Another flooding mega-disaster: Sri Lanka recovers from extreme flooding

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 19. tammikuuta 2011 klo 13:14 (GMT)

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At least 43 are dead and thousands still in refugee camps due to extreme flooding in eastern Sri Lanka caused by record monsoon rains. According to the United Nations, the rains in recent weeks in Sri Lanka have been the heaviest in nearly 100 years of record keeping, and the flood that resulted was a 1-in-100 year event, according to The U.N. Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System. Rainfall at Batticaloa, Sri Lanka, during the 42-day period December 1 - January 12 was 1606 mm (63"), which is about how much rain the station usually receives in an entire year (1651 mm, or 65".) Sri Lanka's previous most devastating flooding disaster was the 2004 tsunami, but as The Economist commented, "in terms of the numbers of people displaced and farmland inundated, the floods have been even more devastating than the tsunami of December 2004." Damage estimates start at $500 million, and much of Sri Lanka's agriculture has been severely damaged by the disaster. Also of concern is the large number of land mines from the recent Sri Lanka civil war that may have been unearthed by the floods. Water is also a major concern in the flood-hit area, as fighting between government forces and Tamil Tigers rebels from mid-2007 to May 2009 damaged or destroyed almost all of the water facilities.


Figure 1. A family affected by the 2011 Sri Lanka floods braves the flood waters. Image credit: United Nations.

Sri Lanka is now the fifth nation in the past six month to suffer a flooding disaster unprecedented in its history. As I reported in a previous post, the other four mega-impact floods--the July 2010 Pakistan floods, the December - January Queensland Australia floods, the November 2010 Colombia floods, and the January 2011 Rio de Janeiro floods--were all accompanied by an atmosphere laden with moisture, due, in part, due to sea surface temperatures over nearby ocean areas that were the 2nd or 3rd warmest on record. However, that was not the case for the Sri Lanka floods. Ocean temperatures during December 2010 were 0.2°C below average in the 5x5 degree square of ocean adjoining the island (5N - 10N, 80E - 85E). The floods appear to be due to the normal monsoon rains that typically affect the region this time of year, enhanced by the strong La Niña event occurring in the Eastern Pacific.


Figure 2. Satellite-estimated precipitation over Sri Lanka for January 3 - 9. Up to 18 inches (525 mm) fell over eastern Sri Lanka. Image credit: NASA Earth Observatory.

Jeff Masters

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957. oracle28
22. tammikuuta 2011 klo 02:26 (GMT)
NASA Study Shows Sun Responsible for Planet Warming

http://www.dakotavoice.com/2009/06/nasa-study-shows-sun-responsible-for-planet-warming/
Member Since: 25.07.2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 596
956. jeffs713
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:58 (GMT)
NEW BLOG
Member Since: 3.08.2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5792
955. caneswatch
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:56 (GMT)
Quoting Grothar:


Going back, it appears a number of blog entries were removed last night. Must have been something.


I have so many on "the list" I couldn't tell LOL. The rain will be doing this soon:

Member Since: 8.10.2008 Posts: 14 Comments: 4553
953. AstroHurricane001
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:26 (GMT)


Hudson Bay and most of the Hudson Strait have now frozen over. However the eastern Davis Strait, coast of Labrador and outlet of Jakobshavn Isbrae still remain unseasonably unfrozen!
Member Since: 30.08.2008 Posts: 8 Comments: 2834
951. AstroHurricane001
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:21 (GMT)
DON'T PANIC! Betelgeuse Won't Explode in 2012 - Discovery News
Member Since: 30.08.2008 Posts: 8 Comments: 2834
950. Grothar
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:17 (GMT)
Quoting atmoaggie:
http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JFLORIDA
This blog has been banned by WunderBlogAdmin.

Surprised, and not surprised, at the same time.


Going back, it appears a number of blog entries were removed last night. Must have been something.
Member Since: 17.07.2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
949. Walshy
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:14 (GMT)
Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service Raleigh NC
615 am EST Friday Jan 21 2011


Also to be considered... the parent high before the storm is
forecast to be in position to deliver very cold dry air into our
region before the storm develops. Even if hybrid or non classical
damming develops (which appears likely)... with a progressive
surface high - there would still be that initial cold air to deal
with. Then... the storm itself will generate its own cold air
(examples include the March 93 superstorm on the extreme and the
Christmas 2010 snow).

Member Since: 17.05.2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 904
948. RitaEvac
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:14 (GMT)
Clouds still locked in here in SE TX and holding just above the freezing mark after 9AM
Member Since: 14.07.2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9625
947. HaloReachFan
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:13 (GMT)
Quoting Neapolitan:

Yeah, it sorta puts the lid on all that nonsense about WU giving preferential treatment to only pro-AGW folks, while silencing those against it, doesn't it? ;-)


He broke the rules somewhere doesn't surprise me.

But why didn't you answer my question yesterday you just ran off?
Member Since: 15.09.2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 563
946. jeffs713
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:12 (GMT)
calusakat,

That first link on google is from a website that has a severe conservative tilt. Reprocessing nuclear fuel is not as "simple" as just taking the used fuel and making it new again. Yes, nuclear reactors use only 3-6% of the fuel put in. What is not mentioned is that of the fuel put in... an average of 4% of that is fissile U-235. (way to not give all the info there)

They also produce a large amount of highly hazardous fission products, including Strontium-90 (which can take the place of Calcium in bones and other organisms), Caesium-135 (which has a long half-life, and can remain in soil for a long time), and isotopes of Iodine, Xenon, and Barium. To fully reprocess fuel, all of these isotopes must be disposed of, and the remaining fuel re-enriched to sustain a nuclear reaction. IIRC, the French reprocessing procedure does increase costs 6%... over what new fuel will cost.

Furthermore, reactors in the US are some of the most efficient in the world, and new, more efficient and safer designs are constantly being developed.

So, yes, spent fuel can be reprocessed, but its not as simple as recycling a plastic milk jug. In nuclear reactions, matter is destroyed to create energy. It has to do with that E=mc^2 thing. You know, the amount of energy created equals the mass of the material times the speed of light squared. This means :

So one gram of mass is equivalent to the following amounts of energy:

89.9 terajoules
25.0 million kilowatt-hours (≈25 GW·h)
21.5 billion kilocalories (≈21 Tcal)
21.5 kilotons of TNT-equivalent energy (≈21 kt)
85.2 billion BTUs
(from Wikipedia)
Member Since: 3.08.2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5792
945. Grothar
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:12 (GMT)
Quoting caneswatch:


Ready for some storms today?


Yes.

Member Since: 17.07.2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
944. Neapolitan
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:07 (GMT)
Quoting atmoaggie:
http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JFLORIDA
This blog has been banned by WunderBlogAdmin.

Surprised, and not surprised, at the same time.

Yeah, it sorta puts the lid on all that nonsense about WU giving preferential treatment to only pro-AGW folks, while silencing those against it, doesn't it? ;-)
Member Since: 8.11.2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13263
942. Xyrus2000
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:07 (GMT)
Quoting oceanminded:
my weekend forecast north tampa
weekend - cooler temps with a 100% chance of great footbal games and a 75% chance of drinking too much beer

(the above is based on 7 years of legal beer drinking ability and nearly 28 years of football watching)


I'd have to respectfully disagree. The latest runs of the LBL (Local Liquor and Beer) model agrees with you about the games, but puts the probability of drinking too much closer to 100%, with 110% chance of hangovers and an 80% chance of "promising never to do that again". There is also a 50% chance of "why am I sleeping in this bush?", a 30% chance of "where are my pants?", a 15% chance of "Hey that's funny, this looks like a jail cell." and a 10% chance "who the heck is this sleeping next to me, and why aren't they wearing any clothes?".

For those that are married, also be prepared for 50-100% chance "Oh no, you ARE NOT going to go out drinking with your football buddies again!"
Member Since: 31.10.2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 1224
941. atmoaggie
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 15:05 (GMT)
http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JFLORIDA
This blog has been banned by WunderBlogAdmin.

Surprised, and not surprised, at the same time.
Member Since: 16.08.2007 Posts: 6 Comments: 12461
940. caneswatch
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 14:57 (GMT)
Quoting Grothar:


Ready for some storms today?
Member Since: 8.10.2008 Posts: 14 Comments: 4553
939. RipplinH2O
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 14:55 (GMT)
Howdy all...a bit brisk on the beach this morning
Member Since: 30.07.2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 491
938. atmoaggie
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 14:54 (GMT)
Quoting MichaelSTL:


That would certainly be a big bang, to say the least:


(it is hard to see, but the Sun is shown on the lower left as 1 pixel, and as you can see, there are even bigger stars)

Not to worry though, from the same article:

But doomsday sayers should be careful about speculation on this one. If the star does go super-nova, Earth will be showered with harmless particles, according to Carter. "They will flood through the Earth and bizarrely enough, even though the supernova we see visually will light up the night sky, 99 per cent of the energy in the supernova is released in these particles that will come through our bodies and through the Earth with absolutely no harm whatsoever," he told news.com.au.

In fact, a neutrino shower could be beneficial to Earth. According to Carter this "star stuff" makes up the universe. "It literally makes things like gold, silver - all the heavy elements - even things like uranium....a star like Betelgeuse is instantly forming for us all sorts of heavy elements and atoms that our own Earth and our own bodies have from long past supernovi," said Carter.
Member Since: 16.08.2007 Posts: 6 Comments: 12461
937. HaloReachFan
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 14:52 (GMT)
Image and video hosting by TinyPic
Member Since: 15.09.2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 563
936. Grothar
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 14:51 (GMT)
Member Since: 17.07.2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23703
935. Chicklit
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 14:44 (GMT)
Good morning.
Woke up at 3 a.m. to the dog pawing at me and a jaw clenching lightning strike right outside the window.
Still loving this rain. We need it!
TGIF. Have to drive near Orlando now.
Happy Friday everyone.
Member Since: 11.07.2006 Posts: 14 Comments: 11035
934. IKE
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 14:43 (GMT)
Quoting cat5hurricane:

LOL. If some had it their way, we'd all be behind bars!

Morning to all. Falls International Airport in Northern MN -38 degrees. Thanks, but I'll pass. At least daylight is increasing noticably.

Looks like we're in for some more rain IKE. No complaints here.


It's 40.3 at my location. Clearing up shortly. Had .05 inches of rain over night.
Member Since: 9.06.2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
933. calusakat
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 14:12 (GMT)
Quoting Xyrus2000:


You are quite the artful troll, aren't you? Deflecting the question without providing so much as a URL. I applaud you, and give you a tip of my hat sir.

However, I do take offense for you claiming things I never said. At no time did I state that all the bloggers here are ignorant. I didn't even use the word ignorant, which has significantly different connotations. I said the general populace is not as well educated when compared to other developed nations, which is true according to PISA.

The general populace does not come onto blogs such as this to discuss the weather dynamics of cyclonic systems, nor the merits of scientific research in regards to meteorology and climatology. The general populace is on Facebook discussing contestants on American Idol, not on weather sites discussing temperature records and extreme weather phenomena induced by La Nina/El Nino.

As I stated, searching for the terms "French Nuclear Power" in Google does not turn up anything to discredit what I said. In fact, the number one link takes you here, which gives a very detailed of France's nuclear power. Or you can go to the second link from that search here, which provides a more concise overview.

Once again I ask, can you site a source for your information? But we both know the answer to that question.


Ah yes, Master X troll, the answer is in two parts. Yes I can cite it; no, I will not.

I refer you to the last part of this post.

The two you cited clearly avoided the discussion of several hurdles that the French admit must be dealt with for the program to be complete. Those hurdles are very serious and even they admit to not knowing the details.

It amazes me how people like you can simply skip past the details, march directly to the sales promo and call it FACT.

BTW - Wikipedia is not necessarily a very dependable source for 'complete' data on such subjects. Even they admit to that.

Like I said in a previous post.

Folks, the information is out there for you to read.

Cut and Paste the following phrase into Google Search -

reprocessing nuclear waste France


Decide for yourself.


Member Since: 10.10.2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 716
932. jeffs713
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 14:06 (GMT)
Quoting HIPPOCRITT:
Statement as of 6:50 am CST on January 21, 2011


... Frigid temperatures chill the Northland...

The following are observed low temperatures through 630 am Friday
January 21 2011.


Temp location St County source
---- ----------------------- -- -------------- -------
-46 International Falls MN Koochiching ASOS
-43 Embarrass MN St Louis coop
-43 Bigfork MN Itasca RAWS
-43 ashlake MN Koochiching mndot
-43 Effie MN Itasca RAWS
-40 Birchdale MN Koochiching mndot
-38 Crane Lake MN St Louis AWOS
-37 Minong WI Washburn RAWS
-37 Hill City MN Itasca RAWS
-36 Longville MN Cass AWOS
-36 Pine River MN Cass AWOS
-36 Seagull Lake MN Cook RAWS
-36 Ely MN St Louis RAWS
-36 Wright MN St Louis coop
-33 Grand Rapids MN Itasca AWOS
-33 McGregor MN Aitkin AWOS
-33 Aitkin MN Aitkin AWOS
-33 Hibbing MN St Louis RAWS
-31 Hayward WI Sawyer RAWS
-31 Moose Lake MN Carlton AWOS
-30 Siren WI Burnett AWOS
-26 Two Harbors MN lake AWOS
-26 Silver Bay MN lake AWOS
-24 Duluth MN St Louis ASOS

Meanwhile, in Key West: 74

There is cold, then there is "holy >beep! It is COLD!"
Member Since: 3.08.2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5792
931. BobinTampa
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 13:52 (GMT)
Quoting Neapolitan:
International Falls: -38
Naples: 68

A difference of 106 degrees. Wow. I've been in air that cold; I'll take 68, thank you.

Speaking of temperature differences: in the past five days, record daily highs and high minimums have outnumbered record daily lows and low minimums by a very lopsided 398 to 14 across the United States. (Over the past six days, that high record/low record ratio has been 439 to 42.) We'll likely see more record cold temperatures tonight and into tomorrow to balance things a bit, but for now, January continues to impress not with its cold but with its heat.



About 10 years ago, I left Rapid City, SD and it was -22 (wind chill I think). I got back to Tampa and it was 80. That was a bit of an adjustment.
Member Since: 14.08.2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 526
927. Neapolitan
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 13:08 (GMT)
International Falls: -38
Naples: 68

A difference of 106 degrees. Wow. I've been in air that cold; I'll take 68, thank you.

Speaking of temperature differences: in the past five days, record daily highs and high minimums have outnumbered record daily lows and low minimums by a very lopsided 398 to 14 across the United States. (Over the past six days, that high record/low record ratio has been 439 to 42.) We'll likely see more record cold temperatures tonight and into tomorrow to balance things a bit, but for now, January continues to impress not with its cold but with its heat.
Member Since: 8.11.2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13263
926. oceanminded
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 12:56 (GMT)
cat 5 you speak the truth, good weekend everyone!

none but ourselves can free our minds....
Member Since: 11.01.2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 15
925. pottery
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 12:56 (GMT)
Good Morning all.

Some days are Diamonds.....

This one is up there somewhere.
Overnight showers have left Sparkles on everything. A zillion prisms dancing to birdsong and stuff.
Hope that everyone has a Good One.
Member Since: 24.10.2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 23080
923. PensacolaDoug
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 12:52 (GMT)



Off to work. Ya'll have a good day!
Member Since: 25.07.2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 519
920. oceanminded
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 12:15 (GMT)
my weekend forecast north tampa
weekend - cooler temps with a 100% chance of great footbal games and a 75% chance of drinking too much beer

(the above is based on 7 years of legal beer drinking ability and nearly 28 years of football watching)
Member Since: 11.01.2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 15
919. scott39
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 12:00 (GMT)
Looks like there may be an upward tick for a positive NAO for the SE Gulf Coast in Feb. Maybe some of that Warmer dryer winter forecast will come true, for the second half of winter? We will see.
Member Since: 13.06.2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6706
918. BahaHurican
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 11:53 (GMT)
Quoting HadesGodWyvern:
Fiji Meteorological Services
Tropical Disturbance Summary
TROPICAL DEPRESSION 06F
21:00 PM FST January 21 2011
========================================

At 9:00 AM UTC, Tropical Depression 06F (1001 hPa) located near 14.7S 176.9W is reported as moving slowly. Position POOR based on multispectral infrared/enhanced infrared imagery with animation and peripheral surface observations. Sea surface temperature is around 30C.

Overall organization has slightly improved past 12 hours. Convection has increased over the center in the last 6 hours. System lies under an upper diffluent region in a moderate sheared environment. Cyclonic circulation extends to 500 HPA.

Global models have picked up the system and gradually moves it southeastward with some intensification.

The potential for this tropical depression to develop into a tropical cyclone within the next 24-48 hours is HIGH.
Morning HGW.... not surprising to see the Fiji area so active this year.... that la nina has quite different impacts over the WPac than it does over the EPac...
Member Since: 25.10.2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20686
917. scott39
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 11:51 (GMT)
Strong-- La Nina NAO-- Still strongly negative! SE still cold and wet. Well at least the NAO aint broke. Will you be arrested with a misdameaner or felony charge for mentioning 2012?
Member Since: 13.06.2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6706
916. BahaHurican
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 11:47 (GMT)
Morning all. Some interesting stuff about stargazing on the blog overnight; pretty high-brow, too, for a pleasant change.... lol

Looks like another front pushes through the GoM and the FL peninsula today. It's remarkably humid here - feels like March 21, not Jan 21 - so I'm very interested to see what happens with this FROPA...

Have a good day, everybody.... and HEY! it's Friday! there's gotta be something good in the forecast for u... like the weekend....LOL
Member Since: 25.10.2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20686
915. severstorm
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 11:39 (GMT)
Good Morning, what a lovely day, more rain in wcfl. Hey doug i wont get arrested for say that will i?
Member Since: 25.11.2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 956
914. IKE
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 11:37 (GMT)
Quoting PensacolaDoug:
JFlorida writes:
They should arrest people just for mentioning 2012.


What else should people be arrested for? Don't hold back, tell us how you really feel.


lol

........................

Quoting PensacolaDoug:
Morn'n Ike.

Looks like there's a lot of winter left. I'm still mongering for my Gulf Coast Blizzard!


Keep your fingers crossed!
Member Since: 9.06.2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
913. PensacolaDoug
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 11:22 (GMT)
Morn'n Ike.

Looks like there's a lot of winter left. I'm still mongering for my Gulf Coast Blizzard!
Member Since: 25.07.2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 519
912. PensacolaDoug
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 11:19 (GMT)
JFlorida writes:
They should arrest people just for mentioning 2012.


What else should people be arrested for? Don't hold back, tell us how you really feel.
Member Since: 25.07.2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 519
911. IKE
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 11:11 (GMT)
5 day QPF...

Member Since: 9.06.2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
910. IKE
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 11:08 (GMT)
Mild winter in the SE USA huh?

Today: Cloudy, then gradually becoming mostly sunny, with a high near 50. North wind between 5 and 15 mph.

Tonight: Mostly clear, with a low around 25. Calm wind becoming north northwest around 5 mph.

Saturday: Sunny, with a high near 52. Calm wind becoming northwest around 5 mph.

Saturday Night: Mostly clear, with a low around 24. Calm wind.

Sunday: Sunny, with a high near 55. Calm wind becoming southeast around 5 mph.

Member Since: 9.06.2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
909. Walshy
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 10:12 (GMT)
Quoting DontAnnoyMe:


Still a whole lot of model discrepancy on track of low and qpf. Another wait and see situation.



Sent you a message. :)

This morning they came into much better agreement. Rumor has it this storm could compare to the 1993 blizzard for North Carolina or New England.
Member Since: 17.05.2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 904
908. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 09:57 (GMT)
Fiji Meteorological Services
Tropical Disturbance Summary
TROPICAL DEPRESSION 06F
21:00 PM FST January 21 2011
========================================

At 9:00 AM UTC, Tropical Depression 06F (1001 hPa) located near 14.7S 176.9W is reported as moving slowly. Position POOR based on multispectral infrared/enhanced infrared imagery with animation and peripheral surface observations. Sea surface temperature is around 30C.

Overall organization has slightly improved past 12 hours. Convection has increased over the center in the last 6 hours. System lies under an upper diffluent region in a moderate sheared environment. Cyclonic circulation extends to 500 HPA.

Global models have picked up the system and gradually moves it southeastward with some intensification.

The potential for this tropical depression to develop into a tropical cyclone within the next 24-48 hours is HIGH.
Member Since: 24.05.2006 Posts: 48 Comments: 43649
907. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
21. tammikuuta 2011 klo 09:57 (GMT)
Fiji Meteorological Services
Tropical Disturbance Summary
TROPICAL DISTURBANCE 07F
18:00 PM FST January 21 2011
======================================

At 6:00 AM UTC, Tropical Disturbance 07F (998 hPa) located at 21.8S 163.0W is reported as moving southeast at 15 knots. Position POOR based on multispectral infrared/enhanced infrared imagery with animation and peripheral surface observations. Sea surface temperature is around 30C.

Gale Force Winds
=================
Northwest winds 30-35 knots within 80 to 150 miles away from the center in the southeastern quadrant

Organization has improved much in the last 12 hours. Convection is displaced to the east of the low level circulation center. System lies under an upper diffluent region in a moderately sheared environment. Cyclonic circulation extends up to 500 HPA.

Global models have picked up the system and gradually moving it southeastward with slight intensification.

The potential for this tropical disturbance to form into a tropical cyclone within the next 24-36 hours is MODERATE.
Member Since: 24.05.2006 Posts: 48 Comments: 43649

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About JeffMasters

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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