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Snow In Houston?—Winter Weather Links

Some snow is expected in Houston this upcoming Thursday night/Friday morning.

(Update 2/4/11–We got ice rather than snow.)

(Above–A 20 inch snowstorm hit Houston in 1895. This picture was taken at the intersection of Travis and Prairie in Houston.)

Here is a list of Houston snowfalls since 1895.

(Update--Here is my rolling blackout post.)

At least one inch of snow is possible in Houston. Though just how much snow we get, and if we get any ice, will be determined by the course of the storm.

While that might not be big news in much of the country, it rarely snows in Houston.

While the bad weather in Houston will pass soon enough, it is good opportunity to learn more about snow and winter weather.

What is snow? Here are basic facts about snow from Clouds R Us.com

“Snow forms if the air in a cloud is below freezing. The water vapour then turns to ice instead of rain and the tiny ice crystals stick together until they form snowflakes. When they get heavy enough to fall, they drop out of the clouds. At this point though, we still don’t know whether they will end up as rain or remain as snow. This depends on the temperature of the air they travel through on the way down to the ground. If it gets warmer, they turn into rain, but if the air stays close to freezing all the way down, then the snowflakes will make it without melting and so fall as snow. If this occurs in a mountain area, it is possible for snow to be falling on the mountaintop while lower down in the valley the air is warmer and so it is raining instead.”

The National Snow & Ice Data Center has plenty of information about–yes–snow and ice.

Snowcrystals.com will tell you all need to know about snowflakes.

Here are tips about surviving a blizzard.

Here are 22 tips for driving on an icy road.

No matter where you are, please be careful on the roads.

And no matter what anybody says, don’t believe the false logic that winter weather in a warm place means that global warming is not true.

In fact, 2010 was the warmest year on Earth so far recorded. 2010 was part of trend that has gone on for some time now.

(Below–Picture I took at Houston Ship Channel during December 4, 2009 snowfall. Photo copyright Neil Aquino.)

February 2, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The World Is Getting Warmer And Warmer And Warmer—It Gets Warmer Year After Year After Year

The world is getting warmer and warmer.

The National Atmospheric And Oceanic Administration has released data that shows that the world is getting warmer.

Above is a NOAA graphic illustrating the warming world.

From a NOAA summary of the report

“While year-to-year changes in temperature often reflect natural climatic variations such as El Niño/La Niña events, changes in average temperature from decade-to-decade reveal long-term trends such as global warming. Each of the last three decades has been much warmer than the decade before. At the time, the 1980s was the hottest decade on record. In the 1990s, every year was warmer than the average of the previous decade. The 2000s were warmer still. The temperature increase of one degree Fahrenheit over the past 50 years may seem small, but it has already altered our planet,” said Deke Arndt, co-editor of the report and chief of the Climate Monitoring Branch of NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center. “Glaciers and sea ice are melting, heavy rainfall is intensifying and heat waves are more common. And, as the new report tells us, there is now evidence that over 90 percent of warming over the past 50 years has gone into our ocean.”..More and more, Americans are witnessing the impacts of climate change in their own backyards, including sea-level rise, longer growing seasons, changes in river flows, increases in heavy downpours, earlier snowmelt and extended ice-free seasons in our waters.”

Here is the full NOAA report.

Many people think this is all a scam.

It is not a scam.

July 29, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Average Texas Temperatures—Texas Progressive Alliance Round-Up

File:Map of Texas temperatures.jpg

Here is the latest round-up of the Texas Progressive Alliance. The TPA is a confederation of the best political bloggers in Texas.

With the round-up this week, I’m offering up a graphic of the average annual temperatures in Texas.

It is not just so that it seems hot if you live in Texas. It really is hot quite a lot of the time.

I’d had other plans for this post, but events have knocked me off schedule. I had planned more text, but the above chart has different colors and a bunch of numbers and should provide at least a measure of distraction.

Here is the round-up—

TXsharon is not the only one who thinks CHK shareholders are getting drilled by the Shale Gas Shell GameBluedaze: DRILLING REFORM FOR TEXAS.

Off the Kuff talks about how to really put the unemployed back to work.

“You knew you were at the Texas Democratic Party Convention when …” at PDiddie’s Brains and Eggs. Continue reading

July 11, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

Snow In Houston—What Is Snow?

(Blogger’s Note—This is updated for the February, 2011 Houston snow.)

It is snowing in Houston today. One to two inches are expected.

(Here is a picture I took of the above mentioned snowfall in Houston. And here is another.)

(Above–Woman wearing mini-skirt in a 1969 New York City snowstorm.)

While that might not be big news in much of the country, it rarely snows in Houston.

Today’s snow is the earliest recorded snowfall ever in Houston.

What is snow? Here are basic facts about snow from Clouds R Us.com

“Snow forms if the air in a cloud is below freezing. The water vapour then turns to ice instead of rain and the tiny ice crystals stick together until they form snowflakes. When they get heavy enough to fall, they drop out of the clouds. At this point though, we still don’t know whether they will end up as rain or remain as snow. This depends on the temperature of the air they travel through on the way down to the ground. If it gets warmer, they turn into rain, but if the air stays close to freezing all the way down, then the snowflakes will make it without melting and so fall as snow. If this occurs in a mountain area, it is possible for snow to be falling on the mountaintop while lower down in the valley the air is warmer and so it is raining instead.”

The National Snow & Ice Data Center has plenty of information about–yes–snow and ice.

Ice is part of the story in Houston today because there is concern that the roads will freeze this evening and overnight.

Snowcrystals.com will tell you all need to know about snowflakes.

Here are tips about surviving a blizzard.

Here are 22 tips for driving on an icy road.

Please be careful on the roads.

Please slow down and be careful on all the highways of life.

We won’t be snowbound very long in Houston. By Tuesday we are forecast to be back up to 71 degrees.

(Below–A 1966 North Dakota blizzard.)

December 4, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 2 Comments

Will Hurricane Ike Kill Enough People In Cuba That It Becomes Less Of A Gulf Threat?

Flooded streets of Baracoa in eastern Cuba 7 September

I know that people use language incorrectly sometimes. I make mistakes in what words I choose. But I can’t help but notice that I’ve heard at least two weather reporters express hope that Hurricane Ike is sufficiently weakened while passing over Cuba, so that it becomes less of a threat for wherever in the Gulf of Mexico it lands.

( Above is damage in Cuba from Ike.)

Yet the longer Hurricane Ike stays over Cuba, the more harm it will do to people in Cuba. Instead of making it a zero-sum issue of who suffers to what degree, I imagine the hope people have is that the storm weakens in a way that harms as few people as possible. It would take just a small bit more extra effort to express concerns over the storm in that more helpful way.

Here is the National Weather Service report on Hurricane Ike.

September 8, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Good News—Tropical Storm Warning Pushes Out Air Quality Alert

A tropical storm warning in Houston has apparently pushed out the air quality alert from earlier in the day. The National Weather Service forecast for Houston no longer makes mention of the bad air. Though it does make ample mention of the prospect of big rain and possibly some wind.

The storm is named Edouard.

Here is the forecast for Houston for the next couple of days—

Monday: A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny and hot, with a high near 99. Heat index values as high as 104. North wind 5 to 10 mph becoming east.

Monday Night: Tropical storm conditions possible. A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 77. East wind 5 to 10 mph increasing to between 15 and 20 mph. Winds could gust as high as 30 mph.

Tuesday: Tropical storm conditions possible. Showers and thunderstorms likely. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 90. Heat index values as high as 101. East wind 40 to 50 mph becoming east 15 to 20 mph. Winds could gust as high as 70 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%.

None of this bothers me so much as long as people don’t get hurt. But I’m aberrant in a lot of ways. You see from that forecast why normal people elsewhere in the country sometimes see Houston as a kind of hell.

August 4, 2008 Posted by | Houston | , , | 3 Comments