Just in time as the winter storm “Nemo” approaches the US Northeast. A new weather map from Esri has been released to help explore live storm reports, precipitation, and weather warnings with geo-tagged social content from Twitter, Flickr, and YouTube. See the real-time effects of the storm via social media posts. To change the search terms, go to the Social menu, click the settings icon, and update the keyword.
Some new numbers crunched by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and 2012 tallies reveal even more monthly weather records set than the 3,251 records smashed in 2011, with record-breaking heat, rainfall and snow events catalogued by State – Top Ten States — CO, IL, IN, MD, ME, MN, NV, TN, WI, WV — to be Highlighted in the findings. In 2012, Americans experienced several unforgettably devastating extreme events. Climate scientists say these types of events are fueled by climate change:
- 2012 was the warmest year ever recorded in the US, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) State of the Climate report released last Tuesday.
- Hurricane Sandy’s storm surge height, 13.88 feet, broke the all-time record in the New York Harbor, and ravaged communities across New Jersey and New York with floodwaters and winds.
- The summer of 2012 was the worst drought in 50 years across the nation’s breadbasket, with over 1,300 US counties across 29 states declared drought disaster areas.
- The hottest March on record in the contiguous US, and July was the hottest single month ever recorded in the lower 48 states.
- Wildfires burned over 9.2 million acres in the US, and destroyed hundreds of homes.
- NOAA has estimated that 2012 will surpass 2011 in aggregate costs for U.S. annual billion-dollar disasters, in large part due to the trails of destruction from Superstorm Sandy and the yearlong drought.
- See more details HERE
2012 has been a rough year for the weather tracking and monitoring industry, so rough that the yer could be shaping up to be known by many as The yer of extreme weather events in the US. NOAA has released preliminary information on extreme weather and climate events in the U.S. for 2012 that are known to have reached the $1 billion threshold in losses. As of December 20, NOAA estimates that the nation experienced 11 such events, to include seven severe weather/tornado events, two tropical storm/hurricane events, and the yearlong drought and associated wildfires. The eleven events include:
- Southeast/Ohio Valley Tornadoes — March 2–3 2012
- Texas Tornadoes — April 2–3 2012
- Great Plains Tornadoes — April 13–14 2012
- Midwest/Ohio Valley Severe Weather — April 28–May 1 2012
- Southern Plains/Midwest/Northeast Severe Weather — May 25–30 2012
- Rockies/Southwest Severe Weather — June 6–12 2012
- Plains/East/Northeast Severe Weather (“Derecho”) — June 29–July 2 2012
- Hurricane Isaac — August 26–31 2012
- Western Wildfires — Summer–Fall, 2012
- Hurricane Sandy — October 29–31 2012
- U.S. Drought/Heatwave — throughout 2012
- See More info – Preliminary Info on 2012 U.S. Billion-Dollar Extreme Weather/Climate Events
Now available in the Google Chrome store, Uber weather (think weather on steroids). To check it out you can also fire up your Google chrome browser and hit http://uberweather.com/ for an awesome experience and be sure to hit the snow icon to see all the places nearby where you can find some snow! See more in this blog post
Amazing that already we’re headed into September and with that another hurricane season is upon us (I’ve always been somewhat of a hurricane tracker since my days living on the Gulf Coast). Hard to believe that it’s been 7 years since Hurricanes Katrina And Rita and get this, during that time FEMA has spent some $19 billion in rebuilding and recovery in Louisiana State. This financial update has been provide by FEMA.
To assist in rebuilding disaster-damaged public infrastructure, FEMA’s Public Assistance Program has provided approximately $11.5 billion for the restoration of roughly 23,669 Katrina and Rita recovery projects throughout Louisiana. Such FEMA aid has enabled significant impacts across various public sectors, including approximately:
- $3.9 billion for education and learning facilities
- $1.1 billion for public safety facilities
- $5.4 billion for general infrastructure (e.g., roads, transportation, parks and sewerage and water facilities)
- $1.1 billion for health care facilities
For more info see the seventh anniversary of hurricanes Katrina and Rita: www.fema.gov/la7year .
This image is worth 1,000 words! Vertical profile shows where the city of New Orleans is positioned relative to Lake Ponchaltrain and the Mississippi River (Source: flhurricane.com)
Created by IDV Solutions using some 50+ years of historical hurricane track data, this animation walks you through hurricane season from 1951-2011. About the 3 minute clip… Animation shows the annual migration of tornadoes northward throughout the season. Brightness of the track is tied to tornado severity. See more about the effort on the IDV blog
Are you a mobile developer or perhaps a would-be mobile developer? If so then take note of the new mobile iPad app from Accuweather – a fine example of how to deliver an awesome user experience! Accuweather has done all the right things here, right from the get go at point of purchase where they have made available a free (ad supported) and premium version of their latest app – the Pro version is just 99 cents, the perfect price point!
Accuweather has made the app fun and simple to use. A scrollable calendar feature lets the user touch the calendar and scroll in a circular motion to view the forecast for selected days. The graphics used are very nice, ads are non-intrusive yet effective (and relevant) and the options are pretty impressive. Like any good app, Accuweather is location-aware, providing the user with relevant information and data for your area. Additionally, a handy map display is also provided where you can easily view a real-time radar map and even play it forward using the animation feature. If you happen to be a weather fanatic there’s also a handy news feed providing the latest weather related breaking news (like hurricane information and storm threats). For those of you in hurricane country there’s a tab specifically for viewing hurricane updates and related news and a social tab brings up all the Accuweather related social media updates from facebook and Twitter.
Kudos to Accuweather on this update… I’ll be coughing up the extra $ for the Pro version on this one simply because you’ve done such a great job and I’m a fan of supporting developers!
See More in the iTunes store by searching “Accuweather” and See also AccuWeather Launches New iPad App
I find this tornado and hail risk incident report from CoreLogic to be pretty interesting. Obviously being in tornado alley can be a bit risky but it seems that most tornado damage is now taking place outside of the area known as tornado alley! The report discusses the impact of record-breaking hazard events across the country over the last year for insurance companies and homeowners, and provides greater insight into the extent of severe tornado and hail risk in geographic regions far beyond the Great Plains states.
Some interesting observations noted in the report include:
- of the top ten states with the highest number of tornado touchdowns between 1980 and 2009, only three actually fell within Tornado Alley
- At least 26 states have some area facing extreme tornado risk
- Estimated property damage within the Tornado Alley states from 2000-2011 was approximately $2.5 billion, while in comparison, the 16 states located outside of Tornado Alley with the next highest numbers of tornado touchdowns totaled nearly $15.5 billion
- At least 11 states have significant areas facing extreme hail risk, and almost every state east of the Rocky Mountains has some area facing a moderate or higher level of hail risk
New maps really need to be drawn and “tornado alley” now ideally should cover over half of the USA! see more in this official news announcement about the report
Ever since the day a couple of years ago when I watched a tornado (F4) blow through the town of Windsor Colorado, about 1 mile from my home, I’ve had much interest in the topic of tornados and storm chasing. And so, I’m glad to share with you some of the latest storm related research to come to light, this from CDS Business Mapping. The company has compiled a top 10 list of the most tornado prone metro areas (greater than 50,000 pop) of the USA – topping the list, Denver, Colorado!
Online, the following top ten tornado prone metro-areas (population 50,000 plus) are as follows:
1.) Denver, CO*
2.) Hialeah, FL
3.) Miami, FL
4.) Hollywood, FL
5.) Aurora, CO
6.) Houston, TX
7.) Commerce City, CO
8.) Tampa, FL
9.) St. Petersburg, FL
10.) North Little Rock, AR
*Not downtown but a rural area to the northeast.
FYI, according to CDS, In the first six months of 2011 alone, there were approximately 1,600 tornadoes that caused an estimated $10 billion dollars worth of insured property damage, according to the Insurance Information Institute.
You may be aware that there’s currently a massive cyclone bearing down on Northern Queensland, Australia – just what they need on the heels of the massive flooding that’s affected the region recently! I’ve been following tweets from the region via the storm hashtag #Yasi and in doing so have come across some interesting graphics and imagery. One interesting graphic from a news publication puts the size of the storm cell in perspective for Americans. See below the storm as seen on top of the continental USA. For more similar graphics see this report from news.com.au