Posted at 8:34 AM on August 13, 2009
by Paul Huttner
NOAA surface map today shows scattered areas of rain around the nation.
What's your weather forecast worth today?
The numbers get better as you dig a little deeper though.
According to NCAR survey author Jeffrey Lazo, the public places the value of a single forecast around 10.5 cents. But U.S. adults use about 300 billion forecasts a year, this adds up to $31.5 billion total. This does not include the value of private sector forecasts that save energy and other weather sensitive companies billions each year.
Here are some more numbers about how we use weather.
Out of the 1,520 people surveyed, 1,465 said they use weather forecasts to make daily life decisions. Those decisions range from whether to carry an umbrella or where to vacation, to critical life-saving decisions like taking shelter to escape a tornado.
85% of us check the forecast daily just to find out what the weather will be like.
The average person accesses weather forecast 3.8 times per day. That number varies day to day depending on planned activities.
The survey also says the top three ways people get weather forecasts are
local television stations, cable television and commercial and public radio.
I guess the real question is, what's it worth to know it's going to rain on your wedding day or graduation party or that trip to the Boundary Waters? One good weather forecast can save you a lot of dough.
Deluge dents drought:
Our weekend deluge that dumped 3 to 6 inches of rain has put a dent in the drought in the south and southwest metro. Today's Drought Monitor shows the area has been knocked back from extreme to moderate drought. That's good news, but there are still areas around the Twin Cities into Wisconsin that are as much as 8 inches below average rainfall this year.
Take it easy in the heat the next few days!
Posted at 9:45 AM on August 13, 2009
by Paul Huttner
Morning GOES 1km visible satellite shows upper air low tracking through southwest Minnesota. The low is moving northeast towards the Twin Cities.
An upper level wave is increasing shower and thunderstorm coverage in southern Minnesota today. The chances for rain are increasing for the metro as the low is taking a more northerly track this morning.
Scattered showers and thunderstorms are developing ahead of the low and moving east to northeast. The chances for rain are increasing for the Twin Cities and the PGA Championship in Chaska. I hope fans brought some umbrellas today out to Hazeltine.
The heaviest and most concentrated area of storms may pass just south of the area today, but the chances of rain at Hazletine will increase after 11 am. Keep an eye out for lighting at Hazeltine today.
You can track the showers and thunderstorms progress here:
Posted at 3:57 PM on August 13, 2009
by Paul Huttner
Tiger Woods marches up to the 18th green under perfect weather conditions during Tuesday's practice round.
Tiger Woods noticed the wind during Thursday's first round of the PGA Championship. It seems as if he liked it.
I was standing about 10 feet from Tiger at his post round press conference today ready to ask him a question about the breeze. No need. He was all over it.
He mentiond the wind at least 3 times during his brief comments. "It was downwind on some of the par 5's, and that made them reachable" said Woods. He commented on the monster length of Hazeltine, and how that allows tournament officials to move tees around depending on wind directions.
Clearly the wind was at Tiger's back today both literally and figuratively. His five under round of 67 is the best on the course so far today, and will likely give him the early lead heading into Friday's second round.
I got the sense today listening to Tiger that he is keenly aware of weather and how it plays into his game. I saw him back off from a shot more than once today, seemingly gauging the wind before stepping back up to hit the shot.
It would be awesome to sit down with Tiger over a beer and talk about the finer points of how weather plays into his game. Tiger is known to take every advantage he can get. I get the sense he is far more than the casual weather observer, and pays a lot more attention to wind and weather factors on the course than the average PGA touring pro.
Minnesota meteorologists watch the sky at Hazeltine:
I've had the pleasure to work at a few PGA events in my day. One thing spectators don't see is the crew of meteorologists that watch the skies and weather computers at every PGA event.
Meteorologists from Burnsville-based DTN Meteorologix are at Hazeltine this week watching the skies. The have deployed an electronic field mill at Hazeltine that measures static electrical charges in the atmosphere. The device can measure static electrical increases in the atmosphere prior to a lightning strike. If the charges reach a high level, they can warn PGA officials that lightning is imminent.
It's nice to know that weather eyes are watching the skies above Hazeltine this week.