WWLP: Artificial intelligence changing accuracy of hurricane forecasts

WWLP: Artificial intelligence changing accuracy of hurricane forecasts. “Researchers at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory have recently developed a new model that aids in predicting hurricane intensity. It’s one of several models that are used to track hurricane movement and intensity. Although this model will be using the same data that other models use, it differs in its use of ‘neural networks’.”

TechCrunch: BreezoMeter, which powers air quality in Apple’s Weather app, launches Wildfire Tracker

TechCrunch: BreezoMeter, which powers air quality in Apple’s Weather app, launches Wildfire Tracker. “BreezoMeter has been on a mission to make environmental health hazard information accessible to as many people as possible. Through its air quality index (AQI) calculations, the Israel-based company can now identify the quality of air down to a few meters in dozens of countries. A partnership with Apple to include its data into the iOS Weather app along with its own popular apps delivers those metrics to hundreds of millions of users, and an API product allows companies to tap into its data set for their own purposes.”

North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality: New air quality tool officially launches in partnership with State Climate Office

North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality: New air quality tool officially launches in partnership with State Climate Office. “The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality’s Division of Air Quality (DAQ) has partnered with the North Carolina State Climate Office to develop a new air quality tool, the Ambient Information Reporter (AIR). The new tool contains statewide weather and air quality observations about past, current, and forecasted air quality events.”

University of Central Florida: UCF Researchers Create Global Storm Surge Database

University of Central Florida: UCF Researchers Create Global Storm Surge Database. “The researchers also visualized the data by creating an online map that displays 802 tide gauges from around the world and all relevant data corresponding to each tide gauge covering the entire 1900s and most of the 1800s. Users can click on the tide gauge and download multiple daily maximum surge datasets.”

New Jersey 101.5: Has a tornado ever hit your town? New tool maps 70+ years of NJ twisters

New Jersey 101.5: Has a tornado ever hit your town? New tool maps 70+ years of NJ twisters. “…between 1950 and July 2021, there have been at least 182 confirmed tornado touchdowns in the state. That equates to an average of 2.45 per year….In a stroke of perfect timing, the NJ State Climate Office at Rutgers University just released a new interactive web tool that maps and charts all 182 of those NJ tornadoes.”

Bureau of Reclamation: Reclamation launches website with real-time information, interactive resources on drought

Bureau of Reclamation: Reclamation launches website with real-time information, interactive resources on drought. “The portal is user friendly and provides easy-to-understand features, explanations and current information on cutting-edge science, drought actions, current conditions and climate change visualizations that will help the public understand the complex drought conditions in the West.”

The Verge: Apple’s weather app won’t say it’s 69 degrees

Hopefully this is a conversion issue, which is the only non-stupid explanation I can think of. From The Verge: Apple’s weather app won’t say it’s 69 degrees. “If you’re an iPhone user, the weather is always a particularly nice 70 degrees. Or 68 degrees. Any temperature but 69 degrees, actually, because it turns out that the built-in weather app on some versions of iOS — including the current version, iOS 14.6 — will refuse to display the internet’s favorite number, even if the actual temperature in a given location is, in fact, 69 degrees, along with several other (less meme-able) numerals like 65 and 71 degrees.”

EOS: Have You Seen Ball Lightning? Scientists Want to Know About It

EOS: Have You Seen Ball Lightning? Scientists Want to Know About It. “Ball lightning has been reported for centuries but hasn’t been reliably observed by scientific instruments. A new website hosted by New Mexico Tech physicist Richard Sonnenfeld and Texas State University engineer Karl Stephan is collecting eyewitness accounts to improve the basic understanding of the phenomenon. They’ll compare the accounts with weather radar systems to characterize the factors that could lead to ball lightning.”

PR Newswire: SC Johnson and AccuWeather Announce Launch of First-of-its-Kind Pest Index to Help Families Plan for a Summer Full of Memories…Not Pests (PRESS RELEASE)

PR Newswire: SC Johnson and AccuWeather Announce Launch of First-of-its-Kind Pest Index to Help Families Plan for a Summer Full of Memories…Not Pests (PRESS RELEASE). “The Pest Index provides users with real-time information on the potential incidence of common bugs in their local towns and cities. It factors in location, weather and insect behavior to predict what level of pest activity – low, moderate or high – people can expect from both indoor and outdoor pests.”

NHK World Japan: Tokyo Games heat index goes online

NHK World Japan: Tokyo Games heat index goes online. “Japan’s Environment Ministry has opened a website showing the heat index at various sports venues during the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics. The website that became accessible on Thursday shows hourly readings of the Heat Stress Index at venues from Hokkaido through Shizuoka Prefecture in central Japan. It also offers predictions.”

Techdirt: Texas Consumers Lose Control Of Their Thermostats, Get Another Crash Course In Value Of Competent Regulators

Techdirt: Texas Consumers Lose Control Of Their Thermostats, Get Another Crash Course In Value Of Competent Regulators. “During the recent heat wave, some Texans were shocked to wake up to find that their local energy company had turned up their thermostats in the night to save energy. Houston locals weren’t exactly thrilled to wake up sweating in the night to the sound of dehydrated, crying infants. Customers had apparently signed up for a ‘sweepstakes’ where the fine print in a massive, overlong end user agreement gave control of their own AC thermostats over to the local utility”

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory: Building a Global Storm Database

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory: Building a Global Storm Database. “A new global database built by researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) captures characteristics and rainfall data of strong thunderstorms from the past 20 years. Including storms in both midlatitude and tropical zones is key to capturing how contrasting storm behavior and corresponding precipitation could affect populated regions of the globe.”

Wired: Citizen Scientists Digitized Centuries of Handwritten Rain Data

Wired: Citizen Scientists Digitized Centuries of Handwritten Rain Data. “IN MARCH 2020, as the United Kingdom went into pandemic lockdown, climate scientist Ed Hawkins put out a call to people with time on their hands: He needed help turning nearly 350 years’ worth of archival rainfall reports into digital documents that modern researchers could easily use. To his surprise, 16,000 people volunteered…. Now, just over a year later, his group has released their work, a massive data set of upwards of 5 million observations extracted from the UK Meteorological Office’s paper records—the oldest dating to 1677.”