February 2012 the globe's 22nd warmest; record Hawaii hailstone confirmed

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 02:09 PM GMT am 28. März 2012

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February 2012 was the globe's 22nd warmest February on record, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). Global temperatures were the 15th warmest on record according to NASA. It was the coolest February since 1994, and the coolest month, relative to average, since January 2008. The relatively cool temperatures were due, in part, to the on-going La Niña event in the Eastern Pacific, which has brought a large amount of cool water to the surface. February 2012 global land temperatures were the 37th warmest on record, and ocean temperatures were the 12th warmest on record. Global satellite-measured temperatures for the lowest 8 km of the atmosphere were colder than average, the 7th or 13th coldest in the 34-year record, according to Remote Sensing Systems and the University of Alabama Huntsville (UAH). February temperatures in the stratosphere were the coldest on record. We expect cold temperatures there due to the greenhouse effect and to destruction of ozone due to CFC pollution. Snow cover during February varied dramatically depending on which hemisphere you were in. Eurasia had its third largest snow cover extent in the 46-year period of record, while North America had its fourth lowest. As seen in Figure 1, much of North America and Siberia were much warmer than average, while Europe was considerably colder than average. Wunderground's weather historian, Christopher C. Burt, has a comprehensive post on the notable weather events of February in his February 2012 Global Weather Extremes Summary.


Figure 1. Departure of temperature from average for February 2012. Image credit: National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) .

La Niña weakens, almost gone
A borderline weak La Niña event continues in the equatorial Pacific, where sea surface temperatures were approximately 0.5°C below average during February and the the first half of March. NOAA's Climate Prediction Center forecasts that La Niña will be gone by the end of April. The majority of the El Niño computer models predict neutral conditions for this fall, during the August - September - October peak of hurricane season, though 32% of the models predict an El Niño will develop. El Niño conditions tend to decrease Atlantic hurricane activity, by increasing wind shear over the tropical Atlantic.

February Arctic sea ice extent fifth lowest on record
Arctic sea ice extent was at its fifth lowest extent on record in February, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center. Continuing the pattern established in January, conditions differed greatly between the Atlantic and Pacific sides of the Arctic. On the Atlantic side, especially in the Barents Sea, air temperatures were higher than average and ice extent was unusually low. February ice extent for the Barents Sea was the lowest in the satellite record, due to air temperatures that ranged from 4 - 8°C (7 - 14°F) above average at the 925 mb level (about 3000 feet above sea level). In contrast, on the Pacific side, February ice extent in the Bering Sea was the second highest in the satellite record, paired with air temperatures that were 3 to 5 degrees Celsius (5 to 9 degrees Fahrenheit) below average at the 925 mb level. Satellite sea ice records date back to 1979.


Figure 2. Record-setting hailstone from the Hawaii 'supercell' thunderstorm that hit the Hawaiian island of Oahu on March 9, 2012. Image credit: NOAA/National Weather Service.

Huge hailstone sets Hawaii record
A hailstone with the diameter of roughly that of a grapefruit that hit Oahu on March 9, 2012, has been confirmed as the largest hailstone on record for the state of Hawaii, according to NOAA. The record-setting hailstone was dropped by a “supercell” thunderstorm on the windward side of Oahu. There were numerous reports of hail with diameters of 2 to 3 inches and greater. Hail the size of a penny (diameter of 3/4 inch) or quarter (diameter of one inch) has been reported in Hawaii only eight times since records began, and there is no record of hail larger than 1 inch in diameter. Hail the size of golf balls and baseballs can only form within intense thunderstorms called supercells. These supercells need warm, moist air to rise into progressively colder, drier air, as well as winds changing direction and increasing speed with increasing height off the ground. For both sets of conditions to exist at the same time in Hawaii is extremely rare, but that did occur on March 9. Conditions that day were ideal for a supercell to form, and the storm looked very much like supercell thunderstorms common in the Central U.S. during spring. Supercells can also produce tornadoes, another rarity in Hawaii. The same hail-producing supercell produced a confirmed EF-0 tornado with winds of 60-70 mph in Lanikai and Enchanted Lakes on Oahu.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting StormTracker2K:



Trinidad

Me too.
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Quoting Cyclone2012:
I see. You in the ABC islands?



Trinidad
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This is typically a dry time of year for PR.

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Here we go with another round of flood advisories for parts of Puerto Rico. I hope that there are much less than what came out on Tuesday.

FLOOD ADVISORY
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAN JUAN PR
158 PM AST WED MAR 28 2012

PRC113-282100-
/O.NEW.TJSJ.FA.Y.0068.120328T1758Z-120328T2100Z/
/00000.N.ER.000000T0000Z.000000T0000Z.000000T0000 Z.OO/
PONCE PR-
158 PM AST WED MAR 28 2012

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN SAN JUAN HAS ISSUED AN

* URBAN AND SMALL STREAM FLOOD ADVISORY
FOR THE FOLLOWING MUNICIPALITY...

IN PUERTO RICO
PONCE

* UNTIL 500 PM AST

* AT 156 PM AST...DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS
OVER THE CITY OF PONCE NEARLY STATIONARY. RAINFALL ESTIMATES THAT
AN INCH PER HOUR RAINFALL RATES ARE OCCURRING WITH THESE SHOWERS.
THIS MAY CAUSE FLOODING OF STREETS AND IN POOR DRAINAGE AREAS.

ADDITIONAL RAINFALL AMOUNTS OF ONE TO THREE INCHES ARE POSSIBLE IN
OVER THE CITY OF PONCE.

MOST FLOOD DEATHS OCCUR IN AUTOMOBILES. NEVER DRIVE YOUR VEHICLE INTO
AREAS WHERE THE WATER COVERS THE ROADWAY. FLOOD WATERS ARE USUALLY
DEEPER THAN THEY APPEAR. JUST ONE FOOT OF FLOWING WATER IS POWERFUL
ENOUGH TO SWEEP VEHICLES OFF THE ROAD. WHEN ENCOUNTERING FLOODED
ROADS MAKE THE SMART CHOICE...TURN AROUND...DONT DROWN.

&&

LAT...LON 1791 6651 1795 6655 1795 6664 1797 6663
1797 6665 1795 6668 1796 6667 1797 6670
1809 6667 1813 6669 1816 6666 1817 6658
1815 6655 1812 6656 1801 6653 1796 6655
1791 6651 1788 6653 1788 6654

$$

ROSA
Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 14775
This looks bad in regards to the severe wx potential. This is something you don't want to see going into April as we all remember what happened in April 2011.

CMC Model
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Quoting Cyclone2012:


Moisture?

Someone else will have to link it for you, but it is the GOES east water vapour satellite, at NOAA site.
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Quoting Cyclone2012:


Moisture?

In the Mid Levels, yes.
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Quoting Cyclone2012:


WV?

Sorry, Water Vapour.
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Looking at the WV loops for the central Atlantic and Northern South America including the Caribbean.....

Unusual amount of WV in those areas for this time of year.
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New study by a panel of Nobel Prize winning climate scientists released...


The study says forecasts that some tropical cyclones — which includes hurricanes in the United States — will be stronger because of global warming, but the number of storms should not increase and may drop slightly.

Some other specific changes in severe weather that the scientists said they had the most confidence in predicting include more heat waves and record hot temperatures worldwide, increased downpours in Alaska, Canada, northern and central Europe, East Africa and north Asia,

IPCC Chairman Rajendra Pachauri told The Associated Press that while all countries are getting hurt by increased climate extremes, the overwhelming majority of deaths are happening in poorer less developed places. That, combined with the fact that richer countries are generating more greenhouse gases from the burning of fossil fuels, makes the issue of weather extremes one of fairness.

Study co-author David Easterling of the National Climatic Data Center says this month's heat wave, while not deadly, fits the pattern of worsening extremes. The U.S. has set nearly 6,800 high temperature records in March. Last year, the United States set a record for billion-dollar weather disasters, though many were tornadoes, which can't be linked to global warming.

"When you start putting all these events together, the insurance claims, it's just amazing," Easterling said. "It's pretty hard to deny the fact that there's got to be some climate signal."


(my emphasis)

http://news.yahoo.com/mumbai-miami-list-big-weath er-disasters-150359548.html
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Quoting Tazmanian:




we cant all be on here all day we have other things too do in life then hang out all day on dr m blog


some thing too not get it yet that we can this be on here all day this for them we got other things too do now like for 1hr or 2 like most of us do is fine but we cant be on here all the time many are at work or school and when they get home they have things too do like home work or cleening there rooms or going out in town doing things or paying bills so we cant be on here 24hrs a day 7 days a week

If you check most of Dr. Masters blog, you'll notice that for most of the day I'm not on the blog and you can ask fellow blog members how often I comment
Quoting Cyclone2012:


No bud, I'm here, =).

Ok, cause I'm not usually on the blog at this time so I was just wondering where everyone was
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Quoting Tazmanian:




we cant all be on here all day we have other things too do in life then hang out all day on dr m blog


some thing too not get it yet that we can this be on here all day this for them we got other things too do now like for 1hr or 2 like most of us do is fine but we cant be on here all the time many are at work or school and when they get home they have things too do like home work or cleening there rooms or going out in town doing things or paying bills so we cant be on here 24hrs a day 7 days a week

If you check most of Dr. Masters blog, you'll notice that for most of the day I'm not on the blog and you can ask fellow blog members how often I comment
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Quoting Cyclone2012:


Hopefully not for much longer, Gams! Have a great day, ma'am.

G'afternoon, all!!!!!!!!!!!

Good afternoon Cyclone2012!
Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


no i think they just went back to work, u can kind of tell when people are working.

Now i am going back to school stuff, so u are all alone................

I would have been at school as welll, but some of my classes are finished for the semester
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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


no i think they just went back to work, u can kind of tell when people are working.

Now i am going back to school stuff, so u are all alone................



i think i this made my point in commet 48
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Quoting nigel20:
Are you guys gone to lunch?




we cant all be on here all day we have other things too do in life then hang out all day on dr m blog


some thing too not get it yet that we can this be on here all day this for them we got other things too do now like for 1hr or 2 like most of us do is fine but we cant be on here all the time many are at work or school and when they get home they have things too do like home work or cleening there rooms or going out in town doing things or paying bills so we cant be on here 24hrs a day 7 days a week
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Quoting nigel20:
Are you guys gone to lunch?


no i think they just went back to work, u can kind of tell when people are working.

Now i am going back to school stuff, so u are all alone................
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Are you guys gone to lunch?
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Quoting Cyclone2012:


Hopefully not for much longer, Gams! Have a great day, ma'am.

G'afternoon, all!!!!!!!!!!!

Good afternoon Cyclone2012!
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Quoting kipperedherring:
Very interesting subject! I believe if we were to undergo a complete magnetic reversal, only Nigel20 could save us!

Very funny
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Quoting kipperedherring:
Very interesting subject! I believe if we were to undergo a complete magnetic reversal, only Nigel20 could save us!


I claim the new compass business!!!!!!
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Quoting weathermanwannabe:
Also. Here is the simple conversion calculation to convert the Celcius temps in that chart to Farenheit:

F = C × 1.8 + 32



Or the simple version to do in your head...

Double it (temp in C), subtract 1/10 of that, and add 32. :-)
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Also. Here is the simple conversion calculation to convert the Celcius temps in that chart to Farenheit:

F = C × 1.8 + 32

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34. hydrus 11:50 AM EDT on March 28, 2012

Great graphic with a nice clear view of the flow of the Gulf eddy/loop current....Could you post the link; it might come in handy later in the season.... Thanks.
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Quoting Chicklit:
Interesting article Hydrus. Nova also did a really good documentary on pole reversal. This year, pole reversal enthusiasts will be out in full force around the 12/12/12 date.
Closing in fast.
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#32, thanks for that link it was very interesting!

Hello everyone,

Just poping in to see what is going on. With such a mild winter and nice warm spring...
wonder what the "season" will bring.

We here in SE Florida have been so lucky since Wilma... and the CONUS has had 3 lucky years..

how long will it last????

Have a great day!

Gams
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Quoting nigel20:

Good morning hydrus....thanks for the info
Yeah...and looking at the TCHP in the Caribbean you can see that there is an increase over last couple weeks, so there will be enough heat content to fuel an early storm
If you ask me, there is always enough heat there to fuel an early storm. Even during the heart of winter.. Only once do I remember the Western Caribbean being below 80 degrees, and it was a long time ago. This is the past 30 days. And this is the 30 day forecast...
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Thanks Dr.;

The majority of the El Niño computer models predict neutral conditions for this fall, during the August - September - October peak of hurricane season, though 32% of the models predict an El Niño will develop. El Niño conditions tend to decrease Atlantic hurricane activity, by increasing wind shear over the tropical Atlantic.

With all of the record heat, and particularly the very warm Gulf, we would be much better off with a shorter El Nino season rather then Enso-Neutral conditions... I am hoping for an El Nino.
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Major overhaul to hurricane warning system

Excerpt:

ORLANDO - Sweeping changes are in the works for the National Hurricane Center's visual warnings on tropical weather, and this time scientists want to make sure the public understands them.

Within a few years, the cone of uncertainty, which shows a hurricane's predicted path, will likely be obsolete. Too many people misinterpret it as a forecast for hurricane winds. Also, new warnings and maps for storm surge are likely to emerge, a move that will bring the largest change to the hurricane center's warning program in decades.

Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 11307
Quoting hydrus:
Very cool post. I guess there is no hard evidence to support exactly what happens when the magnetic field is at its weakest, and how much harmful radiation reached the Earths surface. One would think that being fully clothed or some super Sun block would be in order. .A "superchron" is a pole reversal that lasts over 10 million years...NASA computer simulation using the model of Glatzmaier and Roberts. The tubes represent magnetic field lines, blue when the field points towards the center and yellow when away. The rotation axis of the Earth is centered and vertical. The dense clusters of lines are within the Earth's core..Wiki link..Link

Good morning hydrus....thanks for the info
Quoting StormTracker2K:


I know right! April is just about here and before you know it we will be watching blobs in the Caribbean come May (maybe an invest).

Yeah...and looking at the TCHP in the Caribbean you can see that there is an increase over last couple weeks, so there will be enough heat content to fuel an early storm
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Quoting nigel20:

I can't believe the Hurricane season is almost here


I know right! April is just about here and before you know it we will be watching blobs in the Caribbean come May (maybe an invest).
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Quoting StormTracker2K:
It's about time to dust off the old chart.


Reminds me of good ol' DJ. Hope he comes back during hurricane season.
Member Since: August 9, 2009 Posts: 10 Comments: 5080
Quoting hydrus:
Where is Destin Jeff.? That is his shrine ya know..:)


LOL!
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Quoting StormTracker2K:
It's about time to dust off the old chart.


I can't believe the Hurricane season is almost here
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Interesting article Hydrus. Nova also did a really good documentary on pole reversal. This year, pole reversal enthusiasts will be out in full force around the 12/12/12 date.
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Quoting StormTracker2K:
It's about time to dust off the old chart.

Where is Destin Jeff.? That is his shrine ya know..:)
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Quoting aerojad:
For the fans of charts, I put together a couple to put the March heatwave in some more context.

First one is the average high during the hottest 9-day stretch here in Chicago (82.2 degrees) compared to averages for the rest of the year:



Second one is the daily tally for all records in the United States for the month of March (through the 26th). You can figure out where the heat wave comes in:



Lastly the Lake Michigan water temperature is coming back down, but for a bit there was warmed to late-May temps:


I wonder if lake Michigan will cool to average or will it continue above average
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Quoting Chicklit:
The anomalous hail stone in Hawaii made me think of this:
Link NASA

"Reversals are the rule, not the exception. Earth has settled in the last 20 million years into a pattern of a pole reversal about every 200,000 to 300,000 years, although it has been more than twice that long since the last reversal.

A reversal happens over hundreds or thousands of years, and it is not exactly a clean back flip. Magnetic fields morph and push and pull at one another, with multiple poles emerging at odd latitudes throughout the process.

Scientists estimate reversals have happened at least hundreds of times over the past three billion years. And while reversals have happened more frequently in "recent" years, when dinosaurs walked Earth a reversal was more likely to happen only about every one million years."
Very cool post. I guess there is no hard evidence to support exactly what happens when the magnetic field is at its weakest, and how much harmful radiation reached the Earths surface. One would think that being fully clothed or some super Sun block would be in order. .A "superchron" is a pole reversal that lasts over 10 million years...NASA computer simulation using the model of Glatzmaier and Roberts. The tubes represent magnetic field lines, blue when the field points towards the center and yellow when away. The rotation axis of the Earth is centered and vertical. The dense clusters of lines are within the Earth's core..Wiki link..Link
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It's about time to dust off the old chart.

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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


I got a 103 fever when the pollen count went over 9000, but it is back to 2000 now.

Ive rubbed my eyes so much that my eyelids are very tender, almost cut, and i am practically crying from my watery eyes.

I HAAAAAAAATTTEE Spring.
Quoting hydrus:
Pollen is real bad..I have been allergic to the stuff my entire life...My eyes would swell up to the size of tennis balls..no exaggeration either, wuz blind and had to be helped to go anywhere.
Their was a coat of pollen on my car yesterday morning.That only set the stage.I'm glad that I'm not the only that has real bad pollen accounts.My eyes are even now still dripping wet.
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Day 3 = Some severe storms for me. :D

DAY 3 CONVECTIVE OUTLOOK
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
0226 AM CDT WED MAR 28 2012

VALID 301200Z - 311200Z

...THERE IS A SLGT RISK OF SVR TSTMS MID OH VALLEY REGION...

...SYNOPSIS...
THOUGH ANOTHER PIECE OF THE PERSISTENT NERN PACIFIC UPPER SYSTEM IS
PROGGED TO APPROACH THE W COAST LATE RESULTING IN EVENTUAL
AMPLIFICATION OF THE UPPER FLOW FIELD...A FAIRLY FLAT FLOW PATTERN
IS FORECAST THROUGH MOST OF THE PERIOD. THE MAIN DISTURBANCE WITHIN
THIS PATTERN -- AT LEAST WITH RESPECT TO THE CONVECTIVE FORECAST --
WILL BE THE COMPACT/FAST-MOVING SHORT-WAVE TROUGH WHICH WILL MARCH
QUICKLY ESEWD ACROSS THE MIDWEST/OH VALLEY...REACHING THE
MID-ATLANTIC REGION LATE.

AT THE SURFACE...A LOW AND ACCOMPANYING/TRAILING COLD FRONT IS
FORECAST TO CROSS THE MIDWEST/TN VALLEY REGION IN CONJUNCTION WITH
THE UPPER SYSTEM...AND SHOULD FOCUS STRONG/LOCALLY-SEVERE STORMS
THROUGH THE AFTERNOON AND EARLY EVENING.

...MID OH VALLEY REGION...
ONGOING STORMS AT THE START OF THE PERIOD AHEAD OF THE COMPACT UPPER
SYSTEM SHOULD INTENSIFY/EXPAND IN COVERAGE ACROSS THE MID OH VALLEY
REGION BY AFTERNOON...AS MODEST DESTABILIZATION OF THE PRE-FRONTAL
ENVIRONMENT OCCURS.

STORMS MAY DEVELOP AS FAR ESE AS THE CAROLINAS ALONG THE
WEAK/REMNANT WARM FRONT...AND SWWD INTO THE SRN PLAINS ALONG THE
TRAILING PORTION OF THE FRONT AS WELL AS A HIGH PLAINS DRYLINE.
HOWEVER...THE MORE ROBUST CONVECTION SHOULD REMAIN ACROSS THE MID OH
VALLEY REGION...WHERE STRONGER SHEAR IS PROGGED IN PROXIMITY TO THE
UPPER SYSTEM. ALONG WITH POTENTIAL FOR HAIL...THREAT FOR DAMAGING
WINDS MAY BECOME THE PRIMARY SEVERE THREAT...WITH RELATIVELY FAST
WNWLY FLOW ALOFT PERHAPS ALLOWING ONE OR MORE FAST-MOVING STORM
CLUSTERS TO EVOLVE.

STORMS SHOULD SLOWLY DIMINISH INTO LATE EVENING/OVERNIGHT...AS
DIURNAL COOLING/STABILIZATION INCREASES.

..GOSS.. 03/28/2012
Member Since: August 9, 2009 Posts: 10 Comments: 5080
oops, I think this 'April Fool's Day' temp is a little early:
New Smyrna Beach Weather at a Glance Updated 20 min 27 sec ago
Weather Station
New Smyrna Beach (KEVB)Elevation
10 ft
Report Station You are about to report this weather station for bad data.

Please select the information which is incorrect and click 'Submit' otherwise click 'Cancel'.
Temperature Pressure Wind Forecast Submit %u2014 Cancel

Station Select Now
Scattered CloudsTemperature
129 F
Feels Like 129 F Wind(mph)
7 Sunrise / Set
7:17 AM7:40 PMMoon
Waxing CrescentMore Astronomy
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About

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