In Minnesota, October 2009 was the third coolest since modern records have been kept (about 1860), yet November was the second warmest on record. Globally, the top 11 warmest years on record have all been in the last 13 years. In 2004, four major hurricanes in six weeks shut down much of the state of Florida and caused over 100 deaths and billions of dollars in damage. In 2005, Hurricanes Katrina and Rita devastated the Gulf Coast, which still has not fully recovered. There’s a new El Nino brewing in the Pacific with implications for snowfall and temperatures this winter in the Midwest. Are these events linked? Are they portents of things to come due to humans changing the planet’s climate or are they random events in a natural cycle? Find out the answers to these questions and more in a J-Term course, Geog 230: Weather and Climate.

A new morning section of Weather and Climate has been added and will be held from 9 a.m. to noon Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday during J-Term.

Course Description: The causes and consequences of weather and climate are covered, from global-scale processes of climate dynamics, the greenhouse effect and El Nino, to regional and local-scale processes of fronts, thunderstorms, hurricanes, and tornadoes. Students are introduced to weather map analysis and simple forecasting and observational techniques through hands-on exercises, software tutorials, field trips to local weather sites of interest, and the Tommie Weather station.

Instructor: Dr. David Kelley, associate professor and chair of the Department of Geography.