National Weather Forecast
A couple of systems working into the central United States on Thursday will bring snowy weather from the Rockies to the Great Lakes and storms – some severe – across the Southern Plains and Mid-South. Drier weather is expected out west.
Heavy snow of a foot or more will be possible across portions of the Rockies and up around the Great Lakes through the end of the week. Meanwhile, rainfall amounts of 3”+ will be possible in the southern United States.
From northern Nebraska to central Minnesota, a band of at least 3-7” of snow is expected to fall through Friday as a system moves through. The heaviest snow will fall across portions of the Minnesota Arrowhead/North Shore of Lake Superior to northern Wisconsin and the U.P. of Michigan, where some of this snow will be lake-enhanced. With the combo of strong winds and falling snow, visibility will be greatly reduced across the region, causing hazardous travel conditions.
We’ll be tracking an area of low pressure across the southern United States, along with a cold front and dryline, which will help to spark a severe threat across the Southern Plains Thursday afternoon and Thursday night. An Enhanced Risk of severe weather (threat level 3 of 5) exists across portions of north-central/northeast Texas, southeastern Oklahoma, and southwestern Arkansas – including the Dallas metroplex, Tyler (TX), Texarkana (TX/AR), and Ardmore (OK). Very large hail, damaging winds, and a few tornadoes will be possible.
Cat 5 hurricane-proof wind turbines are coming to the Gulf of Mexico
More from Electrek: “Wind turbine rotor firm Gulf Wind Technology and Shell New Energies US will together develop hurricane-proof wind turbines unique to the Gulf of Mexico. Shell has committed $10 million to create the Shell Gulf Wind Technology Accelerator program with Louisiana-based Gulf Wind Technology, which specializes in developing hurricane-proof wind turbine technology. The accelerator program aims to develop, test, and deploy a Gulf of Mexico-specific demonstrator turbine as early as 2024. In addition to its R&D work on the hurricane-resistant turbine, the Shell Gulf Wind Technology Accelerator will also launch an education and training facility to develop a workforce for the region’s new offshore wind industry.”
EPA proposes first-ever limits on PFAS in drinking water
More from Grist: “The Environmental Protection Agency released long-awaited proposed standards for cancer-causing “forever chemicals” in drinking water on Tuesday. Once finalized, the standards will force states to begin the arduous and expensive process of cleaning their water supplies of some of the class of chemicals called per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS. This marks the first time the EPA has proposed enforceable drinking water limits for PFAS, which are commonly known as “forever chemicals” because they do not break down over time and can remain in the environment for years on end. The proposed limits would cap two common types of PFAS contamination — the chemicals PFOA and PFOS — in drinking water at just 4 parts per trillion. That’s a significant reduction from the level the EPA suggested was safe as recently as 2016, when the agency put out a health advisory that suggested 70 parts per trillion as a maximum level for those types of PFAS in drinking water. This week’s announcement signals that federal regulators’ understanding of the health impacts of exposure to these chemicals is rapidly evolving and that the EPA now appears to believe that virtually no quantity of the chemicals is safe for human consumption.”
Solar companies offer reassurance after renewables financier Silicon Valley Bank collapses
More from Utility Drive: “The shutdown of Silicon Valley Bank by California regulators over the weekend has led to logistical questions about the fate of the renewables startups and projects it financed – particularly residential and community solar. The federal government acted to fully protect the bank’s depositors and provide access to their funds by Monday, but SVB’s collapse means that companies that used the bank to finance projects will have to secure funding elsewhere. Several solar companies said that they either had little exposure to SVB or were satisfied by the government’s promises to make them whole, but CEO Kiran Bhatraju of Arcadia – the largest domestic manager of community solar – said the bank’s collapse will “have an impact on the broader industry.””
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– D.J. Kayser