Saturday, March 24, 2018

New NOAA-led study measures soot from North Dakota flaring in oil and...

Flaring produces an estimated 4 tons of black carbon per day, not considered significant for climate

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In the lonely reaches of northwestern North Dakota and across the border into Saskatchewan, the vast Bakken oil field hosts extensive activities to extract both crude oil and natural gas. Business is booming—production increased by 30 percent between May 2013 and May 2014. More than a quarter of the total gas produced from the Bakken operations can’t be processed fast enough, though, and the common industry practice is to flare it—burn it off as it is vented to the atmosphere. Jutting 30 feet upward like enormous lit matchsticks, the flares pose a new question for atmospheric scientists: What do the flares put into the air? A new NOAA-led study has produced the first direct measurements of how much black carbon—a major component of airborne particles that are commonly referred to as soot —is emitted by the Bakken flaring operations.

NOAA's Science On a Sphere® animations coming to your desktop

NOAA releases free downloadable flat screen program, great for students, teachers and science...

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(September 1) Today NOAA released a free, downloadable flat screen version of its popular Science On a Sphere® (SOS), SOS ExplorerTM. This new way to display the dynamics of Earth’s weather and climate, plate tectonics and more will help teachers bring these stunning science visualizations, usually found at museums and science centers, into the classroom, where students can learn by exploring.

Drought researchers explore future challenges in managing water

California’s water troubles a harbinger of things to come worldwide, say scientists in new essay

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California’s ongoing extreme drought must be a lesson for managing water in a warmer, more densely populated world, says a team of NOAA and University of California climatologists and hydrologists in an essay this week in Nature.

American Chemical Society honors measurement set at NOAA observatory

Atmospheric CO2 record at Mauna Loa named National Historic Chemical Landmark

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The American Chemical Society will designate the Keeling Curve – a long-term record of rising carbon dioxide in the planet’s atmosphere -- as a National Historic Chemical Landmark in a ceremony April 30 at NOAA’s Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii.

NOAA’s growing weather observations database goes into full operations

Meteorological Assimilation Data Ingest System harnesses more than 64,000 sources of data

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More robust observational data gives weather forecasters better information to develop a forecast. But data from so many different sources – 64,000 – is not easily integrated. That’s where scientists at NOAA’s Earth System Research Laboratory came in to develop the system called the Meteorological Assimilation Data Ingest System (MADIS) to make this wealth of data more accessible and usable.  This research project successfully transitioned into operations by NOAA’s National Weather Service in late January. It is another example of NOAA’s work to strengthen the effectiveness of the National Weather Service to provide environmental intelligence to communities and businesses, enabling them to become ready, responsive and resilient in the face of extreme weather, water and climate events.