Climate Letter #1056

Major heatwave affecting North America, Greenland, the Arctic (and more.)  Here it is described by Joe Romm, plus commentary on how Greenland is also being attacked by melting from below.  The addendum has my comments about the new look at the Climate Reanalyzer weather maps, which are fresher than ever and more informative.
–Addendum.  Starting today, the whole set of maps has been expanded and revised, mostly for the better except now there is no way to read temperatures in Fahrenheit.  The anomaly chart that first comes up is the warmest I have ever seen for the Arctic region, plus 5.3C over just three decades.  There is a big improvement in the precipitation link, where it appears that much more data is being gathered for both rain and snow.  The amount of daily rain cover in some large regions, like the entire western Pacific, is truly amazing.  The old Jet Stream is now called 250 hPa Wind Speed, OK, but  the new “500 hPa Geopot Height” is all about what ???
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Without oceans (and with the current atmosphere) the surface temperature would average 122F.  They presently absorb over 90% over the heat that cannot escape, which is a fortunate arrangement for now.  (Without any greenhouse gas at all we would be more like the moon, around zero F and with huge variations between day and night.  The oceans’ surface today ranges from about 32 F near the poles to 80 F (30 C) in the tropics.  The entire bottom is within a few degrees of the freezing level.)
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Storm waves can heave massive boulders out of the ocean and over cliffs.  A study of boulders along the coast of western Ireland adds new information that backs this controversial belief.  Climate scientists like James Hansen have made similar arguments with respect to dislocated boulders found in the Bahamas, which are believed to signify a potential for superstorms in the Atlantic under certain climate scenarios that include considerably higher sea level.
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Cities exposed to sea level rise now have to worry about their credit ratings along with higher insurance premiums.  This post also starts out with a short video that includes pictures and other material tied to James Hansen’s theories about Atlantic superstorms and flying boulders as mentioned in the previous story.
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How native life in Alaska is being decimated by climate change and thawing permafrost.  This high quality presentation was jointly produced by Inside Climate News and the Weather Channel.
–Also, there is new research about the potential loss of historic sites along the southeastern coast of the US because of impending sea level rise.  Just a one-meter rise could wipe out 13,000 sites, with no real prospect for saving them.
Carl
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