Water Requirements for Growing Food


Did you know it takes much more water to maintain livestock than growing fruits and vegetables?  Click here to read the entire The New York Times article “Meat Makes the Planet Thirsty” on the water requirements (water footprint) for growing crops verses the requirements for the maintenance of livestock.  Something to consider regarding water conservation.


U.S. Meteorological Memories of 2013


Below is a video from NWA (National Weather Association) presenting “Meteorological Memories of 2013” for the U.S. as of October.


  • Presented at the NWA  38th Annual Meeting at Charleston, South Carolina, October 17 – 20, 2013


  • Top Weather Events of 2013


  • Presented by Greg Carbin.  He is the Warning Coordination Meteorologist (WCM) at NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Prediction, Storm Prediction Center (SPC) in Norman, Oklahoma.


  • List of top nine events of 2013


  Severe Weather Outbreak (January 28-30, February 10)

•  Nor’easter (February 7 – 10)

•  Colder than Normal Temperatures (March/April)

•  Tornadoes (May 18 – 20)

•  El Reno Tornado (May 31)

•  Derechoes  – (June 12,13)

•  Yarnell Hill Fire June 30

•  Heavy rains over portions of U.S. (July/August)

•  Colorado Floods (September 12 – 14)


  • Number 10 for 2013 is yet to be determined



Meteorological Memories of 2013 Video




South Florida Winter Season Outlook 2013 – 2014


Rainy Season Summary:


  • Rainy season (May 18 – October 10) was wetter than normal across most of south Florida although there was a lack of large scale tropical systems affecting the area
  • Rainfall averaged 40 – 50 inches with some areas exceeding 50 inches
  • Most of the rainfall was induced by typical sea breeze interaction/convergence and a predominate moist southeast wind flow
  • The average dry season rainfall is 12 – 15 inches over the western and interior areas to 15 – 21 inches over eastern areas.


Climate factors affecting Dry/Winter Season:


Enso Phase


  • El Nino (Warm Phase) – Usually associated with cooler and wetter conditions and increased chance for severe weather as storm tracks tend to be further south
  • La Nina (Cold Phase) – Usually associated with drier and milder/warmer conditions. But there can be cold episodes
  • Neutral – Currently in neutral phase making predictability low confidence


PDO (Pacific Decadal Oscillation) – relates to areas of the north Pacific Ocean where it is cooler and warmer.  In the positive phase, the western Pacific is cooler and the eastern Pacific is warmer and in the negative phase it is opposite.  These are multiple decade trends (usually 20 – 30 years)  Currently it is in negative phase and is often associated with drier than normal winter and spring months.
There are other smaller scale occurrences that may have some influences including NAO (North Atlantic Oscillation), AO (Arctic Oscillation) and the PNA (Pacific/North American) to name some of them.  For further readings on these global patterns, click here.



Temperature Outlook:


  • Average winter temperature over interior and western portion is 64 – 66 degrees and 67 – 69 degrees over eastern areas
  • Near to slightly warmer than normal temperatures
  • Freeze episodes occur yearly to various degrees ranging from light/minor to severe causing widespread crop damage
  • This winter is about average to see a moderate to severe freeze
  • Freezes typically occur in December and January, but can occur well into February
  • Freezes are most likely over the interior areas of southwest Florida and around Lake Okeechobee.  Possibility of freezes decrease significantly closer to the metro and coastal areas.
  • This winter is about average to see a moderate to severe freeze



Precipitation Outlook:


  • Based on the climate factors mentioned above, drier than normal conditions are expected (however, as indicated, due to Neutral ENSO conditions, this is low confidence prediction)
  • May lead to less severe weather
  • May lead to increased fire danger due to vegetation growth during the rainy season into the early dry season


For further reading (PDF format) regarding the Dry/Winter Season outlook, click here.  For an in-depth reading (PDF format) with additional details, click here.


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