August Weather Extremes Pt 1

August Weather Extremes Pt 1

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
From the Ag Information Network, I’m Bob Larson with today’s Fruit Grower Report. August was warm. There’s no getting around that. But, here in the Pacific Northwest, it usually is so can we all just calm down a bit.

Cliff Mass, Atmospheric Sciences professor at the University of Washington, says we may have set records for average temperatures, but it’s not that simple …

MASS … “To get the mean, they generally average the minimum and the maximum. Okay? So, the problem with that is, is that the trend of the minimum and the maximum are very different.”

Especially in recent years …

MASS … “You’ve got to go into this with knowledge that the minimum and the maximum are very different and the minimum, you know, is going up more than the maximum. That’s very, very important so, I mean, it’s things like that you’ve just got to keep in mind.”

And, Mass says there are other possible reasons for variable temps …

MASS … “I mean, there’s things like El Nino and La Nina. That effects the temperature. There’s the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, a 20-to-30-year type time-scale. That’s effecting it, right? So, you’ve just to take a look at it in the longer term.”

But, Mass says the average temps have gone up, a bit …

MASS … “So, I think the honest thing is that, you know, there’s this variability going on for most things, but there’s a slow warming going on, okay. I mean, there is. And, you know, we’ve warmed up one to two degrees Fahrenheit over the last 50-to-70 years. Okay, so I think that’s probably pretty fair, to say we’ve done that.”

Tune in tomorrow for more on our weather extremes and why they aren’t necessarily tied to our gradual warming.

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