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Don Paul

Don Paul is a frequent contributor on weather/climate for The Buffalo News. He is also a staff meteorologist for WKBW and a former chief meteorologist for WIVB.


Bills

As of Friday morning, here is Don Paul's look at the weather for Sunday's Bills-Jets game at New Era Field. Tailgate forecast: Starting cool, but very tranquil. Bright sun, light wind (nearly calm). Temperatures rise quickly from low 50s to near 65 by noon. Game temperature: 68 degrees. Warmer in the sunshine. Wind: Light NE, generally under 10 mph in the afternoo…

Weather

East of the Caribbean, Irma has already been the strongest hurricane on record in the Atlantic basin. An anemometer on Barbuda recorded a gust of 155 mph before breaking, very early on Wednesday. At the time, top winds of Irma, which moved directly over Barbuda, were estimated at 185 mph with occasional gusts breaking 200 mph. Shortly afterward, as the eye passed overhe…

Bills

As of Tuesday afternoon, here is Don Paul's look at the weather for Sunday's Bills-Jets game at New Era Field. Game temperature: 68 degrees. Wind: Light northeast 6-12 mph during the game, possibly picking up a bit late in the game. Precipitation: None prior to or during the game. Forecast: Ideal. Sunny and tranquil. Wind will not be a major factor for the game…

Weather

In my article this week about Hurricane Harvey, I noted ongoing warming may not have “caused” Harvey, but could have contributed to the enormity of the unprecedented rainfall by heating waters in the nearby Gulf to above average. That would increase the amount of evaporation into the atmosphere, leading to more “precipitable water” available for rainfall. In scientific …

Weather

Was the horror of Harvey properly communicated? Yes, the intensity forecast for Harvey could have been better earlier in the week prior to landfall. The intensity picture didn’t spin up well until Thursday, when the National Hurricane Center predicted Harvey would come onshore as a major hurricane, which begins at Category 3. Here is the National Hurricane Center/NHC da…

Weather

As I write this article, it’s simply too soon to try to predict cloud cover for eclipse viewing on Aug. 21. Yes, there are models that go out that far in time, but forecast skill for cloud cover in this time range, with or without models, is virtually nil for much of the country, including our region. So, I’ll stick to what effects the eclipse may produce, based on past…

Weather

How can a planet with virtually no air have fascinating weather? Bear with me, and we shall see. Back in the early 1980s when I was working in Detroit, I spent some time with University of Michigan scholar and planetary scientist Thomas Donahue, going through some basics about meteorology on the other planets in our solar system. I recall his touching upon Mercury as be…

Weather

This tale might be THE classic unfulfilled moment in life. It's also my daughters’ favorite story from dear old dad. In a previous article, I recounted my presence at the shooting of Brooklyn mob head Joe Colombo. http://buffalonews.com/2017/06/28/from-thugs-to-thunderstorms-the-don-paul-story/ I had a poverty-wage gig working for WNEW Radio’s best reporter in the…

Weather

I mentioned some personal hypocrisy on the air last Saturday evening. The hypocrisy pertains to not adequately following my own advice about following good sun protection steps consistently enough over the years. Since I was talking about the high UV index I was forecasting for the next day – an easy call – it was a good time to bring it up ... a very good time. In fact…

Weather

Climate models correctly predicted back in the 1980s that warming would be greatest and fastest in the Arctic. Some of the physics in that forecast were simple. As Arctic sea ice melted more quickly during summer months, surface reflectivity of solar energy would change more drastically than anywhere else on the planet. The bright white ice and snow cover reflect much o…

Weather

In a recent article, I recounted how I began my TV weather career with a brief stopover at what was probably the worst station in the nation. But one of my most cherished pre-TV jobs was spending more than two years at WNEW Radio in New York. It was the station where Frank Sinatra started; it had the best local newsroom in American radio; it was probably the most sophis…

Weather

It will never happen here, but it can get too hot for some airplanes to fly. You may have heard how there have been flight cancellations during the current heat wave in the Southwest. Marshall Shepherd, former American Meteorological Society president and current chairman of atmospheric sciences at the University of Georgia, has just written a refresher article for Forb…

Weather

I didn’t begin my career in meteorology until some years after I received my college diploma. I had wanted to be a television weathercaster since I was a little boy, struggled through college to get my training and then temporarily chickened out when I graduated. I grew up in the New York area, which is the No. 1 television market in the country. You don’t break in ther…

Weather

A new Harvard study presents evidence that ozone over the United States, especially over the central part of the country, thins during the summer. A quick refresher: ozone in the stratosphere is what protects us and much of life from what would be a deadly dose of ultraviolet radiation from the sun. (Conversely, periodic high ozone levels near the ground develop from hu…

Weather

Rotten weekend forecasts have gotten a little easier for me, now that I’m working weekends instead of weekdays. How’s that again? For one thing, by the time you see me at 6 p.m. Saturday on WKBW, the weekend is already partially over. All those decades I was the Chief! (pause for effect) Meteorologist, I sometime had to give you bad news about the next weekend for five …