Embattled UK climate scientist steps down

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:53 PM GMT on December 03, 2009

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The embattled director of the University of East Anglia's Climate Research Unit (CRU), Dr. Phil Jones, announced that he will be temporarily standing aside as director. An independent review of his conduct in light of the emails illegally hacked from his computers last month is in progress. In a press release, Professor Jones said: "What is most important is that CRU continues its world leading research with as little interruption and diversion as possible. After a good deal of consideration I have decided that the best way to achieve this is by stepping aside from the Director's role during the course of the independent review and am grateful to the University for agreeing to this. The Review process will have my full support".

The University and the police are investigating the break-in, and it is currently unknown if this was the act of an insider or an external break-in. I think it is highly unlikely this was the work of an insider in a whistle-blower type of action, since a computer at realclimate.org was hacked into the same week (via a computer in Turkey), and the criminal attempted to upload the emails stolen from CRU to the realclimate.org server. This is not the sort of action a whistleblower would do. Dr. Gavin Schmidt of realclimate.org said in a comment yesterday that the CRU break-in appeared to have been done from the outside, into a backup mail server. It is unlikely the hacker acted alone, since hackers aren't typically intimately familiar with the details of the climate change science debate. The emails and code stolen were selectively culled by someone who appeared to have considerable expertise in climate science.

What did Dr. Jones do wrong?
So, what did Dr. Jones do wrong? For starters, he should have confronted the allegations raised by his critics immediately and talked candidly to the press about some of the specific accusations being made. For example, one of the emails contained the statement that he would like to "redefine what the peer-reviewed literature is" to exclude two questionable papers from the IPCC report. Well, that's not something a good scientist should seriously advocate, and is an impossibility, in any case. No one can redefine the peer-reviewed literature, since the rules for this are well-established an not subject to change. When I read the comment in the context it was made, it reads as a joke. There is no discussion in the hacked emails about how to go about redefining the peer-reviewed literature. In the end, the two papers Jones was referring to with this comment, McKitrick and Michaels (2004) and Kalnay and Cai (2003), ended up being cited and discussed in Chapter 2 of the IPCC AR4 report. Those intent on discrediting the science of human-caused global warming are spinning the comment differently, creating a controversy about something that is impossible to do, and was not being seriously suggested. Jones should have immediately spoken up to quash the hype on this comment.

The "trick" to "hide the decline"
Another area of concern is over a graph Dr. Jones helped construct in 1999 showing the "hockey stick" of Earth's surface temperature going back 1,000 years. This graph combined instrumental measurements made since the 1800s with older paleoclimate data (including data from tree rings) to show a continuous 1,000 year record of Earth's temperatures. The paleoclimate data after 1960 show a bogus decline in Earth's temperatures that does not agree with what modern thermometers have been measuring, due to a well-known variation in tree ring thickness as a function of time, referred to as "the decline". Thus, Jones elected to toss out the bogus paleoclimate data (using a "trick" to "hide the decline") rather than present it in the graph. The graph was not properly labeled to show this was done, so viewers of the graph would have had needed to be familiar with a 1998 paper published in Nature or the 1999 paper referenced in the caption on the graph, which explained this well-known data issue. The graph that Jones used his "trick" on was put into a 1999 report called the "WMO Statement on the Status of the Global Climate". The report was given to policy makers, but was never published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal. No reputable climate scientist believes that the paleoclimate data since 1960 is of higher quality than the instrumental record (this is discussed in detail in Chapter 6 of the 2007 IPCC report). In order to make the "hokey stick" graph less confusing, removing "the decline" from the tree ring data is a reasonable thing to do--provided one labels the graph properly. The graph was not properly labeled. Does Jones' "trick" and failure to properly label the graph constitute data falsification, or was it merely sloppy science? The hacked emails contain no suggestions that the "trick" was done to intentionally fool people, and the "trick" never appeared in the peer-reviewed scientific literature, including the IPCC reports. In Dr. Jones' words, "This is well-known and is called the "decline" or "divergence". The use of the term "hiding the decline" was in an email written in haste. CRU has not sought to hide the decline. Indeed, CRU has published a number of articles that both illustrate, and discuss the implications of, this recent tree-ring decline, including the article that is listed in the legend of the WMO Statement figure".




Figure 1. The WMO 1999 "hockey stick" figure (top) with climate reconstructions and instrumental temperatures merged, and a version (bottom) with the climate reconstructions (coloured) and instrumental temperatures (annual & summer in black) shown separately. Note "the decline" in the temperature obtained from tree ring data (green curve) in the bottom curve. Image credit: University of East Anglia.

Global warming contrarians are spinning the "trick" as reason to discredit the "hockey stick", claiming that the data was falsified to hide the fact that tree rings were telling the real story. Since the hockey stick was falsified, some claim, the entire science behind human-caused global warming needs to be questioned. This is plain ludicrous. The graph was never published in a scientific journal. Several updated versions of the "hockey stick" graph have been published in the ten years since the disputed graph was produced, and the "hockey stick" can be reproduced in essentially the same form excluding the controversial tree rings, using other paleoclimate data such as boreholes (See Mann et al., 2008, Figure 2). Furthermore, the peer-reviewed science supporting human-caused global warming is not based solely upon the "hockey stick" and the CRU data used for the last 150 years of the hockey stick graph. There are three separate data sets of global temperatures maintained by NASA, the CRU, and NOAA's National Climatic Data Center, that all show essentially the same global warming. We also have evidence from nature herself in the form of plants and animals expanding their ranges poleward, the record loss of Arctic sea ice in 2007 and record loss of multi-year Arctic sea ice this year, the shrinking of mountain glaciers, reductions in the length of freeze season in many Northern Hemisphere lakes and rivers, the shifting of spring blooms earlier in most regions of the world, and on and on and on. Again, Jones should have spoken up immediately to kill the ridiculous hype being pushed by global warming contrarians about the importance of a 10-year old graph that is now scientifically irrelevant, and was never published.


Figure 2. The "hockey stick" of global temperature anomalies since 300 A.D., as published in a 2008 paper in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by Mann et al.. Even if one excludes tree rings (blue curve), the hockey stick looks the same.

Resistance to releasing data to other researchers
The hacked emails also show that Dr. Jones resisted releasing his data to contrarians and urged others to delete emails regarding Freedom Of Information (FOI) related requests. Many countries protect their weather data under an international agreement called World Meteorological Organization Resolution 40, which prohibits the data from being made public (this is why wunderground can't give out the UKMET model forecasts on our web site, for example). About 5% of the CRU data fell in that category, making release illegal. However, deleting emails related to FOI requests is inadvisable and implies one has something to hide. The investigation should certainly pursue the issue of whether Dr. Jones properly handled the requests to turn over his data to outside researchers. Ideally, weather data documenting Earth's climate history should be free to everyone on the planet (I am not a big fan of WMO Resolution 40). However, another aspect to this issue is the time it takes for the scientists involved to prepare the data for release. Large, complicated data sets require extensive documentation and access to related computer codes in order to process them, and making the data available to every amateur investigator interested in the data puts an unfair burden on the scientists who maintain the data sets. In particular, an amateur climate science investigator named Stephen McIntyre, who runs the web site Climate Audit, has created such an issue. McIntyre, a retired mining executive and an investor, is not a professional scientist, but has been successful identifying several technical errors made in the published literature. He has also generated a huge amount of misleading and incorrect information over the years, and has done a tremendous amount of damage to the understanding of climate science. McIntyre is intent on discrediting the science of human-caused global warming--presumably for ideological reasons, since he has no obvious ties to the fossil fuel industry--and has generated a large number of Freedom of Information requests to further his cause. One of the hacked emails, from Dr. Ben Santer, complained that McIntyre's FOI requests were intrusive and unreasonable with no scientific justification or explanation given, and appeared to be a calculated strategy to divert Santer's attention and focus away from research. It's worth reading Santer's reaction to the hacked email affair to learn more. Given such tactics by McIntyre, Dr. Jones' resistance to FOI requests from McIntyre is understandable, but appears to have been poorly handled.

The science of human-caused global warming remains unaffected
None of the hacked emails reveal any conspiracy to publish falsified or "fudged" material in the peer-reviewed scientific literature. The science of human-caused global warming will require no revision as a result of this affair. Baseless accusations of fraud, data manipulation, and conspiracy against climate change scientists stemming from the hacked emails are being massively hyped by the Manufactured Doubt industry in an effort to discredit climate scientists, since no flaw with the science can be found. Most of the public is in no position to distinguish good science from bad, so if you can create doubt, uncertainty, and confusion, you can win--or at least buy time, lots of it. The hacked email affair is all about politics, not science. Dr. Jones is an excellent scientist, but unfortunately was over-matched as a politician. It was hardly a fair fight--one scientist against the political might of the mightiest PR campaign against science ever waged, armed with some selectively culled stolen emails taken out of context.

Other posts in this series
The Manufactured Doubt industry and the hacked email controversy
Is more CO2 beneficial for Earth's ecosystems?

Next post
I'm working on a post called, "Don't shoot the messenger", and plan to run this Sunday or Monday.

Our Climate Change expert, Dr. Ricky Rood, will be in Copenhagen for Monday's start to the crucial COP15 climate change treaty negotiations. Be sure to tune into his blog for updates on the talks. Wunderground has provided financial support for several University of Michigan students to attend the talks, and I may be featuring portions of their blogs over the coming weeks.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting Bordonaro:


The atmospheric dynamics over the FL Panhandle region is NOT tapping the colder, Artic air over the Midwest, S Plains and parts of the MS valley. Milder air from the GOM is overriding the cool surface airmass in place over FL, GA, SC, and most of NC. Temps are several degrees too WARM to support any frozen precip.

This happens over a large portion of the S US, especially below 34N latitude. Sorry!


Yeah but the western panhandle it's different(especially tomorrow).
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Quoting AstroHurricane001:
I have looked at the West Pacific MTSAT imagery, and TS 28w appears to be a rapid merger between the former TCFA system and half of the remnants of Nida...the other half has accelerated into the North Central Pacific.


Here's a link to the IR satellite imagery in Java: Link. As you can see, the remnants of Nida split into two parts: the main convection merged with half of the TCFA system to form TS twenty-eight, while the other half accelerated northeast, merged with a storm exiting the Asian continent from the Sea of Japan, and became a strong storm in the Central Pacific at 40N. The other half of the former TCFA system retreated south into an area of convection near the equator. The merger spat out another brief area of convection northeast of the Philippines, which quickly fizzled out and retreated southwest to form a low-level circulation. After a tropical depression formed out of what is now TS 28w, it sent yet another piece of convection into the jet, joining that storm (one of three in the Central Pacific from the remnants of Nida) at its tail end. This is all in the past 60 hours.
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Quoting GBguy88:
I'm a little confused. When I go to look at the long range radar in Pensacola, I'm seeing a huge area of snow that extends out into the Gulf of Mexico to our west, but that doesn't seem likely. Is it actually snowing at the coast and beyond, or am I seeing some sort of glitch? I'm just not buying it yet at this point.


The atmospheric dynamics over the FL Panhandle region is NOT tapping the colder, Artic air over the Midwest, S Plains and parts of the MS valley. Milder air from the GOM is overriding the cool surface airmass in place over FL, GA, SC, and most of NC. Temps are several degrees too WARM to support any frozen precip.

This happens over a large portion of the S US, especially below 34N latitude. Sorry!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Why keep a severe chance if there is a stable boundary layer??
"No Rain For You"

BUT 00Z RAOB
DATA FROM MIAMI AND KEY WEST INDICATE WEAK NORMALIZED CAPE DUE TO
POOR LAPSE RATES IN THE 700-500 MB LAYER.




A SWLY LOW LEVEL JET WILL
INCREASE LATER TONIGHT DOWNSTREAM FROM A SHORTWAVE TROUGH THAT WILL
MOVE INTO THE SERN STATES AND THE NRN GULF. THE STRENGTHENING SLY
LOW LEVEL WINDS MAY CONTRIBUTE TO SOME NWD RETREAT OF THE BOUNDARY.
HOWEVER...NWD PROGRESSION OF FRONT WILL BE SLOW/LIMITED DUE TO A
STABLE BOUNDARY LAYER...REINFORCED BY WIDESPREAD RAIN THAT WILL BE
MAINTAINED BY PERSISTENT ISENTROPIC LIFT WITHIN BAROCLINIC ZONE.


Ever Changing :-(

Just need some rain is all.
Quoting GBguy88:
I'm a little confused. When I go to look at the long range radar in Pensacola, I'm seeing a huge area of snow that extends out into the Gulf of Mexico to our west, but that doesn't seem likely. Is it actually snowing at the coast and beyond, or am I seeing some sort of glitch? I'm just not buying it yet at this point.

It seems to be snowing in Texas and Louisiana near the coast, and the cold air is pushing farther south. The storm on the east coast, which is the tail end of a front left by the Gulf low that swept through North America on Wednesday and Thursday, is intensifying. So it's possible that the cold air is filtering all the way to the Gulf, but it would be very surprising.
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It smells like snow outside!
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I have looked at the West Pacific MTSAT imagery, and TS 28w appears to be a rapid merger between the former TCFA system and half of the remnants of Nida...the other half has accelerated into the North Central Pacific.
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1367. GBguy88
I'm a little confused. When I go to look at the long range radar in Pensacola, I'm seeing a huge area of snow that extends out into the Gulf of Mexico to our west, but that doesn't seem likely. Is it actually snowing at the coast and beyond, or am I seeing some sort of glitch? I'm just not buying it yet at this point.
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1366. xcool
sleet now in slidell la


cold out side 36temp
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15684
1365. Skyepony (Mod)
Kin getting snow tonight. Jackson, MS local reports.. 49 moment by moment of snowfall. Better than trees blown down & flooding.
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Quoting Magicchaos:


I think it was the low chasing it. Wasn't Nida absorbed by the front, or did it dissipate.

Nida became part of the front while it was weakening to a TD, but it stayed nearly stationary while sending pieces of itself into the subtropical jet, of which there are currently three with pressures near major hurricane strength Link. While it did this, Nida went from a massive category four (likely larger than Tip) to a TD in two days, churning up cool water in the West Pacific (again, that's why the West Pacific is so cool and the warmest Pacific equatorial water is in the Central Pacific, giving an early boost to El Nino). The low chasing it seemed to have disapated before Nida did (its TCFA was cancelled), while the remnants of Nida flattened into the jet although the convection remained stationary.
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Quoting Patrap:
Left NOLA 4 Pm..arrived BR around 6pm..
Saw everything from Mist,fog,rain,sleet,Mix..Heavy Sleet,then Flurries and Moderate Snow on Campus at Death Vally.
Ride back was back thru it all....now rain with some sleet Uptown.

Sheesh

5hours of being a intense road Hog ..

Didnt see one wreck.


Amazing.



No flurries yet...
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Quoting trunkmonkey:
DR.Masters, why was the data thrown in the trash.

We in law enforcement call that conspiracy to destroy evidence!

that's asinine...it's only '...conspiracy to destroy evidence' if there's an investgation of criminal wrongdoing...us citizens call law enforecment types like you: LA cops...
Member Since: August 13, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 10492
1360. Patrap
Left NOLA 4 Pm..arrived BR around 6pm..
Saw everything from Mist,fog,rain,sleet,Mix..Heavy Sleet,then Flurries and Moderate Snow on Campus at Death Vally.
Ride back was back thru it all....now rain with some sleet Uptown.

Sheesh

5hours of being a intense road Hog ..

Didnt see one wreck.


Amazing.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129093
HUMMM, another wolf cry?
Quoting AstroHurricane001:
Tropical Storm 28w has popped up in the West Pacific. I wonder if this is the remnant of Nida or that low chasing it?


I think it was the low chasing it. Wasn't Nida absorbed by the front, or did it dissipate.
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Tropical Storm 28w has popped up in the West Pacific. I wonder if this is the remnant of Nida or that low chasing it?
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DR.Masters, why was the data thrown in the trash.

We in law enforcement call that conspiracy to destroy evidence!
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1355. miajrz
Sometimes it amazes me just how clearly one can see where the diff is.
Link
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Quoting Walshy:




2008 Surprise Valentines Day snow storm hit Greensboro and Winston Salem. 2-4 inches hit and no snow was forcasted. I remember everything because I live one county west of Winston and we missed it all.

Link

There is lots of vids on youtube about it.


Latest image on rain developing. Already seeing returns of frozen virga in north central NC and southern VA.






"..frozen virga.."

Good!! Let that evaporating virga cool things down!!
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1353. Walshy
Quoting natrwalkn:


"...Valentine's Day snow?..."

No. We had a light dusting this past Jan in Wilmington. That's the only time we've had ANY accumulating snow since late January 2000. As a child growin up there in the '80's, we had accumulating snow about every 2,3,or4 years. My aunts in Durham and Richmond used to get a good snow about every year. Until this past January, it hadn't snowed AT ALL for 4 years in Richmond. Hopefully we will make up for the "snow drought" over the next few winters!! FYI.. I just moved to Greensboro from Wilm in August. I'm counting on seeing some snow this winter!




2008 Surprise Valentines Day snow storm hit Greensboro and Winston Salem. 2-4 inches hit and no snow was forcasted. I remember everything because I live one county west of Winston and we missed it all.

Link

There are lots of vids on youtube about it like the one above.


Latest image on rain developing. Already seeing returns of frozen virga spotty in north central NC and more so in southern VA.




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Brief tropical storm in the West Pacific

WTPN31 PGTW 050300
MSGID/GENADMIN/NAVMARFCSTCEN PEARL HARBOR HI/JTWC//
SUBJ/TROPICAL CYCLONE WARNING//
RMKS/
1. TROPICAL STORM 28W (TWENTYEIGH) WARNING NR 001
UPGRADED FROM TROPICAL DEPRESSION 28W
01 ACTIVE TROPICAL CYCLONE IN NORTHWESTPAC
MAX SUSTAINED WINDS BASED ON ONE-MINUTE AVERAGE
WIND RADII VALID OVER OPEN WATER ONLY
---
WARNING POSITION:
050000Z --- NEAR 23.4N 144.6E
MOVEMENT PAST SIX HOURS - 065 DEGREES AT 18 KTS
POSITION ACCURATE TO WITHIN 060 NM
POSITION BASED ON CENTER LOCATED BY SATELLITE
PRESENT WIND DISTRIBUTION:
MAX SUSTAINED WINDS - 035 KT, GUSTS 045 KT
WIND RADII VALID OVER OPEN WATER ONLY
BECOMING EXTRATROPICAL
REPEAT POSIT: 23.4N 144.6E
---
FORECASTS:
12 HRS, VALID AT:
051200Z --- 26.0N 147.4E
MAX SUSTAINED WINDS - 035 KT, GUSTS 045 KT
WIND RADII VALID OVER OPEN WATER ONLY
EXTRATROPICAL
VECTOR TO 24 HR POSIT: 050 DEG/ 24 KTS
---
24 HRS, VALID AT:
060000Z --- 28.9N 151.8E
MAX SUSTAINED WINDS - 035 KT, GUSTS 045 KT
WIND RADII VALID OVER OPEN WATER ONLY
EXTRATROPICAL
---
REMARKS:
050300Z POSITION NEAR 24.1N 145.3E.
TROPICAL STORM (TS) 28W (TWENTYEIGHT), LOCATED APPROXIMATELY 195 NM
EAST-SOUTHEAST OF IWO TO, HAS TRACKED EAST-NORTHEASTWARD AT 18 KNOTS
OVER THE PAST SIX HOURS. OVER THE LAST 12 HOURS, ANIMATED INFRARED
AND MULTISPECTRAL SATELLITE IMAGERY SHOW SUSTAINED DEEP CONVECTION
NEAR THE LOW LEVEL CIRCULATION CENTER (LLCC) DESPITE VERTICAL WIND
SHEAR IN EXCESS OF 30 KNOTS. ADDITIONALLY, A 042039Z SSMI MICROWAVE
IMAGE SHOWS IMPROVED WRAPPING INTO THE SYSTEM CENTER AS WELL AS A
SYMMETRIC LLCC. RECENT AMSU CROSS SECTIONS ALSO DEPICT THE CONTINUED
PRESENCE OF A WARM CORE. AT 040000Z, DVORAK ESTIMATES FROM PGTW HAVE
COME UP TO 35 KNOTS AND KNES REPORTED AN ESTIMATE OF 35 KNOTS AT
041500Z. TS 28W IS CURRENTLY ALSO SHOWING SIGNS OF BEGINNING AN
EXTRATROPICAL TRANSITION. THE WARM ANOMALIES IN THE AMSU CROSS
SECTIONS HAVE DROPPED FROM TWO DEGREES AT 040900Z TO ONE DEGREE AT
041600Z. ADDITIONALLY, THE GREATEST EXTENT OF DEEP CONVECTION HAS
SHIFTED TO THE NORTHEAST OF THE SYSTEM CENTER AND TOTAL PRECIPITABLE
WATER (TPW) PRODUCTS SHOW THE INTRUSION OF DRY AIR FROM THE WEST-
SOUTHWEST AS WELL AS AN ENCROACHING FRONTAL ZONE LOCATED TO THE
NORTHWEST. TS 28W SHOULD COMPLETE ITS TRANSITION INTO A BAROCLINIC
SYSTEM OVER THE NEXT 12 HOURS AS IT TRACKS UNDER INCREASINGLY
UNFAVORABLE VERTICAL WIND SHEAR, OVER SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURES LESS
THAN 26 DEGREES CELCIUS, AND THE INFLOW OF COOLER, DRIER AIR BREAKS
DOWN THE WARM CORE ALOFT. THIS IS THE FINAL WARNING ON THIS SYSTEM
BY THE JOINT TYPHOON WARNING CENTER (NAVMARFCSTCEN). THE SYSTEM WILL
BE CLOSELY MONITORED FOR SIGNS OF REGENERATION. MAXIMUM SIGNIFICANT
WAVE HEIGHT AT 050000Z IS 12 FEET.//
NNNN



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TRMM
Not so "Tropical"
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Quoting natrwalkn:


"...Valentine's Day snow?..."

No. We had a light dusting this past Jan in Wilmington. That's the only time we've had ANY accumulating snow since late January 2000. As a child growin up there in the '80's, we had accumulating snow about every 2,3,or4 years. My aunts in Durham and Richmond used to get a good snow about every year. Until this past January, it hadn't snowed AT ALL for 4 years in Richmond. Hopefully we will make up for the "snow drought" over the next few winters!! FYI.. I just moved to Greensboro from Wilm in August. I'm counting on seeing some snow this winter!


Sorry, we did have a small (2" or so) accumulation in Jan or Feb 2003.
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Quoting alaina1085:

If he went pick his daughter up in BR he is probly in traffic! LOL. My mom went to the mall there and it usually takes 20 minutes to get home and it took her a good hour and a half.

I noticed the traffic cameras from Siegen to points east have been off for quite a while. So LA DOTD turns off cameras when they are going to widen and add a lane to the outside? Dat's not nice.

(No, gro, not the city in Germany, but the road in Baton Rouge.)
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1348. xcool
by Carl Arredondo



Updated today at 8:26 PM


A Winter Weather Advisory has been extended to the southshore of Lake Pontchartrain. This is for only Orleans, Upper Jefferson, St Charles, St James, St John's parishes, but little to no accumulations expected in the New Orleans metro area.. Sleet/snow mixed will be seen on the southshore. A Winter Storm Warning continues from Pearl River county for all of northshore to Baton Rouge for Accumulations around 1-3" A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect for coastal counties in MS for accumulations from 1-2". Icing of bridges not expected until after midnight if it happens at all. The lowest temperatures around freezing won't occur until 4am-6am.
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15684
Quoting alaina1085:

If he went pick his daughter up in BR he is probly in traffic! LOL. My mom went to the mall there and it usually takes 20 minutes to get home and it took her a good hour and a half.


Thanks, I hope everything is OK, too bad he doesn't have laptop with a wireless card.
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Quoting Walshy:



Recent years have brought less snow here lately. A moderate El Nino this year should bring us back to average. Did your area get that big Valentines Day snow? It was like 1 or 2 years ago it came out of no where...


"...Valentine's Day snow?..."

No. We had a light dusting this past Jan in Wilmington. That's the only time we've had ANY accumulating snow since late January 2000. As a child growin up there in the '80's, we had accumulating snow about every 2,3,or4 years. My aunts in Durham and Richmond used to get a good snow about every year. Until this past January, it hadn't snowed AT ALL for 4 years in Richmond. Hopefully we will make up for the "snow drought" over the next few winters!! FYI.. I just moved to Greensboro from Wilm in August. I'm counting on seeing some snow this winter!
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Quoting Bordonaro:
Has anyone heard from Patrap lately???

If he went pick his daughter up in BR he is probly in traffic! LOL. My mom went to the mall there and it usually takes 20 minutes to get home and it took her a good hour and a half.
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 1240
Has anyone heard from Patrap lately???
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE NEW ORLEANS LA
758 PM CST FRI DEC 4 2009

.UPDATE...
...SOUNDING DISCUSSION...

NO PROBLEMS WITH THE FLIGHT THIS EVENING. A VERY MOIST SOUNDING...
PARTICULARLY ALOFT WITH A PW OF 0.84 INCHES AND A NEARLY SATURATED
SOUNDING BETWEEN 500 AND 830 MILLIBARS WHERE DEW POINT DEPRESSIONS
ARE AROUND ZERO DEGREES. FREEZING LEVEL IS CURRENTLY AT 5100 FEET
BUT WILL CONTINUE TO DROP AS EVAPORATIONAL COOLING AS WELL AS COLD
AIR ADVECTION TAKES PLACE OVER THE NEXT COUPLE OF HOURS. THIS WILL
ALLOW FOR RAIN TO MIX WITH AND EVENTUALLY CHANGE OVER TO SNOW FOR
A FEW HOURS BEFORE ENDING SHORTLY AFTER MIDNIGHT ESPECIALLY NORTH
OF THE LAKE.
A STRONG 140 KNOT SOUTHWESTERLY JET IS IN PLACE AT
AROUND 188 MILLIBARS AS WELL.

The atmosphere is JUICY!!!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
1342. Walshy
Quoting natrwalkn:


"....sign of things to come..."

Agreed!! We got more snow in Wilmington when I was a kid than inland areas have seen in recent years.



Recent years have brought less snow here lately. A moderate El Nino this year should bring us back to average. Did your area get that big Valentines Day snow? It was like 1 or 2 years ago it came out of no where...
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1341. IKE
URGENT - WINTER WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MOBILE AL
805 PM CST FRI DEC 4 2009

...WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IS IN EFFECT FOR INLAND AREAS OF
SOUTHEAST MISSISSIPPI AND SOUTHWEST ALABAMA FROM 11 PM THIS
EVENING TO 9 AM CST SATURDAY...

.A LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM WILL MOVE ACROSS THE CENTRAL GULF OF
MEXICO TONIGHT THROUGH SATURDAY MORNING. TO THE NORTH...A COLDER
AIRMASS WILL BE MOVING GRADUALLY SOUTHWARD ACROSS MISSISSIPPI AND
ALABAMA. DEEP MOISTURE ON THE NORTH SIDE OF THE LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM
WILL CONTINUE TO MOVE ACROSS PORTIONS OF SOUTHEAST MISSISSIPPI AND
SOUTHWEST ALABAMA THIS EVENING AND OVERNIGHT...WITH PRECIPITATION
GRADUALLY BECOMING MORE WIDESPREAD OVERNIGHT. THE PRECIPITATION WILL
BEGIN AS A COLD RAIN...AND THEN CHANGE TO MOSTLY LIGHT SNOW AFTER 11
PM...GENERALLY ALONG AND NORTHWEST OF THE I-65 CORRIDOR. TOTAL
ACCUMULATIONS BEGINNING LATE TONIGHT WILL BE ABOUT ONE INCH OR LESS
FOR MOST AREAS IN THE ADVISORY...WITH SLIGHTLY HIGHER AMOUNTS
NORTHWEST OF A WIGGINS MISSISSIPPI TO CAMDEN ALABAMA LINE. ELEVATED
SURFACES...LIKE OVERPASSES AND BRIDGES...COULD SEE SOME MINOR
ACCUMULATIONS CREATING SLIPPERY CONDITIONS FOR MOTORISTS BY EARLY
SATURDAY MORNING.

ALZ051>057-059-061-062-MSZ067-075-076-078-079-051015-
/O.EXT.KMOB.WW.Y.0002.091205T0500Z-091205T1200Z/
CHOCTAW-WASHINGTON-CLARKE-WILCOX-MONROE-CONECUH-BUTLER-ESCAMBIA-
UPPER MOBILE-UPPER BALDWIN-WAYNE-PERRY-GREENE-STONE-GEORGE-
INCLUDING THE CITIES OF...BUTLER...LISMAN...SILAS...CHATOM...
MILLRY...JACKSON...THOMASVILLE...GROVE HILL...CAMDEN...
PINE HILL...HOMEWOOD...MONROEVILLE...EVERGREEN...GREENVILLE...
ATMORE...BREWTON...EAST BREWTON...MOBILE...PRICHARD...SARALAND...
BAY MINETTE...WAYNESBORO...RICHTON...BEAUMONT...NEW AUGUSTA...
LEAKESVILLE...MCLAIN...WIGGINS...LUCEDALE
805 PM CST FRI DEC 4 2009

...WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY NOW IN EFFECT FROM 11 PM THIS EVENING
TO 6 AM CST SATURDAY...

A LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM WILL MOVE ACROSS THE CENTRAL GULF OF
MEXICO TONIGHT THROUGH SATURDAY MORNING. TO THE NORTH...A COLDER
AIRMASS WILL BE MOVING GRADUALLY SOUTHWARD ACROSS MISSISSIPPI AND
ALABAMA. DEEP MOISTURE ON THE NORTH SIDE OF THE LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM
WILL CONTINUE TO MOVE ACROSS PORTIONS OF SOUTHEAST MISSISSIPPI AND
SOUTHWEST ALABAMA THIS EVENING AND OVERNIGHT...WITH PRECIPITATION
GRADUALLY BECOMING MORE WIDESPREAD OVERNIGHT. THE PRECIPITATION WILL
BEGIN AS A COLD RAIN...AND THEN CHANGE TO MOSTLY LIGHT SNOW AFTER 11
PM...GENERALLY ALONG AND NORTHWEST OF THE I-65 CORRIDOR. TOTAL
ACCUMULATIONS BEGINNING LATE TONIGHT WILL BE ABOUT ONE INCH OR LESS
FOR MOST AREAS IN THE ADVISORY...WITH SLIGHTLY HIGHER AMOUNTS
NORTHWEST OF A WIGGINS MISSISSIPPI TO CAMDEN ALABAMA LINE. ELEVATED
SURFACES...LIKE OVERPASSES AND BRIDGES...COULD SEE SOME MINOR
ACCUMULATIONS CREATING SLIPPERY CONDITIONS FOR MOTORISTS BY EARLY
SATURDAY MORNING.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY FOR SNOW MEANS THAT PERIODS OF SNOW
WILL CAUSE PRIMARILY TRAVEL DIFFICULTIES. BE PREPARED FOR SNOW
COVERED OVERPASSES OR BRIDGES AND LIMITED VISIBILITIES...AND USE
CAUTION WHILE DRIVING.

Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37860
1340. IKE
I've got 43.0 here in Defuniak Springs,FL....
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37860
Quoting Walshy:



There are a few factors going against snow accumulating in the Piedmont. It will be very wet with all that rain on the onset and ground temps will be near 40 as the cold air chases the moisture out. If your lucky you might get a heavy burst to cover the grass and cars but black ice will be a bigger problem for your area Sunday AM.

Hopefully this is a sign of things to come this winter for the south-east! Its just getting started...


"....sign of things to come..."

Agreed!! We got more snow in Wilmington when I was a kid than inland areas have seen in recent years.
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Member Since: July 25, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 591
Quoting Walshy:
Hopefully this is a sign of things to come this winter for the south-east! Its just getting started...

One could have said the same about our 6 inches of snow last mid-Dec, but it actually turned out to be a fairly normal winter in SE LA outside of that one event.
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Listening to the pitter patter of little feet sleet pellets hitting all of the maple leaves from a tree near my front porch...
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1335. Walshy
Quoting natrwalkn:


Yeah, I'm watching it closely, Walshy. Hoping for the cold air to get here a little earlier than expected or the precip to last a little longer than expected, or the best situation would be for BOTH to happen!! I've seen many, many surprises with winter weather in NC. Some have been for the better and some ended up with nothing at all when a big storm was expeted. Most of my experiences have been in Wilmington where I grew up, however. Not quite as familiar with weather here in the piedmont.



There are a few factors going against snow accumulating in the Piedmont. It will be very wet with all that rain on the onset and ground temps will be near 40 as the cold air chases the moisture out. If your lucky you might get a heavy burst to cover the grass and cars but black ice will be a bigger problem for your area Sunday AM.

Hopefully this is a sign of things to come this winter for the south-east! Its just getting started...
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1334. IKE
Quoting weatherman874:
Snowing in Ponchatoula!


Mobile is slightly further north longitude. Looks like Mobile may get some later tonight.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37860
Snowing in Ponchatoula!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:


Surprised that the SPC hasn't issued a Severe T-Storm or Tornado Watch for SW FL yet!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Yep...starting to change here! (When the NWS employees start giving reports, I'll listen)

12/04/2009 0727 PM

Mandeville, St Tammany Parish.

Sleet e0.00 inch, reported by NWS employee.


Sleet starting to mix with snow in city of Mandeville





12/04/2009 0705 PM

Abita Springs, St Tammany Parish.

Sleet e0.00 inch, reported by NWS employee.


Rain changing over to sleet.
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Snow starting just west of Jackson, MS.

http://www.mstraffic.com/Link
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1329. Walshy
Quoting amd:
Will the east coast and the inland areas in the east coast states have their first real accumulating snow of the meteorological winter season? My only concern with possible snow accumulations from north carolina to the upper mid-atlantic (including the NYC area) is the lack of arctic air at the surface.

For instance, in Houston, about 3" of snow fell from the clouds according to ABC 13, however there was very little accumulation in much of Houston because temperatures ranged from 33-35 degrees.

Will there be enough cold air to allow for temperatures to get below freezing and allow for snow accumulation, or will a lot of people get their first snow along the east coast, but have almost no accumulation?




Accumulating snow for areas that are under a warning or advisory. Looks like in NC elevation will play a roll into how much you get.

So my answer is no for big cities in NC like Raleigh or Charlotte but they could see a mix develop before the moisture leaves. The north-east remains to be seen. Cold air will chase the moisture out, but my area might get 2inches or so since its colder near the mountains.
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Atmoaggie, thanks for the weather pictures out of Livingston Parish, LA. Real neat to see all that snow!!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Quoting Walshy:




Most of the rain in that image is not reaching the ground. However, it shows us that the atmosphere is starting to get more moist and widespread rain will develop tonight.

Cold air is lagging behind out west. Therefor, snow will be closer to the mountains of NC until afternoon Saturday when a mix of snow/rain could occur east before the moisture leaves. It might not make it to Raleigh if the moisture leaves to soon. Greensboro might see some mix precip after 1pm.


Yeah, I'm watching it closely, Walshy. Hoping for the cold air to get here a little earlier than expected or the precip to last a little longer than expected, or the best situation would be for BOTH to happen!! I've seen many, many surprises with winter weather in NC. Some have been for the better and some ended up with nothing at all when a big storm was expeted. Most of my experiences have been in Wilmington where I grew up, however. Not quite as familiar with weather here in the piedmont.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1325. IKE
12/04/2009 0735 PM

Jackson, Hinds County.

Snow u0.0 inch, reported by public.


Snow is picking up in intensity at Jackson State
University





12/04/2009 0738 PM

Jackson, Hinds County.

Snow u0.0 inch, reported by public.


Moderate to heavy snow reported at Metro center mall with
accumulations on car tops and grassy surfaces. Light snow
reported at medical mall.





12/04/2009 0738 PM

Jackson, Hinds County.

Snow u0.0 inch, reported by public.


Moderate snow reported at Metro center mall. Light snow
reported at medical mall.





12/04/2009 0722 PM

Clinton, Hinds County.

Snow u0.0 inch, reported by trained spotter.


Light snow beginning to fall in the Clinton area. No
accumulations.





12/04/2009 0710 PM

Jackson, Hinds County.

Snow e0.0 inch, reported by broadcast media.


Light snow falling now at Memorial Stadium in downtown
Jackson... reported by wapt-TV and wadm-TV
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37860

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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.