Newly developed computer simulations of snow cover can now be used to accurately forecast avalanche hazards, according to researchers from Simon Fraser University (SFU) in British Columbia.
Avalanche forecasts in Canada are currently created using data from local weather stations and on-the-ground observations from ski and backcountry ski operators, avalanche control workers, and volunteers who manually test the snowpack.
According to the SFU research, newly developed simulated snow cover models are able detect and track weak layers of snow and identify avalanche hazard in a completely different way and can provide forecasters with another reliable tool when local data is insufficient or unavailable.
Scientists from the University of Reading and the University of Birmingham have found that pollination was reduced by up to 31% in the presence of common ground-level air pollutants, including diesel exhaust pollutants and ozone.
The study found that there were up to 70% fewer pollinators and up to 90% fewer flower visits when air pollution was present. The theory is that the pollutants react with and change the scents of flowers, making it harder for pollinating insects to sniff them out. This work suggested that pollution could contribute to the ongoing declines in pollinating insects, by making it harder for them to locate their food – pollen and nectar.
Weather intelligence provider Baron has installed two dual-polarization weather radars and four Baron Lynx Advanced Forecaster Workstations as part of Kazakhstan’s weather modernization program.
The country’s National Hydrometeorological Service will use the data from the radars to detect weather threats, such as blizzards and floods, with greater precision, resulting in more timely and accurate warnings.
According to Baron, the company’s 1,000,000W klystron C-band dual-polarization radars are among the most powerful on the market, providing the longest signal range available. The Lynx Advanced Forecaster Workstations facilitate the visualization and analysis of the radar data. Baron positioned a workstation near each radar site with two more located at the National Hydrometeorological Service headquarters.
Copper released into the environment may be contributing significantly to stratospheric ozone depletion, according to a new study from the University of California, Berkeley.
In a paper appearing in the journal Nature Communications, UC Berkeley geochemists showed that copper in soil and seawater, released from fungicides, brake pads, antifouling paints on boats and other sources, acts as a catalyst to turn organic matter into both methyl bromide and methyl chloride, two potent halocarbon compounds that destroy ozone. Sunlight worsens the situation, producing about 10 times the amount of these methyl halides.
The findings answer a long-standing mystery about the origin of much of the methyl bromide and methyl chloride in the stratosphere.
The US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is integrating IT specialist Intertrust’s Planet OS weather data API with its OpenOA software, enabling wind energy planners to estimate energy production more accurately from wind farms.
The joint solution will enable wind energy experts to understand weather variability, which is critical to planning renewable energy systems.
The NREL OpenOA (Operational Assessment) framework is developed to provide references of common wind energy operational analytics methods to address the lack of standardization of these methods in the wind industry. The core feature of OpenOA is a state-of-the-art method for estimating the long-term annual energy production (AEP) of a wind plant based on a few years of operational data.
Nearly 70% of western America was affected by harmful levels of air pollution on one particular day in 2020, affecting around 43 million people, according to a new study led by Washington State University.
It is the highest level of air pollution in 20 years and had been caused by large wildfires and severe heat events across the USA.
Conducted in partnership with the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder (CIRES) and NOAA’s Global Systems Laboratory, the study, published in Science Advances, found that such widespread air pollution events are not only increasing in frequency, but also persisting longer and affecting a larger geographic area.
Prof. Amanda Lynch has been elected as chair of the WMO Research Board, which is responsible for guiding and translating the aims of the WMO members into overarching research priorities to be implemented in the activities of different research programs.
Lynch is a distinguished professor of earth, environmental and planetary sciences at Brown University, Rhode Island, USA, and has served as the inaugural director of the Institute at Brown for Environment and Society. Her experience is at the nexus of weather and climate, natural and social sciences, and research and policy. She is a fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering and the American Meteorological Society, and has been a member of WMO’s Scientific Advisory Panel for the past two years.
Environmental and weather measurement specialist Vaisala is undertaking the installation of two WRS400 X-band weather radars in the north of Italy.
ARPA Lombardia (the Regional Agency for the Protection of the Environment of Lombardia Region) procured the radar technology through a public tender with the goal of protecting local residents from extreme weather events such as heavy rainfall, which increases the likelihood of flooding.
Working with its local service partner Eurelettronica Icas, Vaisala installed the first WRS400 radar system in an existing water tower in the municipality of Flero iin December 2021. The location is central to urban areas and the river basin networks, which are most likely to experience dangerous flooding conditions.