Dr. Jeff Masters on August Heat

August 2012: Earth’s 4th warmest August on record

Published: 3:07 PM GMT on September 18, 2012

August 2012 was the globe’s 4th warmest August on record, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). NASA rated August 2012 the 6th warmest on record. August 2012 global land temperatures were the 2nd warmest on record, and global ocean temperatures were the 5th warmest on record. August 2012 was the 330th consecutive month with global temperatures warmer than the 20th century average; the last time global temperatures were below average was February 1985. Global satellite-measured temperatures in August for the lowest 8 km of the atmosphere were 3rd warmest in the 34-year record, according to the University of Alabama Huntsville (UAH). Wunderground’s weather historian, Christopher C. Burt, has a comprehensive post on the notable weather events of August in his August 2012 Global Weather Extremes Summary.

Figure 1. Departure of temperature from average for August 2012. Most areas of the world experienced much higher-than-average monthly temperatures, including much of Canada, Southeast Europe, and Western Asia. Central Russia was much cooler than average. Image credit: National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) .

El Niño watch continues
Sea surface temperatures were at 0.5°C above average as of September 17 in the equatorial Pacific off the coast of South America, and have been near or above the 0.5°C above average–the threshold needed for a weak El Niño event–since the beginning of July. However, winds, pressures, and cloud cover over the region have not responded in the fashion typically associated with an El Niño, and NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center (CPC) classified conditions as being neutral in their September 6 El Niño discussion. They continued their El Niño watch, and gave a 69% chance that an El Niño event will be in place by the end of September. El Niño conditions tend to decrease Atlantic hurricane activity, by increasing wind shear over the tropical Atlantic. Wind shear has been close to average over the tropical Atlantic since the beginning of hurricane season in June. However, the past few runs of the GFS model have predicted a significant rise in wind shear over the Caribbean and tropical Atlantic by early October, which may represent El Niño finally beginning to kick in and affect the atmospheric circulation over the Atlantic.

Figure 2. Arctic sea ice extent as of September 18, 2012 (black line) compared to the previous record low years, in millions of square kilometers. This year’s extent is far below any previous year, and is close to its minimum for the year. Satellite measurements of ice extent began in 1979. Image credit: Danish Meteorological Institute.

Arctic sea ice falls to all-time record low during August
August 2012 Arctic sea ice extent reached its lowest August extent in the 35-year satellite record, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC). The new sea ice record was set on August 26, a full three weeks before the usual end of the melting season. Every major scientific institution that tracks Arctic sea ice agrees that new records for low ice area, extent, and volume have been set (see the comprehensive collection of sea ice graphs here.) Satellite records of sea ice extent date back to 1979, though a 2011 study by Kinnard et al. shows that the Arctic hasn’t seen a melt like this for at least 1,450 years (see a more detailed article on this over at skepticalscience.com.) The latest September 18, 2012 extent of 3.5 million square kilometers is approximately a 50% reduction in the area of Arctic covered by sea ice, compared to the average from 1979 – 2000. The amount of open ocean exposed this September compared to September 1980 is about 43% of the size of the contiguous United States. The ice extent is close to its minimum for the year, and should start in increase within the next week or two, but that open water over the Arctic will provide a significant amount of heat and moisture to the atmosphere over the next few months that will significantly alter weather patterns. One possible impact may be an increase in the intensity and duration of extreme weather events during fall and winter.

Video 1. This animation shows the 2012 time-series of ice extent using sea ice concentration data from the DMSP SSMI/S satellite sensor. The black area represents the daily average (median) sea ice extent over the 1979-2000 time period. Layered over top of that are the daily satellite measurements from January 1 – September 14, 2012. A rapid melt begins in July, whereby the 2012 ice extents fall far below the historical average. Source: NOAA’s Environmental Visualization Laboratory.

Nadine approaching the Azores
Long-lived Tropical Storm Nadine is headed northeastwards on a track that will bring the storm close to the Azores Islands on Wednesday and Thursday. A tropical storm watch has been posted for the islands of Flores and Corvo in the northwestern Azores. Steering currents for Nadine are expected to weaken on Wednesday, and the storm will move slowly and erratically for many days in the Central Atlantic late this week and early next week. On Friday, Nadine will become tangled up with an upper-level low pressure system, and the storm may partially or fully convert to an extratropical storm. By this weekend, the GFS and ECMWF models predict Nadine will move southwestward over warmer waters, and it could become fully tropical again.

Elsewhere in the Atlantic, thunderstorm activity associated with a tropical wave that moved through the Lesser Antilles Islands yesterday (92L) has diminished, and this wave is no longer a threat to develop. None of the reliable computers models is showing development of a new tropical cyclone in the Atlantic through September 24.

from:    http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/article.html

Solar Activity on the Rise

INCOMING ACTIVE REGIONS: Solar activity has been low for more than a week. This could change in the days ahead as a pair of active regions rotates onto the Earthside of the sun. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded the signs of their approach during the early hours of Sept. 18th:

Pictured above are the magnetic canopies of sunspots. Plasma-filled magnetic loops towering more than 50,000 km above the sun’s eastern limb herald the approach of the active regions, possibly turning a pair of flare centers toward Earth as the week unfolds. Amateur astronomers witth backyard solar telescopes should train their optics on the eastern limb; solar activity is in the offing.

from: spaceweather.com

More Mars Mysteries

Mystery Spheres on Mars

Sept. 14, 2012:  NASA’s long-lived rover Opportunity has returned an image of the Martian surface that is puzzling researchers.

Spherical objects concentrated at an outcrop called Kirkwood on the western rim of Endeavour Crater differ in several ways from iron-rich spherules nicknamed “blueberries” the rover found at its landing site in early 2004.

“This is one of the most extraordinary pictures from the whole mission,” said Opportunity’s principal investigator, Steve Squyres of Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y. “Kirkwood is chock full of a dense accumulation of these small spherical objects. Of course, we immediately thought of the blueberries, but this is something different. We never have seen such a dense accumulation of spherules in a rock outcrop on Mars.”

Mystery Spheres on Mars (splash)

Using its Microscopic Imager, Opportunity photographed these small spherical objects on Sept. 6, 2012. The view covers an area about 2.4 inches across at an outcrop called “Kirkwood” on the western rim of Endeavour Crater. Larger image

The spheres measure as much as one-eighth of an inch (3 millimeters) in diameter. The analysis is still preliminary, but it indicates that these spheres do not have the high iron content of Martian blueberries.

The Martian blueberries found elsewhere by Opportunity are concretions formed by action of mineral-laden water inside rocks, evidence of a wet environment on early Mars. Concretions result when minerals precipitate out of water to become hard masses inside sedimentary rocks. Many of the Kirkwood spheres are broken and eroded by the wind. Where wind has partially etched them away, a concentric structure is evident.

Opportunity used the microscopic imager on its arm to look closely at Kirkwood. Researchers checked the spheres’ composition by using an instrument called the Alpha Particle X-Ray Spectrometer on Opportunity’s arm.

“They seem to be crunchy on the outside, and softer in the middle,” Squyres said. “They are different in concentration. They are different in structure. They are different in composition. They are different in distribution. So, we have a wonderful geological puzzle in front of us. We have multiple working hypotheses, and we have no favorite hypothesis at this time. It’s going to take a while to work this out, so the thing to do now is keep an open mind and let the rocks do the talking.”

Just past Kirkwood lies another science target area for Opportunity. The location is an extensive pale-toned outcrop in an area of Cape York where observations from orbit have detected signs of clay minerals. That may be the rover’s next study site after Kirkwood. Four years ago, Opportunity departed Victoria Crater, which it had investigated for two years, to reach different types of geological evidence at the rim of the much larger Endeavour Crater.

The rover’s energy levels are favorable for the investigations. Spring equinox comes this month to Mars’ southern hemisphere, so the amount of sunshine for solar power will continue increasing for months.  Indeed, Opportunity is on the verge of completing the first Martian Marathon.

“The rover is in very good health considering its 8-1/2 years of hard work on the surface of Mars,” said Mars Exploration Rover Project Manager John Callas of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. “Energy production levels are comparable to what they were a full Martian year ago, and we are looking forward to productive spring and summer seasons of exploration.”

from:    http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2012/14sep_mysteryspheres/

The Problem of Exorcism in Poland — Read about It!

Exorcism boom in Poland sees magazine launch

WARSAW: With exorcism booming in Poland, Roman Catholic priests here have joined forces with a publisher to launch what they claim is the world’s first monthly magazine focused exclusively on chasing out the devil.

“The rise in the number or exorcists from four to more than 120 over the course of 15 years in Poland is telling,” Father Aleksander Posacki, a professor of philosophy, theology and leading demonologist and exorcist told reporters in Warsaw at the Monday launch of the Egzorcysta monthly.

Ironically, he attributed the rise in demonic possessions in what remains one of Europe’s most devoutly Catholic nations partly to the switch from atheist communism to free market capitalism in 1989.

“It’s indirectly due to changes in the system: capitalism creates more opportunities to do business in the area of occultism. Fortune telling has even been categorised as employment for taxation,” Posacki told AFP.

“If people can make money out of it, naturally it grows and its spiritual harm grows too,” he said, hastening to add authentic exorcism is absolutely free of charge.

Posacki, who also serves on an international panel of expert Roman Catholic exorcists, highlighted what he termed the “helplessness of various schools of psychology and psychiatry” when confronted with extreme behaviours that conventional therapies fail to cure.

“Possession comes as a result of committing evil. Stealing, killing and other sins,” he told reporters, adding that evil spirits are chased out using a guide of ritual prayers approved by Polish-born pope John Paul II in 1999.

“Our hands are full,” admitted fellow exorcist and Polish Roman Catholic priest Father Andrzej Grefkowicz, revealing exorcists have a three month waiting list in the capital Warsaw.

Priests performing exorcism also work with psychiatrists in order to avoid mistaking mental illness for possession, he said.

“I’ve invited psychiatrists to meetings when I’ve had doubts about a case and often we’ve both concluded the issue is mental illness, hysteria, not possession,” he said.

According to both exorcists, depictions of demonic possession in horror films are largely accurate.

“It manifests itself in the form of screams, shouting, anger, rage – threats are common,” Posacki said.

“Manifestation in the form or levitation is less common, but does occur and we must speak about it – I’ve seen it with my own eyes,” he added.

With its 62-page first issue including articles titled “New Age – the spiritual vacuum cleaner” and “Satan is real”, the Egzorcysta monthly with a print-run of 15,000 by the Polwen publishers is selling for 10 zloty (2.34 euros, 3.10 dollars) per copy. – AFP

from:    http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2012/9/11/reutersworld/1209110726-exorcism-boom-in-poland-sees-magazine-l

September 9-15

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Overall Color for the Week:    Light Opal

The theme this week is one of signs and portents.  It would be well for you to be aware of these things when they appear.  There will also be a number of repetitive incidents, phrases spoken by other people, just stuff happening and then happening again.  This is all related to the time line shift that is going on right now.  There is an overlap in some places and cases.  When these things occur, pay attention to the surrounding circumstances, as they are not random.  The times and the energies are becoming more demanding more unattached to the way things used to be.  This will lead to more and more people checking out.  It is good to take the larger perspective in relation to things this week.  This is al part of the pattern that is forming, and it is not fair to make decisions and determine outcomes before you have greater information.

On a personal level, you will dangle the glitz in front of you.  It is time for you to choose whether you will be bedazzled by what seems to be real or choose to do the work and find out what is true for you.  These are all choices, and in this case, there is neither right nor wrong.  You are finding for yourself in this energy what you can do.  We all do our best, and so do you.  The best you can do is often the first step for moving on to the challenges that lie behind the stuff you can get done.  Stay away from those who wish to judge.  There are a lot of people out there now doing that.  For them judgment is a way of convincing themselves from the necessity of facing their own reality, their own truth.  They do now wish to se t, so they are challenging you to be something else.  Take time.  Use tour perspective.  You know better.  You are moving beyond that framework.  You are changing..

You can do as you wish.  So know that what you choose is what you desire.

On the larger scale, oh dear.  And that says it all. So much will be happening this week.  Things week brings challenges and realizations.  Earth movements.  Storms.  Weirdness Heads will spin as numbers rise and fall — financial markets, candidate’s statistics, number of storms, people affected, victims…  Really, how much can people believe???  And so on.  This is a week of so much. IT is time to find a handhold, a ground.  There are so many who will be going crazy this week.  Meanwhile, more and more people are checking out.  It is time to honor the choices that people are making.  It is time to look at things differently.  Travel will be disrupted.  Health care will be in the news.  And there will be some incredible revelations.  And then there are those who cannot, choose not, are not able to see things in a new framework.  Believe it or not, it is all good.  We sail these seas together and there are those who see the journey to its end and those who find other harbors.

Sunday, September 9:    Pink Pink

There are lessons in the air today.  There are questions.  And the two are not necessarily related.  Because of this, you might find yourself a bit confused in all that is going on.  That is okay.  The day’s energy calls for you to bring ot your childlike nature.  Delight in conundrums.  Take joy in the ridiculous.  There is much wisdom in folly, and so may have forgotten that.  The disconnect between cause and effect is growing.  This is a day on which you will begin to appreciate what that means and to accept that things do not necessarily have to follow the logical and the linear.  It will be interesting also to see those around you who are not getting it.  Be patient with them for their range of vision is such that they cannot see beyond what should be directly in front of them.  This is not a time for challenging, rather it is a time for compassion.

Monday, September 10:    Red Orange

Things that you were waiting for are not going to be coming through today.  There is too much confusion in the air.  You can find yourself forgetting things, saying things that are out of character, and focusing too much on stuff that really is not all that important.  Before you make a choice, think carefully as to whether or not that is what you are really wanting.  Because of the distraction in the air, it is hard to know what is right and what is not really what you were thinking of.  There are many things going on below the surface today.   Most of them are themes or reverberations that have yet to make themselves known on this level.  You are feeling some of this, and it can throw you off a bit.  So, take time to center and ground.  Step back from the action.  Focus on what is in front of you, and know that things will be more coherent tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 11:    Straw Yellow

Memories will be at the forefront today, as you find yourself being reminded of all sorts of things.   This can leave you wondering because the things that are coming up are things you have not even considered for years.  There are issues that we have yet to confront, things we thought we were finished with, themes that need to be put away.  This is a day for getting rid of a lot of that stuff.  It is like cobwebs in your life.  It is time to sweep them away.  So when the stuff comes up, see it for what it was, thank it, let it go, and move on.  The rest of the week will bring you much new information as well as some challenging situations that you will want to have room for.  You are setting new priorities, and it is good not to be burdened by things that no longer have a meaningful place in your life.

Wednesday, September 12:    Light Red Orange

This is a day for making certain realizations about self and others.  When they come to you, through a word, a gesture, a look, take them for what they are.  They are how each person is responding to the energetic shifts and movements.  There is a larger theme behind this all, and part of it is related to the connection a person has with the Earth.  Gaia’s frequency affects all here, and we react to it according to how we are tuned in … or not.  The energies shift and change these days.  Today you will be feeling a tug, a pull to the level on which you find your most important representation.  You are moving into knowing WHO you are in new ways.  There are, as always, choices to be made.  Whether you can see yourself in your total potential or whether you are pleased with the way things are.

Thursday, September 13:    Cloudy White

Do not worry.  Thins are going to turn out fine.  There is just so much stuff in the energetic atmosphere today that everything is hazy and confused.  It is a good day for knowing what you are going to do and how you are going to do it.  Say grounded and focused and centered and you can come through all the ups and downs and challenges of the day with flying colors.  There will be many distractions along the way, hence the need for being strong in your core.  There is also some perspective that you will be acquiring as the day winds to an end.  Things are changing for you, and it is time to know what it is that is really important for you at this point in time.  You will find it helpful to do some centering exercise this evening, whether journaling, meditating, yoga, scream therapy, etc.   Whatever works for you.  And your dreams will be quite interesting.


WIliam Binney NSA Whistleblower

The Program

By Laura Poitras

The Program: The filmmaker Laura Poitras profiles William Binney, a 32-year veteran of the National Security Agency who helped design a top-secret program he says is broadly collecting Americans’ personal data.

Published: August 22, 2012

It took me a few days to work up the nerve to phone William Binney. As someone already a “target” of the United States government, I found it difficult not to worry about the chain of unintended consequences I might unleash by calling Mr. Binney, a 32-year veteran of the National Security Agency turned whistle-blower. He picked up. I nervously explained I was a documentary filmmaker and wanted to speak to him. To my surprise he replied: “I’m tired of my government harassing me and violating the Constitution. Yes, I’ll talk to you.”

Two weeks later, driving past the headquarters of the N.S.A. in Maryland, outside Washington, Mr. Binney described details about Stellar Wind, the N.S.A.’s top-secret domestic spying program begun after 9/11, which was so controversial that it nearly caused top Justice Department officials to resign in protest, in 2004.

“The decision must have been made in September 2001,” Mr. Binney told me and the cinematographer Kirsten Johnson. “That’s when the equipment started coming in.” In this Op-Doc, Mr. Binney explains how the program he created for foreign intelligence gathering was turned inward on this country. He resigned over this in 2001 and began speaking out publicly in the last year. He is among a group of N.S.A. whistle-blowers, including Thomas A. Drake, who have each risked everything — their freedom, livelihoods and personal relationships — to warn Americans about the dangers of N.S.A. domestic spying.

To those who understand state surveillance as an abstraction, I will try to describe a little about how it has affected me. The United States apparently placed me on a “watch-list” in 2006 after I completed a film about the Iraq war. I have been detained at the border more than 40 times. Once, in 2011, when I was stopped at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York and asserted my First Amendment right not to answer questions about my work, the border agent replied, “If you don’t answer our questions, we’ll find our answers on your electronics.”’ As a filmmaker and journalist entrusted to protect the people who share information with me, it is becoming increasingly difficult for me to work in the United States. Although I take every effort to secure my material, I know the N.S.A. has technical abilities that are nearly impossible to defend against if you are targeted.

The 2008 amendments to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which oversees the N.S.A. activities, are up for renewal in December. Two members of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Senators Ron Wyden of Oregon and Mark Udall of Colorado, both Democrats, are trying to revise the amendments to insure greater privacy protections. They have been warning about “secret interpretations” of laws and backdoor “loopholes” that allow the government to collect our private communications. Thirteen senators have signed a letter expressing concern about a “loophole” in the law that permits the collection of United States data. The A.C.L.U. and other groups have also challenged the constitutionality of the law, and the Supreme Court will hear arguments in that case on Oct. 29.

Laura Poitras is a documentary filmmaker who has been nominated for an Academy Award and whose work was exhibited in the 2012 Whitney Biennial. She is working on a trilogy of films about post-9/11 America. This Op-Doc is adapted from a work in progress to be released in 2013.

This video is part of a series by independent filmmakers who have received grants from the BRITDOC Foundation and the Sundance Institute. 

not sure whether the video link came through, you can get it here:    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/23/opinion/the-national-security-agencys-domestic-spying-program.html

August 2012 Weather Extremes

August 2012 Global Weather Extremes Summary

Published: 5:52 AM GMT on September 04, 2012

August 2012 Global Weather Extremes Summary

There is never a dull month when it comes to extreme weather and August 2012 was no exception. The month began with a massive flood in Manila, Philippines and an intense heat wave in the south-central U.S. Two very sharp heat waves affected much of Europe during the 2nd and 3rd weeks of the month smashing records from Spain to Poland and the Ukraine. Typhoons walloped coastal sections of China and Hurricane Isaac thrashed the U.S. Gulf Coast.

Below is a summary some of the month’s highlights.


An intense heat wave in the southern plains exacerbated the on-going drought conditions and the temperature at Oklahoma City reached 113°F (45°C), the warmest temperature ever measured in the city. By mid-August, however, a very cool air mass invaded most of the central portion of the country and temperatures even fell to freezing at a few locations in Minnesota and Wisconsin. In spite, of the mid-month cool down some sites have ended up enduring their hottest summer on record. Denver, Colorado has averaged 76.3° for its climatological summer (June-August) beating its former warmest summer of 1954 by a full 2°F (old record was 74.3°F). The warmest temperature in the world during August was 126°F (52.2°C) measured at Death Valley, California on August 9th.

Sub-tropical moisture brought intense rainfall to portions of the desert southwest on August 22nd. Las Vegas, Nevada recorded its 2nd wettest calendar day on record with 1.68” that caused flash flooding resulting in one drowning death in the city. (Mesquite, near Las Vegas, picked up 2.04”, its greatest 24-hour rainfall on record/since 1992). Some other desert locations measured over 4” of rain in just a few hours (4.03” at Mid Hills RAWS in San Bernardino County, California—about what this site might expect in an entire year). One site in Nevada’s Mohave County, Wikieup, received 1.42” of rain in just 30 minutes. Ironically, Seattle, Washington (normally perceived as wetter than Las Vegas!) received no measureable precipitation during the entire month of August, and of this writing, is approaching its record of 51 rain-free days set in 1951 (last rainfall this summer was on July 22nd).

Hurricane Isaac made landfall in Louisiana on August 27 as a CAT 1 storm although its large size, strong storm surge (as high as 13’,) and central pressure (as low as 966mb) was more indicative of a strong CAT 2 cyclone. Seven storm-related deaths were reported mostly associated with the 15-20” rainfalls that fell along the path of the slow moving storm. The damage (at least US$2 billion) caused by Isaac is still under review as of this writing.

Flooding reminiscent of Hurricane Katrina ravaged some New Orleans-area neighborhoods like Plaquemines Parish southeast of the city. Ironically, Isaac struck virtually on the 7th anniversary of Katrina. Photo by Carolyn Cole, Los Angeles Times).

Hurricane Ernesto struck the western coast of Mexico on August 9th resulting in the deaths of two.

The Arctic measured its lowest sea ice extent since observations began in 1975. By August 26th the ice extent had shrunk to 1.58 million square miles, about 277,000 square miles less than the previous record low set in September 2007.

The coldest temperature measured in the northern hemisphere during August was -36.1°C (-33.0°F) at Summit AWS, Greenland on August 30th.


Tartagal, Argentina recorded a temperature of 38.8°C (101.8°F) on August 22nd a record for the month at that location.


Europe experienced its most intense heat wave since the famous heat wave of 2003 and, in fact, many locations measured even higher temperatures than that occasion. All-time national heat records were set in the Czech Republic (40.4°C/104.7°F at Dobrichovice on August 20th), Moldova (42.4°C/108.3°F at Falesti on August 7th), and Montenegro (44.8°C/112.6°F at Danilovgrad on August 8th). In the Pyrenees along the French and Spanish border virtually every site recorded its warmest temperature on record. For more details on the European heat waves of August see my previous blog on the subject. Wild fires have raged out of control in both Spain and Greece with several fatalities reported from the Spanish resort area around Marbella.

August weather extremes for the United Kingdom are not yet available.

An intense wild fire threatens a beach resort on the island of Chios in the Greek archipelago on August 18th. Photo from EPA archives.


Monsoonal rains resulted in deadly floods in Nigeria and Cameroon during the month. At least 14 flood-related deaths were reported in Cameroon’s north region and at least 15 in Nigeria’s central provinces.

On August 25th and 26th the temperature peaked at 42.5°C (108.5°F) at Mtunzini, South Africa. This was not only a winter record for South Africa but also close to the warmest temperature ever measured in the southern hemisphere during the winter months (44°C has been recorded at Villamontes, Bolivia during previous Augusts). Needless to say, this was the warmest temperature measured in the southern hemisphere during this past August.


Although this years summer monsoons have failed to materialize in much of South Asia, heavy rains in the mountains of northern Pakistan on August 20-23 resulted in flash floods that drowned at least 26.

It was a very active month typhoon-wise in the Western Pacific. Notable typhoons struck Macao and Hong Kong including Typhoon Kai-tak that caused winds to gust to 87 mph at Hong Kong’s International Airport on August 23 and 27 lives were lost in China’s Guangdong and Guangxi Provinces. It was the strongest typhoon to hit Hong Kong since 1999. Typhoon Bolaven was the strongest typhoon to hit the Korean Peninsula since 2002 when it roared ashore on August 28th. At least 18 deaths (mostly fisherman) were reported as a result of the storm with at least a further 48 fatalities reported just recently from North Korea.

The biggest weather story of the month in Asia, however, was the tremendous flood that engulfed Manila in the Philippines between July 31-August 8th. Up to 1000 mm (40”) of rain was reported to have fallen in Quezon City during the week of rains and there were some 60 fatalities reported. For details about the flood see Angela Fritz’s August blog on the subject.

Manila’s streets turned into lakes during the phenomenal flood that affected the city the first week of August. Photo by Jof Cubol.


Australia had a warmer and drier August than normal, reversing (temperature-wise) the cold weather endured over much of the country the previous July. It was Western Australia’s driest August since 1995 and 2nd warmest August on record.

A very warm month virtually nation-wide for Australia this past August (top map). Precipitation was also below normal in most of the country, especially in portions of Western Australia where it was the driest August on record (bottom map). Maps courtesy of the Australian Bureau of Meteorology.

The warmest temperature recorded in Australia during this past August was 38.5°C (101.3°F) at Fitzroy Crossing, Western Australia on August 27th and the coldest -4.9°C (23.2°F) at Thredbo Top Station, New South Wales on August 6th. The greatest calendar day precipitation was 73.0mm (2.87”) at Mount Sabine, Victoria on August 18th.


It was generally a mild and wet August in New Zealand although there was a sharp contrast in precipitation totals on the South Island where anomalies ran the gamut from 10% to 400% of normal!

The extreme anomaly between very dry and very wet weather that affected the South Island in August can be seen in this map above. Map courtesy of NIWA.

The highest temperature recorded was 22.7°C (72.9°F) at Christchurch, South Island on August 26th and the lowest -5.3°C (22.5°F) at Ranfurly on August 23rd. The greatest calendar day rainfall was 198 mm (7.80”) at Akaroa on August 25th.


The coldest temperature in the southern hemisphere and the world during August was -80.0°C (-112.0°F) recorded at Vostok on August 7th.

KUDOS Thanks to Maximiliano Herrera for global temperature extremes data, Stephen Burt for the U.K. extremes, and Jeremy Budd and NIWA for New Zealand weather extremes.

from:    http://www.wunderground.com/blog/weatherhistorian/article.html

Jeff Masters on NE Weather, Leslie, Michael, & New Waves

Severe weather in the Northeast U.S.; updates on 90L, 91L, Leslie and Michael

Published: 4:07 PM GMT on September 08, 2012

A significant severe weather outbreak is underway today across much of the Northeastern U.S., including metro New York City and Philadelphia. NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center has placed the region in their “Moderate Risk” area for severe weather. A fall-like low pressure system with a very powerful cold front will sweep through the region today, triggering widespread severe thunderstorms that may organize into a “derecho” event with damaging winds covering a large swath of the Northeast. A few tornadoes may accompany the event, and several tornado warnings have already been issued in New York, with a possible tornado touchdown in the Point Breeze section of the Rockaway peninsula in Queens. The same storm system killed four people on Friday in northeast Oklahoma; three of the deaths occurred when strong thunderstorms winds blew a mobile home into a ravine. Record heat was observed in advance of the storm’s cold front yesterday; Wichita Falls, TX hit a record high of 109, the hottest temperature ever recorded there so late in the season. When the cold front blew through at 7 pm CDT, the temperature dropped 15 degrees in 16 minutes, falling to 66 degrees by midnight. Wunderground meteorologist Shaun Tanner has more on the severe weather potential for the Northeast in his blog.

Figure 1. Severe weather potential for Saturday, September 8, 2012.

90L in the Gulf not a threat to develop
A partial remnant of Hurricane Isaac off the coast of the Florida Panhandle, Invest 90L, continues to be disrupted by wind shear, and no longer has time to develop before landfall occurs along the Florida Gulf Coast tonight or Sunday. Visible satellite loops show that 90L has a small area of poorly organized heavy thunderstorms, which will bring some areas of heavy rain to Florida today and Sunday.

Leslie still struggling with cool waters
Tropical Storm Leslie continues to feel the impact of the the cool waters it stirred up due to its long pause south of Bermuda, and remains a 65 mph tropical storm. The storm has no eyewall, as seen on satellite loops, but has cleared out a large cloud-free center. As Leslie continues to move north over warmer water, the storm should be able to build an eyewall and become at least a Category 1 hurricane. However, Leslie is expected to pass far enough to the east of Bermuda today and tonight that top winds of 45 mph will be observed on the island. Bermuda radar shows a large area of heavy rain from Leslie is very close to the island.

Figure 2. Morning radar image of Tropical Storm Leslie from the Bermuda radar.

Forecast for Leslie
The strong trough of low pressure pulling Leslie to the north will bring Leslie very close to Newfoundland, Canada by Tuesday night or Wednesday morning. At that time, Leslie should be weakening due to cooler waters and increased wind shear, and is likely to be a tropical storm. Heavy rain will be the main threat to Newfoundland. The latest 11 am EDT NHC wind probability forecast calls for a 24% chance that Leslie will be a Category 1 or stronger hurricane Wednesday morning at 8 am EDT, when the storm will be near Newfoundland. Even if the core of Leslie misses Newfoundland, the island will still likely experience tropical storm-force winds, since 39+ mph winds will probably extend outward from its center 180 miles to its west on Tuesday and Wednesday. Large swells from Leslie continue to pounding the entire Eastern Seaboard, and are creating beach erosion and dangerous rip currents.

Figure 3. Hurricane Michael as seen by NASA’s Aqua satellite at 11:50 am EDT Friday September 7, 2012. At the time, Michael was a Category 2 hurricane with 105 mph winds. Image credit: NASA.

Hurricane Michael weakens to Category 2
Hurricane Michael remains a Category 2 storm with 105 mph winds, out over the open mid-Atlantic Ocean. Satellite loops show that Michael is still an impressive storm with a well-developed eye. None of the models show that Michael will threaten any land areas during the coming five days, and Michael will likely die at sea over cold waters northeast of Newfoundland in 5 – 7 days.

91L off the coast of Africa
A tropical wave that emerged off the coast of Africa on Friday has been designated Invest 91L by NHC today. Most of the reliable computer models are predicting that 91L will develop into a tropical depression by Wednesday. None of the reliable computer models foresee that this storm will be a threat to the Lesser Antilles Islands, but it is still early to be assuming that 91L will recurve harmlessly out to sea.

ERuptionon the Sun

ENTANGLED ERUPTION: Interrupting days of quiet, sunspot AR1564 erupted on Saturday, Sept. 8th, producing an M1-class solar flare. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Obervatory (SDO) recorded the extreme ultraviolet flash:

The movie shows more than just a single flare. This eruption was “entangled.” A magnetic tendril guided a wave of hot plasma all the way from the blast site to another active region (AR1562) on the western limb ~250,000 km away.

Since SDO was launched in 2010, the observatory has recorded hundreds of entangled eruptions. Sometimes they spread like a chain reaction to involve nearly the entire sun. A good example is the global eruption of August 2010. The moral to this story: One little flare can go a long way.

from:    spaceweather.com

Homeopathy & Pets


Homeopathy is a form of energy therapy that is used cure animals, like dogs, that are sick, have parasites or are in pain. It is a means of curing and strengthening the weakened electro magnetic field to make the dog feel stronger and rejuvenated.
What it is
Based on the thought “like cures like”, homeopathy believes that a medicine can cure a sick animal only if it can cause a similar sickness in a healthy animal. For example, a bee sting can be treated by a medicine, which has the same diluted venom.
Can it be used along with allopathy
Homeopathic medicines can be used even if allopathic or other medicines are being used, but it is believed that their effectiveness decreases if drugs, pesticides, cortisone and other immune depressive chemicals are being used.
Precautions while homeopathic medicines are being used.
· Homeopathy is an energy medicine and thus the dog should NOT be given garlic, onions, ginger and other root nodules during the course.
· Homeopathic medicines should be taken at least ½ hour before and an hour after eating. They should not be touched by hand and be given in the precise quantity mentioned.
· The potency of the medicine decides the effectiveness of the medicine. A drug that is less potent would require a stronger dosage than one, which is not.
Prevention of disease
· Homeopathy can be used in place of the rabies vaccine. It works by protecting the body by developing a stronger immune system. The chances of the dog turning rabid despite being given the vaccine inoculation are relatively reduced.
· It helps dogs affected by paralysis and deranged Central Nervous System symptoms, chasing imaginary objects in the air or snapping their jaws rhythmically in the air at nothing.
· Homeopathy in this light is PALLIATIVE as it prevents any breakdown of an organ and instead looks at preventive cure or at inducing a cure from the organ itself.
· Rabies, Canine Distemper and Aluminium as an ingredient in vaccines or as a pollutant in the food chain are known to be causative factors leading to skin problems, endocrine and digestion deficiencies, allergies, toxicities of the liver, kidney and heart with resulting failure of these organs.
· Allopathy can cause cysts and tumours, which are produced in the ovaries and the pancreas resulting in extreme abdominal pain at times even pushing the dog into a state of insulin coma. Homeopathy does not involve such doses of any medication and thus does not harm the dog.
· Breakdown of the body by allopathic medicines is not surprising as the widespread use of pathogens affects the brain, the central nervous system and thus affects each organ and tissue of the body.
· The pup can start on homeopathic medication by the time it is 3 months old. The puppy starts a series of six valent modified live oral vaccination 2-3 weeks apart until 6 months old and then a 6 month or yearly booster can be given.
· The requisite gap between vaccinations is around 6 weeks for the immune stimulating process to recover in order to respond properly to the next dose.
· Puppies are given medications for Canine Distemper, Hepatitis, Leptospirosis, Corona, Parvo and Kennel Cough all in one vaccine. The first three are in one vaccine with the Leukaemia vaccine is separate.
· Rabies vaccine uses a modified live virus (still preferred by health care individuals) but lately killed Rabies is also available. This is given when the pup is 4 months old and then when he turns one. Sometimes booster shots are given every three years.
· You may not find oral homeopathic vaccines over the counter but check with vets and homeopaths.
· If breed dogs are treated with homeopathy, their offspring (at least second and third generation) may not be susceptible to breed problems such as hip dysplasia, wobblers, bloat, colic, inter-digestion pyoderma, elongated soft palates and hypothyroidism.
Homeopathy vs Vaccinations: Why Homeopathy is better
· The flaws of vaccination are the strengths of homeopathy. A vaccine with more than two viruses and/or bacteria decreases the presence of antibodies in the immune system of the dog making him more prone to sickness.
· Sicknesses like Canine Hepatitis and Leptospirosis require only one homeopathic vaccine for immunity for life. They DO NOT need a yearly booster.
· Homeopathic prevention is an option as it DOES NOT interfere with the immune system and aids in building a strong life force in the animal.
· Homeopathy vaccines can be used as treatment or prevention of the targeted disease entity. The parvo-homeopathic vaccine nosode is being used to treat the disease caused by the Parvo virus as well as to prevent it.
· Injections and boosters are traumatic and painful. Homeopathy is a more humane option.
Using Homeopathy

· Most homeopathic medicines can be used to treat any sort of sickness in the dog. The following medicines with corresponding potencies are available, however you can opt for a higher or lower potent drug depending on availability. These are twelve tissue salts that are safe for the dog
– Calcarea flour
– Calcarea Phos
– Calcarea sulph
– Ferrum phos
– Kali mur
– Kali phos
– Kali sulph
– Magnesium phos
– Natrum mur
– Natrum phos
– Natrum
– Silicea
· These are all available in potencies ranging from 1X being the strongest going down to 6X. You should choose one depending on the age of the dog.
· Ideally a small dog should not have a drug with a potency of 1X, although homeopathic medicine even in higher potencies is not really harmful.
The following are some common homeopathic medicines
– Aconite
– Arnica 30C
– Arsenic alb 200
– Belladonna 30C
– Hypericum 200
– Calendula 30C/ Q (Q potency indicates original solution and should be used for only external application)

for more, go to:    http://pets.indiatimes.com/articleshow/1060672766.cms