WBRZ https://www.wbrz.com/ WBRZ Weather Weather en-us Copyright 2020, WBRZ. All Rights Reserved. Feed content is not avaialble for commercial use. () () Thu, 9 Apr 2020 HH:04:ss GMT Synapse CMS 10 WBRZ https://www.wbrz.com/ 144 25 Record warmth possible today, eyes on a weekend storm https://www.wbrz.com/news/record-warmth-possible-today-eyes-on-a-weekend-storm/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/record-warmth-possible-today-eyes-on-a-weekend-storm/ Weather Wed, 8 Apr 2020 6:21:28 AM Chief Meteorologist Dr. Josh Eachus Record warmth possible today, eyes on a weekend storm

Wednesday is expected to be the warmest of the week. A couple of cold fronts will bring cooler temperatures Thursday through the weekend, but also a threat for severe weather on Sunday.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: High temperatures will continue to increase through the 80s and approach the 90s on Wednesday. Reaching 87 degrees would be good enough to tie a Baton Rouge area record high, anything above would set a new mark. The chance for showers is lower, but not zero, and skies will be partly sunny. Overnight will be partly cloudy with low temperatures staying in the low 70s.

Up Next: A frontal system will then move into the region on Thursday. This will bring the potential for isolated showers by midday. Rain chances have turned markedly lower for this event over the last 24 hours. It looks as though most of the activity will occur behind the front, in the evening and at night. Clouds and showers may linger Friday morning followed by some returning sun and drier conditions through Saturday morning. Thermometers will turn cooler behind the first front. A reinforcing front may bring another round of showers and thunderstorms Saturday night through Sunday. Some of these could be strong and heavy. The Storm Prediction Center has already highlighted all of the local area in a threat for severe weather. Below average temperatures will persist through Tuesday.  

The Mississippi River: At Baton Rouge, major flood stage continues with a level of 42’ as of Wednesday morning. Around April 11, the river is projected to crest near 43’. The high water is primarily an issue for river traffic and river islands, although some inundation will continue for a few spots north and south of Baton Rouge that are not protected by levees. Unprotected low-lying areas will be flooded and agricultural operations will be impacted on the west side of the river. The grounds of the older part of Louisiana State University's campus become soggy. This includes the area around the Veterinary Medicine building, the Veterinary Medicine Annex, the stadium and ball fields. The city of Baton Rouge and the main LSU campus are protected by levees at this level. This comes after a year where the gauge at Baton Rouge spent a record smashing run of 212 consecutive days above flood stage between January and August. Peaking at 44.1’ on March 19, 2019 the river set its 7th highest recorded crest at Baton Rouge. The level is also high in New Orleans and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has opened the Bonnet Carre Spillway.

THE EXPLANATION:

An upper level ridge of high pressure will persist over the region on Wednesday. Subsidence will lead to another mostly dry and almost hot afternoon. A strong cold front will dive south across the Eastern U.S. through Thursday. The front is likely to cross the I-10/12 corridor around midday Thursday with very little precipitation. Interestingly, the front may not be the main game with this system. A moderate to strong upper level disturbance will move over the cold front on Thursday evening and generate another round of rain and thunderstorms. Most of this activity will happen Thursday night. Beyond this front, a lull in precipitation will come early Friday through early Saturday as a deep upper level low pressure system in the Southwest U.S. moves over Texas.

The upper level trough will begin to orient from northwest to southeast, this is called a negative tilt, and this if a reliable indicator for active weather. The trough will create a surface low pressure system and associated cold front that will move into the region on Sunday. At this time, forecast model guidance agrees on instability and wind shear being present to support severe weather. If moisture return from the Gulf of Mexico can occur beyond Thursday’s front and prior to this one, a widespread and significant severe weather event could be possible. Timing is not yet clear, but will come into focus as we get closer. The front will clear to the east by Sunday afternoon with cooler and drier conditions persisting into early next week. Please stay in touch.  

--Josh

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, wbrz.com, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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Muggy with isolated showers, thunderstorms https://www.wbrz.com/news/muggy-with-isolated-showers-thunderstorms/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/muggy-with-isolated-showers-thunderstorms/ Weather Tue, 7 Apr 2020 5:49:42 AM Chief Meteorologist Dr. Josh Eachus Muggy with isolated showers, thunderstorms

Warmth will continue through Thursday. However, the next frontal system will then deliver a pop of showers and thunderstorms and cooler temperatures.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: Continued onshore flow will aid the development of spotty showers on Tuesday as well, especially north of I-10 during the midday hours. Beneath mostly cloudy skies, high temperatures will climb into the mid 80s. Showers will lessen in number overnight with low temperatures in the low 70s.

Up Next: High temperatures will continue to increase through the 80s and approach the 90s on Wednesday. A frontal system will then move into the region on Thursday. This will bring the potential for showers and thunderstorms, and a few could bring gusty wind and heavy rain late. Clouds and showers may linger Friday morning until a relative lull through Saturday afternoon. Thermometers will take a turn for the cooler behind that system, and unlike the past couple of frontal passages, this cool air mass will have some staying power. A reinforcing front may bring another round of showers and thunderstorms Saturday night through Sunday.

The Mississippi River: At Baton Rouge, major flood stage continues with a level of 42’ as of Tuesday morning. Around April 11, the river is projected to crest near 43’. The high water is primarily an issue for river traffic and river islands, although some inundation will continue for a few spots north and south of Baton Rouge that are not protected by levees. Unprotected low-lying areas will be flooded and agricultural operations will be impacted on the west side of the river. The grounds of the older part of Louisiana State University's campus become soggy. This includes the area around the Veterinary Medicine building, the Veterinary Medicine Annex, the stadium and ball fields. The city of Baton Rouge and the main LSU campus are protected by levees at this level. This comes after a year where the gauge at Baton Rouge spent a record smashing run of 212 consecutive days above flood stage between January and August. Peaking at 44.1’ on March 19, 2019 the river set its 7th highest recorded crest at Baton Rouge. The level is also high in New Orleans and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has opened the Bonnet Carre Spillway. From May to July 2019, the Spillway was open for a record 79 consecutive days during its second opening of the year. If the Spillway is opened in 2020, it will mark the fourth time in five years and the 15th time since being built in 1931. 

THE EXPLANATION:

A ridge of high pressure over the Gulf of Mexico will maintain above average temperatures through the middle of the week. While, mainly dry conditions are anticipated, advancing Gulf moisture amidst onshore winds will allow isolated showers to develop. The chances may be enhanced somewhat by some weak upper level impulses riding over the ridge with the best, albeit low, chance for isolated showers through Tuesday. High resolution forecast models place the best chances for isolated convection over locations north of I-10 and east of I-55 between 11am – 2pm. Wednesday will be the warmest day of the week with high temperatures approaching 90 degrees. Then, a frontal system will move into the region late Thursday. With several days of warmth and moisture priming the atmosphere, showers and thunderstorms should develop ahead of the front. Interestingly, the better chance for rain may come after the front passes on Thursday night as a more potent upper level wave of energy rides over the cold front. This period will need to be monitored for some heavier activity.

The first front will knock temperatures down a bit, as it crawls into the Gulf of Mexico. It is expected to stall close enough to the region that clouds and isolated showers will stick around early Friday. A second front will then move in during the middle of the weekend. While confidence is low at this time, the current forecast is for this front to flush out the lingering clouds and showers and provide a prolonged period of cooler and drier than average conditions into early next week.        

--Josh

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, wbrz.com, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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Thermometers climb through Wednesday https://www.wbrz.com/news/thermometers-climb-through-wednesday/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/thermometers-climb-through-wednesday/ Weather Mon, 6 Apr 2020 6:17:12 AM Chief Meteorologist Dr. Josh Eachus Thermometers climb through Wednesday

Look for a warm start to the week as highs approach 90 by Wednesday. A cold front will move into the region by the end of the week.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: Look for some high clouds to thicken over a mostly sunny sky to start the new week. Southerly winds will take hold over the area, increasing the potential for spotty to isolated showers to develop by the evening. The influx of warmth and moisture from the Gulf of Mexico will guide afternoon high temperatures into the mid 80s. Overnight brings the best shot at a shower, though coverage will be low. Thermometers will stop in the upper 60s.

Up Next: Continued onshore flow will aid the development of spotty showers on Tuesday as well. High temperatures will continue to increase through the 80s and approach the 90s on Wednesday. A frontal system will then move into the region on Thursday and Friday. This will bring the potential for showers and thunderstorms, and some cells could be strong. Thermometers will take a turn for the cooler behind that system, and unlike the past couple of frontal passages, this cool air mass will have some staying power.

The Mississippi River: At Baton Rouge, major flood stage continues with a level of 42’ as of Monday morning. Around April 11, the river is projected to crest near 43’. The high water is primarily an issue for river traffic and river islands, although some inundation will continue for a few spots north and south of Baton Rouge that are not protected by levees. Unprotected low-lying areas will be flooded and agricultural operations will be impacted on the west side of the river. The grounds of the older part of Louisiana State University's campus become soggy. This includes the area around the Veterinary Medicine building, the Veterinary Medicine Annex, the stadium and ball fields. The city of Baton Rouge and the main LSU campus are protected by levees at this level. This comes after a year where the gauge at Baton Rouge spent a record smashing run of 212 consecutive days above flood stage between January and August. Peaking at 44.1’ on March 19, 2019 the river set its 7th highest recorded crest at Baton Rouge. The level is also high in New Orleans and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has opened the Bonnet Carre Spillway. From May to July 2019, the Spillway was open for a record 79 consecutive days during its second opening of the year. If the Spillway is opened in 2020, it will mark the fourth time in five years and the 15th time since being built in 1931. 

THE EXPLANATION:

A ridge of high pressure over the Gulf of Mexico will maintain above average temperatures through the middle of the week. While, mainly dry conditions are anticipated, advancing Gulf moisture amidst onshore winds will allow isolated showers to develop. The chances may be enhanced somewhat by some weak upper level impulses riding over the ridge with the best, albeit low, chance for isolated showers overnight Monday and through Tuesday. Wednesday will be the warmest day of the week with high temperatures approaching 90 degrees. Then, a frontal system will move into the region late Thursday. With several days of warmth and moisture priming the atmosphere, showers and thunderstorms should readily develop. This period will need to be monitored for some stronger activity. The first front will knock temperatures down a bit, as it crawls into the Gulf of Mexico. It is expected to stall close enough to the region that clouds and isolated showers will stick around into the weekend. A second front will then move in during the middle of the weekend. While confidence is low at this time, the current forecast is for this front to flush out the lingering clouds and showers and provide a prolonged period of cooler and drier than average conditions into early next week.         

--Josh

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, wbrz.com, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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Warming through the beginning of the week https://www.wbrz.com/news/warming-through-the-beginning-of-the-week/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/warming-through-the-beginning-of-the-week/ Weather Sun, 5 Apr 2020 4:34:25 PM Meteorologist Matt Callihan Warming through the beginning of the week

THE FORECAST:

Tonight and Tomorrow: Mostly clear skies initially, but clouds will be slowly increasing late tonight. Temperatures will be dropping into the 60s around 11 PM, as overnight lows approach 63° with calming winds out of the northeast. Wind directions will be shifting out of the southeast into Monday, allowing for warming conditions and the potential for spotty afternoon showers. Temperatures will break into the 70s around 10 AM, with highs peaking near 83°.

Up Next:  Spotty afternoon showers stay the course through much of the week, before turning more scattered and stormy on Thursday and Friday. Highs will approach the 90s on Wednesday before cooling back down into the mid-70s Friday.

THE EXPLANATION:

A high pressure ridge will begin to develop to our south and well into the Gulf on Monday. Winds travel from high pressure to low pressure, which will push gulf moisture and heat onshore. This will provide the potential for spotty afternoon showers to develop Monday and Tuesday as high temperatures continue to soar through the 80s and approach the 90s on Wednesday. The reason highs peak on Wednesday is because the ridge will shift to the west across the Yucatan Peninsula, opening the door to an approaching low pressure system and associated cold front Thursday and Friday. This will bring the potential for storms to develop, which some cells could be rather strong. Drier and cooler conditions are set to move in behind the front as we proceed through the weekend.

--Meteorologist Matt Callihan

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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Moisture set to linger https://www.wbrz.com/news/moisture-set-to-linger/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/moisture-set-to-linger/ Weather Sat, 4 Apr 2020 5:14:39 PM Meteorologist Matt Callihan Moisture set to linger

THE FORECAST: 

 

Tonight and Tomorrow: Cloudy conditions will ensue tonight, as there is a potential for spotty showers after midnight through the early morning hours on Sunday. Overnight lows are set to bottom-out near 63° with calming winds out of the northeast. These light northeasterly winds will continue into Sunday, as areas of patchy fog will be possible before 9 AM. Mostly sunny through the majority of the day on Sunday, but clouds will be slowly building late in the day. There is a spotty chance for PM Showers as highs peak near 80° through the afternoon.

 

Up Next:  Spotty afternoon showers stay the course through much of the week, before turning more scattered and stormy on Thursday. Highs will approach the 90s on Wednesday before cooling back down into the mid-70s Friday.

 

THE EXPLANATION:

High pressure located to our south and east along the northern portions of Florida will be keeping low pressure systems to our west and north. This weather pattern will allow for onshore and southerly winds to continue pushing Gulf warmth and moisture onshore with spotty afternoon showers staying in the forecast through the early part of the week. The high pressure begins to wander east and along the Eastern Seaboard late in the week, opening the door to a low pressure system from the west on Thursday and Friday. This will allow for additional atmospheric instability to occur, allowing for afternoon storms to develop. Conditions should begin to dry into the weekend, as highs cool into the mid-to-upper 70s starting Friday.

--Meteorologist Matt Callihan

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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Active week of ISS passing overhead https://www.wbrz.com/news/active-week-of-iss-passing-overhead/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/active-week-of-iss-passing-overhead/ Weather Fri, 3 Apr 2020 4:40:19 PM Meteorologist Matt Callihan Active week of ISS passing overhead

The International Space Station (ISS), the largest human-made body in low Earth orbit, will be able to be viewed by the naked eye here in South Louisiana over the next week! If you have never taken a second to peer up at the passing space station during a clear morning or evening, this is your chance. There are several promising evenings ahead, with the best and brightest being the evenings of Monday, April 6th and Tuesday, April 7th. The table below describes each pass over the next 7 days.

 

Brightness, or the magnitude of a celestial object, depends on its luminosity, distance from Earth, and any extinction of the object’s light caused by interstellar dust between the object and the observer. The magnitude scale is reverse logarithmic, meaning that the brighter the object is, the lower its magnitude. For instance, the brightest visible star in the night sky is Sirius, at a magnitude of -1.46, whereas Venus is much brighter at -4.2. The faintest stars that are visible to the naked eye have magnitudes of +6.5. What is also exciting about the 5 minutes passage on April 7th, is that it will travel almost overhead. The highest point’s altitude is the degree from the horizon, 0° being along the horizon and 90° being directly overhead. At 76°, or even 49° on the evening prior, the ISS should be quick to point out as it jets across the night sky.

When you are observing the ISS, what you are actually seeing is the Sun’s rays reflecting off of the massive solar panels of the station, which cover an area of about 27,000 square feet – more than half the area of a football field. The ISS has been orbiting our planet over the last 21 years, and there are currently 3 humans on board – Oleg Skripochka, Jessica Meir, and Andrew Morgan. Three more astronauts and cosmonauts are scheduled to join them on a launch later this month.


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Record warmth for March https://www.wbrz.com/news/record-warmth-for-march/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/record-warmth-for-march/ Weather Fri, 3 Apr 2020 3:15:21 PM Meteorologist Matt Callihan Record warmth for March

March was a very warm month across the Baton Rouge area. Only two days, March 5th and 7th, incurred high temperatures that were below average. 29 out of 31 days high temperatures exceeded their average values, amounting to an average high temperature of 79.6° for the month, 6.9° above the 90 year average. Records were also broken, as the warmest high temperature was reached for March 28th at 89°, crushing the record set back in 1989 by 2 degrees! This day was also the hottest March day in the last 46 years, since a high of 91° was reached back in 1963. Low temperatures were also heightened, as the average low temperature for the month was about 11° above average.

Total precipitation for the month totaled 2.20”, which is 2.21” below our monthly average. This is up just over an inch from last year, where we only amounted 1.17”. This past March we received the second lowest rainfall amounts over the last 13 years, and fifth lowest since 2000. Our rainiest day occurred on the 17th, which landed in the middle of the wettest week of the month. This week alone accounted for about 75% of the months total rainfall.  


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Few showers to dodge over the weekend https://www.wbrz.com/news/few-showers-to-dodge-over-the-weekend/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/few-showers-to-dodge-over-the-weekend/ Weather Fri, 3 Apr 2020 5:41:10 AM Chief Meteorologist Dr. Josh Eachus Few showers to dodge over the weekend

The weekend forecast will include some rain chances, but do not expect either day to be a washout. Much warmer temperatures are anticipated next week.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: The week will end with highs returning to the 80s and increasing clouds. While a spotty shower is possible, chances for anything measurable are very low. Southeast winds will keep temperatures mild overnight with lows in the mid 60s. Skies will stay mostly cloudy. 

Up Next: A weak front will stall in western Louisiana by Saturday and a modest upper level disturbance will roll over that front to kick out a few showers and thunderstorms, especially west of the Mississippi River. In the absence of upper level energy, rain chances will go down on Sunday. The weak front will not push through the local area and therefore, temperatures will continue to warm into early next week allowing some thermometers to take another run at 90 by Tuesday or Wednesday. In step with this thinking, the Climate Prediction Center is showing a high probability of above average temperatures.  

The Mississippi River: At Baton Rouge, major flood stage continues with a level of 41’ as of Friday morning. Around April 10, the river is projected to crest near 43’. The high water is primarily an issue for river traffic and river islands, although some inundation will continue for a few spots north and south of Baton Rouge that are not protected by levees. Unprotected low-lying areas will be flooded and agricultural operations will be impacted on the west side of the river. The grounds of the older part of Louisiana State University's campus become soggy. This includes the area around the Veterinary Medicine building, the Veterinary Medicine Annex, the stadium and ball fields. The city of Baton Rouge and the main LSU campus are protected by levees at this level. This comes after a year where the gauge at Baton Rouge spent a record smashing run of 212 consecutive days above flood stage between January and August. Peaking at 44.1’ on March 19, 2019 the river set its 7th highest recorded crest at Baton Rouge. The level is also high in New Orleans As the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will open the Bonnet Carre Spillway on Friday. From May to July 2019, the Spillway was open for a record 79 consecutive days during its second opening of the year. If the Spillway is opened in 2020, it will mark the fourth time in five years and the 15th time since being built in 1931. 

THE EXPLANATION:

On Friday, an upper level ridge will be centered east of the area, but likely still exert enough influence that a cold front over eastern Texas will be too far away to bring lift to generate showers. On Saturday, the front will push toward Louisiana as an upper level disturbance moves overhead. This combination should be sufficient to produce scattered showers and thunderstorms in the afternoon and evening hours. By Sunday, the upper level ridge will build back over the forecast area creating sinking air and mitigating precipitation development. Monday through Wednesday, the ridge will be anchored overhead leading to well above average temperatures that could challenge 90 degrees and some records. However, we may also find southerly winds aiding in typical warm season marine breeze convective processes—that is, isolated afternoon showers and thunderstorms.      

--Josh

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, wbrz.com, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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Celebrating the worlds first weather satellite https://www.wbrz.com/news/celebrating-the-worlds-first-weather-satellite/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/celebrating-the-worlds-first-weather-satellite/ Weather Thu, 2 Apr 2020 2:52:25 PM Meteorologist Matt Callihan Celebrating the worlds first weather satellite

On April 1, 1960, NASA launched TIROS-1, the world’s first successful meteorological satellite. A couple years before, on October 4, 1957, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik 1, which began the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. The U.S.’s first operational satellite was launched a year later in 1958 as Explorer-1, which was the first U.S. satellite in orbit. The Explorer series of satellites numbered 59 in all, from 1957 to 1981. It was not until November 3, 1960 that Explorer 8 studied the Ionosphere its atmospheric composition.

A couple months before on April 1, 1960, NASA launched the Television Infrared Observation Satellite (TIROS-1). The satellite weighed around 270 pounds and carried two television cameras and two video records, providing meteorologists with their first ever view of cloud formations. It also provided us with the first pictures from space.

Image: The TIROS-1 Satellite

Image Credit: NASA

Image: An artist' rendering of the instruments onboard TIROS-1

Image Credit: NASA

“It was really a milestone in the history of weather observations,” states Stephen Volz, Ph.D, Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s Satellite and Information Service. “TIROS-1 changed our perspective. Up to that point, we were very local in our understanding and out interpretation of weather phenomena.”

Image Credit: NASA

TIROS-1 orbited 450 miles above the Earth and up to 32 images could be recorded for playback on 35-mm film for making prints. The satellite operated for only 78 days, but in that time sent back more than 19,000 usable pictures proving how imperative this new technology would become in aiding in weather forecasters across the globe. The first image from the satellite was a fuzzy picture of thick bands and clusters of clouds over the northeastern United States. An image captured a couple days later revealed a typhoon about 1,000 miles east of Australia. 

Title Image Credit: NASA


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European pollution greatly decreases amid Covid-19 https://www.wbrz.com/news/european-pollution-greatly-decreases-amid-covid-19/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/european-pollution-greatly-decreases-amid-covid-19/ Weather Thu, 2 Apr 2020 2:19:03 PM Meteorologist Matt Callihan European pollution greatly decreases amid Covid-19

New data from the European Space Agency’s Copernicus Sentinel-5P satellite show strong reductions in nitrogen dioxide concentrations. Major European cities have greatly reduced emissions including Paris, Madrid and Rome due to the Covid-19 outbreak, as countries implement containment and lockdown measures.

Instead of looking at single day data, it is important to observe data over a span of days or even a week or two. Henk  Eskes, from the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI) explains, “The nitrogen dioxide concentrations vary from day to day due to changes in the weather. Conclusions cannot be drawn based on just one day of data alone. By combing data for a specific period of time, 10 days in this case, the meteorological variability partly averages out and we begin to see the impact of changes due to human activity. The chemistry in our atmosphere is non-linear. Therefore, the percentage drop in concentrations may differ somewhat from the drop in emissions.”

Other countries in northern Europe are being monitored, including the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, but scientists have seen a larger variability associated with changing weather conditions. New measurements in the upcoming week will allow for more specifics in determining nitrogen dioxide changes over northwest Europe.


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CSU predicts above average activity for 2020 hurricane season https://www.wbrz.com/news/csu-predicts-above-average-activity-for-2020-hurricane-season/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/csu-predicts-above-average-activity-for-2020-hurricane-season/ Weather Thu, 2 Apr 2020 10:27:05 AM Chief Meteorologist Dr. Josh Eachus CSU predicts above average activity for 2020 hurricane season

In an annual extended Atlantic Basin hurricane season forecast, tropical experts at Colorado State University are projecting slightly above normal activity for the 2020 season. Their outlook calls for 16 named storms and 8 hurricanes with 4 being considered major (category 3 strength or higher).  Annual averages are 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes.

Dr. Philip Klotzbach and the research team cited an absence of El Niño the potential for weak La Niña conditions by the middle of summer. Additionally, sea surface temperatures across the Atlantic Basin are slightly above average and are forecast to remain that way.  

La Niña is a pattern, which favors much more activity in the Atlantic Basin during hurricane season. During La Niña, trade winds weaken over the Atlantic Ocean creating a supportive environment for tropical cyclone formation.

Warm sea surface temperatures enhance evaporation and cloud development. In the presence of favorable winds, heat energy from the oceans promotes tropical cyclone strengthening.


Some other probabilities given are as follows:

At least one major (category 3-5) hurricane landfall on each of the following coastal areas:

-Entire U.S. coastline: 69% (average for last century is 52%)

-U.S. East Coast Including Peninsula Florida: 45% (average for last century is 31%)

-Gulf Coast from the Florida Panhandle westward to Brownsville: 44% (average for last century is 30%)


As defined by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), El Niño and La Niña are the warm and cool phases of a recurring climate pattern across the tropical Pacific—the El Niño-Southern Oscillation, or “ENSO” for short. Keep in mind that El Niño and La Niña do not “cause” any one specific weather event; rather the two phases of ENSO influence change in global climate patterns that then increase the likelihood of specific weather events.  Once again, ENSO is not “to blame” for any one storm system, temperature anomaly or hurricane. If La Niña does indeed develop, the Atlantic Basin faces an increased chance at above average tropical activity. Despite higher chances, it is much too early to determine where storms will develop or where they will go.

The forecast is based on an extended-range early April statistical prediction scheme that was developed using 38 years of past data. These seasonal forecasts were originally developed by the late Dr. William Gray, who was lead author on these predictions for over 20 years and continued as a co-author until his death in 2018. You can review the entire prediction, the scientific explanation and the reason such a forecast is made, RIGHT HERE.  Seasonal updates are issued on June 1 and August 3.

The researchers at Colorado State University and the WBRZ Weather Team remind that “it only takes one hurricane making landfall to make it an active season for you,” so prepare accordingly. NOAA’s official outlook is expected in Late May. For more on the season ahead and preparedness, visit wbrz.com/weather and click on the hurricane center.


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Temps on the way up from here https://www.wbrz.com/news/temps-on-the-way-up-from-here/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/temps-on-the-way-up-from-here/ Weather Thu, 2 Apr 2020 5:58:25 AM Chief Meteorologist Dr. Josh Eachus Temps on the way up from here

Thermometers will show an increasing warming trend on Thursday afternoon as some clouds spill into skies. The next appreciable chance for showers will come this weekend.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: A cool Thursday morning will translate into a seasonable afternoon. High temperatures will reach the upper 70s beneath partly sunny skies. Winds will begin to shift to the southeast. Overnight low temperatures will stop in the low 60s.   

Up Next: The week will end with a return to the 80s and increasing clouds. While a spotty shower is possible, chances are low.  A weak front will stall in western Louisiana by Saturday and a modest upper level disturbance will roll over that front to kick out showers and thunderstorms.

In the absence of upper level energy, rain chances will go down on Sunday. The weak front will not push through the local area and therefore, temperatures will continue to warm into early next week allowing some thermometers to take another run at 90 by Tuesday or Wednesday. In step with this thinking, the Climate Prediction Center is showing a high probability of above average temperatures.  

The Mississippi River: At Baton Rouge, major flood stage continues with a level of 40.4’ as of Wednesday morning. Around April 10, the river is projected to crest near 43’. The high water is primarily an issue for river traffic and river islands, although some inundation will continue for a few spots north and south of Baton Rouge that are not protected by levees. Unprotected low-lying areas will be flooded and agricultural operations will be impacted on the west side of the river. The grounds of the older part of Louisiana State University's campus become soggy. This includes the area around the Veterinary Medicine building, the Veterinary Medicine Annex, the stadium and ball fields. The city of Baton Rouge and the main LSU campus are protected by levees at this level. This comes after a year where the gauge at Baton Rouge spent a record smashing run of 212 consecutive days above flood stage between January and August. Peaking at 44.1’ on March 19, 2019 the river set its 7th highest recorded crest at Baton Rouge. The level is also high in New Orleans As the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers considers opening the Bonnet Carre Spillway. From May to July 2019, the Spillway was open for a record 79 consecutive days during its second opening of the year. If the Spillway is opened in 2020, it will mark the fourth time in five years and the 15th time since being built in 1931. 

THE EXPLANATION:

As an upper level ridge of high pressure bounces east on Thursday, a weak disturbance will cross the area with little fanfare due to limited deep moisture return. Still, some clouds will be able to develop. A largely zonal flow pattern in the upper levels will continue through the weekend. So even as a weak front develops in the region, the upper winds will not be conducive to a frontal passage. However, as areas of positive vorticity (disturbances) move over the front some pockets of showers and thunderstorms will be forced. The best chances for rain will be Saturday through Saturday night and again on Monday. Severe weather is not expected. Temperatures will remain above average.   

--Josh

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, wbrz.com, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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Comfortable conditions through Thursday https://www.wbrz.com/news/comfortable-conditions-through-thursday/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/comfortable-conditions-through-thursday/ Weather Wed, 1 Apr 2020 6:18:20 AM Chief Meteorologist Dr. Josh Eachus Comfortable conditions through Thursday

Generally, quiet weather is expected to end the week. Though seasonable through Wednesday, temperatures will be moderating.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: After a chilly morning, sunshine will welcome a very nice and comfortable afternoon. High temperatures will stop in the low 70s. With light, northeast winds, skies will remain mainly clear overnight with low temperatures in the low 50s. 

Up Next: Clouds will slowly return to the area on Thursday and though an upper level disturbance will move over the region, moisture is expected to be too limited to stir up showers. Temperatures will begin a moderating trend as winds shift to the southeast. Friday through Monday, a weak front will crawl into the region and stall. As upper level energy moves over the boundary, there will be a slight enhancement in rain chances, Saturday and Monday. Thermometers will again be above average with highs near 80 and lows near 65.

The Mississippi River: At Baton Rouge, major flood stage continues with a level of 40.4’ as of Wednesday morning. Around April 10, the river is projected to crest near 43’. The high water is primarily an issue for river traffic and river islands, although some inundation will continue for a few spots north and south of Baton Rouge that are not protected by levees. Unprotected low-lying areas will be flooded and agricultural operations will be impacted on the west side of the river. The grounds of the older part of Louisiana State University's campus become soggy. This includes the area around the Veterinary Medicine building, the Veterinary Medicine Annex, the stadium and ball fields. The city of Baton Rouge and the main LSU campus are protected by levees at this level.

THE EXPLANATION:

An upper level ridge of high pressure will maintain clear skies and seasonable temperatures through Wednesday. As the ridge bounces east on Thursday, a weak disturbance will cross the area with little fanfare due to limited deep moisture return. Some clouds, and perhaps an isolated shower will be possible. A largely zonal flow pattern in the upper levels will continue through the weekend. So even as a weak front develops in the region, the upper winds will not be conducive to a frontal passage. However, as areas of positive vorticity (disturbances) move over the front some pockets of showers and thunderstorms will be forced. The best chances for rain will be Saturday through Saturday night and Monday. Severe weather is not expected. Temperatures will remain above average.   

--Josh

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, wbrz.com, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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Coolest temperatures since early March expected tonight https://www.wbrz.com/news/coolest-temperatures-since-early-march-expected-tonight/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/coolest-temperatures-since-early-march-expected-tonight/ Weather Tue, 31 Mar 2020 5:53:07 AM Chief Meteorologist Dr. Josh Eachus Coolest temperatures since early March expected tonight

Beyond a cold front, some of the coolest temperatures in the last several weeks are expected. Thermometers will moderate through the end of the week.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: As a frontal system crosses the area from west to east on Tuesday morning, scattered showers and thunderstorms will end from west to east. Through 10am, any thunderstorm could produce brief downpours and gusty wind. However, due to the scattered nature of the activity, not all location will receive rain. Many south of I-10 may stay dry. With returning sunshine by lunchtime, temperatures will recover some 10 degrees to reach the low 80s. Clear skies and light, northerly winds will send overnight lows below average in the upper 40s!

Up Next: Wednesday and Thursday will be pleasant with mainly clear skies and gradually moderating temperatures. By Friday, southerly winds will send afternoon temperatures back into the 80s with a greater buildup in cloud cover. The next frontal system and chance for rain is pegged for next weekend. At this time, that system does not appear to pose a threat for severe weather.    

THE EXPLANATION:

Rain will end from west to east and the cold front drags away on Tuesday afternoon. Due to the warmer starting point in the upper 60s and low 70s along with returning sunshine, Tuesday afternoon will be rather warm in the low to mid 80s. Northerly winds behind the front will then allow much cooler air to settle into the region into Wednesday morning. Low temperatures could dip into the upper 40s in many neighborhoods. A surface high pressure system will build in on Wednesday with dry conditions and a near average temperatures. The high will slide east and an upper level ridge over the Ohio Valley will maintain dry conditions Thursday. Onshore winds will allow a warming trend to end the week. The next upper level trough will drive an associated cold front on Saturday bringing the next chances of showers and thunderstorms.

--Josh

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, wbrz.com, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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Front to deliver some cooler temperatures https://www.wbrz.com/news/front-to-deliver-some-cooler-temperatures/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/front-to-deliver-some-cooler-temperatures/ Weather Mon, 30 Mar 2020 6:29:11 AM Chief Meteorologist Dr. Josh Eachus Front to deliver some cooler temperatures

Two warm afternoons are expected prior to below average temperatures for the middle of the week. A few showers may occur prior to that cool down.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: Clouds will increase throughout Monday as moisture begins to move onshore from the Gulf of Mexico. As this occurs, especially during the afternoon hours, a shower is possible. Highs will top out in the low 80s. Overnight, a cold front will approach from the west, ahead of it, scattered showers and thunderstorms are expected. The threat for severe weather is very low. One or two storms could create gusty wind in southwest Mississippi. Lows will be in the upper 60s.    

Up Next: As a frontal system crosses the area from west to east on Tuesday morning, showers and thunderstorms will continue. By afternoon, skies will begin to clear from west to east and temperatures will recover some 10 degrees in response to sunshine to reach about 80. With clear skies and light, northerly winds overnight lows will take a nice dip and end up below average in the upper 40s! Wednesday through Friday will be pleasant with mainly clear skies and gradually moderating temperatures.  The next frontal system and chance for rain is pegged for next weekend.   

THE EXPLANATION:

A relatively stable atmosphere will make it difficult for anything more than a few weak showers to develop this afternoon and evening as onshore flow promotes rising dew points. This will occur ahead of a frontal system that will move in from the west overnight. The parent surface low will move along the I-20 corridor which is close enough to the local area to support favorable severe weather wind profiles but the timing of the system will make for poor instability. Just enough may be available that closer to the surface low, counties in southwest Mississippi could find some gusty thunderstorms around daybreak. Rain will end from west to east and the cold front drags away on Tuesday afternoon. Due to the warmer starting point in the upper 60s and low 70s along with returning sunshine, Tuesday afternoon will be rather warm in the low to mid 80s. Northerly winds behind the front will then allow much cooler air to settle into the region into Wednesday morning. Low temperatures could dip into the upper 40s in many neighborhoods. A surface high pressure system will build in on Wednesday with dry conditions and a near average temperatures. The high will slide east and an upper level ridge over the Ohio Valley will maintain dry conditions Thursday. Onshore winds will allow a warming trend to end the week. The next upper level trough will drive an associated cold front on Saturday bringing the next chances of showers and thunderstorms.

--Josh

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, wbrz.com, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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Rain returning early in the week https://www.wbrz.com/news/rain-returning-early-in-the-week/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/rain-returning-early-in-the-week/ Weather Sun, 29 Mar 2020 4:46:51 PM Meteorologist Matt Callihan Rain returning early in the week

THE FORECAST: 

 

Tonight and Tomorrow: Mostly cloudy skies tonight will allow cooling to occur rather slowly, especially overnight. Temperatures will be dropping into the 60s around 10 PM, as lows bottom-out near 62° Monday morning. Partly cloudy through the first half of the day on Monday, but clouds will be increasing through the afternoon and evening. These are associated with an approaching system that will bring the potential for showers after 7 PM. Temperatures will ramp up into the 70s by 11 AM, as highs peak near 81° with easterly winds of around 10 mph.

Up Next:  Showers move in late Monday into Tuesday morning, and then drying will commence Wednesday and Thursday. Rain chances return, with the potential for storms to develop Friday night into Saturday. Highs will drop from the low 80s on Tuesday to the low 70s on Wednesday, but rebound back into the 80s by Friday.

THE EXPLANATION:

An approaching low pressure system will move into the lower Mississippi Valley on Monday, increasing humidity, cloud cover, and rain chances through the evening hours. Showers are poised to ramp up overnight, but should begin to dry out by 9 AM on Tuesday. Ridging and high pressure will then encroach into our area, drying and cooling conditions off beginning Tuesday night into Wednesday morning. Overnight lows will hover around 50° Wednesday and Thursday mornings, as highs peak in the low-to-mid 70s. Another frontal system is forecast to approach the area late Friday into Saturday, and could have enough instability early Saturday to produce some storm cells. Low freezing levels may also allow for hail cores to develop within storms on Saturday. Drying should occur through the second half of the weekend, as highs rebound back into the low-to-mid 80s on Sunday.

--Meteorologist Matt Callihan

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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Shower chances return overnight https://www.wbrz.com/news/shower-chances-return-overnight/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/shower-chances-return-overnight/ Weather Sat, 28 Mar 2020 4:53:28 PM Meteorologist Matt Callihan Shower chances return overnight

THE FORECAST:

Tonight and Tomorrow: Cloudy skies tonight as an approaching frontal system will allow for some spotty overnight showers to occur after 1 AM. Lows will drop near 66° into Sunday morning, with southerly winds between 5 and 15 mph. Some lingering early morning spotty showers possible Sunday, and may return later in the day – mainly through the afternoon hours. Rain amounts will be rather low, and coverage will be sporadic. Highs will peak near 80, as winds shift out of the north between 5 and 10 mph by the afternoon.

Up Next:  Showers return Monday afternoon and stay through Tuesday morning. A drier and cooler weather pattern then sets up beginning Wednesday, which will continue into the weekend.

THE EXPLANATION:

A fragmented frontal system will approach from the northwest during the morning hours, and slowly press into our area through the day. Winds will be shifting out of the north through the afternoon, but the passing of the front will allow for some weak instability and light showers to occur as temperatures break into the upper 70s through the afternoon. Another low pressure system will follow on Monday and early Tuesday, originating from South Texas. It will join with another weak low that will pass across Arkansas early in the week. Currently, the peak timing for showers is late Monday into early Tuesday, with the potential for imbedded isolated storms Tuesday morning. Conditions will improve by Tuesday afternoon, as highs stay in the mid-70s through the remainder of the week. High pressure will also keep skies relatively sunny and conditions dry.

--Meteorologist Matt Callihan

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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NOAA U.S. spring outlook warns of widespread river flooding https://www.wbrz.com/news/noaa-u-s-spring-outlook-warns-of-widespread-river-flooding/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/noaa-u-s-spring-outlook-warns-of-widespread-river-flooding/ Weather Fri, 27 Mar 2020 3:06:04 PM Meteorologist Matt Callihan NOAA U.S. spring outlook warns of widespread river flooding

NOAA forecasters have released their spring outlook, and they are forecasting above-average temperatures across the entire country and above-average precipitation in the central and eastern United States. The already highly-saturated soils along with above-average precipitation this spring will contribute to increased chances for flooding across much of the nation. Major to moderate flooding is likely in 23 states from the Northern Plains south to the Gulf Coast, but they do not expect it to be as severe or prolonged as the historic floods of 2019.

The flood risk outlook is based on the integrated evaluation of a number of factors, including current conditions of snowpack, drought, soil moisture, frost depth, streamflow, and precipitation. The greatest risk areas for major flooding include the upper and middle Mississippi River basins, the Missouri River basin, and the Red River of the North. Moderate flooding is anticipated in the Ohio, Cumberland, Tennessee, Missouri, and the lower Mississippi River basins. The table below defines these flood levels, and what is likely to occur during these flood events.

Drought conditions are also expected to persist and expand throughout California over the next several months, and will likely continue in the central and southern Rocky Mountains, the southern Plains, southern Texas, and portions of the Pacific Northwest.

“NOAA stands ready to provide timely and accurate forecasts and warnings throughout the spring,” said acting NOAA administrator Neil Jacobs. “The dedicated employees of the National Weather Service continue to apply their skills and the latest technology to monitor additional rainfall, rising river levels, and the threat of severe weather to keep the public ahead of any weather hazard.”


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Winter arctic sea ice continues to be concerning https://www.wbrz.com/news/winter-arctic-sea-ice-continues-to-be-concerning/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/winter-arctic-sea-ice-continues-to-be-concerning/ Weather Fri, 27 Mar 2020 1:45:54 PM Meteorologist Matt Callihan Winter arctic sea ice continues to be concerning

The National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) has reported that the Arctic sea ice extent reached its maximum on March 5, 2020, at 5.81 million square miles. This amount was the 11th lowest maximum in the 42 year record, and falls 228,000 square miles below the 1981-2010 average maximum of 6.04 million square miles. There were some isolated areas that were closer or slightly exceeded that long-term average, like near the Barents Sea (north of Norway) and the Bering Sea (south of the Bering Strait between Russia and Alaska), but overall extent was rather suppressed.

Arctic sea ice extent, which is the area where ice concentration is at least 15 percent, has not been declining in winter as fast as it has in the summer. Compared to the 1980s, there is very little sea ice that survives multiple years in the Arctic now. Even though the winter maximum and summer minimum cannot be correlated due to increased weather conditions during the summer months, it can be observed that the lowest minimums have occurred over the last 10 years.

The true concerning factor is the loss of overall global albedo. Albedo is the amount of light that is reflected off of a surface. This is why you are cooler in a white shirt versus a black shirt on a sunny day. Fresh snow and ocean ice reflect between 50% and 80% of the incoming solar radiation, where open ocean reflects around 5% - just 1% above asphalt. This lower global albedo could have a snowball effect on warming the climate, which could lead to increased evaporation rates and thus cause heavier rains and more frequent flooding in the future.


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Weak cold front expected Saturday night https://www.wbrz.com/news/weak-cold-front-expected-saturday-night/ https://www.wbrz.com/news/weak-cold-front-expected-saturday-night/ Weather Fri, 27 Mar 2020 5:42:03 AM Chief Meteorologist Dr. Josh Eachus Weak cold front expected Saturday night

Some 1930 Baton Rouge Metro Airport records have been easily falling over the last few days. Area wide data that goes back to 1892 is also being challenged by the unseasonable warmth.

THE FORECAST:

Today and Tonight: Friday will soar back into the upper 80s with partly to mostly sunny skies and light, southwest winds. 89 degrees would be good enough to tie a Baton Rouge area record that goes back to 1899. Overnight will be partly cloudy with low temperatures near 70 degrees.      

Up Next:  The arrival of the next cold front has slowed and therefore Saturday should be another warm one. Highs will reach the upper 80s before a weak front chugs into the region late. This system could create a few showers or thunderstorms, especially north of I-12, but severe weather is not expected. Sunday will be a bit cooler and drier. An upper level disturbance and associated frontal system will create some showers and thunderstorms Monday and Tuesday. This one will need to be watched for strong thunderstorms.       

THE EXPLANATION:

A ridge of high pressure in the upper levels of the atmosphere will continue to dictate above average warmth over the next two days. The warmest temperatures will occur inland, away from cooling marine influences. In the summer months, marine breezes tend to spark showers and thunderstorms but the sinking air beneath the ridge nixes out that possibility and instigates further warming. A cold front will move into the region on Saturday evening. Despite plenty of warmth and moisture to work with, most of the upper level support for any severe weather will stay well north of the local area. Therefore, just scattered showers and thunderstorms are expected Saturday night, with the best rain chances north of I-12. The front will clear the area leaving behind slightly cooler and drier air for Sunday and Monday. However, like many before, this front will retreat north as a warm front on Monday stirring up clouds and a few showers.

Another cold front will quickly supersede that passage Tuesday into Wednesday. Depending on the position of the associated upper level low, this system could pose a greater risk for strong thunderstorms. At this time, the GFS model keeps the upper low well north and is a more benign scenario; the ECMWF model brings the upper low directly over the local area, which could result in severe weather.   

--Josh

The WBRZ Weather Team is here for you, on every platform. Your weather updates can be found on News 2, wbrz.com, and the WBRZ WX App. on Apple and Android devices. Follow WBRZ Weather on Facebook and Twitter for even more weather updates while you are on the go.


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