The rains over the past week were definitely what the doctor ordered. The 3.32 inches of rain that fell in Galveston over the past five days of the month ended a dry spell that lasted much of April and May.

The May total at Scholes airport was 3.72 inches, which is still 0.60 of an inch below normal for the month, but was sufficient to eliminate most signs of the drought.

The mainland fared even better. The National Weather Service at League City/Dickinson reported a whopping 8.70 inches for the month, well above the long-term average. Better yet, heavy rains over the Galveston area watershed, put much needed water into the reservoirs that bring drinking water to the county.

Overall, much of the state fared well with the recent rains, though areas near Del Rio and from Abilene north to the Wichita Falls and Childress area are still critically dry. More rains will definitely be needed over much of the western 2/3 of the state to keep severe drought from returning.

On a side note, May was cooler than normal in Galveston, with the monthly mean running 2.6 degrees below average. This made the seventh consecutive month that Galveston County has experienced cooler than normal temperatures, the longest such spell since 1976-77, when the county went 11 consecutive months with below normal temperature averages.

Meanwhile, the 2014 Hurricane Season has begun. While there are no systems in the Tropical Atlantic Basin showing immediate signs of development, the National Hurricane Center has pinpointed an area of disturbed weather in the Bay of Campeche that has a 20 percent chance of developing over the coming five days or so.

Forecast models, especially the widely used GFS Model, have been projecting this development for the last week and a half. Still, the model has been trending towards a scenario in which the disturbance fails to develop much as it tracks slowly towards western Cuba and South Florida.

Will the season get off to an early start? We shall see.

Current satellite view of the Gulf of Mexico

Graphical Tropical weather outlook

Stan Blazyk is a life-long weather enthusiast, long-time Galveston resident and author of "A Century of Galveston Weather." He has written the weather blog for the Galveston County Daily News for more than a decade.

(23) comments

Gary Miller

Ice in the Great Lakes delayed spring in the North east. The last time the Great Lakes were not Ice free June 1st was in the1970's when Al Gore was predicting a new Ice age.
Below normal Temps keeps the Gulf cooler than normal. Probably delaying our huricane season. With a cooler gulf we can expect less rain. Record ice in the Artic and Anti Artic for their seasons. Increased snow pack has glaciers moving faster. Trees in the Northern Tiaga are a month late starting new growth.
Would someone please tell BHO global warming reversed course in 1998. He never knows anything untill he reads in the paper.

Stan Blazyk Staff
Stan Blazyk

Sorry can't do that. There was not record ice in the Arctic or Antarctic this year. In fact, Alaska had a very warm winter. You are confusing weather with climate. There is a big difference.

George Croix

One difference is you can't make as much money off of 'weather change' as you can 'climate change'... [wink]

Stan Blazyk Staff
Stan Blazyk

But, the few "professional" climate change deniers still in existence are still making big bucks from their sponsors. As usual, follow the money and see who is paying them.

In the meantime, in the world of not sticking your head in the sand:

George Croix

Et tu...

Mr. Blazyk, with all due respect, and I mean that for real, without climate change, you'd be predicting the latest color change in the primordial soup, and the bad hair days caused by running away from hungry T-Rex's...

If I hadn't 'stuck my head in the sand' 40 years ago, I'd have invested heavily, and gone broke, in parkas and mukluks for the coming mini-ice age predicted by the SAME government and national and worldwide experts in 'scientific consensus' that 'global cooling' caused by increased carbon dioxide concentrations and fluorocarbons and such being released were SURE, NO DOUBT, going to cause by...right about now...[wink]

Soon as I hear a credible explanation for how a 17 year hiatus in global temperature change dovetails with an ever INCREASING concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere, i'll look at revisiting the experts testimonials.

In the meantime, I note the two top poster boys for 'global warming' and 'climate change' have diverged on their treatment of what they say they hold so dear. One having made hundreds of millions off of a hysteria he is largely responsible for inducing, then selling out to a company run by Middle east oil money after damning fossil fuels as The Enemy of the glonbal climate. The other content to hamstring the nations power supply and begin the wrecking of what was once the world's greatest economy and cause energy prices to 'necessarily skyrocket' and stick consumers with billions more in fees and charges passed along to them.
The common thread is that BOTH have accomplished nothing to effect the 'global' climate. Just their political and personal financial ones.

Head in the sand?
Question is...who's head...[wink]

Stan Blazyk Staff
Stan Blazyk

The Ice age fad of the 70's was never accepted by the majority of climate scientists. Instead it was driven by the popular media, whereas 97% of all climate scientists world wide think that climate change is happening. How do explain the disappearing glaciers, ice free summers in the Arctic, increasingly rapid melting of Greenland;s ice mass and the melting recently documented underneath the ice cap in the Antarctic.?

climate change always happens sporadically. It never occurs as a direct linear sequence. Look at the chart linked in my previous post. As for the slowdown (not hiatus) in global warming, recent research has shown that some (not all) of the excess CO2 is being adsorbed by the ocean, which means it is being released more slowly as heat....but the important that it is still being released and will continue to do so.

If you choose to believe the sound bites of a minority with vested interests over the opinions of thousands of scientists who specialize in climate, that is your choice. I wouldn't put a lot of your money on climate change not happening and it not having very serious consequences for our children's future.

I suggest that you actually take a look at the research and scientific literature on this topic, if you are really interested.

George Croix

Of course I'm interested in life on earth.
I have a different memory of the 70's climate movement, but then we don't live in the past, anyway.
How do I explain the changes?
The earth is a dynamic organism, and the weather and climate change. Hotter and colder.
Perhaps semantics is the disconnect.
I do not suggest that the climate does not do so would be ludicrous.
I question the imperative to wreck this nation's economy 'fighting' that which we are, these days, a much lesser contributor to than other global countries, such countries also in the process of increasing emmissions, and not in the least interested in any popular movement, real or imagined, to curb their emmissions, and thus their economy.
If we went back to walking and subsistence farming and sweating in the heat tomorrow and killed all the methane emmitting animals in this country, the world as a global entity would STILL be impacting the atmosphere, and thus climate, and doing so a lot more negatively than we are. Nobody can argue that this great beast of a nation has not improved greatly it's stewardship of nature in those last 40 years. Must we now kill the beast to get the last drop of 'improvement'?
The yellow stuff on my leg ain't rain when I see a dog with a hiked up leg next to me. The national hysteria with 'climate change' is a big, mean old dog...
So, until there is some meaningful possibility that other nations will join in (treaty - sure...we can expect that to work great...), and until the 'climate change' gurus in THIS country start telling it like it is that we are a small part of a much bigger situation, and until somebody explains for real the 17 year warming hiatus, count me out.
No doubt...I'll be missed....[beam]
You're lucky that what you're selling is really popular with a lot of folks.
One less customer won't matter...even many millions won' long as we are intent on using 'climate change' as an excuse to further political ideology...
Best wishes.
Always an interesting subject.

Carlos Ponce

"How do explain the disappearing glaciers, ice free summers in the Arctic, increasingly rapid melting of Greenland;s ice mass and the melting recently documented underneath the ice cap in the Antarctic.?"
When the power goes out in my house I check around the neighborhood. If the power is on down the street and across the street I feel the problem is with my house. If the power is out all over the neighborhood then I know it's not just me. Well the polar ice caps are melting -on Mars and Europa and other ice bound moons in our solar system showing that the phenomenon is not localized. That tells me that it is probably caused by an increase in solar activity - something we have NO control over.

Victor Krc

The way I understand the issue is that there is little doubt about the fact the climate is changing, but the question is what is driving the climate change. Geologists and paleontologists tell us that this planet has undergone drastic climate changes long before the invention of the internal combustion engine. It is my understanding that the various theories used to explain these climate changes range from asteroid impact and volcanic eruptions to sun spot activity and wobbles in the axis of rotation of the earth, as well as the current theories du jour of greenhouse emissions from carbon fuel burning and methane emissions from flatulent cows.

I think that the real dispute is over the fact that climate science does not have much to offer in the way of controlled experiments to establish that the current round of climate change is man - made beyond a reasonable doubt. There are too many variables in nature and in the equations, and correlation does not imply causation.

Are we willing to impose drastic costs on our economy to try to attain a by no means certain benefit? And will China and India go along with the program?

Victor Krc

By the way, there was an opinion column in the May 26 Wall Street Journal titled "The Myth of the 97%".

This column was co-authored by Dr. Roy Spencer, who is a principal research scientist for the University of Alabama in Huntsville and the U.S. Science Team Leader for the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer on NASA's Aqua Satellite/

This column presents hard data to refute the current story that 97% of scientists agree about global warming and its purported man-made origins. They say that "The so-called consensus comes from a handful of surveys and abstract - counting exercises that have been contradicted by more reliable research".

I cannot summarize it here, it is a lengthy article but the authors give many specific examples of how data was cherry - picked in order to come up with the bogus 97% claim. Of course, true believers are not interested in hearing anything which contradicts their world - view, but Mr. Blazyk and others may be interested in getting another angle on this "97%" story in the interest of scientific objectivity,

I will copy the link below, though I do not know if it can be read if you are not a subscriber. I think I can email it to anyone who may be interested.

Steve Fouga

China is investing in pollution reduction, more than Europe and similar to U.S. India, not so much. They have a weird situation in that much of their pollution is caused by burning wood and biomass. I didn't know this till I googled it. Man, it's gonna be hard keeping people from cooking their food.

Climate change is one of the issues where I find myself disagreeing with IHOG, Carlos, and gecroix. Though I believe we should take ALL the evidence we have into account, including the past decade of temperature leveling -- the trend overwhelmingly points to a gradual warming. As an admittedly former engineer, I can't ignore this trend. It's there; it's undeniable.

And what Stan is hinting at is supported by basic science: Even with an apparent leveling off, there's a very good chance that the oceans are storing an energy increase that will be released later. It's too hard to measure whether this is happening, but it makes sense scientifically.

Stan Blazyk Staff
Stan Blazyk


I read the Wall Street Journal article about the "myth of the 97%". It turns out that the information used to support this thesis is even more suspect than the "myth" they supposedly try to discredit. Here are a couple of links about this, if you are interested.

Where we are with human influenced climate change is exactly where we were with cigarettes and cancer in the 1950's and 1960's. The great majority of medical researchers were convinced about the association between tobacco use and cancer, but the Tobacco companies could always trot out their paid scientists to dispute these claims. Think about it.

By the way, almost all the funding critical of human caused climate change has been funded by Canadian and American oil companies, which in itself, should call into question motives and concern with the science involved.

Victor Krc

Stan, thanks for your response.

I posted my last blog before I saw I saw your response.

I understand your "follow the money" argument and I am usually sympathetic to that type of argument, however it is really a non - sequitur logical fallacy to assume that this is the case here. What the tobacco companies and oil companies did or are doing as to funding has no bearing on the results of scientific research in climate science. Even if the money is "tainted", does that imply that research findings contrary to the prevailing opinion is necessarily incorrect? And what if the prevailing opinion is not as "prevailing" as made out to be in the media?

You will have to admit that all scientific advances have been made by individuals who stood contrary to the 97% - Thomas Kuhn's Paradigm Shift.

I will explore the links that you posted here, however I could just as easily posit that the true believers are going to emphasize the findings that will confirm their biases, that funding for the current global warming scare is coming from individuals that want to make a financial killing in green technology, or that this is another attempt by the Federal government to increase its domain over the lives of its citizens.

Also, given Dr. Spencer's curriculum vitae and the awards and recognition he has received, I find it hard to discount his contentions. And he is or was a government employee or contractor (NASA).

I just naturally have an aversion to "everybody knows" statements of "fact".

Victor Krc

Stan, I have explored those links that you posted, and as far as I can see it is more of the same.

Dr. Spencer addressed the issues raised in these blogs in his article, which was written by him well after these blogs were initiated. Also, the comments to the main post on these sites were very revealing - basically ad hominem attacks on climate change skeptics that dared to post anything.

The climate has gotten warmer for a time, but apparently has gone into a hiatus the past ten years or so while greenhouse emissions were increasing, as gecroix mentioned.

This hiatus was not predicted by climate prediction computer models, but now, after the fact, various explanations have come forth. Karl Popper said that good science was falsifiable and bad science was not open to the possibility of falsification. Convenient after the fact explanations and acceptance of model failure are not good science because then you can never be wrong. The same criteria of falsifiability should be used in evaluating climate research as should be used in evaluating physics or chemistry research.

Dr. Spencer and many of his climate research scientists offer alternative views that do not get press coverage because their research and conclusions are considered secular heresy.

Indeed, I get the feeling from the vitriol of some of the postings on the blog sites you (Stan) referred me to that some of the posters would be happy to burn dissenters at the stake, except that they in no way wish to be considered "insensitive". Happily, that is not the case here.[smile]

By the way, is there any evidence that Dr. Spencer's research is funded by any oil or coal company?

Steve Fouga

"Convenient after the fact explanations and acceptance of model failure are not good science..."

Vic -- I won't argue this directly, I'll just say that after-the-fact explanations are the starting point for modifying said models to better match reality. Acceptance of model failure comes with the territory when dealing with complex phenomena. You accept it, modify the model, and try again.

"The same criteria of falsifiability should be used in evaluating climate research as should be used in evaluating physics or chemistry research."

Personally, I hold them to different standards. Climate research, at the level of knowability that's feasible at this time, seems to me to be more like engineering than pure science. I'm no expert, but that's what it seems like.

"some of the posters would be happy to burn dissenters at the stake, except that they in no way wish to be considered "insensitive". -- Or maybe they didn't wish to increase their carbon footprint. [beam]

Victor Krc

Doggone it. I wish I would have thought of the carbon footprint angle. That's good.


I agree with your point about how models have to be continually revised based on its prediction outcomes, its just that it seems to me that we are expected to accept "dangerous man-made climate change" as dogma when the evidence for it is not that certain, or at least not certain enough to justify any drastic government intervention programs.

Computer models are useful, but remember GIGO, garbage in, garbage out.

Victor Krc

I will start out by saying that I always enjoy Mr. Blazyk's posts and in fact they are the first thing I look for when I log in to the GCDN Website.

That said, I was more than a little irritated when I read that 97% of climate scientists agree that the increase in global temperatures are due to humans being a significant factor.

I was not a professional scientist, but I have taken enough science courses to know how the scientific method is supposed to work.

Well tested and confirmed scientific theories are certainly the way to bet on predictions they generate about nature. However, they are always tentative and subject to further testing. The eighteenth century thought it had nature nailed in the equations of Newton, that is until Relativity and Quantum theory came along. We can still use Newton to get to the moon and planets, but Newton is fundamentally incorrect as to how nature works.

I believe that the current theories about climate change are no where near the status of theories that are ways to bet on future outcomes. There is too much ignorance of climate processes such as cloud formation and precipitation formation to come to anywhere near a scientific "certainty".

Dr. Roy Spencer is a climatologist who is very much immersed in climate change research. Google his name and also "aqua satellite" and you will find an article about him in Wikipedia that will provide some enlightenment as to an opposing viewpoint. He is a well respected climatological research scientist.

The current fear-mongering 97% canard is being driven by the news media just as the bogus "nuclear winter" hypothesis was during the 1970's

Some highlights of the WSJ article that Dr. Spencer co-authored included the fact that the definition of consensus about global warming left out the word "dangerous" and that "scores of articles by prominent scientists" who questioned the so called consensus where excluded. He said that, in fact, most climate scientists " disagree with the consensus on key issues such as the reliability of climate data and computer models. They do not believe that climate processes such as cloud formation and precipitation are sufficiently understood to predict future climate change".

There is too much to go into here, but keep an open mind and look for all the information you can. Especially be skeptical of politicians who throw around such blatant falsehoods. They are an insult to the intelligence of the American people.

The current 97% canard is being driven by the news

George Croix

When we get honest and change the name to 'economy wrecking', then and only then will we have the factual results of the efforts proposed and getting underway via current 'pen and phone' scientific method by the 'scientists' in the White House, a place not exactly known of late for veracity.
Is killing cheap coal energy, ESPECIALLY in this 'fundamentally changed' screwed up one, and spiking U.S. electricty costs the answer to smog in China...or anywhere else.
If we are to talk of evidence, then the evidence at hand is, currently, that we have had 17 years of essentially no temperature increase globally, as yet UNEXPLAINED, while atmospheric CO2 concentrations have increased substantially, in no small part because no matter how far we cut in this country, we will not be able to undercut the increases in other global countries.
That doesn't sound like a 'settled debate' to me, unless it''s a one sided one.
That is the current hard evidence happening right now, yet we choose, for now, to override it with talk of good chances for something else happening, because we think that it should in a sensible situation.
Here's a point: We are told that absolutely we must cut emmissions or global cooling/global warming will nail us. Absolutely. And although we did a LOT of cutting in this country, globally there's a significant, and growing, increase, YET temps have stalled. For going on 2 decades.
Do we get to have it both ways, demanding a bow to scientific method using hard evidence, but when that doesn't fit the prediction we switch to conjecture and should-be to make the same point?
I know well the value of gut feeling, and how it very well may be correct when evidence suggests otherwise. But, we are not talking here about acting on gut feeling to make some process moves on a refining unit in the face of instrumentaion telling us not to, but experince telling us yes, do it. Or about doing something at an emergency scene totally out of whack with the training manual because we see something happening on scene and know we must deviate or fail.
Those negative consequences if they happen amount to a drop in the ocean compared to the harm to come for SURE by fighting against the harm to come MAYBE.
That's also undeniable.
The current popularly called for cure for the disease amounts to cutting off the patient's head to stop the pain of a broken leg.

George Croix

Here's a bipartisan suggestion:
Rather than follow the 'progressive' lead and do all that's possible to cripple our own national economy in the hope of effecting a global outcome to any significant degree, when the other contributors are not predisposed to do the same, or even help out beyond tokenism, and since there IS most assuredly an as yet unanswered puzzling departure the last several year from the 'settled science', why not refuse to do something when we don't know for sure what, if anything, needs doing?
Which is most likley to have a positive influence on climate research...a vibrant U.S. economy with funds available for significant and far reaching research (here and abroad) from the tax revenues brought in from a prosperous populace flush enough and secure enough to be interested in more than paying the bills each month? Or continuing on the current path of hurting the economy, and thus doing squat to help anybody else research as jobs go to heck and with them even less tax monies come in and more dependency checks take away from useful projects like science research, under the auspices of blanket statements made by ideologues charging up the national credit cards and circumventing the legislative process (it IS more than a one man least it was when we followed the Constitution) to do so?
Let's answer the current burning (no pun) question about the stalled temp increases, contrary to climate scientists predictions, so we know what direction to even go toward.
Then, lets decide if there even IS anything that any amount of money can do to beat Ma Nature at her game, unless everybody else joins in, too.
Now, i don't believe for a second that any people so far herein responding are dishoinest, so, you folks tell me:
Does, or does not, a snowball have a better chance in hell than this country has of convincing the world's other big players to do what we are poised to do - significantly harm ourselves in the supposed hope of helping all?
You answer is..............................?
I'm old East Texas Piney Woods stomper like me probably should not presume to enage such learned folks anyway....

Victor Krc

It all depends on if they perceive the problem to be a threat to their national interests.

I read a story from a journalist in Peking who said that the smog is so bad in Peking that his eyes were burning when he was walking outside and visibility was terrible.

The Chinese government obviously has to address this local problem, which it looks at differently than larger global issues that have less immediate impact on its citizens.

It all boils down to an economic cost - benefit analysis. Easier said than done.

Stan Blazyk Staff
Stan Blazyk

As usual, the debate over climate change brings out more heat than light (no pun intended), which is why I usually do not comment much on the topic.

One thing is certain. Evidence for or against "global warming" aka climate change will be unequivocal within a generation. Then it will be up to the scientists and the historians to say whether we made the correct decisions based upon the information available at the time.

Victor Krc

Basically, my problem with the whole thing is my distrust of computer models. It seems to me that the output from various climate research models is what is driving this debate and I cannot see putting our economy at risk or at a significant international competitive disadvantage because of them. Their output is too tentative for the load we want to put on them.

I have a background in finance and economics and I, and all of us, have witnessed what over reliance on computer models by large financial institutions has done to almost completely wreck our national and international economies. GIGO.

Computer model output gives us a false sense of precision and accuracy as to its predictions and I don't think that scientists are any more immune than the rest of us in our paternal and maternal interest in protecting our babies.

George Croix

Thing about heat is it's not radiates in all directions... [wink]

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.