Thor and Global Warming

The Mighty Thor

Source

Thor

In the Norse mythos, Thor is well recognized as the god of thunder. Perhaps lesser known, he was also the god of weather. In descriptions from the mythos, Thor is often described as carrying a hammer in one hand and lightning bolts in the other, or simply carrying a hammer that can cast lightning bolts. Given that one of the storms of winter 2014 and 2015 was named after Thor, it seems somewhat appropriate to take some time out and talk about things like thunder snow, global warming, and offer some speculation on how both might be resulting from the same effect.

Winter Storm Thor arrived in the winter of 2015, early in March. It was the twentieth named winter storm of the season. The 2015 season set records for winter snowfall amounts in many places, set records for consecutive days of cold weather in others, and in general was a nuisance or worse to many people across the United States.

Winter Storm Thor was just one of many storms that year.

Melting Dry Ice

Global Warming

With all this snow, many people have begun to grump about how the scientists have it wrong. They claim the earth is not getting warmer, and that the snows of this winter are proof of that. In the past fifty years or so, the arguments for climate change have wavered between those who argue for global cooling, those who argue for global warming, and those who say it is all part of the cycle. The confusion is easy to understand, and even easier to understand if you have ever watched a block of dry ice melt.

This simple experiment is to take a block of dry ice and set it down somewhere warm to thaw out. The experiment seems to work best if the block of dry ice is set in a fairly moist place.

When first set down, you can see thin vapor rising off the dry ice. Those vapors quickly spread and interact with the moist air around the block to form small airborne crystals of frost. The small heavier than air frost crystals fall to the surface around the block of dry ice. The frost crystals do not form a real smooth boundary around the dry ice, but instead seem to cluster in small patches that look like snow. The look is slow to form, but chaotic with respect to how it looks overall as the block melts. If one were trying to predict what it looks like, they would not make any attempt to be exact, but instead would say ‘expect something that looks like snow to form around the block'.

After we watch this happen, one wonders whether we should expect polar ice cap melting on planet earth to show the same effect. The sad thing is that watching dry ice melt will not be sufficient to settle the discussion. Those who support the notion of global warming may point to this effect and say ‘expect to see snow’. Those who support the notion of global cooling will also continue to say ‘expect to see snow’. Those who believe it is nothing more than the ongoing seasonal cycle may likely stare in annoyance at both and say ‘in winter, expect to see snow’.

Worse, the whole point to the debate seems to be that the scientists need to justify why they should continue to be paid to make claims that the available evidence supports their arguments one way or the other. The discussions have even recently made it into the Halls of Congress, where some might claim snowballs are deemed especially appropriate.

Hammer Cloud

On a normal summer day, this was the sort of cloud that meant somebody was going to get stormed on.
On a normal summer day, this was the sort of cloud that meant somebody was going to get stormed on. | Source

Cantore Thundersnow Montage! - #ItsAmazingOutThere

Thunder Snow

There are some early signs that a thunderstorm might be about to strike. One early sign is to watch for certain types of cloud formations in the sky. When I was a child, I watched the sky a lot. Usually I was looking for airplanes, jets, or UFOs. When looking at the sky a lot, you also notice that clouds have all sorts of different appearances. One of the most notable was a formation my Dad told me was called a hammer cloud. He was from the midwest. The formation was named that way because seeing one of these clouds usually meant someone was going to get a thunderstorm, and maybe even a tornado. Modern meteorologists will explain that this particular type of cloud formation is caused by upper level winds that are moving at a different speed and direction than lower level winds, while at the same time cloud moisture is rising up in the atmosphere. That sounds impressive. To a little kid though, it is easier to imagine Thor carrying a cloud hammer.

I still watch the sky. It is a bit more active to occasionally glance at the sky and guess the weather while outside than it is to sit inside and watch the news for the weather forecast.

In winter, thunder and lightning during a snowstorm is cause for excitement. Rapid thunder and lightning while standing outside in a snowstorm can cause even those well educated about the weather to run around in childish glee. We call it 'Thunder Snow'.

But in the end, the cause of the thunder and lightning is the same. The simplest way to think of it is ‘Something disturbs the clouds’.

UnderDog

UnderDog and Thunder Snow

Back when I was a kid, one of the favorite cartoon shows we liked to watch was a show called Underdog. Underdog had a rhyming theme song. The original tune is on You-Tube. It actually began as a radio show theme song prior to becoming a television cartoon.

If you really like thunder snow, perhaps you would like to try singing the lyrics below to the tune of the UnderDog theme song.


There’s no need to fear! Thunder snow is here!

when weather-change in this world appear
and bring the storms that we would fear 
and frighten all who see or hear 
the cry goes up both far and near 

for Thunder snow! Thunder snow! Thunder snow! Thunder snow!

speed of lightning, roar of thunder 
scaring all who stand down under 

Thunder snow! Thunder snow!

when in this world of storms of snow
and those whose claims are that we owe
for climate change and what they know
to right this wrong with lightning glow

cries Thunder snow! Thunder snow! Thunder snow! Thunder snow!

speed of lightning, roar of thunder 
scaring all who stand down under 

Thunder snow! Thunder snow!


If these lyrics prove to be exceptionally popular, they may find their way to the folks at the Weather Channel. Who would like to see Jim Cantore sing Thunder Snow to the tune of Underdog?

Reading this article was

  • about as interesting as thunder snow
  • about as interesting as watching dry ice melt
  • about as boring as watching dry ice melt
See results without voting

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Comments 16 comments

FitnezzJim profile image

FitnezzJim 7 months ago from Fredericksburg, Virginia Author

Do you have shareable links or references? If so, you are welcome to share here.


sparkster profile image

sparkster 7 months ago from United Kingdom

It pretty much does. There is a US Air Force document called "Owning The Weather in 2025" (everything seems to be by 2025 for some reason). It documents how weather modification can be used for warfare in a myriad of ways, that includes for both defense and attack applications. The document is quite scary in how far it goes to describe the potential capabilities such as spraying chemical trails to increase radio signals, using drones capable of masking themselves, making it rain/snow intentionally to provide cover or slow down the enemy, etc, etc. It also describes how weather modification was used as early as the 1960s in Vietnam in order to slow down the enemy. The document proposes an alarming possibility and could tie in very well with Denish Bushnell of NASA's "Future Warfare [Circa 2025]" document which was originally a Powerpoint presentation - the document is official and is still available from many military websites.


FitnezzJim profile image

FitnezzJim 7 months ago from Fredericksburg, Virginia Author

Perhaps the US Air Force has recognized the impact of weather on warfare, and the associated planning efforts. Some of what I have been reading has been showing strong improvements in ability to predict the weather. Improvements include using better techniques from estimation theory, better mathematical development of the meteorological models, a scientific maturity in the acceptance that no one model holds the full understanding, and much better techniques for relaying the results (and predictions) to those of us who follow on the weather channel.

That said, if the phrase 'own the weather' implies control, then I suspect we all will soon be reminded of the risks associated with wanting to play God.


sparkster profile image

sparkster 7 months ago from United Kingdom

Interesting, some good information. I think it could go either way and I do believe it's just a cycle. Of course, the act of weather modification could be brought into the situation. Why is it that the US Air Force wish to "own the weather" by 2025? Also, according to research on the NASA website they believe that a mini ice age could be on the way!


FitnezzJim profile image

FitnezzJim 14 months ago from Fredericksburg, Virginia Author

Thank you or the comments Christos and Gus. (Why did I not answer earlier?)


GusTheRedneck profile image

GusTheRedneck 17 months ago from USA

Jim (FitnezzJim on HubPages) -

When Thor gets ticked off, the world gets wet.

Gus :-)))


Christos Mentis profile image

Christos Mentis 18 months ago from London,UK

I like this article very interesting. ;)


FitnezzJim profile image

FitnezzJim 19 months ago from Fredericksburg, Virginia Author

Done. Was too busy shoveling the snow of Thor to delete it yesterday Or maybe I was resting afterwards. Anyway, your Hub should no longer duplicate your comment here.


tsadjatko profile image

tsadjatko 19 months ago from maybe (the guy or girl) next door

Hey Jim, my hub page was unpublished for duplication...I think it is because I of the lyrics i put in your comments here and then used in my hub page, can you delete the comment here with my lyrics?


tsadjatko profile image

tsadjatko 19 months ago from maybe (the guy or girl) next door

OK, Jim here is your hub page and it wasn't much of a challenge being snowed in today with nothing else to do. Hope you like it, I put it under Comedy and Humor but it is actually depressing.

http://tsadjatko.hubpages.com/hub/Barack-Obama-Is-...


tsadjatko profile image

tsadjatko 19 months ago from maybe (the guy or girl) next door

Oh, hub page? Ok, I'll work on it, as soon as I get that tune out of my noggin.


FitnezzJim profile image

FitnezzJim 19 months ago from Fredericksburg, Virginia Author

Too funny, but ... where's the Hub?


FitnezzJim profile image

FitnezzJim 19 months ago from Fredericksburg, Virginia Author

Glad you liked the lyrics.

To keep the tune in your head, maybe we should issue an open challenge to others to write an article that ends with lyrics to be sung to the Underdog tune.

My bet would be on RedWhiskeyPete to win.


tsadjatko profile image

tsadjatko 19 months ago from maybe (the guy or girl) next door

Hey jim, why did you put the underdog theme song there, now I can't get it out of my head! Great lyrics, though!!!!

I saw Watters' World on O'Reilly recently and he interviewed a girl who explained record snow is to be expected with global warming because the warming causes more humidity in the air which results in more snow.

Watters said, well what would happen then if there was global cooling...and she just stood there with a blank stare.

Nobody thinks for themselves anymore, they either glam onto whatever thinking they agree with or repeat what they hear without any scrutiny or analysis.

Very entertaining hub page Jim. Now if I could just get that tune out of my head I'd be a happy camper.


FitnezzJim profile image

FitnezzJim 19 months ago from Fredericksburg, Virginia Author

Thanks for the comment BreakfastPop. I have the uncomfortable feeling that many of those who back global warming theories hope to profit from backing global warming theories, no matter how cold it gets outside.


breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 19 months ago

I might ablate give more credence to the debate about our planet, if the proponents of global warming weren't wedded to taxing the hell out of us for breathing!

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