greg Fishel is a friend (since my high school days). He's a smart guy and a gifted meteorologist; here is his story at Columbia Journalism Review: "...But this search sparked a flurry of other questions. Why was the country so polarized on issues of science, and why did it appear that religion was at war with science? I argued vehemently that we discuss politics and religion within our documentary. I’ll never forget the look on our producer’s face when I first made the pitch. But we did it.  Out of that research and filming, one primary culprit for this polarization emerged: unconditional loyalty to one’s tribe, a quality that is remarkably common. We believe what the people we align ourselves with believe, and rather than look for common ground with those who fall outside of that tribe, we seek the disparities..."


Climate Change Bringing "Biblical" Rains to Texas: From Climate Nexus Hot News: "The chances of a Hurricane Harvey-scale hurricane in Texas have increased sixfold since 1980, and climate change will make massive storms in the area much more likely by the end of the century, according to new research. A study published Monday in the journal Proceedings of the Natural Academy of Sciences from MIT's Kerry Emmanuel finds that warming upped the odds of an over-20 inch rainfall from a once-in-100-years event in Texas between 1980 and 2000 to a once-in-16-years event in 2017. Emmanuel's study projects the chances of this type of extreme rainfall in Texas to rise to once every 5.5 years by the end of the century. "There are folks down in Texas who are having to rebuild infrastructure, and I think they need to have some idea of what kind of event they’re building for," Emmanuel told the Washington Post." (Washington Post $, AP, BloombergLA Times $, The Atlantic, Ars Technica)

File photo: AP.


How Climate Change Fueled Hurricane Harvey. A story at WIRED.com caught my eye: "...Hurricane Harvey has already dumped 9 trillion gallons of water on Texas and may leave even more before it backs up to the Gulf of Mexico. Starting as a category 4 hurricane as it made landfall on Friday night, Harvey, which has since been downgraded to a tropical storm, is breaking weather records every hour—and is leaving some scientists scratching their heads as to why it stalled over south Texas instead of cruising northward to Oklahoma and then to the Midwest as storms of this nature typically do. Is climate change to blame for its atypical path of destruction? Well, a bit, according to climate researchers. Climate change didn’t spawn Harvey, or any other hurricane, though it has made them more dangerous..."


More Than 15,000 Scientists Issue a "Warning to Humanity". Big Think has the details: "More than 15,000 scientists from 184 countries have issued a warning: Mankind must take immediate action to reverse the effects of climate change, deforestation and species extinction before it’s too late. The warning, issued by the Alliance of World Scientists and published in the journal Bioscience, comes on the 25th anniversary of a similar warning from the Union of Concerned Scientists that was titled “World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity”. The new letter, however, has 10 times as many scientists endorsing it. “On the 25th anniversary of their call, we look back at their warning and evaluate the human response by exploring available time-series data,” the paper reads. “Especially troubling is the current trajectory of potentially catastrophic climate change due to rising GHGs from burning fossil fuels (Hansen et al. 2013), deforestation (Keenan et al. 2015), and agricultural production—particularly from farming ruminants for meat consumption (Ripple et al. 2014)..."

Image credit: NASA.