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    20 September 2005

    Rita looks like Katrina

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    Rita's path is further south than Katrina, giving it little land to interfere with it as a system and it seems the storm will spin up into a strong one. Fortunately, depending on which way your looking at it, this storm probably wont hit NOLA directly or be too much of a factor there (I hope). That said, this storm could get big and is expected to hit TX this weekend. If the track continues in a WNW direction it will soon be over the shallow coastal waters off of the TX coast; which will slow the storm in terms of windspeed while increasing the surge associated with hurricanes. If it hooks more northward then all kinds of oil rigs are in the line of fire. Bottom line is that the Gulf is warmer than it has ever been which means plenty of latent heat and thus, hurricanes. I think I heard someone babbling about "the largest increase of something in relation to oil" on the TV or radio today. Go get your gash now.

    More info and Sat pics here (these are updated daily so here is a dedicated link to his home page, and Dr. Masters).
    Although this storm is not expected to be as Catastrophic as Katrina in terms of absolute storm surge heights and aerial extent -- it very well may bring a severe, CATEGORY 4 Storm surge to a 50-80NM stretch of coast. With oil and product imports along with a very large proportion of oil and especially Natural Gas production located near Galveston north and east to off the coast of Louisiana -- the potential total impact on the U.S. energy production is almost of unimaginable levels.

    [UPDATE] DarkSyde has written a great diary highlighting the threat to energy prices this storm has made. Fortunately, the computer models have all grouped themselves as hooking to the south and west of the critical production centers off the coast and on land. I'm not saying that they are out of the woods by any means, these models are pure speculation although they are scientific. This storm is going to be huge, approaching the level of Katrina. People in the line of sight get out and Godspeed.

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