In the 1950′s, meteorologists across the nation lacked the efficient tools, technologies, and computers they needed to perfect their art. They were in great need of a well-equipped science center where scientists specializing in all disciplines of meteorology could collaborate to create more accurate and sophisticated forecasts and models.
In response to this need, the National Science Foundation backed the formation of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in 1960, and Boulder was chosen as its home. Read more
It’s cold — tooth achingly, face numbingly frigid.
In Boulder, the average high temperature in December was about six degrees cooler than normal, and so far this season the city’s been pounded with 70 inches of snow, roughly twice the average.
But this doesn’t mean climate change isn’t affecting Colorado, threatening our snowpack, agricultural lands and water supply, according to local climate gurus.
Beijing had its coldest morning in almost 40 years and its biggest snowfall since 1951. Britain is suffering through its longest cold snap since 1981. And freezing weather is gripping the Deep South, including Florida’s orange groves and beaches.
Whatever happened to global warming? Such weather doesn’t seem to fit with warnings from scientists that the Earth is warming because of greenhouse gases. But experts say the cold snap doesn’t disprove global warming at all — it’s just a blip in the long-term heating trend.
“It’s part of natural variability,” said Gerald Meehl, a senior scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder. With global warming, he said, “we’ll still have record cold temperatures. We’ll just have fewer of them.”
People all over the world are getting worked up about the number 350.
Here’s the deal: Scientists are say that atmospheric carbon dioxide emissions must stay below 350 ppm. Or we’re screwed. Now, carbon dioxide concentratoins are around 390. So, climate activists are saying, something’s gotta change.
This weekend, people in Boulder will join communities around the world by rallying around a number: 350.
There are more than 4,000 events planned for Saturday across 170 countries — including 300 events in China, 500-plus in Central and South America, and 1,500 across the United States — to call attention to the number, which stands for a concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide in parts per million.
Many scientists believe that the carbon dioxide concentration must stay below 350 ppm in order to keep the most traumatic consequences of global warming at bay. The carbon dioxide concentration hasn’t been that low since the late 1980s. Today, it’s at 387 ppm. Read more