Joe’s Climate World: What’s going on in Siberia (TUE-6/23)

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It’s going to be a Top 10 Summer Day in KC I think today. Lower dew points and pleasant by late June standards temperatures. That’s a good combination and while we’ll warm up a bit more tomorrow…the dew points won’t be that bad…so enjoy the weather and remember some sun screen too!

Also of note…I’ll be taking a few more days off starting tomorrow…so no blogs till next next week or so. Normally I’d get something out on Monday but I don’t think I will be able too because I’ll be helping out with a golf tournament I think.



Today: Mostly sunny with pleasant with highs in the upper 70s to lower 80s

Tonight: Fair and pleasant with lows near 60°

Wednesday: Mostly sunny and seasonable with highs in the mid 80s

Thursday: Hotter with highs near 90°. There may be some scattered storms around in the morning.



So a couple of items in the weather news lately that I wanted to touch on for you. I sort of took care of the advancing dust from Africa yesterday so no need to get to much more involved in that. I did though want to touch upon the headlines that are coming from the Siberia area, where temperatures are going nutty warm these days.

In a nutshell there is a weather station up in Verkoyansk, Russia that hit 100° a couple of days ago. That location is about 70 miles or so north of the Arctic Circle…I believe up at 67° north in latitude. IF this observation verifies and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) thinks it might…it would be the hottest ever so far north. As a matter of fact…this town is more than 1000 miles farther north that the latitude of Fairbanks, AK!

Here is the note from the WMO…

The World Meteorological Organization will seek to verify claims of a new Arctic record temperature of 38° Celsius (100.4 F) in the Russian town of Verkoyansk amid a prolonged Siberian heatwave and increase in wildfire activity. The record was reported by media to have occurred on 21 June in a place which is more traditionally regarded as one of the world’s coldest places. WMO is asking for confirmation of the temperature from the Russian state meteorological agency Roshydromet. The WMO Weather and Climate Extremes Archive will seek to verify whether this is a new Arctic record.”

There are some years where we don’t get to 100° here. Heck I think Miami has hit 100° once in their recorded weather history.

As you can see in the following tweet though…it’s been sizzling out there this month, and really this past Spring there.

Now during the month of June…their average high is around 68° and it wasn’t as if the next day was that much cooler…95°

Has anything like that happened before. Well there is some very questionable data that perhaps in 1913 it was hotter but research into that data seems to say that it was not correct. Regardless…this year has been weirdly warm in that region. Here is a map showing temperatures for the year in that region some 13° above average…which is just bizarre. That map shows India in the bottom middle and Russia up top where the heat is centered. By the way, they’ve been keeping records there about as long as we have in KC…back to the 1880s

Here is a broader perspective…

Oh and according to the EURO model…the next 10 days there are going to be running some 10° above average as well.

This has set of a series of other events. Fires up there aren’t that unusual I believe but there are a lot of them this year it appears, perhaps more than typical.

Here is the satellite picture from there yesterday. All the red dots represent fires that are burning.

Why is that important…because the soot/ash/pollution from the fires settles on top of the glaciers…that allows the ice to absorb more of the sun’s energy and melt quicker. This is obviously the melting time of the year there with near constant sunshine at that latitude but add in soot on top of ice and that melting speeds up.

Remember the story last month about how there was a massive oil spill up there?

Apparently with the permafrost melting so much there some of the storage tanks may have collapsed and about 150,000 barrels of diesel was released into the land and waterways. The environment up there is a mess to begin with…but this was pretty bad apparently.

Now there have been times in the past that temperatures have been crazy high…like well into the 90s high at that particular location…but again…just another degree or two added on

I’m sure there are other not so good things happening up there because of this unusual heat. The sea ice up there which helps to reflect the sunlight back into the atmosphere is breaking up quicker and more extensively. That allows the waters up there to absorb the heat…making them warmer in the big picture.

Thought you might be interested!

Our feature photo comes from Jerry Poese out towards Concordia, MO


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