Extreme Temperature Diary- June 26, 2018/ Hot Topic: The African Green Wall

Tuesday June 26th… Dear Diary. The main purpose of this ongoing post will be to track United States extreme or record temperatures related to climate change. Any reports I see of ETs will be listed below the main topic of the day. I’ll refer to extreme or record temperatures as ETs (not extraterrestrials)😊. Here is today’s main climate change post related hot topic:

The African Green Wall 

First, before getting started on today’s hot topic I’d like to advertise Dr. Marshall Shepherd’s work with PBS in association last years trifecta of mega storms, Harvey, Irma and Maria that will be aired tomorrow evening. Questions and answers will be given concerning these storms as they relate to climate change:

4:34 AM – 26 Jun 2018

This morning I saw this graphic indicating that some areas of the planet are trying their hand at mitigation to thwart the worst effects of climate change:

– $8bn project
– Planting wall of trees 7,600 km long and 15 km wide across 20 countries
– Fights desertification by restoring 100m hectares of degraded land
– Massive job creation

Unlike China’s Great Wall of old keeping out foreign invaders, this new great wall will inhibit desertification, being a testament to our times, and historically could be a make or break project for 21st century civilization. If successful in the next few centuries one area of the world will have proven that things can be done sustainably against climate change. If not and the Sahara eats up the Sahel area no matter how much planting is done, this litmus test will indicate that too much global warming will have taken place for such a bulwark to have a long term effect. Nature will have won the mitigation and perhaps adaption wars not only in Africa but world wide.
One big question I have, though, is whether or not increased heavy rainfall, as we have seen from climate change, will offset increased Sahara heat. Perhaps the huge and expensive effort to create the green wall isn’t necessary. One particular study cited earlier this year says yes, the Sahara is expanding:
Quoting from the article:
“The trends in Africa of hot summers getting hotter and rainy seasons drying out are linked with factors that include increasing greenhouse gases and aerosols in the atmosphere,” said Ming Cai, a program director in the National Science Foundation’s Division of Atmospheric and Geospace Sciences, which funded the research. “These trends also have a devastating effect on the lives of African people, who depend on agriculture-based economies.”
Another study indicates as that the Mediterranean area warms the Sub-Saharan monsoon increases greening the Sahel:
Quoting researchers from this article:

And different temperatures in different marine regions also explain why there has been more rain again in the Sahel since the 1990s. “The different marine regions ‘fight it out’, so to speak,” explains Jürgen Bader. “If the temperatures of the tropical sea surfaces rise, the precipitation in the Sahel falls. As opposed to this, rising outside the tropics result in more rainfall in the Sahel.” As Jong-yeon Park and his supervisors, Daniela Matei and Jürgen Bader, discovered through model calculations carried out for his doctoral thesis, the West African monsoon was more intensive in the past 20 years than in the two preceding decades because the water in the Mediterranean was warmer than that in the tropical marine regions. Thus, the difference in temperature between these marine regions will be a crucial factor in future rainfall development in the Sahel.

Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2016-07-warmer-mediterranean-sahel-green.html#jCp

Global Warming may very well expand the Sahel northward due to increased precipitation around the periphery of the Sahara because of added atmospheric moisture, but our best science indicates otherwise. The large, ongoing planting project in the Sahel designed to fight desertification should continue as a precaution, with a side benefit of naturally taking some carbon out of the air.

I’m going to file this issue under my growing “how bad how soon” AGW list. If I get some people to weigh in on how future climate over the continent of Africa will behave later today I’ll post more information.
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I’m beginning to see much more on social media pertaining to the next U.S. heat wave. Here is some good information:

Heat, ozone, dust—we’ve got it all for the U.S. over the next few days.

The pattern remains favorable for some of the hottest conditions of the year to date in the East this weekend (hottest so far: BOS 90 on 5/3, LGA 93 on 5/3, PHL 93 on 6/18, DCA 95 on 6/19)

When June turns the burners on: WU historian Chris Burt looks back at some of the nation’s worst June heat waves on record

As heat in the West intensifies so are large fires:

[update] off Pawnee Rd & New Long Valley Rd, northeast of Clearlake Oaks (Lake County) is now 11,500 acres and 5% contained.

Tomorrow heat will be increasing un the Southwest and southwestern Plains. Dallas may see the century mark. A few records may fall in the central and southern Plains.
Here are today’s maxes:

It’s getting hot in the Intermountain West area, as well. Today’s max was a toasty 97F at Denver. A high of 100F is expected at Salt Lake City tomorrow. 

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The Climate Guy

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