Sunday, November 13, 2011

Review of 2010 Russian Heat Wave

BAMS has a good article that reviews the 2010 heat wave in central Russia, by Richard Grumm of the National Weather Service. Moscow was +18°F above normal for July 2010, and +16°F normal for August, which are incredible numbers. They translate to +32°F and +29°F, which seem unbelievable. Where I live in northwestern Oregon the maximum daily high temperature is 81°F, occurring over the last week in July and the first two weeks in August. I can't even imagine a month of days where the daily high was 112°F. Note: There is a typo in the second paragraph of Grumm's paper -- the departures from normal temperatures there should be in Fahrenheit, not Celsius.

In Moscow the average daily high for July is 24°C (75°F), so I would guess few people there have air conditioning. That summer had to be brutal. (I don't have A/C where I live, and would rarely need it anyway, which is good because I hate being in an air-conditioned building all day. I lived in Tempe, Arizona for a year and a half, and even with A/C the summers there are tough, with high temps around 115°F. You go outside at 10 at night and it's still 103 or so. One day it hit 122°F and they closed the Phoenix airport because planes aren't tested above 120°F. On the other hand, November through April there is idyllic.)

Grumm reviews that summer's blocking ridge in central Russia, but doesn't go into attribution. It's interesting reading.

By the way, wheat prices still haven't come down for that heat-wave induced spike. (Last year I estimated this rise cost the world $67B per year, and the U.S. $2.1B per year.)


Anonymous said...

I think the anomalies are in Farenheit.

Anonymous said...

Looks to me like those vast anomalies are in Farenheit :).

David Appell said...

The 18 C and 16 C numbers come directly from the 2nd paragraph of Grumm's paper. But the figure doesn't seem to support those.... I'm not sure why the difference--perhaps there is more than one station in Moscow.

David Appell said...

OK, I see the problem: the numbers in the 2nd paragraph of Grumm's paper should be in Fahrenheit, not Celsius. I'll correct my post accordingly.