Posts Tagged ‘prediction’
Scientists have found a way to forecast El Nino weather events in the Pacific a year in advance, long enough to let farmers plant crops less vulnerable to global shifts in rainfall…
While far from flawless, the technique doubles current six-month predictions of El Nino, a warming of the eastern Pacific linked in the past to floods in Peru and Ecuador, droughts in Australia and Indonesia and maybe severe winters in Europe…
El Ninos typically happen every two to seven years but scientists have been unable to find the causes of patterns that have occurred naturally throughout history and are among the most disruptive of extreme weather events.
The new system, built on a network of temperature records around the Pacific Ocean since 1950, correctly spotted El Nino events a year in advance more than half the time and gave false alarms fewer than one year in 10…
Even though the new computer-based system is not always right, farmers might find it worthwhile to invest in drought- or flood-resistant varieties of crops when there was a risk of an El Nino in a year’s time.
“Six months’ warning is too short. If you are a farmer in India, or in Zimbabwe or Brazil you have bought your seeds or even planted them. If you have a 12- or even 18-month early warning, you have a full agricultural cycle,” Hans Joachim Schellnhuber…co-author of the report said…
“We expect more strong El Ninos” overall this century because of rising concentrations of greenhouse gases, lead author Jinbao Li of the University of Hong Kong told Reuters.
I actually know folks in this neck of the prairie who got their graduate degrees on El Niño. Living in high desert, our climate doesn’t need a great deal of change to go from acceptable and enjoyable to hard to take. The extended drought we’re in being the hard to take bit. As you can witness on the nightly news with wildfire reports from the Southwest.
Even more locally, the switch from El Niño to ENSO-neutral to La Niña encourages the jet stream to waver 150-300 miles. And that can be enough to take the moisture coming from the west coast or Baja California up and over New Mexico, north of the Four Corners. We’ve subscribed to NOAA’s monthly updates for years. Looks like we may need to add another source – or bug the Feds to add this new estimating system to their report.
“I switched back to Windows, this time!”
When the California Christian group known as Family Radio predicted the beginning of the end of the world as we know it back in the spring (not for the first time), Harold Camping and his followers splashed dire warnings on billboards around the globe.
But then nothing happened on May 21. There was no rapture and true believers weren’t swept to heaven while everyone else was left waiting to be consumed in the total destruction of Earth by Oct. 21.
Despite that setback, the California-based group is still looking on Friday as a day of reckoning, even if its predictions have been toned down.
There aren’t any billboards this time, and the 90-year-old Camping has shifted from definitive language to adding the word “probably” to his vocabulary.
So, if history repeats itself, the world will be just fine on Saturday. In fact, one observer expects Family Radio, which describes itself as a “non-profit, non-commercial Christian radio network,” will keep sending out its signals, too.
I doubt that Camping’s followers will experience sufficient frustration over his latest klutzup to stop sending in their hard-earned money. One thing that’s consistent about True Believers is that repeated failure does not constitute contradiction.
Like most nutball evangelicals, Harold will continue to roll in the cabbage.
If tourists find Rome unusually quiet next Wednesday, the reason will probably be that thousands of locals have left town in fear of a devastating earthquake allegedly forecast for that day by a long-dead seismologist.
For months Italian internet sites, blogs and social networks have been debating the work of Raffaele Bendandi, who claimed to have forecast numerous earthquakes and, according to internet rumors, predicted a “big one” in Rome on May 11…
“I’m going to tell the boss I’ve got a medical appointment and take the day off,” barman Fabio Mengarelli told Reuters. “If I have to die I want to die with my wife and kids, and masses of people will do the same as me.”
Chef Tania Cotorobai also said she would be taking a day off in the country. “I don’t know if I really believe it but if you look at the internet you see everything and the opposite of everything, and it end up making you nervous,” she said…
Bendandi, who died in 1979 aged 86, believed earthquakes were the result of the combined movements of the planets, the moon and the sun and were perfectly predictable.
In 1923 he forecast a quake would hit the central Adriatic region of the Marches on January 2 the following year. He was wrong by two days but Italy’s main newspaper Corriere della Sera still ran a front page article on “The man who forecasts earthquakes.”
Bendandi’s fame grew and in 1927 he was awarded a knighthood by Fascist dictator Benito Mussolini…
However the current panic appears to be due more to fear-mongering in the age of internet than to Bendandi himself.
Fear and ignorance seem to be motivators as central to social and political phenomena today as they were in the Dark Ages.
I wonder if there’s some way the Holy Roman Catholic Church will make a buck off of this?