21st August 2019 Today’s Round-Up of Climate News

“Wildfires raging in the Amazon rainforest have hit a record number this year, with 72,843 fires detected so far by Brazil’s space research center INPE, as concerns grow over right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro’s environmental policy.

“The surge marks an 83% increase over the same period of 2018, the agency said on Tuesday…

“The unprecedented surge in wildfires has occurred since Bolsonaro took office in January vowing to develop the Amazon region for farming and mining, ignoring international concern over increased deforestation.

“Asked about the spread of uncontrolled fires, Bolsonaro brushed off criticism, saying it was the time of the year of the “queimada” or burn, when farmers use fire to clear land.”


“Homeowners in fire-prone regions [of California] have complained in the past year about being dropped from their home-insurance policies and forced to buy coverage from surplus carriers or from the state insurer of last resort, the California FAIR Plan.

“Surplus insurers specialize in unusual risks and can charge much higher premiums.”


“Phoenix has broken another record — and not the good kind.

“The National Weather Service tweeted that Phoenix had broken its heat record for Aug. 20 on Tuesday afternoon, reaching a high of 113 degrees just after 2 p.m. The previous record was 112 degrees in 1986.”


“…while [Alaska’s] fires typically start to peter out in August, recently there’s been a major uptick.

“About 236 of the 663 fires that started this year are still burning in the state, and it’s not clear when they’ll start to fizzle out.

““This is not normal,” Ipsen tells TIME.”


“It is so warm here, just inside the Arctic Circle, that on an August day, coats are left on the ground and Holland and colleagues work on the watery melting ice without gloves.

“In one of the closest towns, Kulusuk, the morning temperature reached a shirtsleeve 52 degrees Fahrenheit (10.7 degrees Celsius). The ice Holland is standing on is thousands of years old. It will be gone within a year or two…”


“A high fire risk persists in forests of Russia’s Siberia and the Far East, in the south of the European part of Russia, and in some other regions across the country, the Federal Service for Hydrometeorology and Environmental Monitoring reports on Tuesday.”


“Reports about bears becoming extremely active in searching for food next to towns and villages – and attacking people in the process – come from many areas of Siberia and the Far East of Russia.

“This footage with an unusually large group of animals prowling around the village of Takhtoyamsk in Magadan region, on shore of the Sea of Okhotsk, appears to be the most peaceful of all encounters. But elsewhere this was not the case…”


“Chinese authorities say at least 201 people have been killed and 63 are missing following flooding across the nation in July and August.

“The most recent deaths came in mountainous western Sichuan province, where eight were killed and 23 missing as of Wednesday morning. Earlier in August, 39 were killed and nine left missing by Typhoon Lekima.”


“Dozens of Pakistani villages were submerged and scores of people evacuated after India released up to 38,000 cusecs of water into River Sutlej without intimation earlier this week…

“Crops stretching over hundreds of acres near the bed of Sutlej were also destroyed by the flooding.”


“Heavy rains and floods in White Nile state [Sudan] and neighbouring North Kordofan resulted in the death of two children and four adults on Monday. Eight villages in White Nile state and large agricultural areas were flooded.

“El Jeili, north of Khartoum, was partly flooded.”


“Raging wildfire burnt 11,254 hectares of forests and rangelands across the country [Iran], since the beginning of summer, the commander of the forest protection unit of Forests, Range, and Watershed Management Organization, has said…

“Heavy rains over the past few months led to the plants and vegetation grown in vast areas of forests and rangelands which soon turned dry due to temperature rise and enhanced the possibility of massive fires.”


“Turkey experienced 503 forest fires between July 20 and Aug. 20 that destroyed 1,344 hectares (3,321 acres) of land, Habertürk reported on Tuesday. Turkish authorities are in the midst of trying to control a wildfire that erupted in Izmir on Sunday. According to Habertürk, 1,345 wildfires have been reported in the country since the beginning of the year.”


“After a recent ‘funeral’ in Iceland to mark the virtual disappearance of the country’s Okjökull glacier because of climate change, groups in Switzerland are now planning a similar event in the Alps to mark the first-ever death of a Swiss glacier.

“The ceremony, set for September 22nd, will mark the end of the Pizol Glacier in the eastern Swiss canton of Sankt Gallen.”


“Nearly two weeks after a tornado hit the south of Luxembourg, clean-up and reconstruction work is progressing as volunteers continue to support the effort.

“The tornado struck the area between Pétange and Bascharage on 9 August, damaging some 300 homes, with around 100 left uninhabitable.”


“Britain could enjoy the hottest August bank holiday on record this weekend with temperatures predicted to soar as high as 30C.

“The wet weather will persist for parts of the country this week, with further downpours and thunder predicted for northern England, Scotland and Northern Ireland on Tuesday.”


“Crops in the Mallee’s Millewa district, stretching 100km west from Mildura to near the South Australian border, are on the brink of ruin…

“Farmers say conditions are the worst since the 1940s — eclipsing the devastating 1982 drought — and have appealed to governments to intervene with support measures.”


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20th August 2019 Today’s Round-Up of Climate News

“…The probes …brought back troubling data — Geenland’s Helheim [glacier] was surrounded by warm water along its entire depth, more than 2,000 feet below the surface.

“It’s very rare anywhere on the planet to see 700 meters of no temperature variation, normally we find colder waters in the upper hundred meters or so, but right in front of the glacier it’s warm all the way up,” said Ian Fenty, climate scientist at NASA. “These warm waters now are able to be in direct contact with the ice over its entire face, supercharging the melting.”

“”It retreats by many meters per day, it’s tens of meters per day. You can probably set your iPhone on timelapse and actually see it go by…””


“…Whether 2019 will set a new all-time extent or volume record at the September sea ice minimum remains to be seen.. For anyone watching the Arctic this year, this dire data comes as little surprise.

“Things have been hot in the Far North, to say the least, with record heat waves, dramatic melt-outs and unprecedented wildfires.”


“Late-season wildfires during one of the driest summers on record in Anchorage have destroyed homes, forced evacuations, closed roads and schools and poured sometimes-dangerous levels of smoke into Alaska’s most populous region.”


“”When it fell, it was cracking small pieces here and there then a big chunk came, another big chunk, and then it just collapsed in on itself,” Hooper said…

“The incident came during a stretch of unusually warm weather in Alaska and just days after July became Alaska’s warmest month ever, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.”


“After being devastated by wildfires last year, California has gone through several months of being relatively fire-free. But as we head into the heat of late summer, the state is ready to burn.

“When the ignition happens, experts warn, it could cause wildfires more intense and destructive than anything California has experienced.”


“Arizona and Nevada are facing the first-ever mandatory cuts in the amount of water they can take from the Colorado River next year.

“The two states are among seven that have agreed to drought contingency plans for the river system that serves about 40 million people and 6,300 square miles of farmland from Wyoming to Southern California.”


“This spring’s heavy rainfall and flooding left 1.3 million acres (0.526 million hectares) of land unplanted in Arkansas. Lawrence County farmers saw nearly 74,000 idled acres (29,947 million hectares), the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported.

“Jerry Morgan is one of the county’s farmers who said his farm had more than 500 acres (202 hectares) of corn, rice and soybeans that he couldn’t plant this year.”


“Central Chile is suffering its worst drought in 60 years. This includes the capital of Santiago, home to nearly half the country’s population of 18 million people, as well as the nearby region of Valparaiso.

“Experts predict… the shortage of water will be permanent. Not only is this changing the lives of farmers and ranchers, but it’s also cutting into revenue from agricultural products sent on cargo ships from Chile to the U.S.”


“The number of forest fires in Brazil increased by 82 percent from January to August in 2019 compared to the same period last year, the country’s National Institute for Space Research (Inpe) said on Monday.

“According to Inpe, 71,497 forest fires were registered in the country in the first eight months of 2019, up from 39,194 in the same period in 2018.”


“Grain and vegetable farmers in the eastern states [of Australia] need rain within six weeks or face the prospect of having no summer crops, depriving them of income for ­another season.

“Forecasts for spring rainfall ­released last week by the Bureau of Meteorology predict drier than average conditions across much of the inland.”


“There’s no more grazing all day like nature intended for them,” she said. “It’s heartbreaking to see the cows and sheep standing on hard dirt instead of soft grass.” …

““Some towns have been in drought for years, the farmers have run out of money, water and in some cases hope. I think it’s just a day by day scenario with most.””


“Meteorologists are debating whether a sudden stratospheric warming (SSW) began earlier this month, putting a wobble into the polar vortex of westerly winds around the Antarctic and allowing freezing air to escape more easily and head towards southern New Zealand.

“Whether one is or isn’t already occurring, computer models are showing a much more significant winter stratospheric warming could begin in about 10 days or a fortnight.”


“A prolonged drought usually causes lower fresh fruit bunch production and may hit oil extraction during harvest in the next 6-12 months, said Pinta S. Chandra, investor relations, Sinar Mas Agribusiness and Food.

““It’s been so dry you can see unopened spears (on the trees),” said a plantation manager at a company that owns estates in both Indonesia and Malaysia, on condition of anonymity…”


“July 2019 saw [Singapore’s] rainfall hitting a record low. Meteorological Service Singapore (MSS) advised that it was the driest July on the records since 1869, when the first rainfall records started, reported CNA.

“Meanwhile, temperatures have been steadily climbing… The prolonged warm weather appears to have taken its toll on nature.”


“The Ladakh region of northern India is one of the world’s highest, driest inhabited places. For centuries, meltwater from winter snows in the Himalayan mountains sustained the tiny villages dotting this remote land.

“Now, like many other places in India, parts of Ladakh are running short of water…”


“Packed into an open-air theater to watch a play on climate change, the Egyptian villagers near the ancient city of Luxor rock with laughter…

“…even though it’s a performance about life and death…”


“Forest fires have consumed some 500 hectares (over 1,200 acres) of land in Izmir on Turkey’s Aegean coast, an official said Monday.

“On Sunday, the fires broke out in four different regions — including two in the southwestern Muğla province and others in Izmir province, according to Agriculture and Forest Ministry.”


“An out-of-control wildfire on the popular Spanish holiday island Gran Canaria has forced 9,000 evacuations, and the fire has now reached a natural park, authorities said on Monday.

“”It’s a huge forest fire, extremely serious, which happened in a heatwave,” and it is still not under control, Canary Islands President Angel Victor Torres told reporters. “This is an environmental tragedy.””


“The record-breaking summer heat, which saw temperatures across the Maltese Islands reach 37.8°C in June, showed no signs of cooling off in July…

“The mean sea temperature was also over one degree warmer than the climate norm, standing at 26.4°C.”


““It’s cooked,” the French farmer said, lamenting the severe drought that will limit his harvest to less than half the amount he needs to feed his herd …“They will sell their animals, their herds will shrink and they will sell cows…”


“The initial and most-supported theory relating to jet stream variations and climate change is one in which warmer temperatures, especially in the Arctic as compared to the tropics, are making it slow down and become ‘wavier.’

“This means we can have more intense cold air incursions in the winter, but also more intense and prolonged heat waves during the summer.”


“Northern hemisphere summers will deliver dangerously longer heatwaves, droughts and bouts of rain even if humanity manages to cap global warming at two degrees Celsius, scientists said Monday…

“”We could see a significant shift in summer weather conditions,” said lead author Peter Pfleiderer, a doctoral researcher at Humboldt University in Berlin.”


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19th August 2019 Today’s Round-Up of Climate News

“The US state of Alaska has experienced continuous, above-average temperatures this summer that are having a dangerous effect on health and deadly consequences for wildlife.

“In western Alaska, there has been a large spate of washed-up dead seals, walruses and birds, caused by a combination of record warm ocean waters and a total lack of sea ice, according to Rick Thoman of the International Arctic Research Center.

“On Thursday, Thoman said there have also been “dead, non-spawned salmon in some places in significant numbers”, coinciding with high river temperatures of 21 degrees Celsius or higher. The wildlife deaths lead to financial harships for many Alaskans, a state in which commercial fishing and hunting are a source of livelihood for many.

“In southeast Alaska, the normally lush forests are falling prey to spruce bark beetles and hemlock sawflies, which are taking advantage of a lack of rainfall and higher-than-average temperatures…”


“Scuba diver Lloyd Bond thought the first time he saw a spotfin butterfly fish under a Nova Scotia wharf it would be a one-off.

“It’s like, oh wow, I saw a butterfly fish and a seahorse in the same year,” the Halifax resident said.

“”Then the following year I [saw] the same thing, and it was twice as many.””


“Wildlife officials say a hail storm packing 70-mile-per-hour winds killed or maimed more than 11,000 pelicans, cormorants and other birds when it rolled over a central Montana lake and nesting area.

“Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks officials said Friday that the storm with 2-inch hail stones killed about 20 to 30 percent of the waterfowl at Big Lake Wildlife Management.”


“Even scientists know less than what they’d like to about so-called pyrocumulonimbus (pyroCb) clouds, which form when wildfires and agricultural fires unleash enough heat and moisture into the atmosphere to produce storms.

“That changed on Aug. 8, when NASA’s airliner-turned-flying laboratory took to the skies over Washington state…”


“The heat waves also affect the wildlife of our community [Madrid, Spain]… Many [creatures] are already suffering the consequences and that, during the heat wave, more than 4,000 swift chickens left their disoriented nests.

“Something similar has happened to kestrels , owls and storks that now recover in a center destined for it in Madrid.”


“Around 8,000 people have been evacuated from towns and villages in the north of the Canary Island of Gran Canaria, due to a forest fire that began on Saturday in a ravine in the municipality of Valleseco.

“An unprecedented operation was put in place today to combat the blaze…”


“A downpour that started in the early hours of Saturday in Bosso and Chanchaga Local Government Areas of Niger State [Nigeria] has claimed three lives leaving over 500 people displaced due to flooding.

“The flood destroyed several buildings including shops and farms after the downpour that started around 3am on Saturday while residents were still in bed.”


“Nelson Mandela Bay [South Africa] is heading for its driest August on record with only 2.2 mm of rain having being measured so far this month… its a worry as the traditional rainy season is nearly over.

“”We always rely on one big rain to get inflow into those dams and historically we find that it needs to be a good fall of 50 mm-plus.”


“Strong rains in Istanbul on Saturday flooded several neighborhoods, as well as the Grand Bazaar, while officials said one person was found dead in the city.

“Rain started early in the day in parts of Istanbul and picked up pace around noon.

“Footage from parts of the Grand Bazaar showed shopkeepers, ankle-deep in water, clearing the water out of their stores and the halls. It also showed water pouring out of a hole on the wall into the bazaar, as well as a manhole left open to drain the flood.”


“The local Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) on Monday said that Himachal Pradesh recorded highest ever rainfall in last 24 hours by breaking the record of last 70 years.

“According to the IMD, rains across different places in the state will continue for the next 24 hours.”


“Vellore [Tamil Nadu, India] recorded 165.7mm (around 16.5cm) of rainfall in the past 24 hours.”


“Amid the media’s blanket coverage of the protests this summer, a story that came and went quickly was that of our exceptionally warm July, which registered 0.7 degrees above the long-term norm.

“It followed a very hot June, which was 1.1 degrees above the norm and which, in turn, completed the warmest temperatures on record for the first six months of a year in Hong Kong.”


“The swimming section of a paratriathlon test event for Tokyo 2020 was cancelled Saturday due to high levels of bacteria in the water, the latest in a series of difficulties over water quality and temperature.

“Olympic organizers have won widespread praise for their preparations but extreme summer heat and poor water quality have brought headaches at practice events…”


“Aucklanders sick of fighting with umbrellas are in for some bad news – more rain is forecast. The first six months of the year have been the driest on record, according to the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research. But August has bucked the trend…”


“In theory with oxygen, food and water there’s nothing stopping you from living for years underground – it just depends on how large your food supply is, not to mention dealing with the psychological effect of confinement and no sunlight.

“Yet as our volatile world spins into an increasingly uncertain future, more and more people are forking out for disaster-proof homes…”


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16th August 2019 Today’s Round-Up of Climate News

“Amid the hottest month in recorded history, some records still stand out as absolutely jaw dropping. That’s definitely true of a measurement made in the Arctic this July.

“According to data released in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) monthly climate analysis, a weather station in Sweden north of the Arctic Circle hit a stunning 94.6 Fahrenheit (34.8 degrees Celsius) last month. As an isolated data point, it would be shocking. But coupled with a host of other maladies, from no sea ice within 125 miles of Alaska to the unruly fires ravaging Siberia, it’s an exclamation point on the climate crisis.

“The steamy temperature was recorded on July 26 in the small Swedish outpost of Markusvinsa, which sits on the southern edge of the Arctic Circle.”


“Wondering what an area of forest burning larger than Belgium looks like? Greenpeace Russia has been documenting the wildfires, to show their effect, size and catastrophic impact on all of us… we took a small helicopter and flew over the fires in the taiga…”


“Roads in Devon [UK] are flooding as 80mm [3+ inches] of rains falls on the county in a matter of hours – almost as much as would normally fall in the South West in the whole of August. The Met Office has issued a yellow warning running from 8am to 10pm today and events have been cancelled ahead of the stormy weather.”


“Flash floods caused by heavy rain have killed at least 46 people across Sudan in the past two weeks, a health official said Thursday.

“Health Ministry Undersecretary Suleiman Abdel Jabbar said the rain and floods have affected 16 of the country’s 18 states.”


“Following news that monsoon rain has claimed more than 300 lives across India, Myanmar and Pakistan so far this month, the risk for flooding will expand to India’s National Capital Region (NCR) into this weekend…

“Over 1 million other residents have been displaced with thousands of homes flooded, according to Aljazeera.”


“A southwesterly air current has brought heavy rainfall to central and southern Taiwan, with 3,566 people evacuated in Kaohsiung as of Thursday night.

“Over the past 24 hours, mountainous areas of Kaohsiung, including the city’s Taoyuan and Namasia Districts, have received over 400 millimeters of rain [nearly 16 inches]…”


“Krosa has already inundated Yanase in Kochi Prefecture on Shikoku with more than 869 mm (34 inches) of rain, as of Friday evening. Out of that total, 124.5 mm (nearly 5 inches) and 60.5 mm (2.38 inches) poured down in 3 and 1 hours, respectively…

“Through Saturday, the heaviest rain will spread from northern Chubu and western Tohoku to Hokkaido.”


“A spate of suspected water thefts is being investigated in a Queensland region [Australia] hit by with severe drought. Police have received three reports of water thefts from a lodge, a dam and a water main in the Darling Downs region – just west of greater Brisbane – in recent months.”


“Sydney is running down its water supply at the fastest rate on record, with dams expected to fall below half maximum capacity due to the worst drought on record, the government said on Friday.

““We have never seen these kind of inflows,” said NSW Minister for Water, Property and Housing Melinda Pavey.

““Catchments that have been historically reliable … are now facing a critical shortage of water,” she added.”


“Once deep in powder this time of year, Chile’s ski stations are fighting the ravages of climate change and pollution that have brought less and less snow to the central Andes. Just a few decades ago, the Andes mountain range could be buried under four metres of snow…

“But this year, it’s snowed only three times in the Chilean Andes, and never more than 30 centimetres.”


“Typically around this time of the year, just as the peak of hurricane season is approaching, the Mississippi River runs 3 to 5 feet high at New Orleans.

“This year, however, the river has flowed past the city at more than 11 feet above sea level for 292 days. It dropped below that level only this week.If a hurricane does come, it could push enough storm surge up the river to send floodwaters washing over the levees that protect New Orleans, officials say.”


“A standard river barge can hold about the same amount as 60 semitrucks. In early June, 642 of them had floated to a standstill near American Commercial Barge Line’s office outside Cairo, Ill.

“”That’s just me. That’s not the other fleets in the area,” said Mark Glaab, facility manager there. “That’s just ACBL.””


“Every summer, a toxic algae bloom turns part of Lake Erie green, and although the primary weather factors all point toward a record-breaking bloom in 2019…

“These highly-toxic algae blooms are so massive that their vibrant green colors are are easily spotted in Lake Erie from space.”


“After record-breaking hailstones fell from the skies over Colorado earlier this week, a powerful thunderstorm unleashed significant amounts of hail in Michigan on Wednesday.

“In this case, it was the accumulation of hail, not the mass of individual stones, that captured onlookers’ attention. In some places, as much as 18 inches of hail accumulated.”


““The drought had a major impact on streams,” says Wilkinson. “Water temperatures rose, oxygen levels dropped and freshwater biodiversity was restricted to smaller areas.

“This disturbance exceeded any worst-case scenario for climate change-induced warming but served as a useful indicator for how ecosystems might respond to a warming world.””


Sheesh, we *know*. We get it already. How many scientific bodies are going to confirm this?!


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15th August 2019 Today’s Round-Up of Climate News

“Even in the Arctic, microscopic particles of plastic are falling out of the sky with snow, a study has found.

“The scientists said they were shocked by the sheer number of particles they found: more than 10,000 of them per litre in the Arctic.

“It means that even there, people are likely to be breathing in microplastics from the air – though the health implications remain unclear.

“The region is often seen as one of the world’s last pristine environments.”


“The dramatic melt suggests that Greenland’s ice sheet is approaching a tipping point that could set it on an irreversible course towards disappearing entirely.

“If that happens, catastrophic sea-level rise would swallow coastal cities across the globe. As ice melt continues to outpace scientists’ expectations, some fear that could happen more quickly than they thought.”


“Territory covered with wildfires across Russia has reached its peak for the year so far, with some 5.4 million hectares ablaze mostly in Siberia and the country’s far east.

“The total land destroyed by flames will soon exceed 2018 with weeks of the burning season still to go. Greenpeace Russia has predicted the damage can overtake the worst year on record, 2012.”


“France’s record July heat wave caused several stones to fall from the ceiling of Notre Dame Cathedral, highlighting the fragility of the fire-ravaged landmark.

“An official with the French Ministry of Culture said the extreme heat – Paris reached a record high of more than 108 degrees – dried out the mortar holding the stones in place, which contributed to the stones crumbling and falling…”


“Tourists in Majorca were evacuated by lifeguards from a popular beach as a huge fire engulfed a section of forest just metres away. The blaze took hold of a 250sq metre area of woodland behind the Es Trenc beach, close to Campos on the southern coast of the island…

“Last weekend, thousands were forced to flee their homes after a fire ravaged more than 1,000 hectares of a national park in Gran Canaria.”


“Over 25 million people are under dangerous heat alerts as temperatures approach record levels in California and the desert Southwest. The heat will then spread east into the weekend.”


“There were at least four reports of tornadoes in Colorado on Tuesday and countless reports of very large hail. In fact, hail that fell near Burlington in the small town of Bethune is now the largest hail ever recorded in Colorado…

“…4.5 inches or grapefruit size.”


“Poor harvests and prolonged drought are driving rural families in parts of Central America from their homes to seek better opportunities in their own or neighboring countries and in the United States, the United Nations said on Wednesday.

“Five years of recurring droughts have destroyed maize and bean harvests…”


“A deadly fungus that plagued banana plantations in Southeast Asia for 30 years has made the inevitable leap to Latin America, where much of the world’s bananas are grown.

“The Colombian Agricultural Institute confirmed on Aug. 8 that it had found a strain of the Fusarium oxysporum fungus…”


“Landslides and flooding as a result of heavy rains are nothing new, especially for Rio de Janeiro. But over the past years the situation has gotten visibly worse.

“While increasing climate vulnerability is a global concern, coastal cities like Rio—situated along the Atlantic Ocean with a terrain that is both mountainous and low-lying—are predicted to be particularly hard hit by natural disasters.”


“While fires in Siberia have created a cloud of smoke larger than the European Union, on the other side of the world, forest blazes in the Amazon are causing a phenomenon of almost the same magnitude.

“Santiago Gassó, a researcher at NASA’s Goddard center, warned on his Twitter account on Tuesday that the surface of Latin America covered by the smoke layer was about 3.2 million square kilometers.”


“A disturbing new study has found that populations of animals living in the world’s forests have declined by over half in the last 50 years.

“This global assessment done by the World Wildlife Fund and the Zoological Society of London incorporated 455 populations of 268 species of wildlife that only live in forests, and found that these populations have declined by 53% on average since 1970.”


“An estimated 12,751 people were rushed to hospitals due to heat-related conditions across Japan over the week from Aug 5, of whom 23 died, the Fire and Disaster Management Agency said Wednesday.

“With severe heat continuing to hit Japan, the number of those taken to hospitals surpassed the 10,000 mark for the second consecutive week…”


“A powerful tropical storm made landfall in Hiroshima Prefecture on Thursday, bringing strong winds and torrential rain, and prompting warnings of landslides and flooding, as well as sparking evacuation advisories and travel chaos during a peak holiday period…

“The Meteorological Agency predicted torrential downpours. It said rainfall could exceed 1,200 millimeters on the Pacific coast.”


“Floods and landslides have killed more than 270 people in India, displaced over one million and inundated thousands of homes across six states, authorities said after two weeks of heavy monsoon rains.”


“Rain in Kochi has shattered all rainfall records this Monsoon season, with city receiving highest rainfall ever in August.

“Kochi has recorded 820 mm [around 33 inches] of rain till now, surpassing the all-time high rainfall record that stood at 783.5 mm in August 2014… we expect Kochi rains to set new record in the coming days.”


“The boom in the US shale gas and oil may have ignited a significant global spike in methane emissions blamed for accelerating the pace of the climate crisis, according to research.

“Scientists at Cornell University have found the “chemical fingerprints” of the rising global methane levels point to shale oil and shale gas as the probable source.”


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14th August 2019 Today’s Round-Up of Climate News

“This summer has been hot. Abnormally hot. So hot that Hawaii just keeps breaking or tying heat records, day after day after day…

“Meteorologist Vanessa Almanza said that from April through Monday, four Hawaii locales broke or tied 124 heat records…

“So what’s up?

“…For one, sea surface temperatures are warmer than average ― about 2 to 4 degrees above normal. Sea surface temperatures contribute to the heat by warming up winds that come on shore.

“And speaking of winds, Hawaii’s natural air conditioner has been fizzing out, too. Throughout the summer, the state has seen several bouts of light or no tradewinds.”


“Thirteen states from Texas to Kentucky in the South are under heat alerts today with some areas expecting the heat index to rise to 115 Fahrenheit…

“It has already been an extremely hot week for those in places like Laredo, Texas, which set a record of 109 degrees on Monday, and Galveston, Texas, tying its own record with an overnight temperature of 86 degrees.”


“Coastal Helicopters has closed its sled dog camps on the Mendenhall Glacier [Alaska] early, citing poor snow conditions.

“While the season for most sled dog camps is only a few more weeks, an unusually small amount of winter snow and a high rate of snowmelt on the glacier has made the surface unsafe.”


“Salmon are dying in rivers across western Alaska.

“The largest die-off reportedly comes from the Koyukuk River, a tributary of the Yukon.

And as KYUK’s Anna Rose MacArthur reports, scientists suspect the summer’s record heat is the cause.”


“Iqaluit’s [NT, Canada] water shortage has forced the city to restrict usage for the second year in a row.

“Climate change and a growing population have strained the Nunavut capital’s water resources, forcing city council to put restrictions on water usage as they work to pump water from another nearby lake.”


“…High Arctic permafrost is not as stable as we thought.”


“…the magnificent Arctic reindeer numbers are in great decline, and the consequences can be devastating for their entire ecosystem. Since the mid-1990s, the size of reindeer and caribou herds has declined by 56%, from an estimated 4.7 million animals to 2.1 million. It’s the lowest number since monitoring began…

“Warmer summers also have adverse effects through increased drought, flies and parasites, and perhaps heat stress leading to increased susceptibility to pathogens and other stressors.”


“As wildfires burn across Siberia for a third straight month, the cloud of soot and smoke that billows above the region is set to break a land area record.

“According to Radio Free Liberty, about 5.5 million hectares of land are on fire in Siberia, with clouds of smoke covering more than five million square kilometres.”


“How do you write a eulogy for a glacier? Think about it. How would you go about that, having grown up with glaciers as a geological given, a symbol of eternity? How do you say goodbye? …

“When academics at Rice University in Houston, Texas called and asked me to write the text for a plaque to commemorate the first dead glacier in Iceland, I found myself confronted with this problem.”


“A speedboat has been spotted roaring across a flooded rugby pitch following torrential rain in East Ayrshire [Scotland].

“The vessel’s driver made the most of inclement weather near Kilmarnock Rugby Club on Queen’s Drive on Monday.

“The grounds are within the River Irvine’s flood plain, which risked bursting its banks.”


“July’s record-breaking temperatures did not just affect the electricity and water usage of Luxembourg’s residents, but also had an impact on the location producing said electricity.

“The Cattenom nuclear power plant uses water from the Moselle river to cool down the nuclear reactors and consequently, the rise in the river’s water temperatures impacted the power plant.”


“Hundreds of villagers were evacuated Tuesday and the Greek prime minister cancelled a vacation as scores of firefighters battled a major wildfire on the country’s second-largest island of Evia, authorities said.

“”Conditions are exceptionally difficult and the state’s first priority is to protect lives,” Kyriakos Mitsotakis told reporters outside the fire department’s centre of operations.”


“At least six people were killed Tuesday in flooding triggered by heavy rain in the Sudanese capital Khartoum and elsewhere in the country, said state-run news agency SUNA. SUNA news agency said at least five people, including two children, were killed when rains destroyed their house in the village of Rifaa in central Jazeera province.”


“An emergency has been declared in the federal capital [of Islamabad, Pakistan] as torrential rains are expected to lash the city. Section 144 has been imposed in the city in wake of heavy rains.

“Sawan and Korang Nullah – the district government has directed the citizens to move away from these risky places.”


“A man in Tainan’s Yongkang District (永康) said that yesterday’s rain was worse than the flooding during Typhoon Morakot in August 2009, a storm that killed 619 people.

“Central Weather Bureau statistics showed that at 325.5mm [12.8 inches] Tainan received the most rain from 12am to 4pm.”


“North Korea experienced worsening drought through July, a sign extreme weather conditions have been amplified due to record high temperatures and a heat wave affecting the region…

The dry weather has damaged crops, and surveys indicate this year’s corn crops are showing lower levels of above-ground biomass, compared to 2018.”


“Incredible timelapse footage from space has revealed the shocking extent of the Australian drought. The images taken using Google Earth Engine’s Timelapse tool shows a much greener land mass in 1984.

“Fast forward to 2018 and Australia appears much redder and drier. Australia is experiencing its worst drought on record…”


“Chile has one of the world’s largest reserves of fresh water outside the north and south poles, but the abundant glaciers that are the source of that precious commodity are melting fast…

“A toxic cocktail of rising temperatures, the driest nine-year period on record and human activity, including mining, is proving lethal for the ice of Chile’s central region.”


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