Hurricane Patricia, which struck southern Mexico over the weekend made landfall so quickly that it declined within hours into a tropical storm, then broke up into disorganized cells. Patricia was the most powerful hurricane ever recorded. However, the speed with which it came ashore in a relatively arid area meant that its vertical circulation was impeded, and what could have been a great disaster became an event involving flooding and minor wind damage.

Farther north in Texas, an extension of the storm complex dumped as much as 20 inches of rain east of Dallas, but for the most part the state experienced a rainfall 4 to 6 inches, which is resulting in a significant increase in water levels in reservoirs and aquifers.
read more

Hurricane Joaquin’s winds missed the US Eastern Seaboard, but the storm caused massive flooding in South Carolina, resulting in at least 19 deaths, burst dams, flooded streets, highways and homes, and serious and growing water shortages due to damage to water systems and reservoirs. Because the storm moved rapidly out to sea, already waterlogged parts of the region farther north were spared. The flooding in South Carolina is said to be the worst ever recorded, and is being called a thousand year flood, of which we now have many.

read more

A study just published in Nature Climate Change reports an "exceptional" weakening of the Gulf Stream system across the twentieth century, and suggests that the entire system of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation is in jeopardy. But the lack of measurements means that the degree to which this is true is unclear. The weakening of the system is the probable cause of the recent harsh winters in North America, as the polar vortex has ceased to be held in position by warm air that is normally driven northward by the current.read more

By Whitley Strieber

The eastern half of the United States is experiencing one of the harshest winters ever recorded. In many places both snow accumulation and temperature lows are breaking century old records. Because of all this cold air and the heat that is rapidly building in the southern Caribbean, the stage is set for a spring and summer of great weather violence as well. Meanwhile, in Australia, two fierce cyclones hit on the same day, Friday, February 20. In Europe, last summer was characterized by violent weather, and that is likely to happen again this year. In Siberia more massive craters are appearing, leading some scientists to issue serious warnings.
read more