“A third day of severe weather brought more death and destruction to areas from northern India to Afghanistan.
“The slow-moving storm system, which has triggered damaging thunderstorms, blinding dust storms and flooding downpours, has claimed at least 39 lives in Pakistan, 47 in India and 15 in Afghanistan, according to Anadolu Agency.
“That death toll may continue to rise as many people remain missing and severe weather continues to impact the region through Wednesday night.”
“Farmers in the southern Philippine region of Soccsksargen have resorted to selling their farm animals to survive the impact of a drought that has reportedly ravaged about 15,000 hectares of farmland.
“Father Ariel Destora, director of the social action center of Marbel Diocese, said the scorching heat brought about by the El Nino phenomenon that has hit the region in Mindanao this year had dried up grasslands.”
“People across the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales are gauging any long-lasting effects from its unusually bone-dry summer…
“Many places had zero rainfall, making it their driest January on record, all the while heat records were tumbling. The odd 35-degree-plus spike is not unusual in January or February, but Grafton, Casino and Lismore were breaking temperature records as late as March.”
“Melbourne has sweated through two consecutive days above 30 degrees for the first time so late in April in almost a century. It’s the city’s driest ever start to the year, as Tuesday cracked 30.3 degrees and Wednesday hit 30, the first time that’s happened so late in April since 1922.
“Parts of the state woke up on Wednesday after enduring their hottest April night ever. Cape Otway on the south coast smashed 156 years of records, dropping to 24.3 degrees overnight.”
Meanwhile, over in Western Australia:
“Residents in the Mandurah and Rockingham areas can expect some wet, cold weather on Good Friday…
“The maximum is expected to reach just 15 degrees, the coolest April temperature in Mandurah on record.”
“Five years ago, the Gulf of Alaska warmed to record temperatures, likely due to a sudden acceleration in the melting of Arctic sea ice.
“Usually a cold southern current flows along California…”
“Tornadoes and thunderstorms hit the South and Midwest for a second time this week, starting on Wednesday afternoon and they will gradually push eastwards…
“Communities in central Texas and western Louisiana, already hit by flash floods and twisters in the first round, will be hit once more by high winds, twisters and intense rain, according to AccuWeather and the NWS.”
“The same storm that is forecast to bring another severe weather and tornado outbreak to the South and part of the Midwest through Friday will also bring areas of heavy rain to the Mississippi Valley, the Tennessee Valley and the upper Great Lakes region into Thursday.”
“New Census Bureau data shows Puerto Rico lost nearly 4% of its population after Hurricane Maria, the greatest population drop in the recorded history of the island, according to one demographer.
“Data released Thursday shows the U.S. territory’s population dropped by 129,848 people between July 2017 and July 2018. The hurricane struck two months into that period, in September 2017. The population loss was the result of deaths and people moving away…”
“A Quebec town that this week suffered its worst flooding in nearly 50 years is fearing more damage as rain is forecast in the coming days. Officials in Beauceville, about 90 kilometres south of Quebec City, say they haven’t seen this type of flooding since 1971.
“And with warmer weather and rain forecast to end the week, there are concerns the Chaudiere River could burst its banks again.”
“A desperate bid is underway to save a forlorn polar bear at least 450 miles off course after being carried away on an ice floe off Russia’s Pacific coast.
“The beast headed towards the police station in Tilichiki village once the floe touched land, evidently pleading for human help. The predator is ‘lame, exhausted and confused’ but has climbed on its hind legs to peer into windows in a search for food or assistance, leaving some locals scared…”
“The anticipated heatwave has prompted concerns about a “pollen bomb” over the Easter weekend. Sonia Munde, head of services for Asthma UK, said: “A deadly pollen bomb is due to hit this week, putting people with asthma at risk of a potentially life-threatening asthma attack.”
“The dry weather [in Kenya] witnessed in the long rains season from March to May will be the worst in 38 years, worsening food shortages, water scarcity and piling pressure on electricity bills.
“Intergovernmental Authority on Development says the rains have already failed and even if it rains now, farmers will not make any meaningful return from their farms because the planting season is already over.”
“…in such scenarios where more than one region suffers harvest failures, food prices begin to soar. In the 2010 heatwave, Russia ended all its wheat exports and prices in Pakistan rose by 16 per cent, with harsh consequences for the poorest. Governments, agriculture ministries and international aid agencies need to be prepared.
““Such incidents cannot be resolved by individual countries acting on their own. Ultimately, extreme events affecting large areas of the planet could threaten food supply elsewhere, even in Switzerland,” said Sonia Seneviratne, an ETH climate scientist who has also shared in the study.”
“Flash floods threaten more people than thought, as ice dams melt…”