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Paul Douglas on Weather

We Go From The Big Dig To The Big Melt This Week

Snow Continues Saturday Night

Snow was already falling across the Twin Cities during the late afternoon hours Saturday, quite heavily at times. And I noticed the title games for high school girls hockey were Saturday... so we can officially call this a tournament snow storm, right? This is what the falling snow looked like Saturday afternoon in the St. Cloud area.

Overall, here are the snow totals we are expecting from this system. We could see a swath of 6-10”+ from southern Minnesota to the Arrowhead by the time the snow moves out Saturday Night into early Sunday.

(Advisory map as of 4:30 PM Saturday) Due to the snow, Winter Storm Warnings and Winter Weather Advisories remains in effect into early Sunday. Winds will also pick up behind the snow, causing some blowing and potentially drifting issues.

This snow is good news for at least one category: the season departure from average. Through Friday, we were 2.8” below average in the Twin Cities since the snow season began. This system should push us into the positive range.


We Go From The Big Dig to The Big Melt This Week
By Paul Douglas

The 7-Day Outlook calls for slush, mush, Blue Juice (windshield washer solution) and second-string shoes. A word to the wise: if you like snow, take full advantage of today. It won't get any better than this.

I like snow. For a fleeting, frozen moment in time the landscape is white-washed, sun-scrubbed and pristine; worthy of a postcard. It's nature's do-over. In the twinkle of an eye, we are children again.

A mid-October sun angle will help to melt all that new snow in your yard in the coming days. Models show highs near 40F by midweek, so the Big Melt is inevitable. Borrow a friend's shoes, because it's going to be a slop-fest out there the next couple of weeks.

After nearly an inch of liquid water from two snowstorms two days apart there's no more weather-drama - the maps look quiet into mid-March. Future storms will probably be a mix of rain and snow; the days of all-snow are winding down.

So here we are, enjoying an average winter - snowfall and temperatures very close to normal. Last winter was mild with little snow, so an average winter almost feels like punishment!


Extended Twin Cities Forecast

SUNDAY: Partly sunny, breezy. High 30. Low 18. Chance of precipitation 10%. Wind NW 10-20 mph.
MONDAY: Clouds increase, trending milder. High 37. Low 27. Chance of precipitation 10%. Wind SW 5-10 mph.
TUESDAY: Patchy fog and clouds. High 40. Low 28. Chance of precipitation 10%. Wind SE 3-8 mph.
WEDNESDAY: Clouds linger, sloppy out there. High 39. Low 24. Chance of precipitation 10%. Wind SE 3-8 mph.
THURSDAY: Peeks of sun, still quiet. High 37. Low 21. Chance of precipitation 10%. Wind NW 7-12 mph.
FRIDAY: Bright sun, light winds. High 39. Low 25. Chance of precipitation 0%. Wind NW 3-8 mph.
SATURDAY: Clouds and winds increase. High 43. Low 31. Chance of precipitation 20%. Wind SE 10-20 mph.


This Day in Weather History
February 25th

1934: A late season cold snap produces a bitterly cold low of -46 at Big Falls.


Average Temperatures & Precipitation for Minneapolis
February 25th

Average High: 32F (Record: 58F set in 1976)
Average Low: 17F (Record: -23F set in 1967)
Average Precipitation: 0.03" (Record: 0.63" set in 1944)
Average Snow: 0.3" (Record: 4.8" set in 2001)


Sunrise/Sunset Times for Minneapolis
February 25th

Sunrise: 6:57 AM
Sunset: 5:55 PM

*Length Of Day: 10 hours, 57 minutes and 31 seconds
*Daylight Gained Since Yesterday: ~3 minutes and 4 seconds

*Sunrises After 7 AM Begin Again March 11th (7:32 AM) Due To Daylight Saving Time
*Next Sunset at/after 6 PM: March 1st (6:00 PM)


Minnesota Weather Outlook

Saturday Night's snow will have pushed out of the region for the most part by the morning hours Sunday, with only a few lingering snowflakes across northern Minnesota early on in the day. Highs will be in the 20s and 30s across the state with a mix of clouds and sun.

Highs on Sunday will be around average for the most part around the state - enjoy!

Highs will be in the 30s - and even potentially 40s - each of the next seven days. Fairly quiet weather in the temperature department, but this will allow our fresh, new snow to quickly start melting away.

After snow Saturday night into early Sunday, we will see quiet weather for the first half of the week as the next chance of precipitation (which will be in the form of rain and snow) doesn't move in until Wednesday Night and Thursday. A few more light snow chances appear in the long term, but it is certainly too early to really focus on any of them at the moment.


National Weather Forecast

Snow will be departing the upper Midwest during the morning hours Sunday. A cold front moving across the country will finally kick some of the heavy rain impacting the Southern Plains to Ohio Valley off to the south and east Sunday, with some snow possible across parts of Maine. Rain and mountain snow will continue in the Northwest.

Warmth will be found out east ahead of the cold front Sunday, with highs a good 10-25 degrees above average from western New York into northern Florida. Cooler than average weather will be found in the western half of the United States, with highs that are up to 15-20 degrees below average across the Rockies.

While the heavy rain that has been ongoing the past few days from the Southern Plains to the Ohio Valley will shift south heading into Sunday, another round of rain is likely toward the middle of the week that could continue flooding issues. Heavy precipitation - especially in the form of snow at higher elevations - will also be possible through Thursday morning in the Northwest.

Heavy snow will continue though the end of the weekend and into early next week across the higher elevations in the Northwest, with feet of snow possible. Snow will continue through Sunday morning across the upper Midwest. Some light snow is expected Sunday in parts of New England, potentially totaling to a few inches.


Hurricanes Chance Coastal Sounds From Critters

Scientists this hurricane season noticed a chance in sounds from coastal critters after Maria and Irma passed over Puerto Rico. More from Science Daily: "Audio recordings of Hurricanes Irma and Maria's passage over Puerto Rico document how the calls of coastal critters changed in response to the deadly storms. The hurricanes caused a major disruption in the acoustic activity of snapping shrimp, a reduction in insect and bird sounds, and potentially an intensification of fish choruses, according to new research presented at the Ocean Sciences Meeting Friday." (Image: Hurricane Maria near peak intensity, moving north towards Puerto Rico, on September 19, 2017. New research shows Hurricanes Maria and Irma caused a major disruption in the acoustic activity of snapping shrimp and a reduction in insect and bird sounds in southwestern Puerto Rico. Credit: Naval Research Laboratory/NOAA.)

Where Is The Snow Out West?

That is the question many ski and snow lovers are asking out west this year. More from Earther: "Outside of the Northern Rockies and Washington State, the U.S. is desperately seeking snow. Hot, dry weather has been the norm for much of this winter in the West, setting the region up for a summer of water woes. The snow drought is most severe in California and the Southwest. California’s Sierra Nevada are averaging just 19 percent of their normal snowpack, trending in record-low territory. At the start of the water year, which began Oct. 1, there was nary a hint of drought to be seen in the Southwest. Now, nearly the entire region is in drought. The epicenter is right at the Four Corners, where extreme drought expanded this week to engulf 10 percent of the region, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor."

Record February Warmth This Year

Numerous record highs - even all-time February highs - were broken in the eastern United States this week. Bad news: February's will continue to get warmer. More from Popular Science: "Summer came early to New York City on Wednesday, as temperatures soared to a record 76 degrees Fahrenheit — more than 30 degrees warmer than the average February high. Up and down the the East Coast, from Atlanta to Baltimore to Cleveland to Boston, an unusual warm spell broke temperature records. While everyone enjoys t-shirt weather in February, this week’s mild weather is an ominous sign of global climate change. When heat makes history, it tends to bear a human fingerprint. Carbon pollution from cars, trucks, factories, farms, and power plants is trapping heat, driving up temperatures around the world. The result is more days of extreme heat and fewer days of extreme cold. Over the last year, the continental United States saw more than twice as many record highs as record lows." (Image: 3 PM ET Temperatures Wednesday, February 21st, 2017 from AerisWeather)


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

 - D.J. Kayser

Winter storm warning: Another 4-8 inches likely Saturday

White Gold: Another Plowable Snowfall Later Today

The short term forecast calls for White Gold. At a time when western Minnesota is too dry, with pockets of moderate drought showing up on weather maps, moisture in today's snowfall is money in the bank for farmers and gardeners and anyone with a lawn. Hey, it's coming on a Saturday, so more people can enjoy these big fat flakes, without worrying about parking lot conditions on area highways.

Moisture is impressive with this next storm; fueled with a plume of water vapor from the Gulf of Mexico. The atmosphere should be cold enough for all snow (subfreezing temperatures in the lowest mile of the atmosphere). Making the snowfall prediction more problematic: this storm will move quickly, maybe 8 hours of snow; heaviest this evening.

Many towns will wind up with 4-8 inches of heavy, wet snow. This is "heart attack" snow - remind older friends and neighbors to take it easy out there.

Travel improves tomorrow, and don't waste time playing in all this new snow. Models show a few days near 40 next week as we finally limp into a March-like pattern. Good news: nothing subzero in sight. 

00z NAM Future Radar loop from Saturday morning thru Sunday evening courtesy of NOAA and

Snowfall Potential. The next storm will move too quickly for a foot of snow, but many spots will pick up a cool half foot. That's on top of the roughly half foot of snow that fell Thursday night. A foot of snow for many towns and suburbs over 2 days? I'm relieved it can still snow here. Map:

Like Snow? Get Out Sunday. Models consistently show upper 30s to near 40F by the middle of next week, meaning snow will become slushy and mushy and compact over time. Sunday skiing, sledding and snowmobiling conditions will be about as good as they ever get. ECMWF guidance: WeatherBell.

A Stormy Mix? The extended outlook (roughly 2 weeks out) continues to show a longwave trough over the western USA, with a series of storms ejecting northeastward across the High Plains. We'll see a parade of low pressure systems, but it's unclear whether there will be enough cold air in place for all-snow. March means mixed precipitation, and this one should be no exception. 

Praedictix Briefing: Issued Friday, February 23rd, 2018:

* Very active weather will continue into the weekend across the central United States as a new system moves across the region.

* Heavy snow will be possible across the Central Plains starting tonight, spreading into the Upper Mississippi Valley during the day Saturday. The heaviest snow is expected to fall from northeast Nebraska into northern Minnesota and Wisconsin, where 6”+ of snow is in the forecast.

* Heavy rain will continue from Pennsylvania into the Southern Plains into at least the first half of the weekend. An additional 2-4”+ of rain can be expected across this region. Due to this additional rain on top of already saturated ground flash flooding will be possible. We also continue to watch river flooding, as some rivers across the region could reach major and even record stage into early next week.

* We are also tracking an Enhanced Risk of severe weather from the Ark-La-Tex into the Mid-Mississippi Valley Saturday, where large hail, damaging winds and tornadoes (some of which could be strong) are possible during the afternoon and evening hours.

Winter Weather Concerns. With snow departing the region, Winter Weather Advisories are still in effect this morning from northern Minnesota into northern Michigan. To the southwest of those advisories (across Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska and Iowa), Winter Weather Advisories are in effect for the next storm system to move out into the central United States later today into Saturday, with Winter Storm Watches from northeast Nebraska into Minnesota. Map: AerisWeather and Praedictix.

Winter Storm Watches. Here’s a better look at where just Winter Storm Watches are in effect as we head into the weekend. Across parts of Nebraska, watches are in effect from late tonight through Saturday afternoon. In the Sioux Falls (SD) and Sioux City (IA) areas, watches are in effect from Saturday morning until late Saturday night. Across parts of Minnesota and Wisconsin, watches go into effect Saturday afternoon/evening and last into early Sunday. Areas under watches are expected to see the heaviest snow, with the potential of 5-9”, with isolated amounts up to a foot.

Expected Snowfall. While a couple inches of snow is still possible from northern Minnesota into northern Michigan this morning, most of the snow pictured above will fall from this second system moving through the region starting later tonight and departing Sunday. Heaviest snow totals are expected from northeast Nebraska across northern Iowa into southern and eastern Minnesota as well as western Wisconsin. These areas have the best potential of at least 6” of snow, with up to a foot possible in parts of northwest Wisconsin and along the North Shore of Lake Superior in Minnesota.

Twin Cities Snowfall. Models indicate 5-9” of snow late Saturday to early Sunday across the Twin Cities, with the heaviest snow in the metro falling between 3 PM Saturday and 1 AM Sunday. The heaviest snow – potentially topping 9” – looks like it will fall north and east of the main metropolitan area at this time.

Timing The Snow. Snow will start tonight across parts of Colorado and Nebraska, continuing to move northeast into Saturday. A mix of precipitation (including freezing rain) will move into Omaha by 5 am, with snow in Sioux Falls by 7 am. By Saturday evening, snow will already be tapering off in Sioux Falls, but heavy snow will be falling across parts of Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin, including the Twin Cities. By Sunday morning, most of the snow will be north of the International Border in the Upper Midwest, with just a few snow showers left over northern Minnesota. This will be a quick moving system, with most of the snow accumulation falling within a 6-12 hour timeframe.

Heaviest Rain Across Kentucky And Tennessee This Morning. Some of the heaviest rain is falling across parts of Tennessee and Kentucky this morning, with up to about a half an inch of rain per hour. This, on top of recent heavy rain the past couple days, is causing additional flooding across the region.

Past 24 Hour Rainfall. The heaviest precipitation over the past 24 has fallen from Texas into parts of the Ohio River Valley, where 1-3”+ has fallen. In the past 24 hours (through 7 AM), almost 3.50” of rain has fallen in Jonesboro, AR, with 2.40” in Mayfield, KY. Numerous Flood Advisories, Flood Warnings and Flash Flood Warnings extend from northeast Texas to southwest Ohio due to recent heavy rain and rising rivers.

Additional Heavy Rain Expected. An additional 2-4”+ of rain is likely from northeast Texas into the Ohio Valley and even parts of eastern Pennsylvania though 7 PM Sunday on top of heavy rain already observed over the past few days. This will continue to exacerbate any ongoing flooding across the region.

Excessive Rainfall Outlook Next Two Days. With the heaviest rain expected to continue over the next two days from Pennsylvania to eastern Texas, the Weather Prediction Center has in place moderate risks of rainfall exceeding flash flood guidance. This indicates areas that would have the greatest potential of flooding each day. The good news is that rain should finally push south and east out of the region into the second half of the weekend.

Flood Watches. Flood Watches and Flash Flood Watches continue from western Pennsylvania into the lower Mississippi Valley due to the potential of heavy rain which could lead to flash flooding and river flooding over the next several days.

Forecast River Flooding. Additional heavy rain into the weekend will continue to cause river flooding from the Great Lakes to the lower Mississippi Valley. Almost three dozen USGS river gauges could reach major flood stage over the next seven days, with some potentially reaching record levels. River levels will be slow to recede, and we could see flooding issues into next week.

Severe Weather Potential Saturday. Not only will we be watching the heavy rain threat across parts of the southern United States but there is also an Enhanced Risk of severe thunderstorms Saturday and Saturday Night from the Ark-La-Tex into the Mid-Mississippi Valley. Storms will become organized across western parts of the Enhanced area during the afternoon hours Saturday, capable of tornadoes (a few of which could be strong), hail and damaging winds. As the storms continue east, they’ll form into more of a linear structure, increasing the wind threat by the evening hours into parts of Mississippi, Tennessee and Kentucky.

Summary: As a new system pushes out of the Rockies later today, a second round of snow will start tonight across parts of the Central Plains and into the upper Mississippi Valley Saturday. The heaviest snow with this system will fall from Nebraska into Minnesota and Wisconsin, where 6”+ of snow will be possible. Across northern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin, some snow totals could approach a foot by Sunday morning. We also continue to track the heavy rain threat from Pennsylvania to the Southern Plains, where an additional 2-5” of rain through the weekend is expected. This will continue to produce the potential of flash flooding across the region. River flooding will also continue into early next week, with a number of river gauges expected to reach at least minor flood stage. Severe weather is also expected Saturday from the Ark-La-Tex into the Mid-Mississippi Valley where an Enhanced Risk of severe weather is in place for the afternoon and evening hours. Large hail, damaging winds, and a few tornadoes (some of which could be strong) are possible.

D.J. Kayser, Meteorologist, Praedictix

Moderate Drought West Central Minnesota. There's also a small pocket of moderate drought near International Falls, and much of western Minnesota is too dry. That's why I won't be whining about snow in the forecast. Source: Drought Monitor.

Summer in February? Simply Astonishing. So says Dr. Jeff Masters at Weather Underground; here's an excerpt of his post: "Astonishing summer-like heat cooked the Eastern U.S. on Wednesday, smashing all-time records for February warmth in cities in at least ten states, from Georgia to Maine. At least 24 cities recorded their hottest February temperature on record on Wednesday, including New York City (78°), Hartford, CT (74°) and Concord, NH (74°). According to Weather Underground weather historian Christopher C. Burt, February 20 - 21 marked the most extraordinary heat event to ever affect the Northeastern quadrant of the U.S. during the month of February, since official records began in the late 1800s. He catalogued the following eight states that tied or beat all-time February state heat records over the past two days, noting that in the case of Maine and Vermont, “It is simply amazing to beat a state temperature record by some 8°F!..."

IMPACTS: From Climate Nexus: "What land will be underwater in 20 years? Figuring it out could be lucrative (New York Times $), Arctic temperatures soar 45 degrees above normal, flooded by extremely mild air on all sides (Washington Post $), coral reefs at risk of dissolving as oceans get more acidic: study (Reuters), extreme February temperatures on east coast raise questions about climate change (ThinkProgress, Nexus Media News), sea level rise threatens to wipe out west coast wetlands." (InsideClimate News)

An Arctic Up To 45F Warmer Than Average? Jason Samenow reports at Capital Weather Gang: "...Temperatures over the entire Arctic north of 80 degrees latitude have averaged about 10 degrees (6 Celsius) above normal since the beginning of the calendar year, sometimes spiking over 25 degrees  (14 Celsius) above normal (the normal temperature is around minus-22, or minus-30 Celsius). These kinds of temperature anomalies in the Arctic have become commonplace in winter in the past few years. “[T]he *persistence* of the above average temperatures is quite striking,” tweeted Zack Labe, a PhD candidate in climate science at the University of California at Irvine..."
Image credit: "The temperature difference from normal over the Arctic averaged over the next five days in the GFS model forecast." (University of Maine Climate Reanalyzer)

PUERTO RICO: From Climate Nexus: "Suicide rates spike in Puerto Rico, five months after Maria (NBC), iIn Puerto Rico, a skirmish over how much debt the bankrupt island can handle (Washington Post $), Puerto Rico utility gets $300 million after truce with creditors (Reuters), why does restoring full power in Puerto Rico seem like a never-ending task? (NBC), Puerto Rico recovery efforts plagued by power company’s financial troubles." (ThinkProgress)

Hurricane Maria file image: NASA.

How "The Lean Start-up" Turned Eric Ries Into an Unlikely Corporate Guru. If you haven't read it, pick it up, no matter what business you're in. It's a simple, but powerful read. Here's an excerpt from an interview at Fortune: "...He never expected to be in such demand. After The Lean Startup came out, Ries was inundated with invitations to lecture, consult, and coach, a career he hadn’t previously contemplated. “It just happened,” he says, adding that it took a while to get used to people paying him to tell them what he thought. Indeed, Ries volunteers a startling admission for Silicon Valley’s preeminent business guru. “This is probably not good for the profile,” he says, the author-as-subject anticipating the impact of his words, “but I don’t really like business that much, at least not as much as most of the people I talk to. I actually kind of feel bad about it.” He says Jeffrey Immelt, the erstwhile chief executive of GE, once asked what Ries would do if he ran the conglomerate. “I was like, ‘I would die. I wouldn’t last 10 minutes. It would destroy me...”

An Amateur Astronomer Captured an Impossible Photo of an Exploding Star. Quartz reports: "While taking a series of short-exposure photographs to test his 16-inch telescope, Argentinian amateur astronomer Victor Buso caught the image of an initial burst of light from an exploding star in a distant galaxy. It was a remarkable discovery. The chances of such a discovery are one in 10 million—or perhaps even one in 100 million, said Melina Bersten, a professional astronomer at the Instituto de Astrofísica de La Plata in Argentina..."

Image credit: "A one in 10 million shot." (Carnegie Institution for Science)

Did Archaeologists Just Prove the Existence of the Prophet Isaiah? Daily Beast has an interesting post: "...The evidence itself comes in the form of a small piece of clay (an impression left by a seal), a mere 0.4 inches long, which appears to bear the inscription “Isaiah the prophet.” It was unearthed as part of excavations of a previously undisturbed pile of debris at the Ophel excavation in Jerusalem. The dig is headed by Eliat Mazar, who provides a description of the discovery, significance, and translation of the seal in an article published in this month’s issue of BAR. The debris contained figurines, pottery fragments, pieces of ivory, and some clay seal impressions, known as bullae. These impressions were created when the owners of the seals stamped their seals into the soft clay and include the mark of King Hezekiah, previously reported here at The Daily Beast..."

Image credit: Royal Doors.

St. Louis Radio Host Gives Birth – Live – On the Air. Jordana Green, my amazing co-host at WCCO Radio, are you paying attention? has details: "A St. Louis radio host gave birth live on the air Tuesday morning.  Cassiday Proctor is the co-host of “Spencer’s Neighborhood” on 106.5 The Arch. "Throughout her pregnancy, Cassiday shared every aspect of expecting a baby - including all of the ups and downs and the anticipation of baby's arrival - with the 106.5 The Arch listeners across St. Louis. And today, she and her husband Jerry were gracious enough to share the most intimate part of it with us,” her co-host Spencer Graves said..."

State Department Tries to Teach Americans How to Speak Minnesotan. You can't make this stuff up. Here's an excerpt and video link from GoMN: "This is your taxpayers dollars at work ... but then again we can't really argue with it being used this way. The State Department's American English wing has taken it upon itself to educate the rest of America as to the proper way to speak – Minnesotan. It posted the video below earlier this week, leveraging the expertise of Minnesota natives within the federal government for a how-to guide on Fargo-esque diction. Featured is "Uff da," obviously " and "Ohfer" – which it incorrectly spelled "Oh for..."

Ax-Throwing Bar to Open in Northeast Minneapolis. Eater Twin Cities reports that "...Ontario-based Bad Axe Throwing will kill both of those birds with one flung blade with the company’s 17th location opening at 2505 Kennedy St. NE, Suite A on March 10. Think of this like a dart league on steroids. Patrons can hang out at several lanes, each set up with two targets, get a primer on proper throwing techniques and then hurl death devices with all the pent-up rage of a cubicle-kept work week gone awry. The facility hopes to play host to large groups and caters to parties. For now, would-be axe throwers are invited to bring beer and wine, but Bad Axe is hopping to secure a liquor license to sell on site. There will be no hard alcohol, however, because that would be just crazy…"

Image credit: "Here’s hoping the axe is bad, not the throwing." Bad Axe Throwing/Website

8" snow on the ground at KMSP Friday morning.

32 F. maximum temperature yesterday in the Twin Cities.

32 F. average high on February 23.

39 F. high on February 23, 2017.

February 24, 1835: The temperature at Ft. Snelling falls 26 degrees in only three hours.

SATURDAY: Winter Storm Warning. Snow arrives by afternoon. Winds: E 10-15. High: 32.

SATURDAY NIGHT: Snow, heavy at times. 4-8" expected. Low: 22

SUNDAY: Partly sunny, travel slowly improves. Winds: W 10-20. High: 29

MONDAY: Intervals of sun, milder. Winds: SW 5-10. Wake-up: 20. High: 35

TUESDAY: More clouds than sun, not bad at all. Winds: S 5-10. Wake-up: 25. High: 38

WEDNESDAY: Overcast, feels like March. Winds: W 5-10. Wake-up: 28. High: 40

THURSDAY: Glimmers of sun, a little cooler. Winds: NW 7-12. Wake-up: 27. High: 35

FRIDAY: Mix of clouds and sun, quiet. Winds: NW 5-10. Wake-up: 23. High: 37

Climate Stories...

Winter Sports Industry Feeling The Heat From Climate Change: From Climate Nexus: "Low-snow winters influenced by climate change can cost the US economy up to $1 billion in reduced participation costs from winter sports, new research shows. A report released today from Protect Our Winters finds that low-snow cover years since 2000 resulted in 5.5 million fewer visitors to US ski towns than average, causing resort towns and surrounding areas to retain 17,400 fewer jobs compared to average years. "When somebody goes and skies, they don't just spend money on that lift ticket," report coauthor Rebecca Hill told NPR. "They also spend money at restaurants in the area. They buy gas in the area. So it's those other support industries that are also going to be harmed." (NPR)

One Arm of the Trump Administration Thinks Climate Change is a Security Threat. Here's an excerpt from The Economist: "...But the menace that most concerns Captain Dean VanderLey, the chief civil engineer for the navy in the mid-Atlantic region, is one that is undeterred by military might. In the 100 years since the base was first built, the sea level has risen by half a metre. In a major hurricane, he says, while surveying the piers and a road linking them to an airfield, “a lot of this would probably be flooded”.Captain VanderLey is not alone in fretting about the military consequences of climate change. A report published on January 26th by the Department of Defence (DoD) found that more than half of the 3,500 sites surveyed are already reporting climate-related problems (see map). Droughts are leading to water shortages, heatwaves are causing some live-fire exercises to be cancelled and shifting wind patterns are disrupting aircraft sorties..."

Map credit:

What Are The Birds Telling Us About Climate Change? Here's a clip from a post at The Austin Chronicle: "...It's not like wildlife hasn't dealt with extreme events before; of course they have," Parmesan explained when I asked her about the effects of such events. "But you normally have several years or even decades in between these extreme events, so you allow those numbers to recover. Then you get hit again, but by then the population is high enough that you're not causing the population to go extinct. But as these events get more and more frequent, you don't get the recovery time, and then the populations have a much higher likelihood of going extinct rather than just their numbers going down." Following Harvey, the species tallies at counts along the coast were unsurprisingly down. The storm had indiscriminately flooded and destroyed lives and homes, local wildlife not excluded. Salt marshes were flushed with rainwater, trees where songbirds gathered were demolished, and coastal habitats were eroded..."

Photo credit: "Jane Tillman, Ken Zaslow, and Skip Mencio on the lookout at the Christmas Bird Count in South Austin." (Photo by Jana Birchum)

Moose and Loons are "Climate Change Canaries in the Coal Mine", Say Conservationists. This story is focused on New England, but we have the same trends and challenges here in Minnesota. reports: "...She says shorter winters are hastening the spread of ticks, which attach to moose in tens of thousands and can kill large numbers of each year’s calves. Moose are also dying from brain worms, spread by larger deer populations. Rines also says the cold-loving moose can show signs of heat stress even on mild summer days, or in winter temperatures as low as the mid-20s. In more intense heat, they stop foraging altogether..."

Photo credit: "In this July 2011 photo, a moose picks its head up from eating grass from Pierce Pond in North New Portland, Maine." (Pat Wellenbach/AP)

The Reverend Billy Graham Called Climate Change a "Serious Problem". Here's an excerpt from a story at "America's Pastor" Billy Graham was a supporter, if not a leading advocate, of action on climate change. The Christian evangelist, who died yesterday morning at age 99, reached millions of people around the world and had advised U.S. presidents. Known for preaching about God's love in the Bible, Graham also talked about the need for mankind to be "stewards of God's creation." "Why should we be concerned about the environment? It isn't just because of the dangers we face from pollution, climate change or other environmental problems — although these are serious. For Christians, the issue is much deeper: We know that God created the world, and it belongs to Him, not us. Because of this, we are only stewards or trustees of God's creation, and we aren't to abuse or neglect it," Graham said in May 2006..."

East Coast Shatters Temperature Records, Offering Preview to a Warming World. Here's a clip from InsideClimate News: "...The warm temperatures do feel strange this time of year, but it's easy to forget that this isn't the only abnormally hot February in recent years. February 2017 saw extraordinary temperatures, too. February 2016? Same thing. It's been happening with greater frequency—and in line with what scientists have said to expect as the world warms. "It used to be said that 'scientists can't say anything about an individual event.' That statement is patently false now," said Michael Wehner, a senior staff scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. "We can say lots about individual events, and we have..."

We Can't Engineer Our Way Out of Climate Change. Bloomberg View has the Op-Ed; here's an excerpt: "...The human response to global warming has been so slow that it may be too late to avoid serious consequences just by reducing future emissions. This means tough decisions. Rapidly rising temperatures could so damage supporting ecosystems that we’ll be forced to cool the planet with technological tricks – for example, injecting sulfate aerosols into the atmosphere to block the sun’s rays. Such “geoengineering” is risky. For one, a single nation might be able to do it on its own, changing global patterns of weather that harm people elsewhere, and inciting conflict. Also, aerosols stay suspended in the atmosphere only for a year or so. If carbon emissions keep rising, we’ll be locked into continuing the treatment forever, lest we face much faster warming – and biological disaster..."

File image: NASA.