Category Archives: Climate

Is Madison breaking any records during the warmest year ever across the globe?

Sunday was the 110th consecutive day in Madison with a daily high temperature at or above 70 degrees, shattering the previous longest such streak of 103 days, set in 1998, by seven days.

We are also approaching the record for the number of consecutive days with a daily minimum temperature at or above 45 degrees, set in 2010 when a streak of 128 such days occurred. As of Sunday, this year’s string was at 127. Low temperatures forecast around 45 degrees for Monday through Wednesday could maintain or break that streak. Continue reading

Category: Climate, Meteorology, Seasons

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Is another transition around the corner?

As we head into the second half of August a subtle transition in our weather begins to occur — one that is probably hard to detect at first but that eventually becomes very obvious and then lasts for approximately eight … Continue reading

Category: Climate, Meteorology, Seasons

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Has global warming stopped?

In a recent interview on the Glenn Klein Show on WRJN radio, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Oshkosh, asserted that “the climate hasn’t warmed in quite a few years … that is proven scientifically.”

This statement is entirely untrue but echoes a line of argument that many climate change and global warming skeptics have introduced into the discussion for a number of years. The so-called “global warming hiatus” argument suggests that since the beginning of the present century there has been a slower rate of increase in the global average surface temperature than climate models suggested would be the case. Continue reading

Category: Climate, Meteorology

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How do you measure how hot the summer is?

After experiencing our first 90-degree day of the season on Friday, many people are wondering what we might expect this summer.

It turns out that the number or 90-degree days each summer is extremely variable here in Madison. From 1971 to 2015, the average number of days at or above 90 in Madison was 10.96. This average, however, struggles to convey a sense of the variability. Continue reading

Category: Climate, Meteorology, Seasons

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What can be learned from the recurrence of extreme weather events?

In 2004, the Boston Red Sox won the World Series for the first time in 86 years and their loyal fans were ecstatic. In the very next year, the Chicago White Sox won their first World Series title in 88 years.

Never in the long history of baseball had two teams that had been denied championships for so long won those long-coveted titles in successive years. This circumstance was at least partially a function of the changes in baseball brought about by free agency — a fundamental change to the rules. Continue reading

Category: Climate, Meteorology, Severe Weather

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