Employment slump at NHC

Bob Tisdale writes in with:

What Do You Suppose They’ve Been Doing At The National Hurricane Center This Summer?

http://i27.tinypic.com/im1m2r.gif
Source: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/

Bocce maybe? Horseshoes?

UPDATE – Ryan Maue of Florida State University writes in comments:

Global (Northern Hemisphere) tropical cyclone ACE for the months May – June – July is the lowest in at least the past 30-years or more.

I, for one, am not surprised.  Continued inactivity should persist for the next few weeks until the atmosphere catches up with the radiative warming of the tropical oceans due to the season called summer.

2007 was a dud.   2008 was saved from being a record year by 2007.  2009 is behind the pace of both years.  Amazing how natural variability affects tropical cyclone formation, tracks, and intensity.  Who would have thought?

Ryan’s Tropical web page at Florida State University has this graph that shows accumulated cyclone energy (ACE) :

click for larger image

Sorted monthly data: Text File

Note where 2009 is in the scheme of things.

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130 thoughts on “Employment slump at NHC

  1. The primary reason for no hurricanes in the Gulf is because the jet stream is too far North. And the reason it is North is because of the condition of the PDO. This all results in the oceanic conditions of the Atlantic not having to fight the jet stream. So the turbulence that sets up hurricanes is taking a siesta. However, the occasional swing of the jet stream to its southern track can still happen during a cold/neutral PDO.

  2. Rock, scissors, paper?
    Sudoku?
    Organize ipod lists?
    Bet on lap times when the groundskeepers are mowing?

    Word on the street is everyone’s fingernails there look great.

  3. Not that unusual. Hurricane Andrew didn’t strike until the last week in August, which is when things really pick up.

  4. Even better is the comment at the top of their site:

    NHC predicts a near-normal season…have your disaster plan ready!

  5. I wrote to NHC and asked what was the latest date for a first named tropical storm or hurricane. In the modern era, since 1966, the latest date for a first named storm was August 30th 1967, Arlene; and the latest date for a first hurricane was September 11th 2002, Gustav.

  6. They are probably worrying about the increasing number of LNG regasification facilities in the Gulf of Mexico, since those chill the ocean surface and act as hurricane preventers. Or minimizers.

    I wrote: “One other thing about importing LNG, especially into the Gulf of Mexico. Re-gasification requires great quantities of heat, and that heat is derived from ocean water in some processes. The ocean water cools in the process. This is just the opposite of how power plants heat a local body of water with once-through cooling for their steam condensers. It may not be enough to notice or even to measure, but it could help cool the surface waters so that hurricanes (which require warm water to sustain their winds) decrease in strength or even disappear. Another benefit in the Gulf of Mexico might be that cold water absorbs more oxygen compared to warm water, and that could help the notorious “dead zone” in the Gulf.

    The floating LNG regasification system referenced above uses a two-tier vaporizer with a closed-loop system of propane vaporizing the LNG, then ocean water is used in the second tier to warm the cold propane. The net effect is colder ocean water with high-pressure natural gas produced for moving via a pipeline to shore.”

  7. They are not even getting occluded fronts, cut off lows or Tiny Tims for count padding! They must be on suicide watch down there.

  8. What Do You Suppose They’ve Been Doing At The National Hurricane Center This Summer?

    Maybe they have been trying to clean off the Oscar and the Nobel Prize that Al Gore won because they sure has been collecting a lot of tarnish lately. His jumbo size heated pool could always use some extra cleaning as well.

  9. RE: The primary reason for no hurricanes in the Gulf is because the jet stream is too far North.

    Too far south. Cold fronts are reaching the Gulf. That is more like mid to late October than late July / early August.

  10. Just one other thing–June and July are usually relatively slow months for hurricanes in the Atlantic, and it’s not unknown for a season to start late (Andrew was around Labor Day in 1992). September is the peak of the season. Let’s wait until at least Labor Day, or maybe the Equinox, to start getting critical…

  11. The NHC may have missed a chance to name a subtropical storm last week.

    Things weren’t windy at home near Concord NH, but apparently it was plenty windy near the track of a “subtropical nor’easter” off of Massachusetts. The wind field of extratropical storms is wide enough so I was quite surprised at the reports from last week closer to it.

    See http://www.weathernewengland.com/tim-kelley/walks-like-a-duck-tropical-storm-or-not/1004027.html for a lot of discussion from the weather staff at NECN (New England Cable News Network).

    Tim Kelley reports:

    Tonight we are sharing some inside information regarding the characteristics of this second major Nor’easter for New England this summer of 2009. The first one lasted three days from June 21 to June 23. This one came through in 28 hours from 4 PM July 23 to 8 PM July 24. Each storm hit during an astronomically high new moon tide. Thank goodness, we had the worst of the wind during low tide early Friday July 25th. I woke up to the sound of my grill slamming to the ground after an estimated gust to 48 mph about 5:35 AM.

    Both storms had peak gusts of 45 mph. The June storm had a central pressure of 994 Millibars or 29.35″. That one was clearly a cold core storm. This one however, had many tropical characteristics, with ingredients form Africa, The Bahamas, And The Pacific. The central pressure was about 1000 Millibars or 29.53″. The temperature was 63 degrees with a dewpoint of 61, clearly not a true tropical storm. But the characteristics of the wind and the rain appeared tropical in nature.

    I feel terrible about how badly I missed the Marine Forecast. If we had a named storm boaters would have been better prepared. The wind at Island Shoals Buoy was sustained at 39 knots this AM, 5 knots great than Tropical Storm Force. We had no statements form any National Hurricane Center or Weather Service that tropical storm conditions would prevail this morning. Matt Noyes was the lone voice of reality yesterday, thanks for the heads up Matt. So far there are no reports of injuries. But as Joe posted earlier, we have many reports of trees down and flooding. This is how the sea looked in Massachusetts Bay at 5:40 AM.

    [From another NECN met.]
    “It seems NHC is not calling everything a T.S. like they have in the past, which I think is a good thing. To many storm wannabees doesn’t help us get the message across. I can think of 3 others this season they have not named which have some of your same “duck” qualities”. Sure in the past I could see this being named a subtropical storm. I believe tropical systems and nor’easters are much more related than most think, and the line of purity between the 2 is rather thin.

    That said, too much points to a RARE late July subtropical nor’easter loaded with tropical moisture. PW values around 2 !! I think this situation should have been a big deal from the local offices with wording and special statements. I haven’t seen all the discussions, but it seemed by Thursday night it would have warranted stronger wording. Sustained winds even well below TS strength along with the super wet soils you guys have had resulted in dozens of non t-storm wind damage reports. Sometimes as Mets. we focus on what the storm is not, rather than what it is.”

    Yes I do think we are more vulnerable.
    July 2009 Rainfall records are rivaling July of 1938!

    [The hurricane of '38 took down huge swatchs of trees and wind and rain were aided by saturated soils. References to 1938 are worrisome, though I'm not sure if the weather pattern is similar. OTOH, the pattern this year with the persistant low in the upper great lakes helped steer this nor'easter this way.]

    I have more to say but it’s the weekend.. JJ take over form here. Tell us about how this is the wettest July on Record in at PVD (Warwick RI), and how this is this second coldest July on record at NYC (Central Park NY).
    Make the connection to Global Cooling.

  12. Bob Tisdale:

    Are you crazy, man? What if the Watts Effect applies to cyclonic storms as well as sunspots? You’re going to have live with what you’ve done….

    Jim Cripwell (10:03:15) – nice initiative… so a prolonged spell without hurricanes is not THAT unusual.

  13. Pamela Gray (09:45:12) :
    “The primary reason for no hurricanes in the Gulf is because the jet stream is too far North. And the reason it is North is because of the condition of the PDO. This all results in the oceanic conditions of the Atlantic not having to fight the jet stream. So the turbulence that sets up hurricanes is taking a siesta. However, the occasional swing of the jet stream to its southern track can still happen during a cold/neutral PDO.”

    Sorry Pamela, but that makes no sense. Currently, the jet stream is actually further south and closer to the Gulf than usual. That is why it is so cool for this time of year over the eastern half of the US. Furthermore, the jet stream does not help with hurricane formation.

  14. Well if anyone from the NHC is bored and has some hurricane modelling software can I suggest….
    Flood basalt events cause ground temperatures of > 50C over 1000s of sq. miles, what sort of hurricane will that set off (24/7 geological heating of course)??

  15. Well, since the global warming have been masked by global cooling so have the hurricanes been masked by doldrums.

  16. Andrew is a good example; or rather the 1992 Hurricane Season is a good example of what might happen this year. Relative to normal we may have few named storms this year. Of course, in respect to anyone who may experience a named storm, its good to remember, it’s not the number of named storms in a given year, it’s the number of named storms that make landfall that is most important.

    The 1992 Hurricane Season only had 6 named storms, (1 subtropical storm, which today would be named) if that were to occur this year, it would make the ‘Forecast’ of around 11 named storms, wrong… …again.

    http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2009/20090521_atlantichurricane.html

  17. Jeff Masters at wunderground.com (who is a strong AGW supporter, by the way) has a very interesting blog about the late starting hurricane season. According to records, some of which he admits is incomplete before weather satellites, only 2 out 10 hurricane seasons that started in August was above average for the number of storms the season produced.

    In any event, it is going to be a mild year. Ever since that season which we had so many Atlantic hurricanes that we ran out of names, it is like a light switch was turned off.

    The mantra was “Look what global warming is going to do.” Then suddenly, poof, quite. The season was so mild the past several years that the NHC now classifies a tropical storm the hour it happens, even if it is an official tropical storm just for an hour. The result was, of course, many more named storms than in years past. Thus, people still thought global warming makes more hurricanes. Still, accumulated cyclone energy (ACE) was calculated to be WAY down. (It just so happens, that NOAA uses ACE along with the number of named storms to determine how active a season is. Since NOAA and the NHC are now overzealous in naming storms, this makes the season appear worse than it really is.) When look at just the ACE, it has not been this calm in 3 decades. It was like someone turned off a light switch for hurricanes.

    http://www.coaps.fsu.edu/~maue/tropical/

    I am interested to see when a hurricane will hit New York City. New York is actually overdue for a strong hurricane. That last Category 3 hurricane to hit New York was in the 30’s. It only takes one hurricane to make a season memorable. When, not if, a strong hurricane hits New York, I believe it will make Katrina look tame. Will this finally be the year?

  18. Global (Northern Hemisphere) tropical cyclone ACE for the months May – June – July is the lowest in at least the past 30-years or more.

    I, for one, am not surprised. Continued inactivity should persist for the next few weeks until the atmosphere catches up with the radiative warming of the tropical oceans due to the season called summer.

    2007 was a dud. 2008 was saved from being a record year by 2007. 2009 is behind the pace of both years. Amazing how natural variability affects tropical cyclone formation, tracks, and intensity. Who would have thought?

  19. See those blue colors surfacing along peruvian costs? That´s humbold currents´cold waters surfacing, fighting against the red&oranges noaa´s jet printing. That means exausted surface water heat. Gulf waters are just light orange predicting no hurricanes.

  20. Since I live on the coast of Georgia , I watch tropical weather activity pretty closely . The Atlantic basin has been awfully quiet this year – a couple of tropical waves , but no depressions – so far . This is unusual . However , as stated in other comments , things don’t really crank up for another few weeks . As always , I’m hoping for a quiet season . BTW , it has not been a particularily hot summer yet . August will tell though…

  21. It´s time for Bill Gates´hurricanes abatement engineering….or will dismiss it like vista´s?

  22. I’m surprised by how closely that graph above matches the ups and downs of the solar cycles 20 through 23.

    Draw a line down across the peaks from 1971 to 2008 and it’s an accurate reflection of the slow weakening of those cycles over the period.

    Modified slightly by El Nino and La Nina events.

    Given the smallness of solar variation and the time lags caused by oceanic variability even I was expecting a much less obvious relationship.

    More thought needed by the climate establishment ?

  23. SST’s are not high currently, El Nino is getting slightly more active and SSA is a bit dusty, so all the long track hurricanes are on hold until the season really starts. Indeed I thought most early Atlantic hurricanes at this time of year start in the Caribbean?

    Saying there is not much activity at the moment is like claiming there is a lot of Arctic ice about in May, ie it doesn’t really matter.

    Regards

    Andy

  24. The Atlantic has developed its own mini-La Nina-like state right now so we shouldn’t expect sea surface temperatures in the Atlantic tropical storm formation zone to reach normal levels this year.

  25. What Do You Suppose They’ve Been Doing At The National Hurricane Center This Summer?

    Holding a “Go Fish” tournament to determine who gets an office with a window at the new $50M hurricane center.

  26. AEGeneral (11:25:47) :

    What Do You Suppose They’ve Been Doing At The National Hurricane Center This Summer?

    Holding a “Go Fish” tournament to determine who gets an office with a window at the new $50M hurricane center.

    Actually that’s a computer model of “Go Fish” which predicts that everyone will win, and everyone will lose.

  27. KZimman wrote wait until Sept.

    Yes, Sept is usually when things kick in down there, however, I would suggest we just wait until the end of the season and then do a post mortem on it.

    I believe the cooler the earth gets, the more these hurricanes will kick in again…

    IMHO

  28. Ryan Maue (10:57:13)
    “Amazing how natural variability affects tropical cyclone formation, tracks, and intensity. Who would have thought?”

    Well, apparently not UCAR, way back in 2006…

    http://www.ucar.edu/news/releases/2006/hurricanes.shtml

    Global Warming Surpassed Natural Cycles in Fueling 2005 Hurricane Season, NCAR Scientists Conclude

    June 22, 2006

    BOULDER—Global warming accounted for around half of the extra hurricane-fueling warmth in the waters of the tropical North Atlantic in 2005, while natural cycles were only a minor factor, according to a new analysis by Kevin Trenberth and Dennis Shea of the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). The study will appear in the June 27 issue of Geophysical Research Letters, published by the American Geophysical Union.

    “The global warming influence provides a new background level that increases the risk of future enhancements in hurricane activity,” Trenberth says. The research was supported by the National Science Foundation, NCAR’s primary sponsor.

    The study contradicts recent claims that natural cycles are responsible for the upturn in Atlantic hurricane activity since 1995. It also adds support to the premise that hurricane seasons will become more active as global temperatures rise. Last year produced a record 28 tropical storms and hurricanes in the Atlantic. Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Wilma all reached Category 5 strength.

  29. If I may say so: No contest. The winner here is JAN (10:08:31) :

    “Maybe they’ve just been going around in circles?”

  30. What are the employees at NHC doing? Probably seeing their doctors about their CTS from playing too much spider solitaire. Counting the number of holes in the ceiling tiles. Holding staring contests. Picking lint out of their belly-buttons. The list is endless.

  31. Skeptic Tank (09:52:28) :

    Not that unusual. Hurricane Andrew didn’t strike until the last week in August, which is when things really pick up.

    OK, you’re not the only one to bring up Andrew (1992), but it formed mid August, and it would have been the SECOND named storm of the year using today’s standard – that first storm forming in APRIL. There were also multiple tropical depressions before Andrew, whereas we have only had one this year that hardly rates a sniffle, much less a sneeze.

    That being said, I agree with all those who say to wait until the first week of September before getting too excited…

  32. Quiet sun = fewer large cyclones.

    Current theory about the formation of tropical cyclones, hurricanes, and tornadoes fails to take into account that the origin of these phenomna take place under conditions of an abnormally strong electric fields which together with electromagnetohydrodynamic interaction occupies a key position in the intensification process.

    As the sun is a major suppler of electricity to the earth, I thnk the lack of solar actvity at the moment means the earths electromagnetc field is too weak to fuel these energetc events.

  33. What is the strength/location of the Bermuda High this year relative to previous years? How have the trade winds been in the tropical Atlantic? Strong trade winds will cool the water surface like a fan blowing on a wet towel. You won’t get much formation over cooler water. Location of the Bermuda High will give you some clue as to the track storms are likely to take. If it is positioned more to the South and West, you will see storms pushed into the Gulf. If it is more to the North and East, the Atlantic coast has a better chance of being in the track but too far East and the storms will miss the coast altogether and curve before making landfall. Probably the worst possible scenario would be a weak-ish Bermuda High sitting right over Bermuda with sluggish trades.

  34. Pamela Gray (09:45:12) :

    “The primary reason for no hurricanes in the Gulf is because the jet stream is too far North”

    Pamela we’re being told in eastern Canada and the NE USA that the reason we have had no summer this year is because the jet stream too far south! WUWT?

  35. The NHC and TWC caveats have been humorous. Today TWC says: “At this time, it appears the Atlantic Basin will not see its first named storm before August 1st. This is not too uncommon, as about 25% of the time the first named storm does not occur until August. The last time this happened was 2004 when Alex was named on the first day in August.”

    It may not be common (25%), but how does that reconcile with the AGW gloom and doom of “more frequent and stronger hurricanes”?

    I live on the northen Gulf Coast, and for years those with a vested interest have been hyping the frequency and strength of storms. We have noticed the NOAA hurricane updates repeatedly overstate the strength of the storms. The hurricane hunters will go out and send back data, which NOAA will convert into an update. Yet, the estimated strength does NOT correlate with the buoy data, even when the longitude and latitude of the eye of the storm is virtually on top of the buoy. The buoys are online at the National Data Buoy Center website – http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov.

    You can review the buoy data for the 12 hours before a storm reaches the buoy, and for the 12 hours after the storm passes the buoy, and the wind speed and gust speed recorded by the buoy is ALWAYS less than the NOAA updates, generally by about 30%. We have had a general suspicion for some time that the measure of sustained wind speed has been replaced by estimated wind gusts. How often does the NOAA estimated wind speed UNDERSTATE the wind speed. How often do you see a headline indicating the storm was stronger than anticipated?

  36. We have had a number of coastal storms the past couple of months here in NYC metro area. This pattern of coastal storms, humidity (but not a lot of heat) and some really wicked thunderstorms (I had a funnel cloud pass over my apartment building on Sunday) seems to be holding as the weeks pass.

    Could a quieter tropic mean more severe weather for the mid-Atlantic states?

  37. I was wondering when someone was going to comment on this. :) Two named hurricanes this year, no major land hits is my prediction. My model is very accurate.. lol really it is.. hehe ..

    *flips over the last tarot card* and you will meet a tall dark stranger in September:P

  38. I sent the FSU link to Drudge with comment:
    Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) lowest in 30 years!

  39. What is the NHC doing?

    Establishing baseline performance standards.
    Honing core competancies.
    Reviewing strategic research goals.
    Documenting implementation of achieving objectives.
    and a thousand other bureaucratic games

    but not much hurricane forecasting

  40. Stephen Wilde (11:16:45) :

    I’m surprised by how closely that graph above matches the ups and downs of the solar cycles 20 through 23.

    Draw a line down across the peaks from 1971 to 2008 and it’s an accurate reflection of the slow weakening of those cycles over the period.

    Modified slightly by El Nino and La Nina events.

    Given the smallness of solar variation and the time lags caused by oceanic variability even I was expecting a much less obvious relationship.

    More thought needed by the climate establishment ?
    __________________________________________________________

    I noticed the same thing, but had a hard time believing there was a true relationship since, as you noted, there should be a lag. Definitely something worth looking into.

  41. To JR: About the wind speed at the buoy. There is actually a reason why there is a wind speed difference between the airplane and the buoy. There is less friction in the air where an airplane flies. Wind speed is always going to be less at sea level/ground than in the air.

  42. Living in the Florida Keys I tend to watch tropical cyclone activity pretty closely. I am no expert, I just like surviving. The Saharan dust that has been producing the haze we have had every now and again, the lower than normal SST we have had and my personal panic index all say below normal season. But don’t tell anyone, I don’t want to jinx myself.

  43. I believe the Atlantic high is in position to steer any Cape Verde storms north before they hit the coast. IIRC, when Andrew came through the high had shifted west and drove it straight into us.

    I’m interested in that cold water off of Africa right now. Looks like some kind of “Atlantic La Nina”. Is that unusual? Does that occur very much? I never noticed it before in past years of keeping a wary eye on Atlantic SSTs.

  44. Only news to report here is that there is no news to report here. Another model that didn’t get it right. In the real world, we look out our windows and wonder.. “Is it mathematically possible for the climate models to get it wrong that many times in a row?”

  45. Tenuc

    “fails to take into account that the origin of these phenomna take place under conditions of an abnormally strong electric fields which together with electromagnetohydrodynamic interaction occupies a key position in the intensification process.”

    you’ve just cut and pasted something you don’t understand from here

    http://cat.inist.fr/?aModele=afficheN&cpsidt=2717573

    and added your own bits

    “Quiet sun = fewer large cyclones”

    and

    “As the sun is a major suppler of electricity to the earth, I thnk the lack of solar actvity at the moment means the earths electromagnetc field is too weak to fuel these energetc events”

    That last paragraph just boggles the mind it is so far removed from reality.

    Regards
    Andy

  46. Note, however, the close correspondence of hurricaine frequency with the steady increase of CO2 concentration in the atmosphere! Actually, the graph is quite interesting for showing that the system is clearly cyclical.

  47. Another proof that mankind has damaged the climate beyond repair.
    ;-)
    Increased cyclones as a result of AGW has became part of common knowledge. I love to use such graph in discussion. Usual warmist reaction is, “well, but I still believe that…”

  48. crosspatch (12:32:39) :
    Right again. This year the Bermuda high has been everywhere but over (or near) Bermuda. It’s been mostly over or just north of the Gulf and with it’s clockwise circulation is what is helping/allowing “cold” fronts to traverse (N to S) Florida so very late in the season. Had one last week. But why? There are other conditions this year that do not favor H formation such as the failure of SST to warmup as quickly as other years, weak East to West trade winds in the same location (due to as captdallas2 pointed out, greater Saharan dust?) and stronger upper atmosphere wind currents. But why? PDO shift? The Sun? ENSO change?
    Oh, and while September/October is the most active period for “Atlantic” hurricanes it’s NOT because we don’t get them earlier (we’ve had them in May) it’s because that includes the ones that form in the Gulf which by then has warmed sufficiently to produce them itself or further empower the ones developed elsewhere. And therefore on average there are more and bigger ones at that time.

  49. Yes, but I’m sure we would have had even less activity by now (i.e. negative hurricanes) if it wasn’t for global warming…

    /sarc off

  50. Re: Pamela Gray (09:45:12) :
    “The primary reason for no hurricanes in the Gulf is because the jet stream is too far North.”

    I’m not so sure about links between PDO and the Jet Stream in the Atlantic.

    I’d give you AMO (which turned strongly negative back in Spring) which supports cooler Sea Surface Temperatures – cooler than average (or “normal” whatever that is) in the Tropical Atlantic in fact.

    Also, there has been widespread strong vertical wind shear (consistent with the fact that we have entered El Nino) and a couple of strong Saharan dust outbreaks into the eastern Tropical Atlantic this season. Cooler SSTs (driven by the natural cycle of the AMO) together with El Nino (natural) and dust (natural) and you get….NADA so far.

    my 2 cents

  51. Saharan dust has been associated with reduced tropical activity.
    The Navy Research Lab’s aerosol dust model (http://www.nrlmry.navy.mil/aerosol/) has shown significant Saharan dust across the Atlantic during all of July. The dust floating over South Texas is as significant as I’ve measured in 20 years. This helps explain the lack of tropical systems in the Gulf of Mexico. Of interest is the enhanced dust during the current protracted solar minimum.

  52. Somewhat on topic: The very, very preliminary July 2009 Global and NINO3.4 SST anomalies (NOAA posted preliminary July data on the NOMADS website on Monday) are here:

    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/07/very-very-preliminary-july-2009-sst.html

    I won’t graph with individual ocean data until it’s finalized in a couple of weeks. But for those interested, North Atlantic SST anomalies are showing a very slight drop (~0.02 deg C) after last month’s jump up (~0.2 deg C).

  53. Re: Dan Lee (13:14:08) :
    “I’m interested in that cold water off of Africa right now. Looks like some kind of “Atlantic La Nina”. Is that unusual? Does that occur very much? I never noticed it before in past years of keeping a wary eye on Atlantic SSTs.”

    I have seen that and the opposite (warmer than normal water) on occasion off West Africa and off eastern South America – I think it is essentially due to up-welling. Stronger easterly trade winds off Africa (which we have had – hence the dust) leads to greater up-welling of deep cold water near the coast. When the trades are weak, the opposite occurs.

  54. As mentioned above, the Pacific is not very active either. I think that there have been only one or two named storms (Western Pacific) of which only one made it to typhoon status. Today’s satellite photo shows only two possible area east of Guam.

  55. captdallas2 (13:11:11)

    Skipper,
    If you want to keep an eye on Saharan dust, then watch here for the daily storm activity lifting the dust, often creating a haboob and here for the dust heading your way across the Atlantic.

  56. This is OT, but I think it important enough to interrupt the thread. I am posting from the public library in Red Lodge, Montana. I drove up here to document the local USHCN station. The NOAA coordinates shown for current are incorrect. The site was the local radio station for about 15 years. A gentleman at the local fire department called a friend at the radio station who said the weather station had been moved downtown. He didn’t know the exact location, but give him a few minutes and he would find out and call back.

    As good as his word, he called back, but with the news that his informant would not share the information, but would talk with me. Fair enough, I made the call to:
    Carolyn Willis at 406 652-0851 ext 246

    This is NOAA’s National Weather Service Office in Billings, Montana. As diplomatically as possible under the circumstances, Ms Willis declined to give me the new location, other than that it is located at a private residence. She cited privacy issues. I asked if they were no longer post the location on MMS; she allowed that they would probably eventually post it. She said that they have received complaints from their curators about our activities.

    Finally, she referred me to
    Mr. Matt Ocana at 801 524-5692

    I got an answering machine message there inviting me to leave a number for a call back. Unfortunately, being on the road in very remote areas, this is not practical.

    It seems to me that there is an element in NOAA that is now actively obstructing our efforts. They need to hear from more than just m.

    Juan

  57. Stephen Wilde: You wrote, “I’m surprised by how closely that graph above matches the ups and downs of the solar cycles 20 through 23.”

    Steve J: You agreed, “I noticed the same thing, but had a hard time believing there was a true relationship since, as you noted, there should be a lag. Definitely something worth looking into.”

    You’ve got to plot things. Your eyes are deceiving you. There’s no correlation:

    Not even close.

  58. With respect to weather stations I spent a good couple of hours over two attempts trying to find the weather reporting station in Curtis NE last week, # 252100. It was NOT where the Google Map location showed it to be on Surfacestations.org.

    Then I remembered the tip to look it up on the NOAA/NCDC website and I did that to find the NNE located it about 2 miles away. Drove out there to find a rain gauge but no MMT sensor in sight. Felt miserable that I’d failed to find it but had to give up due to time pressure. Sorry guys I tried.

  59. Wade (13:08:01),

    What you said is true, but I believe they take the barometric pressure and wind speed aloft, and dropsonde measurements, and estimate the sea level wind speed, which is what is listed on the update as the estimated wind speed of the storm AT SEA LEVEL. My point is that the estimated wind speeds at sea level then do not correlate to actual wind speeds measured at sea level, either at the buoys or at landfall.

  60. Gulf temps off Tampa have reached 90 F. However, we have had strong winds out of the west for quite a while due to the position of the Bermuda high. That high is moving back to a more normal place and our winds have now returned from the southeast, more typical for summer in Florida. But, as mentioned by others several times above, the peak of hurricane season is mid Sep (hey, so is max arctic sea ice melt) so we have a long way to go.

  61. Is anyone asking their Insurance company for a reduced premium for storm damage insurance???

  62. The jet stream map I see on the Seattle TV weather reports show it turning almost due north out over the Pacific to get around the big high pressure area giving Seattle record high temps this week. Then it makes a 180 and goes almost due south from up in Alaska toward the Gulf coast. So, everybody is right, it’s too far north and too far south.

  63. To Bob Tisdale: “not even close”
    Very true. The curves are about four years out of phase, if that means anything.

  64. Bob Tisdale (13:08:18) : That´s ok; so you are right, and I´m right also. How this is possible?.
    -Oulu neutron counter is at >10%, highest in 45 years.
    -We are along the west SA coast (at 1+2 Nino), with a permanent low cloud cover, for fifteen days, drizzling all the time, cold time. (Weather as used to bein the last 50´s and 60´s)and winter usually worsens during august.
    -Sun at minimum, time of cooling off heat, right here.
    -Will drizzle and rain until all that heat has reached a certain equilibrium point.
    Then chances are for a feeble El Nino…or suffering of AH1V1 flue, or La Nina coming back from arrranging herself at the toilette.

  65. Sam: Shifting the Sunspot Number data four years doesn’t help. One or more of the last three solar cycles will always be out of phase. And then there’s SC20. The ACE is in a league of its own before 1975.

  66. “Who would have thought” asks Ryan Maue. We all remember those who were quite certain in the opposite direction?

  67. Nogw: We can both be right.

    You wrote, “Then chances are for a feeble El Nino…or suffering of AH1V1 flue, or La Nina coming back from arrranging herself at the toilette.”

    I believe it will be the feeble El Nino. I don’t think we’ll have a repeat of last year where the warm waters started to form but then disappeared. Last year there was still some cool water (surface and subsurface) in the central equatorial Pacific leftover from the 2007/08 La Nina. This year that cool water is not there.

    Regards

  68. “There are NO tropical cyclones globally right now either. None. Nowhere.”

    Come on – I am sure that Captain Peter Willcox and the crew of the Arctic Sunrise could find a few.

  69. But, but, Algore said Hurricanes and Tornadoes would increase. He even had a big hurricane image on the poster for his propaganda flick. Where’s the beef?

  70. I would just like to remind everyone that the folks at the National Hurricane Center are operational forecasters, meteorologists and tropical climatologists. They are not the ones trying to tie hurricanes to AGW. Their focus is on damage mitigation and data analysis in the off season, and warnings and advisories during the peak of the hurricane season. Their life is a little easier if the season is slow, but they are not idle. Does your local National Weather Service forecaster have something to do even when there is not a tornado on the ground? Of course. The folks at the Hurricane Center are still tracking all the tropical waves, issuing multiple tropical weather summaries and advisories each and every day. They are prepping the public through seminars and media events. I would be willing to bet that they are just as busy as most people posting here…if not more so. And when the storms do come…they are invaluable.

    As to the difference between advisory winds and observed winds at the surface: This is a function of the way the winds are measured. Surface and buoy observations are points on the map. The idea that the peak winds from any single storm will go over that specific point is rather low. Today’s aircraft, however, use state-of-the-art Doppler Radars to seek out the area of the storm with the strongest winds and then shoot dropsondes into that specific area, capturing the peak velocity. Also, hurricane winds almost always weaken when making landfall, so any observation on land will be significantly less than what is measured over the water and, consequently, in the advisory.

    The modern equipment on today’s aircraft make it much easier to find and measure the peak wind of a storm. This has skewed the data, as historical storms were poorly measured, but the skew is the result of improving technology, not an AGW conspiracy. Operational tropical meteorologists are well aware of this. The academics that try to tie hurricanes to global warming seem to be oblivious. Please don’t lump the two together!

  71. Was thinking about the lack of storms this morning and checked the stats. There are on average only 1.5 named storms between January and the start of August. So none so far is not really rare.

    On the insurance front. My current home owners insurance went from $1100 to $1999 this year. I think they want to limit their exposure for hurricanes. My car insurance company will no longer insure homes in my state (VA). I did find a company for $1000 with no hurricane special deductible thanks to friend with the same old company I had who looked first. My new company only has one state with hurricane exposure, mine so hopefully it will stay without the high hurricane damage deductibles. My old policy also changed it from hurricanes to any named storm.

  72. The low hurricane activity of the past few years has coincided with a severe drought in South and Central Texas. They could actually use a tropical storm or two (hopefully of the mild variety). I heard a presentation many years ago in San Antonio about water issues in that region and the presenter said they rely on the occasional hurricane (or remnants of one) to recharge the aquifer.

  73. Tim Channon (14:13:12) :

    Da da da da… da da da da..

    Twilight Zone stuff. What a beautiful sine curve!… Can anything natural cause that? Maybe something man(n) made?

  74. Jim Clarke (18:38:33)

    Your distinction between academics and professionals should be engraved in stone!

  75. This is not very scientific I suppose, but over the years I’ve always looked at the National Hurricane Center website, and determined where the ITCZ is. I then check the GOES satellite IR loop. It seems that most of the time if the ITCZ stays well to the south there are fewer Atlantic hurricanes. As the season heats up into August and September it moves north and then they occur more often. This year it seems to be slower to move north.

  76. Tenuc (12:30:26) :

    Quiet sun = fewer large cyclones.

    Current theory about the formation of tropical cyclones, hurricanes, and tornadoes fails to take into account that the origin of these phenomna take place under conditions of an abnormally strong electric fields which together with electromagnetohydrodynamic interaction occupies a key position in the intensification process.

    Then, measure it (the supposed ‘electric field’).

    Whip out that laboratory-quality rotary-vane ‘field mill’ electrometer (static meter) and measure it (the DC static electric field)!

    (I don’t believe it myself until you can QUANTIFY it.) So measure it …

    Sample instruments: http://www.jci.co.uk/products.html

    I picked up a model “JCI 111AM” off e-bay a few years back (complete with accys and Pelican case) for a few hundred bucks; you should see what those things show/measure in and near thunderstorms …
    .
    .
    .

  77. Since Hurricanes and Tropical Storms are great cooling machines, the lack of them may indicate the Earth does not need any significant cooling at this time. Or, it could foreshadow some increased warming in the future.

    I’m sure the warmers know exactly what will happen since the science is completely settled. Maybe we could get one of the normal contributors to explain what is going on and why so many climate scientists said we were supposed to have more of these storms. Mary, Flanagan, Bill, Joel, Nick, Phil. … jump in any time

  78. “Jimmy Haigh (19:16:06) :

    Tim Channon (14:13:12) :

    Da da da da… da da da da..

    Twilight Zone stuff. What a beautiful sine curve!… Can anything natural cause that? Maybe something man(n) made?”

    A misunderstanding, I should have explained, yet that would take space and probably need time and investigation to fully work it out.
    I am developing a tool which attempts to match a synthesizer output (from perhaps many generators, not necessary sine) to input data. In the simplest case this is non time quantised fourier synthesis.
    In this case a significant component was as you saw. In my experience this is something to think about. There are for example also other components very close in harmonic and a phase structure.
    The general concept is exploration where the human is trying to make sense of the data.
    I’d have to say a lot more before it would fully make sense. Could be that doing anything out of the ordinary is best kept secret.

  79. Let’s see: Global warming means H2O positive feedback, re: fewer clouds. This will let more heat/sun in, but it will be held in by that nasty pollutant CO2. If there are no tropical cyclones in the oceans, it must mean that fewer clouds/moisture is available and it is hotter/dryer over the oceans? But why aren’t we setting global temperature record highs?

  80. Why is 2009 not zero?

    REPLY: It is Global, and there have been typhoons in the SH. – Anthony

  81. Does Ryan have a ftp site where we can get to the data used to produce his various graphs? I’m not particularly keen on some color choices he makes so I’m wondering…

    REPLY: Get some new glasses, or a bigger PC screen, then check right below the graph. – Anthony

  82. Results of September through November still loom… But I am glad the past two years of predicted killer storms (due to AGW) have never happened, or they were so short-lived that they made a difference.

    I have flown through many storms on my way to Orlando in the fall season. You never know how and when they will be evil or tame storms. Bottom line Is: I hope for few storms this year. I hope the NOAA and the weather services see a calm ending of this summer.

    Does any of this have anything to do with the 1400 page House energy bill? NO.

    Does any of this influence opinions of the non-meltdown of the Arctic? No.

    Please just hope that there is no “I told you so” extreme weather this late summer or fall to give the AGWers amunition to continue the IPCC fear-mongering and Hansen claims.

  83. timetochooseagain (20:47:15) : Okay a see A data file-where does he keep the rest? Not trying to be adversarial, mind you. :)

  84. K-Bob (20:33:35) : The Hurricane situation is much more complicated than those few factors! Wind shear is very important for example. Other people are probably better at explaining what the whole business is than me, though.

  85. “mr.artday (15:59:43) :

    The jet stream map I see on the Seattle TV weather reports show it turning almost due north out over the Pacific to get around the big high pressure area giving Seattle record high temps this week. Then it makes a 180 and goes almost due south from up in Alaska toward the Gulf coast. So, everybody is right, it’s too far north and too far south.”

    When the equatorial air masses contract due to a reduction in energy flow from the oceans the air circulation systems not only move towards the equator but there is much more freedom for the polar air masses to swing north and south during the progression of the jets around the globe.

    When the equatorial air masses expand due to an increase in energy flow from oceans to air the polar air masses are squeezed into a narrower path and cannot move north or south as much. Instead the speed of progression around the globe increases.

  86. “actuator (19:54:55) :

    This is not very scientific I suppose, but over the years I’ve always looked at the National Hurricane Center website, and determined where the ITCZ is. I then check the GOES satellite IR loop. It seems that most of the time if the ITCZ stays well to the south there are fewer Atlantic hurricanes. As the season heats up into August and September it moves north and then they occur more often. This year it seems to be slower to move north.”

    Slower to move away from the equatorial regions because the reduced energy flow from the oceans means smaller equatorial air masses and less expansionary pressure to push the ITCZ poleward. It may be that the strength of the hurricane season is a function of the rate of energy emission from the oceans, the consequent size of the equatorial air masses and the distance they are able to push the global air circulation systems poleward.

    It would be the pressure of the equatorial air masses pushing poleward against the resistance of the mid latitude air circulation systems that would dictate the energy available for hurricane formation.

  87. “Bob Tisdale (17:25:12) :

    Sam: Shifting the Sunspot Number data four years doesn’t help. One or more of the last three solar cycles will always be out of phase. And then there’s SC20. The ACE is in a league of its own before 1975.

    Bob Tisdale (15:42:11) :

    Stephen Wilde: You wrote, “I’m surprised by how closely that graph above matches the ups and downs of the solar cycles 20 through 23.”

    Steve J: You agreed, “I noticed the same thing, but had a hard time believing there was a true relationship since, as you noted, there should be a lag. Definitely something worth looking into.”

    You’ve got to plot things. Your eyes are deceiving you. There’s no correlation:

    Not even close.”

    Thanks, Bob. I was hoping you would do an overlay like that.

    However time lags are inherent to the system. What really matters is the similar sine wave on both plots and thy both show a slow decline in the peaks over the period.

    Your point about cycle 20 is well made but I would say that my climate description involves a varaible interplay between solar input of shortwave to the oceans and variable rates of release of that energy by the oceans.

    So, for cycles 21, 22 and 23 both solar and ocean cycles were in positive warming phases and all we have to contend with is the time lag between the operation of the two cycles (solar and oceanic).

    For cycle 20 solar was positive but oceans were negative which gives a more confused signal so what do the plots show ?

    For the period 1970 to 1980 the size of the difference between high and low ACE for each year is far more variable than it was during the following 3 cycles when sun and oceans were in phase.

    The charts are indeed consistent with a powerful link between solar shortwave inputand ACE. For cycles 21 22 and 23 the magnitudes of the two cycles are similar with a time lag. For cycle 20 the opposing solar and oceanic phases introduce an addition factor namely wider swings in the ACE from year to year.

    Now, consider this reply in conjunction with my reply to ‘actuator’ and I think we have something worthy of further investigation.

  88. Jim Clarke (18:38:33) “Operational tropical meteorologists are well aware of this. The academics that try to tie hurricanes to global warming seem to be oblivious.”

    Thanks for the insider notes Jim.

  89. I can’t remember who or when but I distinctly remember some climate wizard saying something like “yes we have forcasted record hurricane years for the last few years and they bombed out but this year (2009) really, really will be a record year”.

    Those hurricanes had better jump to it if they want to keep from embarrassing… whoever that was.

  90. timetochooseagain (22:29:22) The basics of hurricane formation

    These are some of the things needed. However, having them won’t necessarily result in a hurricane.

    A starter: in the eastern Atlantic an ‘Easterly Wave”

    http://www.weatheronline.co.uk/reports/wxfacts/Easterly-wave—the-Hurricanes-cradle.htm

    Distance off the Equator: > than about 6 degrees Latitude; otherwise the starter wave will not begin to rotate and the inward rotating Low won’t develop. See Coriolis Effect. http://www.ems.psu.edu/~fraser/Bad/BadCoriolis.html

    Then ‘warm waters” to some depth. This site has some info but the water needs to be warm in the Atlantic Ocean (or wherever) also. Temps > 82 F; depth to 200-300 feet. Source of energy. Too cool water is likely why the South Atlantic rarely develops hurricanes.

    http://www.surfermag.com/features/onlineexclusives/loopponeworld/

    Then ‘no or little wind shear’ :

    http://www.wunderground.com/education/shear.asp

  91. It seems as if a big-bang peak is often followed by a collapse, whether it’s human or natural. On the human side, we had Woodstock in 1969, and rock n roll seems to have died since then. Ditto for the housing bubble in 2008. On the natural side, 1998 made an AGW believer out of me for several years, but things have gone nowhere since. And now the 2005 hurricane season has been followed by… virtually nothing.

  92. Stephen Wilde: You wrote, “For cycles 21 22 and 23 the magnitudes of the two cycles are similar with a time lag.”

    There are three cycles and regardless of how you lag the data, at least one of the last three cycles will always be out of phase.

    You wrote, “What really matters is the similar sine wave on both plots and thy both show a slow decline in the peaks over the period.”

    Looking at the last three cycles in the smoothed ACE data I presented, the peak of the first is lower than second and third. How is that a slow decline?

    You wrote, “Now, consider this reply in conjunction with my reply to ‘actuator’ and I think we have something worthy of further investigation.”

    My investigation ended with these two graphs:

  93. Look on the bright side. They can always apply for one of Obama’s green jobs…

    Oops!

    No hurricanes = no AGW = no green jobs.

  94. “Skeptic Tank (09:52:28) :

    Not that unusual. Hurricane Andrew didn’t strike until the last week in August, which is when things really pick up.

    http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/gifs/peakofseason.gif

    Actually, looking at the graph that shows ACE, it seems to me that this years ACE is lower than any other year on the graph, which would make it pretty unusual in my book.

    Am I missing something?

    JimB

  95. Bob Tisdale (03:31:35)

    I know what you are saying but I consider the destabilising effect of a negative ocean at the same time as a positive solar influence to be quite capable of throwing out the correlations in the manner observed.

    The best correlations are when both sun and oceans are in phase, the worst when they are out of phase and a large number of disparate effects during transitional spells.

    Not everything in nature is neat and tidy.

  96. Tyler (20:41:53)
    Why is 2009 not zero?

    According to my screen and glasses, it’s the Northern Hemisphere i.e. Asian Typhoons and tropical cyclones in the Arabian Sea. In the land down under they are also called tropical cyclones and spin clockwise. It would be interesting to see how the ACE correlate between hemispheres over time, though there is a 6 month difference between peak seasons in each hemisphere.

  97. Pamela Gray (09:45:12) :

    “The primary reason for no hurricanes in the Gulf is because the jet stream is too far North. And the reason it is North is because of the condition of the PDO. This all results in the oceanic conditions of the Atlantic not having to fight the jet stream. So the turbulence that sets up hurricanes is taking a siesta. However, the occasional swing of the jet stream to its southern track can still happen during a cold/neutral PDO.”

    Give her an attaboy
    short accurate to the point and not attached to a political commentary.

  98. The Jamaicans have a little jingle with respect to hurricane season:

    June, too soon
    July, stand by
    August, you must
    September, remember
    October, all over

    While this is possibly outdated now in light of 2005, it expresses a general rule of thumb. So, if we reach the next-to-last day of August with no named storms, then we may have something to think about.

  99. Referring to what’s happening at NHC- they are saddled with a government bureaucracy that doesn’t respond to the work of their own scientists. What they call their ‘Best Track Committee’, which approves all changes in the record, actually never meets; it’s head is a Cuban, which seems quite odd, given the state of things. I have it on good authority that there is frustration there over how things are politicized and how innovation is stifled by a soul numbing government culture of delay, deny and obfuscate. On July , my 16 year old nephew wrote this analysis of the El Nino:

    It is noted that the CFS models have been too robust in regard to the development of El Nino. Based on recent data from June, NINO 3.4 has featured -IMAGE LINK: Sorry, Guests cannot view links.- . Previous projections from the CFS suites suggested that the rise would have yielded a June value slightly below +1 C. The ensemble mean has trended toward a slower development of El Nino, accordingly. Previous projections implied that an official tri-monthly El Nino would occur during late July or early August; currently, these projections have shifted to August or later periods. It is also notable that several CFS suites and the ensemble mean projected a more robust peak of El Nino (per NINO 3.4) in the high-end moderate or low-end strong category; new projections show a greater spread in the models, and many estimates have lowered into the moderate or low-end moderate range (see link). More reliable ENSO models are more consistent in regard to a weaker/later event. The new -IMAGE LINK: Sorry, Guests cannot view links.- are largely projecting the emergence of a tri-monthly El Nino (per 3.4 data) by late August or early September, followed by a peak in the low to medium range of the moderate category. Additionally, the ECMWF’s disparity between the higher and lower plumes has increased substantially since the previous forecast. Personally, I have consistently believed that the original CFS projections were too bullish in regard to 1) an earlier commencement of El Nino and 2) the peak strength of El Nino during the meteorological winter. The model trends, evident over the past several weeks, are supported by the newest data, including actual NINO 3.4 anomalies (showing a slower warming trend than the CFS suites) and model data that are based on the latest NINO 3.4 anomalies. The later Nino start and weaker peak will likely be conducive to a slightly more active Atlantic TC season than the CSU forecast; thus, I believe that an average season is the most likely outcome, and it reflects my expectations at this time. Although ENSO is only one factor in regard to meteorological support for my expectations, it is still notable.

  100. I can see the headlines from CNN and UK Telegraph “Man Made Global Warming Causes Calm Hurricane Season”.

  101. Not possible, Al Gore’s movie said there would be big hurricanes! In fact, it’s the cover of the book/movie poster is it not?

  102. I posted more on the Tips and Notes page at http://wattsupwiththat.com/tips-notes-to-wuwt/

    Today is the publication date for the next Phil Klotzbach/Bill Gray hurricane forecast, see it at http://typhoon.atmos.colostate.edu/forecasts/2009/aug2009/aug2009.pdf

    They’re expecting 85% of normal for the remainder of the TS season.

    Information obtained through July 2009 indicates that the 2009 Atlantic hurricane season will be less active than the average 1950-2000 season due largely to the development of an El Nino. We estimate that 2009 will have about 4 hurricanes (average is 5.9), 10 named storms (average is 9.6), 45 named storm days (average is 49.1), 18 hurricane days (average is 24.5), 2 major (Category 3-4-5) hurricanes (average is 2.3) and 4 major hurricane days (average is 5.0). The probability of U.S. major hurricane landfall and Caribbean major hurricane activity is estimated to be below the long-period average. We expect Atlantic basin Net Tropical Cyclone (NTC) activity in 2009 to be approximately 85 percent of the long-term average. We have decreased our seasonal forecast slightly from early June.

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