Thursday, August 5, 2010

What's Ahead This Winter?

Watts Up With That? has been a goldmine this week. The Truth be told? I'm procrastinating on the heavy-lifting plumbing project back in the Ancestral Diggins. It's easier to dilly-dally when there's fascinating weather and climate news to ponder!

Today's distraction is: Global Sea Surface Temperature Cooling Continues. In the Comments, I found a new Climate Acronym: AMO is the newly discovered (or newly postulated, I'm not sure which yet) Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation. The Atlantic's version of the Pacific's PDO, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation.

The AMO is so new, that there hasn't been enough time to compile it's footprints going back into the historical record. This makes any models highly volatile going forward...for the near term, anyway...

It's going to be interesting to follow this new cyclic climate variation as it becomes better understood. Time will tell if this new data set will evolve scientifically, or does become politicized? All the better to beat the fast-fading Human Caused Global Warming Drums!

I can't wait to see the AMO, plotted over 2000 years overlaid with the same plot for the PDO. Do you suppose that the All-Time Record Temps might coincide with the alignment of these cycles at their combined peaks? How long between these alignments...I wonder. What about Atlantic Hurricane Activity, or Intensity. ENSO/El Niño/La Niña, and the Sunspot Cycles all get to play here.

Related comments cited the rapid "rise" of the new La Niña (rise could be confusing, the Pacific is cooling into the La Niña state, and cooling rapidly) Couple the effects of the new La Niña with the PDO getting farther into the Negative (read cool) Phase and we're looking at Winters trending cooler for the next decade or two.

La Niña often results in drought for many regions...usually the American Southwest, and the Southeastern States. The Pacific Northwest gets drenched, and in Central California, it can go either way. Fortunately for My Mountain, La Niña's lower temps are good for snowmaking, in case a dry winter does visit.

What might be shaping up in the years ahead, is the possibility of a big El Niño coming into play to coincide with the forecast Solar Maximum in 2015. If the Sun cooperates, (and that's far from a certainty, given the Sun's capricious nature of late) That El Niño could rival 1998's strong El Niño, that brought all kinds of exotic tropical gamefish into our NorCal waters. There were Striped Marlin taken as far North as Westport off Washington State!

Marlin, Yellowfin Tuna, and Dorado were taken off the San Francisco coast during the 1998 El Niño, and the associated warm water currents brought the White Sea Bass back to Bay Area waters, where they are seen increasingly seen in catch reports every season.

Though still an incidental catch in Bay Area waters. White Sea Bass (WSB) nicknamed "The Grey Ghost" are highly prized for their fighting skills and they make excellent table fare. I can't wait until I catch one. The California State Record WSB is 78 pounds, it was taken in 2002 in Monterey Bay... unverified reports have WSB going to 90 pounds.

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