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Climate change projected to significantly increase harmful algal blooms in U.S. freshwaters

Tue, 08/15/2017 - 14:24
Harmful algal blooms known to pose risks to human and environmental health in large freshwater reservoirs and lakes are projected to increase because of climate change, according to a team of researchers led by a Tufts University scientist.The team developed a modeling framework that predicts that the largest increase in cyanobacterial harmful algal blooms (CyanoHABs) would occur in the Northeast region of the United States, but the biggest economic harm would be felt by recreation areas in the Southeast.

NASA's GPM Found Gert Strengthening into a Hurricane

Tue, 08/15/2017 - 14:11
NASA looked at the rainfall rates within Tropical Storm Gert as it continued to strengthen and found the most intense rainfall on the tropical cyclone's eastern side. Just over 12 hours later, Gert would strengthen into a hurricane. As Gert has strengthened, the storm began generating dangerous surf along the U.S. East coast.The Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core observatory satellite passed above tropical storm Gert on August 14, 2017 at 9:36 a.m. EDT (1336 UTC) when winds had reached about 57.5 mph (50 knots). Data collected by GPM's Microwave Imager (GMI) and Dual-Frequency Precipitation Radar (DPR) instruments were used to show the coverage and the intensity of rainfall around Tropical Storm Gert. The area covered by GPM's radar swath revealed that the most intense rainfall, measuring greater 3.5 inches (90 mm) per hour, was located in bands of rain on the eastern side of the storm.

NASA Sees Tropical Storm Jova Being Ripped Apart

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 18:28
Satellite imagery from NOAA's GOES-West satellite showed vertical wind shear was already tearing Tropical Storm Jova apart just two days after it formed. By August 14, the storm weakened into a post-tropical cyclone.Tropical Storm Jova formed around 11 p.m. EDT on Friday, August 11. Now, wind shear it tearing the storm apart.At 12:45 p.m. EDT (1500 UTC) on Sunday, August 13, NOAA's GOES-West satellite captured a visible image of Tropical Depression Jova that showed wind shear was pushing most of the clouds southwest of the center of circulation. That wind shear is causing the demise of the depression.NOAA manages the GOES series of satellites. NASA/NOAA's GOES Project at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland uses the satellite data to create imagery.

Study Finds Drought Recoveries Taking Longer

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 18:19
As global temperatures continue to rise, droughts are expected to become more frequent and severe in many regions during this century. A new study with NASA participation finds that land ecosystems took progressively longer to recover from droughts in the 20th century, and incomplete drought recovery may become the new normal in some areas, possibly leading to tree death and increased emissions of greenhouse gases.In results published Aug. 10 in the journal Nature, a research team led by Christopher Schwalm of Woods Hole Research Center, Falmouth, Massachusetts, and including a scientist from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, measured recovery time following droughts in various regions of the world. They used projections from climate models verified by observations from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument on NASA's Terra satellite and ground measurements. The researchers found that drought recovery was taking longer in all land areas. In two particularly vulnerable regions -- the tropics and northern high latitudes -- recovery took ever longer than in other regions.

NASA's Sees a Tightly Wound Typhoon Banyan

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 15:35
Satellite imagery from NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite showed powerful storms tightly would around Typhoon Banyan's center as it moved through the Pacific Ocean.On Aug. 14 at 02:06 UTC (Aug. 13 at 10:06 p.m. EDT) the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) instrument aboard NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite provided a visible look at Banyan. The visible image showed a tight concentration of strong thunderstorms around the center of circulation, but no eye was visible. However, microwave satellite imagery did reveal an eye.

Drone tech offers new ways to manage climate change

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 15:30
An innovation providing key clues to how humans might manage forests and cities to cool the planet is taking flight. Cornell researchers are using drone technology to more accurately measure surface reflectivity on the landscape, a technological advance that could offer a new way to manage climate change.“When making predictions about climate change, it’s critical that scientists understand how much energy the earth is absorbing and retaining,” said Charlotte Levy, a doctoral candidate who presented a talk on her research at the annual Ecological Society of America meeting, in Portland, Oregon, Aug. 8.

Student's idea leads to Antarctic volcano discovery

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 15:15
An Edinburgh student has helped identify what may be the largest volcanic region on Earth.

Study Links Major Floods in North America and Europe to Multi-Decade Ocean Patterns

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 14:48
The number of major floods in natural rivers across Europe and North America has not increased overall during the past 80 years, a recent study has concluded. Instead researchers found that the occurrence of major flooding in North America and Europe often varies with North Atlantic Ocean temperature patterns.

Ozone Treaty Taking a Bite Out of Us Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 14:34
The Montreal Protocol, the international treaty adopted to restore Earth’s protective ozone layer in 1989, has significantly reduced emissions of ozone-depleting chemicals from the United States. In a twist, a new study shows the 30-year old treaty has had a major side benefit of reducing climate-altering greenhouse gas emissions from the U.S.That’s because the ozone-depleting substances controlled by the treaty are also potent greenhouse gases, with heat-trapping abilities up to 10,000 times greater than carbon dioxide over 100 years.

Canary in a coal mine: Survey captures global picture of air pollution's effects on birds

Fri, 08/11/2017 - 12:17
Famously, the use of caged birds to alert miners to the invisible dangers of gases such as carbon monoxide gave rise to the cautionary metaphor “canary in a coal mine.”But other than the fact that exposure to toxic gases in a confined space kills caged birds before affecting humans — providing a timely warning to miners — what do we know about the effects of air pollution on birds?Not as much as you’d think, according to researchers from the University of Wisconsin–Madison.

NASA Sees Formation of Comma-Shaped Tropical Storm 14W

Fri, 08/11/2017 - 12:03
The fourteenth tropical cyclone of the Northwestern Pacific Ocean hurricane season formed about 200 miles away from Wake Island and a NASA-NOAA satellite saw it take on a comma-shape.  NASA-NOAA’s Suomi NPP satellite passed over Tropical Storm 14W on August 11 at 0118 UTC (Aug. 10 at 9:18 p.m. EDT) shortly after it formed. The Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) instrument aboard took a visible light picture of the storm that showed thunderstorms around the low-level center and a thick band wrapping from the east to south to west, forming a comma-shape.

Global Warming Will Leave Different Fingerprints on Global Subtropical Anticyclones

Fri, 08/11/2017 - 10:45
Subtropical anticyclone is an essential component of the atmospheric circulation in the subtropics, and it is responsible for the formation of subtropical monsoons and deserts. There are two subtropical anticyclones in the subtropical northern hemisphere in boreal summer, and three subtropical anticyclones in the subtropical southern hemisphere in austral summer. These five summertime subtropical anticyclones are all located at the lower troposphere over the subtropical oceans.

Climate change shifts timing of European floods

Fri, 08/11/2017 - 09:27
A study conducted by TU Wien and 30 European partners shows that the timing of the floods has shifted across much of Europe, dramatically in some areas. When a major flood event occurs it is often attributed to climate change. However, a single event is not proof, and so far it has been unclear whether climate change has a direct influence on river floods at large scales in Europe.

NASA Analyzed Intensifying Franklin's Rains Before Landfall

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 14:06
Before Tropical Storm Franklin made landfall in east-central Mexico, the storm was intensifying. Two NASA satellites provided a look at the storm's cloud heights and extent and rainfall within.

Portland State laser mapping project shows global warming effects in Antarctica

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 13:57
Portland State University researchers and the National Science Foundation (NSF) have publically released high-resolution maps of the McMurdo Dry Valleys, a globally unique Antarctic polar desert.

Human-Caused Warming Likely Led to Recent Streak of Record-Breaking Temperatures, New Study Finds

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 13:42
It is “extremely unlikely” 2014, 2015 and 2016 would have been the warmest consecutive years on record without the influence of human-caused climate change, according to the authors of a new study.

NASA Airborne Mission Returns to Africa to Study Smoke, Clouds

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 13:10
NASA's P-3 research plane begins flights this month through both clouds and smoke over the South Atlantic Ocean to understand how tiny airborne particles called aerosols change the properties of clouds and how they influence the amount of incoming sunlight the clouds reflect or absorb.

What it takes to recover from drought

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 11:53
Drought-stricken areas anxiously await the arrival of rain. Full recovery of the ecosystem, however, can extend long past the first rain drops on thirsty ground.According to a study published August 10 in Nature, the length of drought recovery depends on several factors, including the region of the world and the post-drought weather conditions. The authors, including William Anderegg of the University of Utah, warn that more frequent droughts in the future may not allow time for ecosystems to fully recover before the next drought hits.Find a video abstract of this study here. The study was funded by the National Science Foundation and by NASA.

East Coast's rapidly rising seas explained

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 11:04
University of Florida scientists discover cause of Atlantic coastline’s sea level rise hot spots.

U.S. had 2nd warmest year to date and 10th warmest July on record

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 09:10
July is the hallmark of summer in the United States. Long days, intense sun and high humidity typically make it the hottest month of the year. The heat can also trigger flash droughts, wildfires and summer storms. This July didn’t disappoint.Here’s how July and the year to date fared in terms of the climate record.