Visible satellite image of the October 26, 2010 superstorm taken at 5:32pm EDT. At the time, Bigfork, Minnesota was reporting the lowest pressure ever recorded in a U.S. non-coastal storm, 955 mb. Image credit: NASA/GSFC.
You have to love the intro to this excellent piece over on Climate Progress, a quote from Minnesota meteorologist Paul Douglas:
My dad was the biggest Republican that ever walked the earth. He always said: “Actions have consequences.” To pretend that a 38% increase in greenhouse gases isn’t going to have any impact, that we can have our cake and eat it too, and smear it all over our face, and maybe have our grandchildren deal with the hangover, I think it is immoral.
The post goes on to discuss the “weather bomb” that just hit the Midwest in great detail and its relationship to global weirding.
A couple highlights on the storm, which actually come from meterologist Jeff Masters:
Yesterday’s 28.20″ (955 mb) low pressure reading in Minnesota breaks not only the 28.28″ (958 mb) previous “USA-interior-of-the-continent-record” from Cleveland, Ohio during the Great Ohio Storm of Jan. 26, 1978 (a lower reading in Canada during this event bottomed out at an amazing 28.05″/950 mb), but also the lowest pressure ever measured anywhere in the continental United States aside from the Atlantic Coast….
Yesterday’s superstorm is reminiscent of the amazing low pressures reached earlier this year (Jan. 19-22) in the West, where virtually every site in California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, southern Oregon, and southern Idaho–about 10 – 15% of the U.S. land area–broke their lowest on record pressure readings. However, the lowest readings from that event fell well short of yesterday’s mega-storm with 28.85″ (977 mb) being about the lowest recorded at any onshore site….
And the takeaway, long-term point is: we’re are seeing more and more freak storms like this. More and more extreme weather, in general. Can we expect more like this? You bet!
We’ve now had two remarkable extratropical storms this year in the U.S. that have smashed all-time low pressure records across a large portion of the country. Is this a sign that these type of storms may be getting stronger? Well, there is evidence that wintertime extratropical storms have grown in intensity in the Pacific, Arctic, and Great Lakes in recent decades. I discuss the science in detail in a post I did earlier this year.
And a little more from Douglas before I send you over to Climate Progress to read more:
“I’m a recovering Republican, and I don’t recognize my party any more. I’m ashamed so many Republicans don’t recognize the science. The writing is on the wall.”
It’s sad, all the signs are here, we are seeing what climate scientists have been predicting for decades, and we still have people trying to completely shut their eyes to the problem. Why? Probably because the problem is so daunting to deal with,.. but it is only going to get bigger. I guess some folks don’t mind if it is bigger as long as it is on the kids’ heads not their own, but as Douglas says, that is downright immoral.
Read more about the Weather Bomb on Climate Progress: Masters: “Strongest storm ever recorded in the Midwest smashes all-time pressure records”