2017 January 24

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Albany Pine Bush
Climate Change
Common Earth
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John Boyd Thacher State Park
Pine Lake

January 2017
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Questions? Need an updated map? Email me andy@andyarthur.org.

President Trump inherits stable economy, Congressional report says

Congressional analysts Tuesday projected that President Donald Trump has inherited a stable economy and a government that is on track to run a $559 billion budget deficit for the ongoing budget year.

The new estimates from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office say the economy will hold relatively steady, with economic growth rising slightly to 2.3 percent this year and unemployment averaging less than 5 percent for the duration of Trump’s term.

American Experience – Rachel Carson.

I just finished watching this on PBS. While it's definitely a somber film it's one of the fastest two hours you can spend watching a show. Recommended, check PBS for future rebroadcasts tonight and future nights.

"Featuring the voice of Mary-Louise Parker as the influential writer and scientist, Rachel Carson is an intimate portrait of the woman whose groundbreaking books revolutionized our relationship to the natural world. When Silent Spring was published in September 1962 it became an instant bestseller and would go on to spark dramatic changes in the way the government regulated pesticides. Drawn from Carson’s own writings, letters and recent scholarship, the film illuminates both the public and private life of the soft-spoken, shy scientist who launched the modern environmental movement."

NAFTA and other trade deals have not gutted American manufacturing — period

A manufacturing job making things in a factory is no longer, in any sense, a typical job for Americans. A sector of the economy that provided three out of 10 nonfarm jobs at the start of the 1950s and one in four nonfarm jobs at the start of the 1970s now provides fewer than one in 11 nonfarm jobs today. Proportionally, the United States has shed almost two-thirds of relative manufacturing employment since 1971.

Evolution, Climate and Vaccines: Why Americans Deny Science

The U.S. has a science problem. Around half of the country's citizens reject the facts of evolution; fewer than a third agree there is a scientific consensus on human-caused climate change, and the number who accept the importance of vaccines is ticking downward.

Those numbers, all gleaned from recent Pew and Gallup research polls, might suggest that Americans are an anti-science bunch. But yet, Americans love science. Even as many in the U.S. reject certain scientific conclusions, National Science Foundation surveys have found that public support of science is high, with more than 75 percent of Americans saying they are in favor of taxpayer-funded basic research.

Good evening! While those plow man and bus drivers keep things moving along, things are a sloppy mess out there. It is the evening slog in all senses of word. I hope you wore your boots. We have a mix of light freezing rain and ice pellets coming down in Albany, with temperatures hovering around the 33 degree mark. There is a north-northwest breeze at 10 mph. The roads are wet with sloppy and some icy spots and the sidewalks are icy. Great weather for the evening commute, in our world of Alternative Facts (TM). The road crews are doing an amazing job, probably because the mercury is slightly above freezing. 

Tonight will have continued freezing rain and sleet likely before 7pm, then snow and sleet likely between 7pm and 1am. Otherwise, mostly cloudy then clearing, with a low of 30 degrees at 4am. 16 degrees above normal. Northwest wind 9 to 13 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%. Little or no ice accumulation expected. New snow and sleet accumulation of less than a half inch possible. If your up before dawn, you might even see the skies clear enough to see the stars. In 2016, it got down to 18 degrees under mostly cloudy skies. The record low of -12 occurred back in 1963.

Waning Crescent Moon tonight with 17% illuminated. The moon will rise around 3:40 am. The New Moon is on Saturday night with mostly cloudy expected. The Full “Snow” Moon is on Saturday, February 11th. The sun will rise at 7:15 am with the first light at 6:45 am, which is 49 seconds earlier then yesterday. Tonight will have 14 hours and 15 minutes of darkness, a decrease of 2 minutes and 8 seconds over last night.

Tomorrow will be mostly sunny, with a high of 37 degrees at 4pm. Six degrees above normal. That’s an improvement from earlier forecasts. For most of the day, looking at about 40% sky cover. That means a fair amount of blue sky. Northwest wind 7 to 11 mph becoming southwest in the afternoon. A year ago, we had mostly cloudy skies and a high of 38 degrees. The record high of 61 was set in 1938. 9.5 inches of snow fell back in 2000.

Right now, a split verdict on the weekend. Saturday, mostly cloudy, with a high near 35. Sunday, partly sunny, with a high near 34. Typical average high for the weekend is 31 degrees. I think I can accept the forecast for the weekend, although more sun on Saturday would be better. Maybe if there is sufficient snow, I’ll go cross country skiing up in the Heldebergs. 

In four weeks on February 21 the sun will be setting at 5:35 pm, which is 36 minutes later then tonight. In 2016 on that day, we had rain and temperatures between 47 and 32 degrees. Typically, you have temperatures between 36 and 19 degrees. The record high of 65 degrees was set back in 1981.

Looking ahead, Valentines Day is in 3 weeks, Spring is in 8 weeks, Average High is 50 is in 9 weeks, Tax Day is in 12 weeks, Average High is 70 is in 16 weeks and Independence Day is in 23 weeks. 

Only sixteen weeks until the average high is seventy. Just think about that as the evening slog continues. 

“For in the years leading into a dark age, societies often exhibit an inability to perceive or act upon a looming threat, such as a declining resource. Twilight cultures begin to show a preference for veneer and form, not depth and content; a stubborn blindness to the consequences of actions, from leadership on down.” – Distracted by Maggie Jackson 

Map: Pine Lake

Map: Pine Lake

168-acre lake near Kane Mountain in the Shaker Mountain Wild Forest. There is public access to Pine Lake from the end of Pine Lake Road, off of NY 10/NY 29A. The one end of the lake is highly developed with camps and the private Pine Lake Campground.

NOAA Releases Spectacular First Images From New GOES-16 Satellite

The spectacular first images from NOAA's powerful new GOES-16 satellite were released Monday, providing the most vivid look yet at our hemisphere from a geostationary weather satellite.

GOES-16 first made headlines when it launched Nov. 19, 2016, under the name GOES-R, and was renamed after reaching orbit. NOAA is describing the new imagery that it's sending out as "high-definition from the heavens".

While the weather will be a few degrees above normal in the next week, there is hardly much to bring one cheer in the coming week, with clouds and gray skies expected to predominate throughout the next week. Mid-day tomorrow we will have a brief period of sun, but even Sunday — my birthday — won’t be that sunny. No big storms expected once we get through the slop of tonight. At least it won’t be cold.

Weather Summary
Today. Rain/Sleet and 33 degrees , 4:59 sunset.
Tonight. Wintry Mix is likely then Slight Chance of Snow and 29 degrees , 7:15 sunrise.
Wednesday. Partly Sunny and 39 degrees , 5:00 sunset.
Wednesday Night. Slight Chance of Showers then Chance of Rain/Snow and 33 degrees , 7:14 sunrise.
Thursday. Chance of Rain/Snow then Chance of Showers and 42 degrees , 5:02 sunset.
Thursday Night. Mostly Cloudy and 30 degrees , 7:13 sunrise.
Friday. Mostly Cloudy and 36 degrees , 5:03 sunset.
Friday Night. Mostly Cloudy and 26 degrees , 7:12 sunrise.
Saturday. Mostly Cloudy and 34 degrees , 5:04 sunset.
Saturday Night. Mostly Cloudy and 22 degrees , 7:11 sunrise.
Sunday. Partly Sunny and 34 degrees , 5:06 sunset.
Sunday Night. Mostly Cloudy and 19 degrees , 7:10 sunrise.
Monday. Partly Sunny and 32 degrees , 5:07 sunset.

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