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Annual #ShowYourStripes campaign raises awareness about climate change

Chris Michaels' #ShowYourStripes climate warming tie
Chris Michaels' #ShowYourStripes climate warming tie (Copyright 2021 by WSLS 10 - All rights reserved.)

Happy Monday and welcome to another edition of Beyond The Forecast!

If you follow any meteorologists on social media, you’ll likely see a consistent hashtag on many accounts on this first full day of summer: #ShowYourStripes.

Your Local Weather Authority’s Chris Michaels took it a step further! He wore his stripes on Virginia Today this morning.

But what exactly are the stripes? Well, they were created by climate scientist Ed Hawkins and they depict the warming climate on a local, state and global level.

With the help of Climate Central, we can show you the stripes for Roanoke, Virginia and Earth.

Show Your Stripes - Roanoke (Copyright 2021 by WSLS 10 - All rights reserved.)

The blue stripes depict years with a negative temperature anomaly from the 20th-century average, while the red stripes are a positive temperature anomaly.

As you can see, recent years are all red in the Star City, indicative of a warming climate. Data in Roanoke dates back to 1912.

Below, you’ll see Virginia’s climate warming stripes.

Show Your Stripes - Virginia (Copyright 2021 by WSLS 10 - All rights reserved.)

The Commonwealth’s climate data goes back to 1895. It’s a similar situation to Roanoke with lots of warming in the past 20-30 years.

Finally, we have global data back to 1850.

Show Your Stripes - Global (Copyright 2021 by WSLS 10 - All rights reserved.)

I think this diagram shows the recent warming trends the best. Most of the 170-year record has a negative temperature anomaly, but the recent years have flipped to a bright red.

This doesn’t come as a surprise as many of the warmest years on record globally have come since 2000.

More information about how these graphics were created is available here.

Switching gears to your forecast, it will be a hot and humid start to the week, but a cold front will provide some changes soon! Chris has a look at what you can expect in our daily forecast article.

You can always get specific forecast details for your zone, whether it’s the Roanoke Valley, Southside, the Highlands or elsewhere around Southwest and Central Virginia, anytime at WSLS.com/weather. Know your zone!

In case you missed it, we’re posting great weather and science content on WSLS.com. Here are a few links from the past week to check out:

If you prefer your weather information delivered by social media, you can follow Your Local Weather Authority on Facebook and Twitter.

You can also keep up with me on social media. I’m on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and TikTok, follow along!

-- Justin McKee


About the Author:

Justin McKee presents the weather forecast on 10 News Saturday and Sunday mornings from 6 to 8 a.m. He also fills in for other meteorologists during the week.