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Following on from an unprecedented heatwave and unprecedented bushfires:

“Cyclone Owen will “wreak havoc” across Queensland, with remote communities braced for 280km/h winds and much of the state on flood alert, the premier has said.

“Annastacia Palaszczuk said the state had done all it can to be ready for Owen, which is expected to hit as a severe category-four storm late on Friday or early on Saturday.

“The latest modelling on Friday suggested Owen would make landfall south of Kowanyama, on Cape York peninsula’s east coast.

“Flooding was also expected in other parts of Queensland, with Owen expected to dump as much as 400mm of rain on some areas in coming days…

“In central Queensland, there were concerns about possible landslides if heavy rain fell over vast tracts of land denuded by bushfires.

““We’ve just been through horrendous bushfires and now we’re dealing with a … cyclone,” Palaszczuk told the Seven network on Friday. “Owen will wreak havoc across our state and come down the east coast.””

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/dec/14/tropical-cyclone-owen-will-wreak-havoc-across-queensland-residents-warned


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“A thunderstorm sweeping across Melbourne on Friday caused widespread flash-flooding prompting numerous calls for assistance. Sydneysiders were also dealing with traffic chaos as residents along the length of the New South Wales coast were being told to prepare for heavy rainfall, damaging winds and large hailstones… Dungong in the Hunter region received 40mm in just 30 minutes during the afternoon as heavy rains drenched much of NSW.”

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/dec/14/wild-weather-continues-with-severe-thunderstorm-warning-for-much-of-nsw


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“”We’re now at the tipping point — whether we start selling now [or] we don’t really know what we should do,” Jess Moody, a fourth generation grazier said.

“”Seven years really stretches you a bit. “Like a lot of other businesses in the drought, if it doesn’t rain this summer, we’re all going to be in some serious trouble.””

https://www.abc.net.au/news/rural/2018-12-14/outback-town-of-cunnamulla-population-down-40-per-cent/10610796


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“With 46.6mm rainfall recorded up to 8.30am on Friday, Hyderabad broke a 100-year-old record of highest rainfall received during 24 hours for December.”

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/hyderabad/hyderabad-rains-break-100-year-old-record-for-december/articleshow/67087514.cms


“A deep depression in the Bay of Bengal is expected to develop into a tropical cyclone in the next 24 hours and threaten parts of eastern India this weekend. People in areas from Chirala to Visakhapatnam and Puri should closely monitor the development and track of this strengthening depression.”

https://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/india-brewing-tropical-cyclone-may-strike-andhra-pradesh-later-this-weekend/70006864


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“The consequences for the Middle East were spelled out in one of the 6,000 scientific papers referenced in the IPCC report, published originally in the journal Nature Climate Change in 2016. Under the “business-as-usual scenario of future greenhouse gas concentrations”, it concluded, the environment in and around the Arabian Gulf, Red Sea and the Arabian Sea would come to “exceed a threshold for human adaptability”.

“Life in… the UAE and the entire GCC area, would no longer be supportable.”

https://www.thenational.ae/opinion/comment/the-middle-east-will-be-among-the-first-casualties-of-trump-s-climate-change-denial-1.802400


“World water supplies are drying up and research at the University of NSW shows evidence that drought-like conditions are becoming more commonplace and Jim Macdonald told Michael Condon farmers can’t adapt much more.”

https://www.abc.net.au/radio/programs/nsw-country-hour/world-water-warning-unsw/10621354


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“Lead author Jascha Lehmann told the Thomson Reuters Foundation the researchers had been “a little bit surprised by the very strong signal” on drying in Africa.

“The findings suggest efforts to cut planet-warming emissions faster are crucial, he said, as “there are limits” to how much people can adapt if drought continues to worsen in the Sahel, a semi-arid zone that lies south of the Sahara desert.”

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-climatechange-africa-drought/hike-in-record-dry-months-for-africas-sahel-worries-scientists-idUSKBN1OC1PT


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“The rains that affect the center and north of the province of Buenos Aires caused flooded streets and other inconveniences in several cities. In Pehuajó, 100 mm fell in less than three hours.”

https://www.cadena3.com/noticias/sociedad/inundaciones-baradero-chivilcoy-pehuajo_129603


Torrential rain causing flooding in parts of Colombia, too:

https://www.eltiempo.com/colombia/otras-ciudades/lluvias-ocasionaron-inundaciones-en-ibague-este-jueves-304952


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“Hurricane Maria inflicted “unprecedented” and “fundamental” changes to Puerto Rico’s ecosystem, according to new studies conducted by NASA scientists and other experts…

“The storm caused 60 years worth of natural tree-falls in just a day.”

https://grist.org/article/hurricane-maria-cut-the-height-of-puerto-ricos-forests-by-a-third/


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“Alaska is warming at twice the rate of the global average. And as air and sea temperatures warm at record-breaking speeds, sea ice forms much more thinly and much later into the year. According to the Arctic Report Card, during the winter of 2017 and 2018 when ice historically accumulates, the Bering Sea lost a section of ice the size of Idaho. With no ice, Teller has no natural defense from increasingly intense storm surges…”

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/dec/14/alaska-vanishing-ice-threatens-to-destroy-cultures-including-our-own


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“The Arctic is in the throes of what sea-ice scientist Peter Wadhams called a “death spiral.”

“As the region’s once abundant ice melts, giving way to a less reflective surface, the Arctic heats up faster — now at a rate that is double the rest of the planet.”

https://grist.org/article/4-ways-the-melting-arctic-is-wreaking-havoc-near-you/


UK swans starving after the heatwave killed off their river-weed:

https://www.iwcp.co.uk/news/17298402.letter-dont-let-swans-starve-over-winter/?fbclid=IwAR3IwNRwoblCfKNGTSV8UV1m2RESPEJylgwgISPrtUpm1yjbVZISzltv_3w


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