Irene takes a bite out of ocean heat

While nowhere close to Trenberth’s missing heat, it’s a nice bite sized chunk of SST. Hurricanes are heat engines, transporting massive amounts of heat from lower to higher levels of the atmosphere.

La Niña is growing too. Have a look:

h/t to reader “mitchel44”

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Douglas DC

So if there is a following storm as some have predicted, This may mean that the heat engine will not be there when it hits the coast?

John Marshall

Convection transports the largest portion of heat to the stratosphere. convection on a large scale forms hurricanes/typhoons. QED
And alarmists worry about radiation.

Ryan Welch

That is a great graphic! If this planet did not have means of self regulation I don’t think life would be possible. The geological record shows a fairly stable environment, even including the interglacials, for the last 600 million years or so. It is a beautiful and elegant system of self regulation and the more we learn the more we can appreciate it.

Esteban

Oh nooooooo! From M Mann

tom T

Cool.

R. Gates

Of course, it’s important to note that La Nina’s and hurricanes have the exact opposite effect on ocean heat. La Nina’s are a time that the oceans absorb more heat than they release when looked at in totality (hence less is released to the atmosphere), whereas hurricanes are huge engines that suck heat out of the ocean.

‘Tis the season.

Simon

Could we be about to see a double-dip La Nina, where the 2nd year is stronger? This Nina is certainly coming on faster than the 2008-2009 2nd year Nina episode. CFS and CFSv2 see -1.5 to -2C, which would put it colder than 2010-2011 La Nina.

Pascvaks

Problem: How to get lots of fresh water from the warm tropics to the far North to form huge Continental Galciers in order to counter Anthroprogenic Global Warming?
Hint: Ask a woman. (Irene knows;-)

RiHo08

The question becomes: what is the impact of huricane Irene’s ocean heat loss on subsequent tropical storms this huricane season? Having traveled the East Coast, the ocean heat loss may be made up by infill heat, conduction, as well a Gulf Stream current flow, that as far as ocean heat content is concerned and its potential to feed following huricanes, all is a wash in two weeks time.
I noticed that Tropical Depression Jose seems to have “Petered” out.

So if global warming causes an increase in the number and severity of tropical storms, that will produce a negative feedback by moving the excess heat to higher altitudes, past the CO2 and water vapor that supposedly cause the warming, and by precipitating some of that water vapor back out as rain.
And the assertion that increasing CO2 sets off a POSITIVE feedback loop, creating runaway warming, is demolished.

Przemysław Pawełczyk

It’d be worth to compare the above image with an animation found on one of the pages (http://tropic.ssec.wisc.edu/tropic.php) suggested by PearlandAggie on Tropical Cyclone Page, namely:
http://tropic.ssec.wisc.edu/real-time/mimic-tpw/global2/main.html
Please, find the two enormous swirls on the Western part of Pacific Ocean. The Eastern part also shows gigantic swirl. All in all the starting point for all of the moves of the precipitable water masses lie in the middle of Pacific. The two Asian cyclones are supplied with additional energy coming from Indian Ocean as well.
Decidedly animation for Mr Bob Tisdale (http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/) who is searching for the causes of super La Nina’s energy dissipation. 😉
Comment valid Aug 29, 2011.
Regards

Przemysław Pawełczyk

As always, addendum and correction. 🙁
1. Mr Bob Tisdale has new hyperlink: http://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/
2. I have wrote “super La Nina’s energy dissipation”, it should be “Super El Niño’s energy dissipation”. I beg your pardon.
Przemysław Pawełczyk

gary gulrud

And with continued comparative Solar magnetic weakness Svensmark’s albedo holding steady, tectonic tension loaded for elastic release.

Gregory Young

Like most, I see a real parallel between the hype of Irene and AGW. Journalists and politicians glory in “crisis.” It helps put the spotlight on themselves as being the sages that now pronounce with authority “what is.” Yet the stage is continually littered with these failed prophets of doom. Irene led to the classic syndrome of hype with more hype and drama lavishly laddled up to an adoring public looking for guidance. But most missed the obvious. Even in the aftermath, very few noted that since the storm was from its inception altogether too large and ill-formed to then become “organized” further without significant input from lower and warmer latitudinal waters, and could not possibly hold together any longer than it did. Indeed, there was not a single cautionary note broadcast from the MSM or the Weather Channel that this storm was weakening even before hitting NC, and its disorganization becoming more telling. Instead, true to form, except for the very few, most went hysterically ahead and hoped for the worst, not paying any attention to the possibility of a weakened storm, nor the weakening of their own soapbox.

Elizabeth (not the Queen)

Blech. Down with la nina. We’ve had it with her antics here.

Stephen Wilde

A few more like that and the warmth of the Gulf Stream to Western Europe will take quite a hit.
During the late 20th century warming period the main hurricane tracks were into the Gulf of Mexico whereas now they seem to favour a track up the Eastern US.
Was it like that during the mid 20th century cooling period ?
Could we use the favoured hurricane tracks as a diagnostic indicator for a warming or a cooling world?
My hypothesis set out elsewhere is that in a warming world the mid latitude jets move poleward and/or become more zonal but in a cooling world they move equatorward and/or become more meridional..
So one could suggest that when the mid latitude jets are more equatorward/meridional they more readily and more often interact with hurricanes to draw them poleward and up into the mid latitude depression tracks. In contrast when the mid latitude jets are more zonal/poleward they fail to draw hurricanes poleward so that hurricanes stay in the tropics more often or for longer.
Interesting that these pattern changes are occurring DESPITE increasing human CO2 emissions.

ed

Pawełczyk@7:32am
Wow.

crosspatch

Keep an eye on TD12. It didn’t get the “Jose” name as some had predicted, it will get the “K” name but still looks on track to visit NC outer banks and Delmarva in about 9 days time.

R. Gates

Przemysław Pawełczyk says:
August 29, 2011 at 7:32 am
“…who is searching for the causes of super La Nina’s energy dissipation…”
That will be an interesting search since it is super (or regular) El Nino’s that dissipate energy to the atmosphere. La Nina’s are a time the oceans absorb more net energy, not dissipate it.

Ferd

So…. more La Nina…. what does that mean for TEXAS?????

Steve Keohane

R. Gates says:August 29, 2011 at 7:07 am
Of course, it’s important to note that La Nina’s and hurricanes have the exact opposite effect on ocean heat. La Nina’s are a time that the oceans absorb more heat than they release when looked at in totality (hence less is released to the atmosphere), whereas hurricanes are huge engines that suck heat out of the ocean.

Very crappy non sequitur Gates. Hurricanes suck heat from the ocean and dump it into outer space. It is not relevant if it occurs during El Nino or La Nina, they are still massive heat extractors. And it is an outright lie to state “it’s important to note that La Nina’s and hurricanes have the exact opposite effect on ocean heat.”, as if to imply during [La Ninas], hurricanes add heat to the ocean. Total nonsense.

Steve Keohane

Mods, please change my use of “El Ninos” in my last sentence to “La Ninas” Thank you.

R. Gates

Steve Keohane says:
August 29, 2011 at 8:58 am
Hurricanes suck heat from the ocean and dump it into outer space. It is not relevant if it occurs during El Nino or La Nina, they are still massive heat extractors. And it is an outright lie to state “it’s important to note that La Nina’s and hurricanes have the exact opposite effect on ocean heat.”, as if to imply during El Ninos, hurricanes add heat to the ocean. Total nonsense.
______
I was not the one who mentioned Hurricanes and La Nina together in the same post. And hurricanes do not only “dump” energy to outer space. The move it from ocean to atmosphere and land. Some of will of course dissipate to outer space, but not all of it, or even nearly all of it.
It is important to note that La Nina’s are, in a the bigger picture, doing the exact opposite of hurricanes, as more net energy enters the ocean than leaves during La Nina. In this regards, El Nino’s are far more similar to what hurricanes do.

Daniel M

R. Gates says:
August 29, 2011 at 7:07 am
Of course, it’s important to note that La Nina’s and hurricanes have the exact opposite effect on ocean heat. La Nina’s are a time that the oceans absorb more heat than they release when looked at in totality (hence less is released to the atmosphere), whereas hurricanes are huge engines that suck heat out of the ocean.
You’re talking apples and oranges here. Of course they have an “exact opposite effect”. The proper comparison would be the sea state post hurricane: having released all that energy, the oceans will be in a state where they will “absorb more heat than they release”. Similarly, if you truly account for the “totality” of a La Nina event, then you have to account for the processes which led to this depleted energy state.

dp

R. Gates – I don’t recall seeing anything in physics where energy collecting bodies did anything but radiate more than before. Cooled water radiates at a reduced energy but still radiates because it is warmer than the cloudless night sky. It may receive more incoming energy during the day if it remains cloudless in the area. But I suspect most heating of the cooled area of a hurricane path is the result of mixing with warmer water at the boundary, and vertical migration being back-filled from surrounding near-surface water.
It represents a net energy loss to the spaces between stars.

Dave Dodd

R. Gates: We know. We KNOW. WE KNOW!!! It’s always worse than we thought!!!
Give it a rest!

Ferd says: “So…. more La Nina…. what does that mean for TEXAS?????”
Judging from History, it looks like it means a warm, dry year:
http://devoidofnulls.wordpress.com/2011/08/25/enso-and-us-climateweather-revisited/

Stephen Wilde

Hurricanes extract energy from the oceans and rush it up through the atmosphere to space.
At present due (in my opinion) to the less active sun the energy available for hurricane activity is low.
However, also due to the less active sun, the favoured track for hurricanes is now poleward up along the eastern USA rather than remaining in the tropics within the Gulf of Mexico.
So we currently see both low availability of energy for hurricane development PLUS a more ready exit route for the reduced energy that is available to escape to space.
I consider that combination to be a diagnostic indicator for a generally cooling climate system.
During the late 20th century warming period the situation was reversed in that a more active sun was increasing the energy available for hurricane activity AND the exit of that energy to space was slowed down because the hurricane tracks remained within the tropics.
I do not expect immediate recognition of the significance of what I say. Time will have to pass to demonstrate or rebut my concept of the system and I accept that I may well be dead before the validity or otherwise can be determined.

Anything is possible

R. Gates says:
August 29, 2011 at 9:14 am
“I was not the one who mentioned Hurricanes and La Nina together in the same post.”
_____________________________________________________________________________
Actually, you were. At 7:07 am. In the first ten words too.
Thanks for the laugh, though.

R. Gates

dp says:
August 29, 2011 at 9:18 am
R. Gates – I don’t recall seeing anything in physics where energy collecting bodies did anything but radiate more than before. Cooled water radiates at a reduced energy but still radiates because it is warmer than the cloudless night sky. It may receive more incoming energy during the day if it remains cloudless in the area. But I suspect most heating of the cooled area of a hurricane path is the result of mixing with warmer water at the boundary, and vertical migration being back-filled from surrounding near-surface water.
It represents a net energy loss to the spaces between stars.
________
I suspect you are mostly right about how the cooled area of a hurricane path gets re-heated, but it would depend on the time of year of course for how much SW radiation will also play into the mix. Your comments about clear night skies are interesting, but of course the central issue to AGW is that those apparent clear night skies are not so clear as they once were…meaning of course that there is more greenhouse gases in that “clear sky” to prevent the loss of LW radiation to space at the same level. This is the key reason why higher night time temperatures have long been predicted by models, and that is precisely what we’ve been seeing:
http://www.dallasnews.com/news/local-news/20110817-high-nighttime-temperatures-taking-a-toll-on-dallas-fort-worth.ece
http://www.nrdc.org/globalWarming/hottestsummer/
Higher night time temperatures are one of the things that AGW models have predicted, but course skeptics love to ignore.

Bill Illis

During a La Nina, out-going longwave radiation in the equatorial Pacific can be 50 watts/m2 higher than normal due to the lack of cloud-cover. Additional energy is being released to space during a La Nina, that is why there is cooling. (R. Gates is trying to argue the opposite but he is not right as usual).

rbateman

La Nina absorbed it, and Irene sucked it right back out before it had time to sink in.
Left a pretty good chunk of colder than normal water in it’s wake.
Sounds like global cooling to me.

Jordan

Reported on BBC Radio Scotland this morning: “Irene has been downgraded to a Scottish Summer”.
On the topic of this particular Scottish Summer and claims of changing seasons – it is late August and the trees look like they would in late September or October in Scotland. Leaves are turning yellow and red as temps drop to 5 Celcius overnight. Missing heat indeed!

John Cooper

Stupid question: Do hurricanes remove a lot of moisture from the surrounding atmosphere? There has been a noticeable lack of humidity here in Western Carolina since Irene passed by two days ago..

KJD

Sorry Gates but I have to believe that this year, at least in CO, we have seen our lows below normal as would ususally see some 70’s as a nighttime low, but haven’t hit it once this year. Obviously, it is annecdotal instead of your convenient charts for 1 year.. If you are going to cherrypick data to prove a point, you should also show us a trendline graph for comparative purposes. 1 datapoint out of thousands of is an anomoly. It’s called variance. Let’s put it in perspective.

SteveSadlov

I’m on the fence about teleconnections, that said …
I’m wondering if Irene combined with Rossby Waves from a recent WPAC typhoon will bring an early and intense winter to the NH, especially the northern 2/3 of North America.

Anthony, is it possible you could add an image of thermal radiation from the top of the troposphere, because I presume there is an equal and opposite “heat” at that level.
And I suppose it would be far far too much to ask for an image showing the difference between the two.
REPLY: Yes

Kevin Kilty

Hurricanes are heat engines moving large amounts of heat from the ocean surface to higher levels in the atmosphere. By cooling the surface they moderate the intensity of hurricanes following the same track.

DirkH

Do climate models simulate or take into account hurricanes and similar big storm systems?

Stephen Wilde

“Ferd says: “So…. more La Nina…. what does that mean for TEXAS?????”
Judging from History, it looks like it means a warm, dry year:”
The pattern of global response to ENSO (and on longer time scales solar) variability is determined by the land/sea configuration.
Unfortunately for Texas a negative ENSO signal (dominant La Nina) combined with a quiet sun (equatorward/meridional jets) gives a double whammy of dryness in that particular region.
It seems that the dryness associated with the subtropical high pressure cell normally situated over Mexico moves north DESPITE the general tendency for the mid latitude jets to move equatorward during a period of quiet sun.
I haven’t yet worked out why that should be so but it does seem to be something to do with the effect of the global landmass distribution on the global circulation.
My best guess is that the La Nina effect contracting the size of the sub tropical high pressure cells is more than offset by the meridional behaviour of the jets caused by the inactive sun. Something about the land sea configuration causes a poleward loop of the jets in the Texas region despite generally more equatorward/meridional jets. Hence a poleward shift of the sub tropical high pressure cell despite a general global shift of air pressure systems toward the equator.
I know that is a bit speculative but we shall see.

lgl

R.Gates
La Nina’s are a time the oceans absorb more net energy, not dissipate it.
Not globally, http://virakkraft.com/Radiative-imbalance-ENSO.png

R. Gates

Bill Illis says:
August 29, 2011 at 10:02 am
During a La Nina, out-going longwave radiation in the equatorial Pacific can be 50 watts/m2 higher than normal due to the lack of cloud-cover. Additional energy is being released to space during a La Nina, that is why there is cooling. (R. Gates is trying to argue the opposite but he is not right as usual).
_____
Sorry Bill, but you are completely wrong on this one as we are talking about NET heat, not one region of the ocean. The global spike in atmospheric temperatures that we see during El Nino’s is the release of NET heat, and of course, this heat has to be stored during some period, and that would be during La Nina’s. If La Nina’s didn’t store heat, where would it come from to be released during El Nino? This is a classic charge/discharge pattern.

Stephen Wilde

Bill Illis said:
“During a La Nina, out-going longwave radiation in the equatorial Pacific can be 50 watts/m2 higher than normal due to the lack of cloud-cover. Additional energy is being released to space during a La Nina, that is why there is cooling.”
I would expect cloudiness changes to have an opposite effect equatorward and poleward of 45 degrees latitude.
Thus less cloud equatorward of 45 degrees would give a net energy gain to the oceans and less cloud equatorward of 45 degrees would give a net energy loss from the oceans.
As far as I can tell Enso variability affects cloudiness equatorward of 45 degrees whereas solar variability affects cloudiness poleward of 45 degrees.
So the precise balance at any given latitude will depend on the balance between solar and oceanic variability at the time and the point of balance will be different for the atmosphere as compared to the oceans. The oceanic and atmospheric points of balance would interact in a complex dance.

Nuke

@ R Gates:
Sounds like you’re saying these climate patterns are cyclical.

Billy Ruffn

The diagram says, “heat loss”. Isn’t it really heat transfer — what was taken out of the SST north of the Bahamas was transferred somewhere further north.

Kaboom

Two thoughts: Would the “heat hoover” effect of hurricanes yield higher mean surface temperatures in years with lots of hurricanes? And do trees predict a severe winter by dropping their leaves early and if yes, how do they detect it is coming? Cosmic radiation counter?

Bill Illis

Out-going longwave radiation over the past year (global map but check the Nino 4 region).
http://cawcr.gov.au/staff/mwheeler/maproom/OLR/m.ly.html
Regional Ocean Heat Content time series – last 4 yrs and most recent 13 months (Note the Equatorial Pacific).
http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/GODAS/ocean_briefing/hc300_ts_4yr.gif
http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/GODAS/ocean_briefing/hc300_ts_13mo.gif

Gary Crough

Is the net effect of a hurricane to transfer heat to outer space?
And if so, at what rate? For example, can a storm like Irene be expected to have a measurable impact on the (monthly & lower troposphere) satellite-based global temperature measurements for global temperature?

fred houpt

At least I got my question/point answered in today’s thread that I posted yesterday. After having read what I wrote in yesterdays post, and feeling like a doofis for asking, I feel a bit better today, having referred to most of what is being discussed here.
In Toronto I too have noticed that a few trees appear to have some early die off and drying up of leaves. The night time temperatures are now fall-like, with the worst of the summer heat wave long gone. I fear that the winter coming up will be a lot like this past one, which was longer and colder than it has been in a few years.
Before I go I also was thinking yet again on how very little we know about Ice Ages or long term climate cycles in general. We all have seen recently about how some scientific papers on the impact that cosmic radiation…..has confirmed a measurable influence on cloud formation. I also saw a few years ago a paper (darned if I recall where I stashed it in one of my computers) about how it is theorized that our Sun and it’s babies are travelling into a dead null void zone of one of the arms of the Galaxy. I think that the writer speculated that the impact of the overall energy levels of where our solar system traverses has an impact on our climate….and so, I do wonder if the reason why some Ice Ages commence (first of all) and last for extraordinary long time periods (hundreds of thousands of years in some cases) has more to do with where we are in the galaxy? Makes you wonder but it is probably unprovable one way or the other.