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Global Warming: loading the extreme weather dice

Discussion in 'Environmental Discussion' started by bwilson4web, May 21, 2013.

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  1. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web 03 and 10 Prius

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    Severe storms are heat engines fuel by water vapor and you can really see it in time lapse images:


    The physics and chemistry have been known for a very long time and here is an engineering description:


    Source: Thunderstorm Thermodynamics

    From chemistry, the 'heat of vaporization" is released when the water condenses:


    Source: Enthalpy of vaporization - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    These are metric units so one "j" Joule is 1 Watt second. So a "jK" is a kilowatt second. A "kg" is a kilogram or 2.2 lbs. Do you understand the units?

    So lets take 2,260 jK Watt seconds and convert them into kilowatt hours, something you might find on a utility bill . . . you do have one, right?
    • 2,260 / (60*60) = .63 kWhr
    • 2.2 lbs of water / 8.3 lbs/gal -> 0.26 gallons of water
    • .63 kWhr / .26 gal -> 2.42 kWhr per gallon
    So the amount of rain from any storm including flooding storms like Sandy and every other hurricane, typhoon, monsoon, tornado storm, down to a small shower, all of them are dumping huge amounts of water releasing megawatts of stored, solar energy captured by evaporating water.

    One other source of energy, sunlight on the clouds but are not a sole determinant. Rather, if there are strong storms in the morning and noon, they tend to amplify until sunset. But given enough water vapor, they will continue after sunset but often at reduced magnitude within one or two hours after sunset.

    Global warming, man-made from an increasing CO{2} blanket, leads directly to more water vapor, the fuel for severe weather. Although specific storms resemble the throw of a dice, global warming is putting more weight on the severe weather side, a crooked game. Talking about a crooked game, reminds me.



    Source: Oklahoma Senator James Inhof

    The war on science, facts and data, has been and remains evident. So the tragedies of tornadoes and hurricanes are simply the loaded dice coming up on the severe weather side.

    Bob Wilson
  2. Corwyn

    Corwyn Energy Curmudgeon

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    No, I don't. I would expect 'jK' to be Joules * Degrees Kelvin. 'kJ' would be kilo-Joules.
    More info
  3. wxman

    wxman Member

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    I would argue that the other side of the "extreme weather" dice is also being loaded, and possibly more so than the increased heat and moisture side of the dice, if the IPCC premise of polar amplification is correct (Polar amplification - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia). Polar amplification would be expected to weaken upper air flow and thus weaken shear needed for tornado and organized severe weather development. This is something that was discussed here in detail a few years ago (Is Climate Change in any way shape or form related to more tornadoes? | PriusChat).

    Climate models are apparently projecting this weakening shear trend (Climate Change and Severe Thunderstorms - Climate Change Weather Blog).
  4. mojo

    mojo Senior Member

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    bwilson4web,
    Your BS theory says CO2 causes more severe weather.
    CO2 levels are highest in (supposedly) millions of years.
    Yet occurrences of major hurricanes,tornadoes,fires, droughts are all at all at time lows.
    Are you delusional?
    Or are you too intellectually impaired to understand the empirical evidence?
    MORE SEVERE MEANS BIGGER ,NOT LESSER.
    BTW Atmospheric water vapor has decreased for at least 60 years since measurements have been observed.
    How the hell does increased water vapor cause more severe weather ,when atmospheric water vapor is decreasing?
    climate4you GreenhouseGasses






  5. austingreen

    austingreen Senior Member

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    I would say that the simpson's on sunday had a good take on this loaded dice thing, as homer learns the odds are that he will never win the lottery, but buys a ticket anyway and wins.

    To Inhoff, it appears that if he would walk into a casino, and bet on black, he would only remember when black won. To some of the weather extremeists it also appears that they always bet on 33, and even if they lose just about every time, they will say, when they lose, see I told you this casino is rigged for 33 (even though their pile of chips keeps dwindling:mad:). Then they go bet don't pass at craps, and cheer when others are losing, even though they end up giving all their money to the casino with their bad bets.

    When it comes to tornados, I did indeed think that the theory was Oklahoma would have less of them with more ghg. But those weather extremists, don't really like theory. 33 has come up, and people have died, at someone much be blamed. These folks rub their hands with glee. After all it can't just be the weather. I mean the wizzard of oz was written after global warming right?
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  6. mojo

    mojo Senior Member

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  7. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web 03 and 10 Prius

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    With a capital "K" as your reference shows, I would agree. However, the units description in the Wiki source:


    The "kJ" was and remains a measure of heat. One of the interesting aspects is the heat released from water condensing is constant regardless of the temperature, Kelvin, it occurs. Even now, I have vivid memories of Thermodynamics class at Oklahoma State University . . . one of my favorites.

    Bob Wilson
  8. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web 03 and 10 Prius

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    I can appreciate the 'reduction' but I have found the Jet Stream is a strong indicator of the type of shear needed to generate a super-cell. It turns out we can see the current mapping of the Jet Stream fairly easily:
    Weather Forecast - United States - Local & Long Range | Wunderground | Weather Underground

    During the polar events, I remember seeing the Jet Stream being at high latitudes. Sure enough, the weather in the lower 48 was moderate. But once the polar event was over, the Jet Stream moved over the lower 48 and took its usual meandering path.

    Bob Wilson
  9. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web 03 and 10 Prius

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    Correct!

    To make it simple enough even you can understand, put a quart of water on the stove to boil:
    • low boil - partial power
    • rapid, vigorous boil - full power
    It is a very simple concept, the atmosphere transfers heat, just like boiling water transfers heat from the burner to the cooler air above. Increase the heat and the boil becomes more vigorous.

    Now going back to the global warming model and the pot of water, you would need something to reflect the heat down . . . a cover! Put a cover on the simmering pan and the water boil becomes more vigorous. Some of the heat is retained, not lost as fast as in the open pot. That is how basic physics and thermodynamics works.

    I fully appreciate the global climate models and the sophistication and detailed data involved. The earth heat transfer is more complex than a boiling pot of water but the basic physics, the heat flow is the same. Weather is just another form of water-based, heat transfer, and sometimes, pretty dramatic.

    Bob Wilson
  10. wxman

    wxman Member

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    Bob,

    Jet stream configuration does not necessarily determine shear intensity in the atmosphere, and the shear comes from all levels of the atmosphere, not just the jet stream level.

    There are two types of shear in the atmosphere - speed shear (increasing wind speed with height), and directional shear (changing wind direction with height). A combination of the two creates high helicity and thus more favorable conditions for supercell development. By the way, in meteorology, "supercell" refers to a specific thunderstorm structure (rotating updraft), not just a "super" strong thunderstorm.

    Warming the poles (north pole in the northern hemisphere) relatively more than the equatorial regions (as posited by current AGW theory) would be expected to weaken speed shear at all levels of the atmosphere due to a lessening overall thermal gradient from south to north. This in turn would tend to result in "weaker"supercells even if directional shear isn't affected (not all supercells produce tornadoes; as a matter of fact, most do not).

    So even if you are "priming" the atmosphere with more energy (in the form of heat and moisture), you now lack the key condition of high-velocity upper air flow (speed shear).

    Weakening upper air flow trend would tend to favor development of another type of thunderstorm structure - "pulse" thunderstorms, or the disorganized thunderstorms we see here in the southeastern CONUS in mid-summer. Pulse thunderstorms can be very strong and produce very damaging straight-line winds at the surface, but they almost never produce tornadoes. This is the reason why tornado frequency decreases in mid-summer in spite of heat and moisture being the greatest.
  11. Corwyn

    Corwyn Energy Curmudgeon

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    So your concept of casinos is a confused as climate change? Every bet in roulette has the same house percentage (with a few minor exceptions). There is no bad good bet in roulette. And Don't Pass (unless they have change the rules) is a better bet than Pass.
  12. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web 03 and 10 Prius

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    Over what time-line?

    The reason I ask is the Greenland ice cap is thinner but still ice covered. The arctic sea ice cover is smaller but showing breaks, the Northwest Passage, but only in the summer. I suspect the proposed reduction in shear events will only occur once the Arctic becomes temperate and that appears to be on a fairly long time scale.

    Before we get to a temperate Arctic, the increasing global heat load will generate a lot of water vapor, the energy of storms because this is an on-going process. Even today, the amount of water vapor is a function of tropical heating of the oceans. Incremental heat has a direct, current impact on water vapor generation.

    Bob Wilson
  13. wxman

    wxman Member

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    If I recall correctly, the IPCC AR4 report stated that the Arctic regions are currently warming at a rate that's 2-3 times greater than the tropics. So that weakening of the equatorial-polar thermal gradient should be a process that's currently ongoing.



    I completely agree with you but as a result, the the frequency and intensity of pulse storms can be expected to increase, not supercells, from a severe weather perspective.
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  14. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web 03 and 10 Prius

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    Because of my mechanical engineering training, a lot of thermodynamics, I'm sensitive to phase-change heat flows (ever take a test with a 'steam table' booklet?) Steam tables make trig functions look trivial but that is another story for another day (as the old man wanders off muttering to himself.)

    I pay a lot of attention to the polar ice loads because as they melt, a lot of heat is absorbed, until there is no more ice to melt. Then the global temperatures should go . . . non-deniable by even Mojo's propagandist.

    Bob Wilson
  15. austingreen

    austingreen Senior Member

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    How is it confused? I am talking about them both having a gamblers mentality Roulette is a game where the gambler is always at a big disadvantage to the house.

    IS that more clear?

    Those folks claiming ghg makes tornadoes should at least try to read an attribution study. Here's one -

    ESRL : PSD : 2011 Tornado Season Climate Factors




    Moving to the crap table, increases your odds, but even betting against the other players the odds are against you - a number is barred. The odds still are you lose your bet, but you jump up and down happy when you win and others lose. I find this very much like many of the extreme weather predictors, that seem gleeful when tornadoes hit and people die. They seem oblivious to the human tragedy, and don't really want to check attribution, to see if it was their winning strategy of betting against mankind, or just random weather.

    If you follow the analogy one step further, you might realize that the house is science, and in the long run you will lose if you bet against it. Even when you bet don't pass, thinking you are betting with the house, you need to look at the bar value. The bar is attribution studies that weather extremists really don't seem to like. They want to just say, see I won this time, I will keep winning. But in the short run people might buy your book, or vote for you, or watch your tv show or lecture. That can make you a lot of money even if you are totally wrong. That is weather you reject the science as inhofe or as trenbleth.

    For sure if you are looking at breaking high temperature records, ghg contribute. It is even against most weather theories that changes occurring with more ghg will cause more sever tornadoes Read wxman's posts. Only cognitive dissonance and recency will fool many into thinking some magic gamblers luck is causing these weather events. We should study and find attribution. We should not go off with a ghg is bad so all the lizards will die, or more tornadoes will happen.

    Are you one of those guys that bets don't pass with maximum odds, cheer when the table loses, and when you lose, claim the odds were in your favor. You just need to bet a little more and you will win eventually.

    There is something we can all understand though. You subsidize insurance where tornadoes and hurricanes are likely to occur, and more people will move there, and build more expensive stuff. This puts more stuff in harms way, and when natural weather happens damages increase.

    I didn't think a simple analogy would need so much explanation.

    I'll give you a strong gambling analogy with taxpayer money. Bob Lutz claims that he doesn't believe in global warming, so he bought a house in the Keys.
    Bob Lutz: Global Warming is a crock of $#%! | JunkScience.com
    I don't really care what he believes, but sea levels are rising. Even if it is slowly and huricane frequency is not increasing, the risk to homes on low lying islands is high. What happens though, is politicians have decided to protect bob lutz by selling him low price insurance. The case against building in New Orleans or galviston is even stronger, yet the US government has promised to cover all bets with taxpayer money.
  16. mojo

    mojo Senior Member

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    Which is where you are delusional.
    Both Hansen and Trenberth base their lies on this premise.They say atmospheric water vapor has increased 8-10% .
    There is no increase in atmospheric water vapor.There is a decrease. water vapor.jpg water vapor2.jpg



  17. wxman

    wxman Member

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    There's a similar concept (I think) in meteorology called "equivalent potential temperature" (Θe). That is the temperature which would occur if all water vapor is condensed out of a parcel of air (and thus all latent heat of evaporation is released). It's actually a very important value in my profession (or was - I retired from full-time meteorology last year (2012)). Is that similar to engineering phase-change tables?

    You actually have a good point about melting of polar ice only during the summer. The premised relative warming of the poles may not be uniform year-around (I personally haven't seen any data; has anyone else?).

    Even then, we still should expect to see a decrease in frequency and intensity of tornado/organized severe weather events during the "secondary" severe weather season which typically occurs in November. To my knowledge, no decreasing trend has been identified.
  18. tochatihu

    tochatihu Senior Member

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    Great to see those graphs @16. They are all from climate4you, which may or may not have a 'methods section' that the interested reader would study.

    The clue of NOAA Earth System Laboraty (often spelled laboratory) led me to
    ESRL Global Monitoring Division - FTP Navigator
    which offers data from 3 sites. Colorado since 1980, Hawaii since 2010, and New Zealand since 2004

    Also to
    NOAA/ESRL/GSD - RAOB
    where global radiosonde data are offered since 1990

    It does not look like climate4you started from either of those sources. I appreciate your efforts so far, but if somebody really wanted to explore this in a , well, publishable way: They'd start with the original data, and see when and if equipment or procedural changes occurred, and then see if the evidence supports decrease, increase, or no detectable change.

    I have pointed to such studies in the past. But in no way would I discourage someone from making the effort.

    Now that wxman is here, we can talk about what happens after the surface (or surface ocean) heats up. More evaporation seems like the necessary first step. But I guess the air just doesn't get wetter and wetter. Instead, rainfall also increases. The water cycle might go faster w/o increased global average humidity.

    If there were more CCN and/or uplift, the rainout might overwhelm the evaporation increase, and then humidity would decrease. AFAICT it's a possibility.

    Now if humidity has increased (suggested by my previous citations and certainly opposed by climte4you), I reckon it hasn't done so by much. I don't think it can go up by much, but I'd appeal that matter to wxman.

    If it can't go up by much, this would seem to put a limit on how much feedback amplification water vapor can put on CO2 forcing. And this is really what we want to know.

    Not being a climate modeler I can't tell if they are doing this right. But I see great value in trying to get it right.
  19. austingreen

    austingreen Senior Member

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    I can't help on thunderstorms, nor do I even understand the theory, but on tornados this was put out this month from noaa
    http://nrc.oarhq.noaa.gov/sites/nrc/Documents/SoS Fact Sheets/SoS.Fact.Sheet.Tornadoes.and.Climate_FINAL_May2013.pdf
    Take a look at the trend of F1-F5, and you will see there isn't one (any discernable trend)

    For the debate there is rivkin
    Terrible Tornadoes in a Changing Climate - NYTimes.com
    And this describes part of the science



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  20. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

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    Mojo's graphs in #16 are relative humidity, meaning humidity corrected for temperature.

    While Wxman may be right that a certain type of storm may not be increasing in frequency with global warming, an atmosphere with more energy is going to be more chaotic and over time have more extreme weather events. That just seems like a no-brainer.

    And in that context, attribution studies are a red herring.
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