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Record warmth engulfs Western Europe, while Russia plunges into deep freeze… Western Europe sits on the rising end of a meteorological seesaw that’s simultaneously sending temperatures across a broad swath of Russia plummeting below zero…

Hamburg [Germany] hit 70 degrees, not only the warmest on record in February but for any winter month. It beat out the previous record, set a day earlier, by 4.3 degrees…

“Much like what has happened during the extreme warm wave that also swallowed China this weekend, it’s very rare for records to fall by so many degrees, a testament to the anomalous nature of this event.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2021/02/24/record-warmth-western-europe/


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A new heat record [Brussels, Belgium] was broken on Wednesday, for the fourth day in a row, according to meteorologist David Dehenauw.

“The royal meteorological institute of Belgium recorded a temperature of 18.4° C [65.1F], just beating the previous record (18.3° C) on a 24 February, recorded back in 1990.”

https://www.brusselstimes.com/brussels-2/156801/new-heat-record-set-for-the-fourth-consecutive-day-18-4-c-recorded-in-brussels/


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Germany sees a record weekly jump in temps: since records began, the temperature has never risen as sharply within seven days, as the now-confirmed readings from the Göttingen, Lower Saxony weather station in central Germany show.

“While a low of -23.8C was measured there on February 14th, the high on February 21th was 18.1C — marking an increase of 41.9C [75.4F] .”

https://www.thelocal.de/20210223/germany-sees-temperatures-jump-by-nearly-42c-in-one-week


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The condition of German forests has deteriorated to record levels due to fire, drought and a bark beetle infestation, the agriculture minister said on Wednesday…

“More trees died in 2020 than ever before and only 21% of trees under observation had an intact canopy, an indication of how healthy a tree is…”

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-germany-politics-forests/fire-drought-beetles-ravage-german-forests-study-finds-idUSKBN2AO1IA


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The climate emergency is already hitting “worst case scenario” levels that if left unchecked will lead to the collapse of ecosystems, with dire consequences for humanity, according to the chief executive of the Environment Agency.

“Warning that this is not “science fiction”, Sir James Bevan said on Tuesday that in recent years several of the “reasonable worst case scenarios” had happened in the UK, with more extreme weather and flooding…”

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/feb/23/climate-crisis-hitting-worst-case-scenarios-warns-environment-agency-head


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Hot houses: the race to save bats from overheating as temperatures rise:

“Chimneys for bat boxes and a flying fox heat stress forecaster are among efforts to prevent deaths from effects of climate crisis… scientists are now discovering that in a rapidly warming climate, overheating bat boxes can be a death trap.”

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/feb/24/race-to-save-bats-flying-foxes-from-overheating-as-temperatures-rise-aoe


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Hundreds of Houston’s famous bats are believed to be the latest animal casualties of recent back-to-back winter storms and historically cold temperatures in Texas.

“Some 2,000 Mexican free-tailed bats that live year-round in a colony under the city’s Waugh Bridge are estimated to have died in the freezing weather following Valentine’s Day…”

https://weather.com/news/news/2021-02-23-houston-bats-freeze-cold-waugh-bridge


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On Monday, Feb. 22, the temperatures in Rapid City, South Dakota, soared to 57 degrees F in the afternoon after bottoming out at 24 degrees below zero last week, making for an 82-degree [Fahrenheit] / 45.5C temperature swing

“”It’s not just the fact that we have a huge warmup from last week to this week, it’s the fact that temperatures are also above normal as well,” AccuWeather Broadcast Meteorologist Brittany Boyer pointed out.”

https://news.yahoo.com/dallas-sees-70-plus-degree-185800554.html


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California’s iconic coastal redwoods, some standing since before Julius Caesar ruled Rome, are in a fight for their lives. They are increasingly threatened by wildfires that are larger and more intense due to the impact of human-caused climate change.

“And it’s not just the redwoods — giant sequoias and Joshua trees are also in trouble.”

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/climate-change-california-redwood-sequoia-joshua-trees/


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Alaska thunderstorms could triple if climate trends continue, scientists warn:

“Alaska may need to brace for more thunderstorms — along with the landslides, floods and wildfires they can bring — if current climate trends continue, a team of scientists warns.”

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-climate-change-alaska/alaska-thunderstorms-could-triple-if-climate-trends-continue-scientists-warn-idUSKBN2AO2JT


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Argentine media today reported a strange occurrence in the province of Buenos Aires – a tornado of mosquitoes… a cloud of mosquitoes would be an unusual fact, but having taken on the appearance of a tornado is even more curious.

“The strange event was filmed by drivers traveling on Route 74 that links General Madariaga to Pinamar, in the province of Buenos Aires.”

https://metsul.com/tornado-de-mosquitos-na-argentina/


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A forest fire that has been raging for the past three days on a mountain some 85 kilometers north of Tokyo has now scorched at least 50 hectares and shows no signs of dying out, the local government said Wednesday.”

[Parts of Japan had record high temps for Feb last week.]

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2021/02/24/national/tochigi-forest-fire/


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Taiwan’s tech manufacturers fear their output is under threat from the island’s worst drought in decades, risking more turmoil for global supply chains already strained by shortages of semiconductors and other key components.

“Taiwan’s government will on Thursday further tighten water use in several cities that are home to a cluster of important manufacturers.”

[You may recall that cold weather shut down semiconductor factories in Texas last week. The manufacturing process is so complex and sensitive to disruption that shut downs are enormously inconvenient and expensive].

https://asia.nikkei.com/Business/Tech/Semiconductors/Taiwan-s-chip-industry-under-threat-as-drought-turns-critical2


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The bodies of about 100 dead dolphins have been found on an island off the coast of Mozambique.

“Eighty-six more carcasses were found on Bazaruto Island, north of the capital Maputo, on Tuesday… The cause of the deaths is still unknown… One possibility experts are investigating is if a cyclone may have contributed.”

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-56181298


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Wherever you look in West Antarctica right now, the message is the same: Its marine-terminating glaciers are being melted by warm seawater.

“Scientists have just taken a detailed look at the ice streams flowing into the ocean along a 1,000km-stretch of coastline known as the Getz region. It incorporates 14 glaciers – and they’ve all speeded up.”

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-56171302


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Polar bears and narwhals are using up to four times as much energy to survive because of major ice loss in the Arctic, according to scientists.

“Once perfectly evolved for polar life, apex predators are struggling as their habitats shrink and unique adaptations become less suited to an increasingly ice-free Arctic, researchers say.”

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/feb/24/arctic-ice-loss-forces-polar-bears-to-use-four-times-as-much-energy-to-survive-study


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Record-high Arctic freshwater will flow to Labrador Sea, affecting local and global oceans.

“Freshwater is accumulating in the Arctic Ocean. The Beaufort Sea, which is the largest Arctic Ocean freshwater reservoir, has increased its freshwater content by 40% over the past two decades. How and where this water will flow into the Atlantic Ocean is important for local and global ocean conditions.”

https://phys.org/news/2021-02-record-high-arctic-freshwater-labrador-sea.html


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“… there are growing concerns that today’s bond yields are not fully reflecting the looming impact of climate change, and associated regulation, on both countries and companies.”

[In other words, climate change and our attempts to adapt to it are an additional and rapidly worsening stressor, helping push the global financial system towards its inevitable collapse].

https://www.cnbc.com/2021/02/24/climate-risks-not-priced-in-bond-markets-a-risk-for-many-countries-.html


You can read the previous ‘Climate’ thread here. I’ll be back tomorrow with an ‘Economic’ thread.

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