Wednesday, January 3, 2007

24 Days and Counting


Clear, mild. After a frosty start, it's a brilliantly sunny mid March day here in the Washington metro area. The official high was 56°, equal to the climatological average high for March 16-18. This is now the 24th consecutive day of above-average temperatures, and there are at least several more on tap. The PM Update mobile unit observed numerous walkers, joggers (note to spellcheck: not jokers!), and bicyclists enjoying the conditions along Beach Drive in the Kensington-Bethesda area early this afternoon.

Tonight and Tomorrow

Continued seasonably mild; some increase in clouds. Under mainly clear skies, low temperatures tonight will be in the upper 30s downtown to near freezing in the 'burbies. Clouds will increase somewhat tomorrow, particularly late in the day, with highs near 60°

For the outlook through the weekend, scroll down to Dan's post below.

The Trend is Your Friend?

The trend is definitely not your friend if you're a snow-lover. As we've cautioned many times, however, "past performance is no guarantee of future results". Matt recapped December in his Tuesday post. The chart to the right summarizes the temperature part of the story. Note the 2 daily record highs, but also the fact that the linear trend (dashed line) of the highs is actually slightly upward, despite the usual downward trend of the average during the month. chart from NWS data, photo © Kevin Ambrose

Science Fact and Fiction

Dan poses the intriguing question of what Washington would be like under a different climate in his earlier post. For a really far out consideration of this question, check out the science fiction section of the new store. Kim Stanley Robinson's trilogy is based right here in a future DC. The second volume comes out in paperback at the end of the month and is available for pre-order; the third book is scheduled for release in February.

In case you missed it, let me repeat that this is fiction, although the first one (I haven't yet read the other two) is much more plausible than, say, "The Day After Tomorrow." Unlike some people who run energy industry lobbying operations from their $1.2 million Potomac homes, we are extremely careful here at to separate fact from fiction. Like alternative histories, however, alternative futures can often provide interesting and useful insights.

No comments:

Seasonal Outlook

Latest seasonal forecast: Click here.

Latest 3-month temperature outlook from Climate Prediction Center/NWS/NOAA.