Caldera_Mt_Tambora_Sumbawa_Indonesia

Tambora

On this date in 201 years ago in 1815, the Tambora Volcano in Indonesia erupted.  This was the most powerful volcanic eruption of at least the past 1000 years. Tens of thousands of people were killed in a torrent of pyroclastic flows and tsunami waves. Given the population today, that number would have been in…
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Three Thermometers

Quantifying The Seasons

Average temperature is one way to gauge the severity of a winter season. Another measure is to quantify just the severe cold.  The winter with the highest average temperature (2011-12) had just 16 days (October through April) of subzero temperatures.  The winter with the second-warmest average, 1986-87, had just 14 such days. The winter with…
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Cold, Warm, Snow All Out Of Sync

The temperature has yet to drop below zero in Fargo Moorhead so far this cold season.  The coldest day so far was last Friday with a high temperature of 17 degrees and a low of zero. More than half of the days in December so far have had high temperatures above freezing.  The monthly average…
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From Flood To Drought

Last week the Garrison Diversion Conservancy District held a drought conference in Fargo to discuss the reality of drought.  Because flooding has been the problem recently, and not drought, water cooler talk led to snickering regarding the apparent foolishness of both flood and drought mitigation were brought up. But without getting into the politics (or…
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Tropical Earth, Snowball Earth

It is generally accepted that there have been numerous times in our Earth’s past in which there was little or no ice on Earth at all.  During much of the time of the dinosaurs (230-65 million years ago), most of the world had tropical type weather and carbon concentration in the atmosphere may have been…
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