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Friday, December 25, 2015

The reason for the wrong kind snow

A Christmas post of a different kind.

The article on the wrong kind of snow is worth reading, on Wikipedia.  Yes, it's something found on Wikipedia, and I just found it this Christmas morning, while looking at Types of snow.  (remember, Wikipedia is wonderful, no doubt about it)

The reason for the wrong kind of snow, which is rare in England, was the extreme cold.  Very cold air makes powder snow, something the railroads and plows are not used to.

This shows up even using the monthly data, which is remarkable.

When the air causing it to snow is very cold, the snow can be powder, instead of the wet stuff the British think of as snow.

This happened again, since the original story, and they are still using the term.

People always want to know the last time we had such heavy snowfall
Questions like this are practically impossible to answer accurately because every snow event is different. And some parts of the country are better equipped to cope with the stuff than are others. 
For instance, a ten-inch snowfall in London is not only much rarer than a similar fall in the Scottish highlands, but it will also affect a rather larger number of people.
The last occasions that London and the Home Counties were hit so badly were in February 1991 and January 1987. During the 1991 event level snow lay 12 inches deep in central London, and on January 12-13, 1987, the deepest snow was in south Essex, Kent, Surrey and south London with 22 inches reported in the Maidstone and Gillingham areas. Yesterday, central London had six inches while the Surrey suburbs reported 10 to 13 inches.

The important fact from all this is about what does "heavy snow" even mean?

It does not mean the weight/water content of the snow.  Heavy snow means lots of snow, which is almost always powdery snow, which is the light fluffy snow.  So heavy snow means light snow, but lots of it.

More on this to come.  Because heavy snowfall is not found on Wikipedia.

Did you know that was coming?

Heavy snow redirects, but makes no sense at all.

Heavy snow warming does exist, stating the NWS uses it for "snowfall rates of 4 inches (10 cm) or more in 12 hours, or 6 inches (15 cm) or more in 24 hours".

So both rate and amount are involved, but not the kind of snow falling.

Friday, November 27, 2015

The 15,000-Year History of a River in Oregon Rendered in Data

Art Meets Cartography: The 15,000-Year History of a River in Oregon Rendered in Data

When considering the historical path of a river, it’s easy to imagine a torrential flood that causes a stream to overflow its banks, or a drought that brings a body of water to a trickle. The reality of a river’s history is vastly more complex, as the artery of water gradually changes directions over thousands of years, shifting its boundaries imperceptibly inch by inch.


Thursday, November 26, 2015

Bråsvellbreen ice wall

The Great Ice Wall

Bråsvellbreen is a wall of ice that stretches for over 100 km along the southern coast of Nordaustlandet. 

Writing on the wall - Understanding global warming is fine, the point is to stop it

The November 27th New Scientist Editorial
issue: 2214, volume: 164, year: 1999, 
pages: 5 - 5

Writing on the wall
Understanding global warming is fine, the point is to stop it

CONSENSUS is a dangerous thing in science.
The notion that researchers can ever prove their
theories is long gone--they can only wait for
others to knock them down. This means that to
be healthy, science needs an opposition, and
when politicians ask scientists to reach a common
view, it pays to be wary.

For a decade now, the UN's Intergovernmental
Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has had the task
of moulding adversarial science into a consensual
form. Its third assessment of climate change
science, now circulating in draft form for
comment, is an impressive example of the art,
dealing as it does with a controversial matter of
utmost importance to the whole world.

As we reported last week, the IPCC says there is
now little room for doubt that global warming in
the past 25 years is our fault. With the help of
increasingly successful climate models, it lays out
our likely future in awful detail. We have
probably already signed death warrants for
several low-lying Pacific islands, casualties of
rising sea levels. And if we let concentrations of
greenhouse gases increase more than 50 per
cent above present levels--which could happen
by the middle of next century--the Amazon
rainforest will simply shrivel up and die.

Of course, committees charged with reaching a
consensus may gloss over contentious details,
and simplified models of the real world still leave
plenty of room for improvement. We know little
about how clouds created by extra evaporation in
a warmer world will influence temperature. And
there is an alarming fuzziness about atmospheric
mechanisms that could turn small changes in
solar radiation into large temperature swings
here on Earth. But the IPCC's draft report is
honest on these points, stressing that uncertainty
should be a cause for more concern, not an
excuse for delaying action.

Among other uncertainties, it asks whether
melting Arctic ice will dilute the waters of the
North Atlantic, shutting down a massive "pump"
that is driven by salty waters sinking to the ocean
floor. If this happens, it would reduce the ocean's
uptake of carbon dioxide and accelerate global
warming. Perversely, it would also cut off the
currents that warm Western Europe, so London,
Paris and Madrid would shiver while the rest of
the world sweltered. In this issue we report the
first evidence from the Atlantic that this
hypothetical event may be starting to happen.

In the few years since the world woke up to the
threat of climate change, science has made
impressive strides in describing how Earth's
life-support systems work. At a meeting in Bonn
earlier this month, where more than 160
governments discussed targets for cutting
emissions of greenhouse gases, NOT ONE VOICED

But can you have too much of consensus? The
IPCC must guard against this. It makes a point of
drawing sometimes hostile sceptics into its
deliberations. The latest report, for instance,
includes major contributions from researchers
studying the potential impact of changes in solar
radiation on our temperature. It has also set up a
group specifically to search for scientific surprises
that could upset its calculations.

Dangerous it may be, but the IPCC has turned
consensus into a virtue. It is now time for
governments to show that they can act as one to
halt the coming nightmare.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

The real story of sea level

 You will see this graphic representing sea level since the end of the last glacier period of the current ice age

This ice core data from Greenland shows the climate fluctuations, and also shows how sea level has actually changed .  The peaks are when it was warm, the lows when it was cold.  Sea level mostly followed this pattern.

We know this due to many sources of evidence, with tide history data showing it with out any doubt..

You can see the peak around 7000 years ago, (Holocene Climatic Optimum) and why sea levels dropped after that, with several more periods where it rose, but then continued to drop. This maximum sea level period is called the Holocene Transgression.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

The entire DDFTTW story, DUFTTW and DDWFTTW

From Bauer to Jack Goodman to spork and JB to the TV and to internet legend.

Goodman's paper

DDWFTTW on a kiteboard

Forum, after forum after forum  etc etc (probably a million posts easily)

The official blog (now gone), many things gone

But not the first video of the BUFC, or the papers about it being official

Encyclopedia of World Climatology

Found as a source all over Wikipedia, the actual book has no entry.  Neither does the editor,
John E. Oliver is Professor Emeritus at Indiana State University. He holds a B.Sc. from London University, and a MA and Ph.D from Columbia University. He taught at Columbia University and then at Indiana State where he was formerly Chair of the Geography-Geology Department, and Assoc iate Dean, College of Arts and Sciences. He has written many books and journal articles in Climatology, Applied Climatology and Physical Geography

Friday, September 4, 2015

Basic global warming theory

Not even a mention on Wikipedia.  Mentioned on

To many people’s confusion, these weather events happened against a backdrop of increasing man-made greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere that are gradually warming the planet. But scientists stress this weather does not mean that those gases are no longer exerting a warming influence. Nor does it go against the grain of basic global warming theory
 By the beginning of the 21st century, Earth ‘s temperature was roughly 0.5 . Nor does it go against the grain of basic global warming theory. 

Roy Spencer explains it here 

Friday, August 7, 2015


An insulated box with a thermometer inside, sunlight is allowed in through a window with three panes of clear glass, to measure sunlight, but not the outside air.   

Horace Bénédict de Saussure (1740-1799), a Swiss natural scientist, used Mariotte’s insight to design and build a “heliothermometer” to measure the relative intensity of sunlight. It was an insulated box with one side consisting of three layers of glass separated by air layers. 

Image and conflicting information about altitude here

Not found on Wikipedia (Aug 7 2015)

Friday, May 22, 2015

Maxwell–Lorentz electromagnetic theory

Or Maxwell's electromagnetic theory.  Not even on the article about Maxwell! The closet you will find is

His most notable achievement was to formulate the classical theory of electromagnetic radiation

But the article on electromagnetic radiation doesn't have it either!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Why the snows of Kilimanjaro decreased

Kilimanjaro snow loss due to deforestation, which is a form of human caused. climate change.  While the reason, decreasing humidity,  does appear, they essential reason is left out of the article.  As is the scientific study.

 It appears that decreasing specific humidity instead of temperature changes has caused the shrinkage of the plateau glaciers since the late 19th century.

The study, Kilimanjaro's vanishing ice due to tree-felling, as well as the information from it, is not found on Wikipdia.

Monday, April 13, 2015

The CO2 theory in any form

Either the "carbon dioxide climate theory" or the "carbon dioxide theory of climate change", (they mean the same thing), you won't find the theory on Wikipedia.

Isn't that incredibly strange?

Extended entry on this is here

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Boreal winter, boreal summer, still no entry

The terms are used of course, it's just that there is no entry or explanation of them.


 The NECC has a pronounced seasonal cycle in the Atlantic and Pacific, reaching maximum strength in late boreal summer and fall and minimum strength in late boreal winter and spring. Furthermore, the NECC in the Atlantic disappears in late winter and early spring.[2]

Here's how easy it is to explain it when using it.

Thursday, March 19, 2015


I know, hard to believe.

Criticality is a nuclear term that refers to the balance of neutrons in the system. “Subcritical” refers to a system where the loss rate of neutrons is greater than the production rate of neutrons and therefore the neutron population (or number of neutrons) decreases as time goes on.

Scientific explanation

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Pictures of the Zhangye Danxia Mountains

While Wikipedia does have an entry for the  Zhangye Danxia National Geological Park, there is no picture of how awesome the mountains are.

(click image for source and more photos of very cool places)