Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Some Notes on a Rainy Wednesday Evening: Still More on the Impending U.S. East Coast Record Christmas Warmth and Oligarchs Trumped

Updated 1:39PM 12/24/2015 with new content: See below.

How it WON'T be anywhere along the U.S. East Coast this Christmas:

A snow-blitzed scene at the Squaw Valley Ski Resort in the High Sierras of California on or about December 22, 2015.

The picture was featured in this CWG entry discussing what a dramatic difference in the Western U.S. between last year's snow drought and this year's ongoing snow bonanza. On that note, here is an interesting factoid on just how much water has entered Lake Tahoe between Monday and Tuesday of this week (answer: 6.4 billion gallons of water).

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The 12Z 12/23/2015 GFS showing 2-meter temperature anomalies across North America at hour 24 / 12Z Dec. 24, 2015, as prettied up by WeatherBELL.com.

The positive anomalies are freakish in some cases -- 30F to 40F above normal.

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The following says it best:

"The warm air surging up the East Coast on Christmas Eve will prove nothing short of historic. Dozens of records will fall, some by very large margins.

Temperatures at or above 70 degrees will span from Florida all the way into southern New England covering some 1,200 miles and 20 percent of the Lower 48.

In many places in the East, temperatures will run some 30-40 degrees above normal.

The warmth in a few locations will be so anomalous that low temperatures will challenge existing records highs."


Tweet sent out by the NWS Buffalo office earlier today on the impending record warmth.

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At this point, really the only thing I can talk about is the impending record-breaking Christmas warmth. Temperatures are forecasted to be well into the 70s Fahrenheit tomorrow -- easily eclipsing the daily record highs at the three main regional airport climate stations (KDCA, KBWI, and KIAD), not to mention daily record high low temps. Indeed, all-time record high lows could be set in places.

Richmond, Virginia (KRIC) could flirt with 80F (the forecasted high is 78F).

The NWS National Digital Forecast Database map of high temperatures on Christmas Eve day (Dec. 24, 2015) for the northeastern quadrant of the U.S. as issued at 21Z 12/23/2015.

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The record-shattering warmth is covering the entire eastern third of the United States and extending far north into central and even northern Quebec. Some places including in Boston and Buffalo (!) are forecasted to have low temperatures tomorrow that break the previous daily record highs including 61F and 60F, respectively. Ditto New York City (Central Park) at 63F.

Tweet sent out by the New York City NWS office yesterday on the impending record warmth.

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These twin CWG entries by Jason Samenow -- from which I got the bulk of the images in this entry -- give a good national and regional overview, respectively (links embedded):


Backward air parcel trajectory ending 12Z 24 December 2015 for Washington, D.C., grid point as shown by NOAA's NYSPLIT model.

The air is originating in the tropical Atlantic by way of the Caribbean.

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At this point, I would like to repost some of the info in my previous entry but with a bit more detail on the upcoming daily records. It is taken from the recent Sterling (LWX) forecast discussion.

Dec. 24th record daily high minimum (low) temperatures:

KDCA: 58F (1891)
KBWI: 53F (1891) 
KIAD: 42F (2014 / 1979)

Dec. 24th record daily high temps:
KDCA: 69F (1933)
KBWI: 65F (1990 / 1982)
KIAD: 66 (1982)

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Dec. 25th record daily high minimum (low) temperatures
KDCA: 49F (1987)
KBWI: 48F (1964)
KIAD: 50F (1982)

Dec. 25th record daily high temperatures:

KDCA: 72F (1964)
KBWI: 72F (1964)
KIAD: 71F (1982 / 1964)

All-time December monthly high temperatures:

KDCA: 79F (Dec. 7, 1998)
KBWI: 77F (Dec. 7, 1998, Dec. 6, 1998, and Dec. 29, 1984)
KIAD: 79F (Dec. 6, 1998)


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All-time December monthly high minimum temperatures:
KDCA: 59F (Dec. 5, 1973)
KBWI: 62F (Dec. 22, 2013)
KIAD: 62F (Dec. 22, 2013)

All three all-time December monthly high minimum temps. are likely to be broken.

The good news is that today is a rainy day around the Baltimore/Washington area. It is actually raining quite steadily now.

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As a brief update, last night was a non-gym night. Instead, I went with Andrea to get dinner at Baan Thai -- I hadn't been there in a while -- and then I took her to Trade, where we had a fun time. Dave J. also showed up and we had a good conversation. After she left, Dave and I made our way to Larry's Lounge, except I really don't remember a whole lot about that ...

Dave walked me home and I woke up at 2AM on my bathroom floor, whereupon I got ready for bed.

Sterling (LWX) NWS standard base reflectivity radar loop from 3:39PM - 4:10PM EST December 23, 2015.

KDCA through 5PM EST has picked up 0.87" of rain today, which eliminates the monthly deficit so far. KBWI has had 0.58" and KIAD has had 0.48".

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UPDATED 1:39PM 12/24/2015:

Info for this update comes in part from this CWG entry.

Doppler estimated 24-hour rainfall totals for the Washington, D.C., area covering yesterday's heavy rain event and ending this morning (Dec. 24, 2015).

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Dec. 23rd rainfall totals across the region were impressive with KDCA receiving 1.67" -- a new daily record and enough to put this December into surplus (at 3.43") even if no more falls (monthly average is 3.05"). KDCA is up to 43.61" for the year or +4.58". The current 30-year annual average is 39.74" so we are already in surplus for the full year.

KBWI picked up 2.01" -- also a daily record and boosting the monthly total to 3.78" (+1.20" so far). Its annual total is 49.09" or +8.00". KBWI's current 30-year annual average is 41.88", so it is well into surplus for the full year. I'm not sure if KBWI will reach the 50" mark for the year but given the forecast, it is possible.

KIAD received 0.58" and is at 2.21" for the month (-0.09") and 37.83" year-to-date or -3.05". KIAD's current 30-year annual average is 41.54", so it is possible, even likely, that it will end the year with a slight deficit.

The 0Z 12/24/2015 KIAD radiosonde chart noting the historic precipitable water value.

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Of historic note, the precipitable water (PW) value measured in the 0Z 12/24/2015 radiosonde launched from Dulles was 1.80" -- the highest ever recorded by any weather balloon in the Washington, D.C., area between the months of December and April. This indicates the pure tropical nature of the air mass in place.

It is still overcast today and so temps have not rocketed well into the 70s but KDCA has already reached 70F, enough to eclipse the previous daily record high of 69F. The overnight low looks like it was 61F, so that is enough for a new daily max minimum.

End of Update.

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I need to take the computer home this evening since I won't be in the office tomorrow or, indeed, at all ahead of the Christmas holiday extended weekend. It is really raining as I write this and I don't have an umbrella. I have my backpack, which is fairly sturdy, and I will wrap up the computer in several layers of plastic trash bags.

I'm probably not going to update the blog tonight but I will try to do so before I head over to Annapolis tomorrow with Gary to meet my mom and, health permitting, Ray at Chart House.

Given the abnormal warmth this yuletide, my entry may celebrate the Washington Consensus.

1400 block of U Street NW, Washington, D.C., 10:58AM December 22, 2015.

Yes, that's a Flippo truck. And, yes, my Flippo got his name from that name -- in an indirect way that I'll have to relate some other time.

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For now, I'm probably going to stop at a few places en route home. I am skipping the gym tonight even though it's Wednesday and I typically go. That's my Christmas present to myself.

Oh, yes, before I sign off, I do want to draw attention to this funny piece on Salon.com by Simon Malloy mocking billionaire T. Boone Pickens' stupidly clueless idea to have a "bipartisan commission" vet would-be presidential candidates: Donald Trump's run has spooked billionaires — so now one has an insane plan to rig the election system.

The reason?


Pickens and other members of the oligarchical 0.01% overclass -- also called the donor class -- are beside themselves over Donald Trump and his political standing, which is upending their plans and ruining their "ROI". True, Trump may be a egomaniacal bombastic blowhard with authoritarian-to-fascist tendencies, but this has still been a delight to watch. (Pickens is the one who bankrolled the Swift-Boating of John Kerry.)

Oh, and Trump's poll numbers on the GOP side remain very strong (but he still loses to Hillary):

Real Clear Politics polling averages for the GOP presidential candidates through late December 2015.

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OK, that really is all for now.

--Regulus

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