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“For many in the eastern half of the United States, rain boots, rain jackets and umbrellas have been in regular wardrobe rotation this year.

“Places like Washington, DC, have seen the most rain they have ever seen in a calendar year.

“In fact, 78 cities across the United States are on track to have their wettest years on record. At least 16 of those have already broken their yearly records, according to data from NOAA Regional Climate Centers…

“Much of the Mid-Atlantic has observed 20 inches above what they get in an average year.

“Some places, like Wilmington, North Carolina, have seen more than 40 inches above the yearly average. Not only has Wilmington shattered its previous yearly record of 83.65 inches, set back in 1877, but it also surpassed 100 inches of rain in a single year.

“That’s about the same height as a standard deep end in a backyard swimming pool.”

https://edition.cnn.com/2018/12/18/us/record-yearly-rainfall-washington-wilmington-wxc/index.html


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“What we have brewing is a very anomalous setup. A disturbance will once again dive DEEP into the south, setting up a strong meridional flow. This means that we’ve got a formidable S-N flow which will be capable of sending lots of tropical air northward into New England. One measure of how much water vapor is in the column of air above you is ‘precipitable water’ or PWAT for short. On Friday, we’ll be running about 400% of normal and near all-time marks for December in the Boston area.

“That air will be juicy!”

https://boston.cbslocal.com/2018/12/18/tropical-rain-record-warmth-visit-for-one-last-time-in-2018/


“Climate scientists are warning that a polar vortex disruption could inflict one of the harshest winters for years as it sweeps the US East coast later this month. Judah Cohen, a climate researcher at Atmospheric and Environmental Research that a polar vortex disruption, which could hit by the end of December or start of January, would be the “single most important determinant of weather this winter”.”

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/polar-vortex-where-east-coast-when-what-winter-2018-2019-wind-weather-a8689146.html


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“Expect more storms with heavy rain, heavy mountain snow and rough seas to lash the West Coast of the United States into Christmas Day.

“The main focus of the storms has been and will continue to be the Northwest into this weekend.

“The storm train over the northern Pacific has seas greatly agitated.”

https://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/powerful-storms-to-hammer-west-coast-disrupt-holiday-travel-into-next-week/70006922


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“The president of the Federation of Neighborhood Councils (Fejuve), Samuel Mendizábal, today asked the Mayor’s Office to declare the municipality of Oruro [Bolivia] in a state of emergency due to the floods that are registered in many neighborhoods of that city, as a result of the rains of the last two days.”

https://www.paginasiete.bo/sociedad/2018/12/18/vecinos-de-oruro-piden-declarar-en-emergencia-su-municipio-por-inundaciones-203544.html


One to keep an eye on: “A low pressure area off the Pacific Ocean is unlikely to intensify into a storm less than a week ahead of Christmas, the state weather bureau said Wednesday. The weather disturbance, spotted 1,000 kilometers east of Mindanao, may enter the Philippine area of responsibility in the next 24 hours, said PAGASA weather forecaster Lorie Dela Cruz.”

https://news.abs-cbn.com/news/12/19/18/lpa-off-mindanao-unlikely-to-become-storm-before-christmas


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“Parts of Sydney still mopping up from last week’s intense storm activity have been battered again, as severe thunderstorms hit the Sydney basin on Wednesday night, set to return on Thursday.

“Large storm cells tracking over the Blue Mountains, Central Coast and Sydney’s northern and western suburbs brought hailstones, strong wind gusts and heavy rain.”

https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/risk-of-large-hail-damaging-winds-as-severe-thunderstorms-hit-sydney-20181219-p50nb0.html


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“Walgett literally means “the meeting of the two waters” — the Namoi and Barwon rivers. But neither is providing drinking water to this town in north-west New South Wales.

“”It looks bloody shocking to see our rivers like this. But what can we do if we’ve got no rain?” Lewis Beale, a Kamilaroi elder, said… he dam is currently at 0.3 per cent capacity and has had to be shut down.”

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-12-19/walgett-has-two-rivers-but-no-water-left-to-drink/10558428


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“An extreme heatwave in far north Queensland last month is estimated to have killed more than 23,000 spectacled flying foxes, equating to almost one third of the species in Australia.

“The deaths were from colonies in the Cairns area where the mercury soared above 42 degrees Celsius two days in a row, breaking the city’s previous record temperature for November by five degrees.”

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-12-19/heat-wipes-out-one-third-of-flying-fox-species/10632940


“An intense heatwave, which saw temperatures soar to above 40 degrees Celsius in the northeastern parts of KZN [South Africa] on Tuesday, has ended with severe thunderstorms across the province. East Coasters and holidaymakers alike had to pack away their cooler boxes and find shelter following a thunderstorm warning which was issued by the South African Weather Service on Tuesday afternoon.”

https://www.ecr.co.za/shows/east-coast-drive-with-bongani-and-mags/watch-footage-from-the-crazy-thunderstorm-in-pietermaritzburg/


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“From freak dust storms to the once-in-a-century Kerala floods, Indian states were battered by extreme weather throughout 2018. Weather events claimed the lives of hundreds of people, besides causing millions of dollars worth of damage to houses, roads, and other infrastructure.

“But what’s worse is that researchers suggest they could become the new normal, a sign of how the dark side of climate change is already here.”

https://qz.com/india/1499410/kerala-floods-to-cyclone-phethai-india-saw-bad-weather-in-2018/


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“One of the world’s coldest inhabited cities, Yakutsk, the capital of Russia’s Sakha Republic is warming up, damaging the city’s settlements which were built on permafrost that currently face the risk of melting, experts say…

“”As a result of global warming we are witnessing the degradation and the destruction of our permafrost,” regional lawmaker Vladimir Prokopyev told Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.”

https://www.dailysabah.com/environment/2018/12/18/one-of-worlds-coldest-cities-russias-yakutsk-could-melt-away-collapse-due-to-global-warming


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“According to research unveiled last week, mega-droughts may no longer be history.

“On Thursday, a team of climate scientists argued that the American West may currently be experiencing its first mega-drought in more than 500 years. A record-breaking period of aridity set in around the year 2000 and continues to this day, they said.”

https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2018/12/us-southwest-already-mega-drought/578248/


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“The rapidly warming Arctic is no stranger to loss. Climate change is gradually claiming some of its most iconic features, from melting glaciers in Greenland to shrinking sea ice in the ocean. But some casualties may be more surprising than others. Research suggests that small lakes and ponds across the Arctic tundra are also steadily disappearing. Hundreds, in fact, have vanished from the landscape in the last few decades alone.”

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/arctic-lakes-are-vanishing-by-the-hundreds/


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“If it holds up, the finding would confirm that “the West Antarctic Ice Sheet might not need a huge nudge to budge,” says Jeremy Shakun, a paleoclimatologist at Boston College. That, in turn, suggests “the big uptick in mass loss observed there in the past decade or two is perhaps the start of that process rather than a short-term blip.” If so, the world may need to prepare for sea level to rise farther and faster than expected…”

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2018/12/discovery-recent-antarctic-ice-sheet-collapse-raises-fears-new-global-flood


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