Transcript: Climate Watch Shorts: Storm chasers | Sep 17, 2016

(music plays)

Against a gray sky, an animated black globe spins. The title of the programs reads "TVO Climate Watch Shorts."

A caption appears on screen. It reads "Nam Kiwanuka. Climate Watch Shorts host."

Nam stands in a bridge by the sea. She’s in her early forties with curly brown hair. She’s wearing glasses, purple blouse and gray jacket.

Nam says WELCOME TO CLIMATE
WATCH SHORTS WHERE WE
EXAMINE THE LOCAL
IMPACT OF CLIMATE CHANGE.
ONTARIO STORM CHASERS
SEE THE WEATHER AT
ITS MOST VIOLENT.
THE WARMING CLIMATE MEANS
MORE SEVERE STORMS,
AND THOSE WHO CHASE THEM
WILL BE THE FIRST TO NOTICE.
MARK ROBINSON HAS BEEN
UP CLOSE WITH SOME OF
THE PROVINCE'S MOST
VIOLENT STORMS.
HERE'S WHAT HE'S SEEN.

[rumbling]
The caption changes to "Storm Chasers."

A video plays.

Mark Robinson drives a car at night. He is in his mid-forties, clean-shaven with short blond hair. He wears glasses and a dark shirt.

Mark says I ACTUALLY BECAME A
STORM CHASER BEFORE
I WAS A METEOROLOGIST.

The clip ends.

Mark stands in a pebble beach and says I STARTED CHASING
IN THE YEAR 2000,
JUST AFTER THE MOVIE
TWISTER
CAME OUT.

The caption changes to "Mark Robinson. The Weather Network meteorologist and storm chaser."

He continues AND I HAD NO IDEA WHAT
I WAS REALLY DOING.
BUT I FOUND OUT THAT YOU CAN
ACTUALLY CHASE TORNADOES
HERE IN SOUTHWESTERN ONTARIO.
AND I QUITE LITERALLY
JUMPED IN THE CAR
AND CHASED AFTER
A THUNDERSTORM.
I HAD A VERY VAGUE IDEA
OF WHAT I WAS DOING.
I STARTED TRYING TO
LEARN AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE.
AND WENT AFTER THE THUNDERSTORM,
GOT UNDERNEATH IT, SAW THE
WHOLE THING AND SAID,
THIS IS THE COOLEST THING
I HAVE EVER SEEN.
AND THEN, BOOM,
I WAS HOOKED.

[rain pouring]
A fast-motion clip shows the inside perspective of a car driving along a road on a rainy day.

The caption changes to "Courtesy Mark Robinson."

He says I'M DEFINITELY IN THE
RAIN CORE RIGHT NOW,
AND THE RAIN IS REALLY
KICKING UP THROUGHOUT HERE.
IT'S NUTS.

The clip ends.

Driving a car, he continues NO MATTER WHERE I GO
I GET PEOPLE ASKING ME
ABOUT THE WEATHER.
ESPECIALLY IF THEY FIND
OUT I'M A STORM CHASER.
IT'S JUST SOMETHING
THAT SEEMS TO BE
INHERENT TO CANADIANS.
PEOPLE ABSOLUTELY LOVE
THE IDEA OF WEATHER.
AND THEN WHEN YOU TALK
ABOUT SEVERE WEATHER,
I THINK THERE'S ALMOST
SOMETHING PRIMAL ABOUT IT,
THAT EVERYBODY...
YOU CAN SHOW THEM SOMETHING,
AND THEY'RE JUST LIKE, WOW,
THAT'S REALLY,
REALLY COOL.

The caption changes to "Hurricane Ike. Galveston, Texas."
A van crosses a flooded area as big waves hit the side of the road.

He continues AND THEN WHEN YOU GET
INTO LIKE AN EVENT LIKE
TORNADOES OR HURRICANES,
IT'S JUST SUCH A...
IT'S SOMETHING LIKE AN
UNCONTROLLABLE THING.
I LIKE TO THINK OF
IT FOR MYSELF AS
THE LAST GREAT ADVENTURE.

(music plays)
A white slate reads "In July 2013, a monumental rainstorm dropped 125 mm of rain in just a few hours over some parts of Ontario, leading to flooding and property damage estimated at 940 million dollars in Toronto alone -the most expensive natural disaster in Ontario history." Quoted from "Climate Change strategy. Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change."

The caption changes to "King City Radar Station."

David Sills walks in the woods towards two solar panels. He looks up and puts his hand in a horizontal position on his forehead to protect from the sunlight. He is in his mid-forties, with a short beard and brown hair. He wears glasses, brown leather jacket and a dark shirt.

David says SO THIS IS OUR
SOUTHERN ONTARIO
LIGHTNING MAPPING ARRAY.
WE HAVE A NETWORK OF
14 STATIONS IN THE
GREATER TORONTO AREA
ALL COLLECTING DATA
DOWN TO THE
NANOSECOND LEVEL, TRYING
TO GET THE POSITIONS OF ALL
THE PARTS OF A LIGHTNING FLASH.

A computer screen shows animated colourful graphs.

[cracking]
Lightning bolts appear in the sky.

The caption changes to "Burlington, Ontario. Courtesy David Piano, storm chaser."

David continues IF YOU LOOK AT TRENDS
SUCH AS JUST THE MOST
SIGNIFICANT TORNADOES,
JUST THE EF2s
AND HIGHER OR F2s
WHEN WE GO BACK
BEFORE 2013 IN CANADA,
WE DON'T SEE THAT
MUCH OF A CHANGE.

The caption changes to "David Sills, PhD. Severe weather scientist, Environment and Climate Change Canada."

David continues THERE'S NOT THAT
MUCH OF A TREND.
THE ONE TREND THAT'S BEING
PICKED UP... ESPECIALLY
IN U.S. DATA IS
MORE VARIABILITY.
YOU MIGHT HAVE
MAYBE SOMEWHAT LESS
TORNADO DAYS, BUT ON
THOSE DAYS THERE'LL BE
MORE TORNADOES.

The caption changes to "Tornado activity over 15 years. Overlaid on Google Earth."

Animated multi-coloured dots appear in the USA map displayed in a globe.

Mark says SO ONTARIO IS ACTUALLY
A PART OF TORNADO ALLEY.
JUST DEPENDING ON WHAT
TIME OF THE YEAR IT IS.
AND WE SEE ABOUT 8-12
TORNADOES EVERY YEAR
HERE IN SOUTH
WESTERN ONTARIO.
BUT THE BEST PART OF
IT IS... SEE THAT?

He turns and points to the waves crashing on the rocks and continues
THAT'S WHAT HELPS
PRODUCE OUR TORNADOES
AND OUR THUNDERSTORMS
IN SOUTH WESTERN ONTARIO.
BECAUSE WE HAVE SOMETHING
WE CALL LAKE BREEZES.
AND THEY ACT LIKE A
LITTLE MINIATURE COLD FRONT
WHICH PUSH JUST A
LITTLE BIT OFF THE LAKE.
AND THUNDERSTORMS THAT
ARE SORT OF MOVING ALONG
MAYBE THEY'RE NOT ALL
THAT FIERCE, MAYBE
THEY'RE NOT ALL THAT
GETTING REALLY GOING,
BUT AS SOON AS THEY START
TO HIT THAT LAKE BREEZE
THEY CAN SPIN UP AND
START TO REALLY PRODUCE
SOME SIGNIFICANT,
SEVERE WEATHER.
SO A LOT OF OUR TORNADOES
THAT WE SEE IN
SOUTH WESTERN ONTARIO
ALONG THOSE LAKE BREEZES,
AS A STORM CHASER I JUST
LOOK FOR THE LAKE BREEZE
AND GO SIT
THERE AND WAIT.

He giggles.

(music plays)

A final slate reads "TVO.org/climatewatch"

Watch: Climate Watch Shorts: Storm chasers