Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 - A Year of Wild Weather

While weather is not exactly a technology, tracking the weather most definitely is. I am a big fan of the Weather Underground website.  If you haven't seen it, you should check it out at this link. There is also a mobile app for your smart phone that gives an abbreviated version of the data. I use it mostly for live radar in my local area.

Weather Underground produced a summation video for weather in the U.S. during 2012.  The video is worth a look.

Massive droughts, wildfires, distorted temperature patterns, tornado outbreaks, hurricanes - 2012 brought them all. Severe weather is becoming the norm rather than the exception. I think we better get used to it. There can be little doubt that our climate is changing.

Meteorological technology improvement becomes all the more critical as the weather becomes more extreme. If it were not for the early warnings provided before a tornado outbreak or Hurricane Sandy's deadly landfall, the death toll would have been much higher. NOAA's weather satellites are getting old and need to be replaced.  The Hurricane Hunter aircraft are decades old. I don't ever plan to fly into a hurricane but I surely wouldn't want to do it on one of those old birds.

Let's all hope that 2013 is a year with fewer meteorological catastrophes. We need a bit of a breather.

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