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Weird Meteorology Roundup

November 5, 2010

Scientists have evidence that the phase of the moon can affect rainfall.

Transcript

Weather from the moon. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

Farmers have long claimed that the phase of the moon can affect weather, and now new research shows they may be right. Scientists at Arizona State University and the National Climatic Data Center compared precipitation records going back over a hundred years with lunar phases. And they found that it rains a little more just before the quarter moon. It’s not known why, but the scientists say it could be because the moon’s gravity causes the earth to bulge in a way that affects the motion of storm systems.

In other meteorology news, scientists at the University of California, Santa Barbara have found that the ocean’s color affects hurricane development. Greener waters with more microscopic plankton trap more heat near the surface, making storms more likely. I’m Bob Hirshon for AAAS, the Science Society.