27th August 2020 Today’s Round-Up of Climate News

Unprecedented torrential rains wreaked havoc once again in Karachi on Tuesday, which was battered already by the last week’s heavy rains, overwhelming the city and plunging its main thoroughfares and practically most of the city under knee-deep water…

“…345 millimetres of rain was recorded at the PAF Faisal Base, while previously 298.4mm of rain was recorded there in 1984…”

https://www.thenews.com.pk/print/705923-rains-sinks-karachi-s-90-year-old-record


Heavy flooding in northern and eastern Afghanistan has killed at least 100 people, as the deluge ravaged large parts of Charikar city, the capital of Parwan province, officials have said…

“Many children were among the dead in Charikar, which was hit by heavy rains overnight…”

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/08/afghanistan-flooding-dozens-dead-hundreds-homes-destroyed-200826061120112.html


Communities along the Yom River in Sukhothai, Northern Thailand, were flooded with up to two metres of water on Monday after a dyke was damaged by strong currents following heavy rain upstream.

“The flooding saw houses in Si Samrong, Si Satchanalai and Muang districts inundated by water as high as a single-storey house.”

https://www.bangkokpost.com/thailand/general/1973771/flooding-in-sukhothai-as-dyke-bursts


Record high water levels and devastating floods in the south of China have reignited the debate over the Three Gorges Dam’s efficacy.”

Video:

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/08/china-floods-raise-concerns-gorges-dams-efficacy-200825161650183.html


The winter of 2020 [New Zealand] looks likely to have been one of the three warmest on record, and snow coverage in many areas has been poor, Niwa says…

“Niwa snow experts Dr Christian Zammit and Dr Jono Conway said the early part of the season was fairly typical, but then the snow dried up.”

https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/weather-news/122576384/poor-snow-cover-in-many-areas-during-one-of-warmest-winters-on-record-some-more-could-fall-overnight


Bleak milestone: 500 major fires detected in Brazilian Amazon this year.

“516 major fires, most of them illegal, covering 376,416 hectares (912,863 acres) were detected between May 28 and August 25, 2020, with the Amazon fire season not even half over, and expected to run at least through September.”

https://news.mongabay.com/2020/08/bleak-milestone-500-major-fires-detected-in-brazilian-amazon-this-year/


Hot, dry conditions make Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah fertile ground for enormous blazes

“More than two dozen wildfires are burning across the American south-west as the region’s summers continue getting hotter and drier, laying bare the intensifying consequences of climate change.”

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/aug/26/wildfires-us-south-west-colorado-arizona-new-mexico-utah


San Diego ocean temperatures hit record territory this past weekend, as a heatwave also baked the San Diego Region

“Sunday’s reading at Scripps Pier tied for the hottest on record 79.5 degrees Fahrenheit. It tied the record that was set just two years ago.”

https://www.kpbs.org/news/2020/aug/26/ocean-has-record-temperature-san-diego-coast/


“…Kodiak residents [Alaska] began to notice numerous dead pink salmon in a river popular with fishermen. The Buskin River, located near the Kodiak Airport and a short drive from town, is known for its sockeye and silver salmon runs…

“The Buskin River was warmer than usual with water around 60 to 65 degrees. Warm water cannot hold as much oxygen as colder water. That, combined with low water levels, reduced the number of fish the river could support.”

https://www.ktuu.com/2020/08/26/hundreds-of-salmon-found-dead-in-kodiak/


Satellite imagery is giving meteorologists a jaw-dropping view of Laura’s rapid intensification into a major hurricane.

“….Laura went from a 75 mph Category 1 to a Category 4 major hurricane with 140 mph winds [in 24 hours].”

https://weather.com/storms/hurricane/news/2020-08-26-hurricane-laura-satellite-images-rapid-intensification


Chicago …has logged 29 days of 90 degrees or hotter.

“What’s more, WGN meteorologist Mark Carroll said the average temperature since climatological summer began on June 1 has been 76.5 degrees, making this the hottest summer on the books so far.”

https://wgntv.com/weather/temperatures-so-far-this-summer-hottest-on-record-as-chicago-logs-another-90-degree-day/


The Hartford area has broken a 37-year-old record for most days in a year with temperatures at or above 90 degrees, the National Weather Service confirmed Wednesday.

“The temperature on Tuesday at Bradley International Airport hit a high of 90, the 39th day of 2020 that the temperature has been at or above that mark. The previous record was 38 days set in 1983.”

https://www.thetelegraph.com/news/article/Hartford-breaks-record-for-most-days-at-90-15516134.php


Nearly 50,000 salmon escaped when a fish farm in Argyll, Scotland broke free from its moorings during Storm Ellen, it has been revealed. The North Carradale farm, near Campbeltown, suffered damaged to four of its 10 fish pens…

“Just over 30,000 of the farmed salmon also died as a result of the incident.”

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-53913708


Record-breaking winds and heavy rainfall have caused chaos in parts of the UK as Storm Francis swept the country, leaving two people missing, dozens of others needing rescuing and damaging hundreds of homes and businesses…

“The Met Office said a number of areas across Wales and the Midlands were hit by record-high wind speeds for August.”

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2020/aug/25/storm-francis-record-breaking-winds-and-heavy-rainfall-batter-uk


There are growing concerns about a precipitous decline in hedgehog numbers in Europe after conservationists concluded that Germany’s population was enduring its worst summer in living memory.

“After decades of habitat destruction, the dry summer has taken a toll on hedgehogs’ food sources…”

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/europes-hedgehogs-starving-to-death-after-long-summer-drought-xnkqc3p8m


“The General Directorate of Meteorology (DGM) announced in a special bulletin that Morocco will see a heatwave from Tuesday, August 25 to Thursday, August 27 in several provinces.

DGM forecast temperatures ranging between 38 and 49 degrees Celsius [120.2f] in several regions throughout Morocco.”

https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/316505/heatwave-up-to-49-degrees-to-hit-morocco-tuesday-to-thursday/


A platform of ice surrounding Antarctica measuring more than 350,000 square miles (900,000 sq km) is at risk of collapse as the effects of climate change threaten to destabilise it, a new study has shown.

“The floating ice shelves that extend from the world’s largest ice sheet into the sea could split if fractures on their surface are flooded by meltwater as the climate warms.”

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-climate-change-antarctic/giant-antarctic-ice-shelves-facing-fracture-risk-study-idUSKBN25M20W


Emergency situation: the slow-moving tragedy of the Russian Arctic.

“Melting permafrost, oil spills, collapsing infrastructure, abandoned towns:

Russia’s far north is heading for social, economic and ecological disaster.”

https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/odr/russia-arctic-monotowns/


Siberia, known primarily for its freezing temperatures and thick forests, has been a land this summer apocalyptically transformed.

“Abnormally high temperatures have sparked fires, sending thick smoke bellowing across the landscape of a region that is now firmly on the frontline of the world’s fight against climate change.”

https://emerging-europe.com/news/melting-permafrost-is-a-threat-not-just-to-the-arctic-but-to-the-entire-planet/


A new study suggests that the earthworms have made their way into the the Arctic, and as earthworms are typically wont to do, they are making the Arctic soil more fertile. And, even though that might sound like a positive thing, it’s not…

“… as plants grow taller due to the nitrogen-rich soil, that can be attributed to the earthworms, they stick out of the snow, absorb more heat, and accelerate snow-melting.”

https://theswaddle.com/earthworms-have-made-their-way-to-the-arctic-threatening-an-already-delicate-ecosystem/


I’ll be back with more climate news over the weekend and looking at the economy tomorrow, Friday.

You can read the previous ‘Climate’ thread here and visit my Patreon page here.

25th August 2020 Today’s Round-Up of Climate News

Yemen faces a new catastrophe from torrential rain and flooding that have devastated the country for the past three months, the UN warned on Sunday.

“Flash floods have killed at least 148 people, left more than 300,000 homeless and destroyed property, crops and livestock…

“Dams have collapsed and the biggest, at Marib, overflowed, flooding shelters and washing away farms. There are now fears that Marib dam may burst because it has not been properly maintained.”

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1723576/middle-east


Dozens of people were feared trapped in the debris of a five-story building that collapsed on Monday in Mahad, an industrial town in western India, with some reports saying about 60 to 70 people were still inside, while a local lawmaker said the figure was higher…

“Old, creaky structures and illegal constructions are prone to collapse, typically during torrential rain.”

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/08/24/world/asia/mahad-india-building-collapse.html


Bihar is one of the poorest states in India. Its health infrastructure is stretched thin under the pressure of twin crises – the spread of Covid-19 and floods.”

Video:

https://edition.cnn.com/videos/world/2020/08/24/india-poorest-state-bihar-coronavirus-covid-19-flood-sud-pkg-intl-hnk-vpx.cnn


Millions have been forced to flee their homes in Bangladesh because of floods triggered by monsoon rains.

“The flooding, which has affected almost one-third of the country, shows no sign of abating due to continuous rain. Most of the country’s 16 rivers have overflowed…”

https://news.sky.com/story/bangladesh-millions-flee-their-homes-as-flooding-hits-a-third-of-the-country-12054873


Rainstorms and floods have wreaked havoc in Gansu, NW China, since Aug. 10, damaging 721 km of levees, of which 2.5 km gave way to floodwater.

“Over 1.2 million people have been affected. Zhouqu County, among the hardest hit by rain-triggered floods, on Wednesday activated a top-level emergency response for flood control and natural disaster relief.”

http://www.ecns.cn/hd/2020-08-24/detail-ifzzismq8705069.shtml


Hong Kong’s hot nights and even hotter days bring higher risk of mortality for women and the elderly, new study finds. The findings come just weeks after the Observatory announced July was the city’s hottest month on record.

“Researchers attribute the increasing number of hot nights and very hot days to climate change, saying the numbers could rise…”

https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/health-environment/article/3098611/hong-kongs-hot-nights-and-even-hotter-days-bring


Every year, as the mercury rises, we undergo a collective [psychological] transformation. Some of the symptoms are relatively minor – people are more likely to honk their horns when they’re stuck in traffic; the police usually notice a spike in disorderly behaviour; and we’re less likely to help strangers out.

“But others are more disconcerting.”

https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200817-the-sinister-ways-heatwaves-warp-the-mind


Typhoon Bavi could grow to be one of the strongest to hit Korea in years, packing strong winds that could damage or destroy vehicles and outdoor structures, the weather agency said Monday.

“According to the Korea Meteorological Administration, the eighth typhoon of the year that formed off the east coast of Taiwan last week was around the northwestern coast of Okinawa, Japan, as of 4 p.m. Monday…”

http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20200824000753


“Australia’s east coast will battle through another day of wild winds… while Western Australia reels from a weekend of blistering 40C heat… Victoria recorded its wettest day in 20 years on Friday…

“…[meanwhile] Yampi Sound in Western Australia’s Kimberley region took out the August record for hottest maximum temperature, reaching a sweat-inducing 40.7 degrees on Saturday.”

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8657091/Australias-east-coast-braces-day-winter-weather-mercury-hit-40C-WA.html


“Australia’s Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the government had increased spending by $45 million to bolster fire-fighting resources.

“The report noted: “It is likely that we will see extreme fire conditions again when the risk factors combine in the right way. Extreme fires and fire seasons in NSW, Australia are likely to become more frequent.”

https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/national/nsw/extreme-fires-in-nsw-to-become-more-frequent-events-report-20200825-p55p5w.html?ref=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_source=rss_feed


Since the beginning of the year, more than 18,000 fires have destroyed a large part of Argentina’s Paraná Delta, a wetland home to unique biodiversity that provides oxygen and drinking water to millions of people and greatly mitigates the effects of climate change…

“The fires, the most widespread and prolonged at least since 2008, have already devastated some 1,000 square kilometres of territory…”

https://dialogochino.net/en/agriculture/36975-fires-ravage-argentinas-parana-river-delta/


From the historic heat wave and wildfires in the West (USA), to the massive derecho that tore through the middle of the nation, to the record-breaking pace of this year’s hurricane season, the unprecedented and concurrent extreme conditions resemble the chaotic climate future scientists have been warning us about for decades

“…only it’s happening right now.”

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/climate-change-heat-wave-wildfires-hurricanes-derecho/


The deadly California wildfires have burned over 1 million acres — and there’s no end in sight as thousands of firefighters struggle to contain the blazes and more emerge.

“Hundreds of fires were started by lightning, Cal Fire spokesman Steve Kaufmann said. There were approximately 12,000 lightning strikes that started 585 fires in the state over the past week.”

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/08/23/us/california-wildfires-sunday/index.html


A late-August monsoon triggered flash flooding, waterlogged roadways and opened at least three sinkholes on Sunday night in St. George, Utah — an astounding display of “the power of Mother Nature,” Gov. Gary Herbert said…

“Several underpasses and roads also flooded, leading to a number of stalled cars and closed roads in low lying areas.”

https://eu.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2020/08/24/st-george-utah-flooding-sinkholes/5629575002/


It was another day of thunderstorms for the region, as powerful storms rolled through, leaving damage in their wake. One of the harder hit areas was in Wakefield, Massachusetts, where many residents were without power Sunday night…

““It was the scariest thing I’ve ever seen, the wind was crazy,” said resident Kathy Barber.”

https://www.nbcboston.com/weather/stories-weather/thunderstorms-develop-in-southern-new-england/2182335/


The corn crop in the U.S. Midwest deteriorated the most in 8 years with hot weather adding to woes from drought and the Aug. 10 derecho windstorm that swept through the top-growing state of Iowa

““Drought conditions continue to expand across the region as widespread rains have not yet materialized,” Justin Glisan, Iowa state climatologist, said in a report.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-08-24/corn-conditions-worsen-as-iowa-faces-drought-derecho-damage


Tropical Storm Marco has made landfall near the mouth of the Mississippi River but it is Tropical Storm Laura that has Louisiana and Texas residents bracing for what could be the strongest storm since 2005’s Hurricane Rita — still ranked as the most intense tropical cyclone on record in the Gulf of Mexico…

“Tropical Storm Laura is gaining strength.”

https://www.npr.org/2020/08/24/905381329/storm-updates-marco-fizzles-as-it-nears-gulf-coast-laura-still-to-become-hurrica


At least 12 people have been killed as two storms tore through the Caribbean on Sunday.

“Hurricane Marco and Tropical Storm Laura brought high winds and rough seas leaving at least nine people dead in Haiti and another three in the Dominican Republic. Heavy rains have also battered Cuba and the US territory of Puerto Rico.”

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-53884709


Veneto governor Luca Zaia has signed a ‘state of crisis’ order after the north Italian city of Verona was hit by a sudden storm on the evening of 23 August.

“Witnesses spoke of streets flooded with “rivers of hailstones” in the city centre, with the storm knocking down more than 500 trees.”

https://www.wantedinmilan.com/news/italy-verona-flooded-in-river-of-hailstones.html


Turkish rescue workers recovered two more bodies Monday after severe weekend floods swept along Turkey’s Black Sea coast

raising the death toll to eight, officials said.

“At least eight other people were reported missing.”

https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20200825/p2g/00m/0in/031000c


“Songbirds in tropical rainforests curtail their reproduction to help them survive droughts, according to a study Monday…

With more record hot spells gripping parts of the planet and biodiversity threatened by human encroachment on habitats, a crucial question is whether species can adapt to these ever-harsher conditions.”

https://phys.org/news/2020-08-tropical-songbirds-survive-drought.html


“The world’s tropical regions are home to the widest range of plants and animals, but research from The University of Queensland reveals that climate change is pushing species away, and fast.

“UQ ARC Future Fellow Dr. Tatsuya Amano led an international team that reviewed more than 1.3 million records of waterbird species, and found temperature increase is drastically affecting species abundance in the tropics.”

https://phys.org/news/2020-08-species-tropics-climate.html


Ice is melting at a surprisingly fast rate underneath the Shirase Glacier Tongue in East Antarctica due to the continuing influx of warm seawater into the Lützow-Holm Bay

“”Our data suggests that the ice directly beneath the Shirase Glacier Tongue is melting at a rate of seven to 16 meters (23 – 52 feet) per year,” says Assistant Professor Daisuke Hirano of Hokkaido University…”

http://www.digitaljournal.com/tech-and-science/science/ice-melting-fast-below-east-antarctica-s-shirase-glacier-tongue/article/576847


“Melting and refreezing of ice around the globe is an annual natural phenomenon, but owing to the gradual rise in global average temperature, the cycle is no longer marked by just the seasonal variability. Over the last few decades, the accelerated irreversible melting has been a prime indicator of global warming…

“Underlining this growing threat, a recent study has estimated that the planet Earth, in whole, lost a staggering 28 trillion tonnes (Gigatonnes) of ice between 1994 and 2017.”

https://weather.com/en-IN/india/environment/news/2020-08-24-study-estimates-global-ice-loss-of-28-gigatonnes-since-1994


You can read the previous ‘Climate’ thread here and visit my Patreon page here.

23rd August 2020 Today’s (Sunday) Round-Up of Climate News

I’ll be back with the economic news tomorrow (Monday) but these are the biggest climate stories of the weekend in the meantime:


This year’s record warm winter did not bring joy to the Arctic’s wildlife:

“Climate change is triggering behavior change among animals across the Arctic. In Northern Siberia wild reindeer this summer started migrating almost a month earlier than normal.”

https://thebarentsobserver.com/en/ecology/2020/08/animal-life-shows-signs-distress-arctic-temperature-records-are-smashed


Researchers recently found pesticides and industrial compounds deposited in snow atop four high-elevation glacier sites on the Norwegian archipelago Svalbard, often considered a “pristine” environment.

“The long journey of these compounds – likely originating in the United States and Eurasia – shows the far-reaching impacts of industrial pollution.”

https://earthsky.org/earth/pesticides-industrial-pollutants-found-atop-arctic-glaciers


LNU Lightning Complex fires now second-largest in California’s history:

“Wildfires called the LNU Lightning Complex fires burning around the North Bay have now burned more than 300,000 acres as of Friday night, making it the second-largest fire in California history and one of many burning around the Bay Area following a series of lightning strikes last weekend.

https://www.nbcbayarea.com/news/california/california-wildfires/lnu-lightning-complex-fire-now-second-largest-in-state-history/2349835/


‘Driest I’ve seen’: Without summer rains, Arizona cattle ranchers confront tough choices.”

https://eu.azcentral.com/story/news/local/arizona-environment/2020/08/22/dry-monsoon-season-persists-arizona-cattle-ranchers-adapt-and-hope/3378256001/


Next week for the first time on record, two hurricanes could hit the Gulf of Mexico at the same time.

“Twice before, in 1959 and 1933, two tropical storms have entered the Gulf at the same time. But never before have both been hurricanes.”

https://www.livescience.com/two-hurricanes-gulf-of-mexico.html


New record for simultaneous waterspouts off Louisiana coast:

“We had slightly cooler air “aloft” or a couple thousand feet above the ground and very warm water temperatures in the Gulf. This contrast of air temperatures likely created ideal conditions for waterspout formation.”

https://www.google.com/amp/s/wgno.com/weather/must-see-new-record-of-simultaneous-waterspouts-off-the-coast-of-louisiana/amp/


Floods test limits of China’s Three Gorges Dam:

“Water levels at China’s giant Three Gorges Dam on the Yangtze river are inching closer to their maximum after torrential rains raised inflows to a record high.”

https://www.bangkokpost.com/world/1972727/floods-test-limits-of-three-gorges-dam


Massive rains lash Madhya Pradesh, India. Indore records 263.4 mm [10.4 inches] rainfall.

“Among the major towns and cities, Indore was the worst hit, recording 263.4 mm rainfall till 8.30 am on Saturday, which broke the previous heaviest rainfall record of 24 hours recorded 39 years ago on August 10, 1981 when the city considered the state’s commercial capital had recorded 212.6 mm rainfall.”

https://www.newindianexpress.com/nation/2020/aug/22/massive-rains-lash-madhya-pradesh-indore-records-2634-mm-rainfall-2187071.html


You can read the previous ‘Climate’ thread here and visit my Patreon page here.

21st August 2020 Today’s Round-Up of Climate News

Greenland’s ice sheet lost a record amount of mass last year, according to a study published on Thursday, a finding that could prompt scientists to redefine their worst-case scenario as they assess the effects of climate change.

“That loss of 532 gigatons of ice – equivalent to about 66 tons of ice for each person on Earth – was 15% more than the previous record in 2012.”

https://in.reuters.com/article/climate-change-arctic/greenlands-ice-sheet-saw-record-mass-loss-in-2019-study-finds-idINKBN25G1TC


“Thawing [in Alaska and the Canadian North] is happening even faster than we thought,” said Thomas Douglas, an environmental engineer with the U.S. Army Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory and lead author of the study.

““We’ve had these crazy wet summers. It’s gonna be bad for permafrost.””

https://thenarwhal.ca/climate-change-rain-arctic-permafrost-thaw/


“The US government is pushing forward with controversial plans to allow drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, by laying out the terms of a leasing programme that would give oil companies access to the area.

The wildlife refuge in north-eastern Alaska sits above billions of barrels of oil. However, it is also home to many animals, including reindeer, polar bears and different species of bird.”

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-53819727


Alaskan salmon are getting smaller due to climate change and competition, according to a new study

“”We know that climate drives changes in ocean productivity, and we see a consistent signal of climate factors associated with decreasing salmon size,” Eric Palkovacs, a professor at UC Santa Cruz and a corresponding author of the study, said.”

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/08/20/us/alaskan-salmon-size-decreasing-trnd-scn/index.html


Several central San Joaquin Valley counties have issued emergency proclamations to prevent a pile-up of cow carcasses killed from the recent stretch of scorching temperatures.

“County agriculture officials estimate livestock operators may be seeing an increase of 50 to 100% in mortality.”

https://www.fresnobee.com/news/local/article245124705.html


Californians across the state are now facing a crisis across multiple fronts. As the coronavirus pandemic drags on, lightning strikes and hot weather have fueled dozens of wildfires.

“Millions face losing power, and thousands have already been evacuated.”

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/08/20/californians-face-the-dual-nightmare-of-wildfires-coronavirus.html


“California isn’t the only state battling ferocious wildfires.

A wildfire burning in western Colorado has grown into the second-largest in the state’s history, fire officials said Wednesday. As of Wednesday, the Pine Gulch fire has spread across more than 195 square miles…”

https://eu.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2020/08/19/colorados-pine-gulch-wildfire-grows-second-largest-state-history/5608584002/


Fish may not be the only victims of the pollution and hot temperatures that drove oxygen to insufficient levels in Biscayne Bay and led to a mortality event that shocked Miami residents last week.

“Coral reefs in the bay risk bleaching if water conditions don’t improve soon, scientists said.”

https://phys.org/news/2020-08-thousands-fish-dead-biscayne-bay.html


Sales of home air conditioners soared last week as the UK sweltered under a heatwave that saw temperatures exceed 34C for more than six days in a row…

“…the UK’s changing weather patterns is extending the traditional busy season for air conditioner sales.”

https://inews.co.uk/news/air-conditioning-sales-soar-climate-change-583987


Over 400 more people died in the Netherlands last week, during the hottest week since temperature measurements started, than in the weeks before, Statistics Netherlands reported on Friday.

“The recorded coronavirus related deaths were low, so the excess mortality “is thus almost entirely attributable to the higher temperatures”, the stats office said.”

https://nltimes.nl/2020/08/21/400-heat-deaths-netherlands-hottest-week-ever


The drought in France is expected to last until autumn with temperatures up to 2C above seasonal norms, which will continue to cause low river levels, experts told Montel.

“High pressure in the Alpine region is expected to continue to result in below-normal precipitation in the country “until September, maybe even longer,” said Robin Girmes of Energy Weather.”

https://www.montelnews.com/en/story/frances-drought-to-continue-until-autumn–forecasters/1140654


Cyprus is feeling the impact of global warming with weather experts puzzled as they see new temperature records on a monthly basis while an ever-increasing number of extreme heat warnings are being issued.

“Cyprus’ Met Office issued its 64th warning for extreme weather for Wednesday with maximum temperatures expected to exceed a scorching 40 degrees Celsius.”

https://www.financialmirror.com/2020/08/19/endless-cyprus-heatwaves-signal-climate-change/


“…Morocco will see a heatwave from Thursday, August 20 to Sunday, August 23 in several provinces. DGM forecast temperatures ranging between 39 and 47 degrees Celsius in several regions throughout Morocco…

“The upcoming heatwave is likely to add to the difficult conditions that Morocco’s agriculture is enduring, marked by two consecutive years of drought.”

https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2020/08/315982/heatwave-up-to-47-degrees-to-hit-morocco-starting-thursday/


After more than a year of unusually heavy rainfall, over 800,000 Kenyans have been displaced by flooding, according to the government.

“The situation has been made worse by flooded rivers channelling huge volumes of water into Lake Victoria, Africa’s largest lake, causing it to spill over onto its shores – a phenomenon called “backflow”.”

https://uk.reuters.com/article/kenya-floods-environment/feature-floods-on-record-high-lake-victoria-expose-need-for-water-cooperation-idUKL8N2EE3DL


At least 24 people were killed as heavy rains lashed Pakistan’s Punjab province on Thursday, August 20.

“Rescue officials told local media that several houses have been completely destroyed, and the majority of the victims were killed due to roof collapse incidents…”

https://weather.com/en-IN/india/news/news/2020-08-20-at-least-24-dead-as-heavy-rains-lash-pakistan


Rains in Delhi and its neighbouring areas Thursday morning led to long traffic snarls and damaged property. In Bihar, the flood situation remained grim.

“With two more deaths, the toll in the Bihar flood climbed to 27 as 81.79 lakh [ie 100,000] people were affected in 16 districts.”

https://www.indiatoday.in/india/story/heavy-rains-disrupts-normal-life-parts-india-bihar-odisha-mumbai-delhi-gurugram-uttar-pradesh-flood-1713407-2020-08-20


With 75,000 cubic metres per second of water flowing in from the Yangtze river on Thursday, the reservoir’s depths reached 165.6 metres by Friday morning, up more than 2 metres overnight and almost 20 metres higher than the official warning level

““They will do everything they can to prevent the dam from overtopping,” said Desiree Tullos, a professor at Oregon State University who studies the Three Gorges project.

“An overtopping dam is a worst-case scenario because it produces significant damage… and can lead to the entire thing collapsing.”

https://uk.reuters.com/article/us-china-floods-threegorges/water-levels-at-chinas-three-gorges-near-maximum-after-flooding-rains-idUKKBN25H0CJ


Chinese megacity Chongqing braces for record flood.

“City goes on the highest alert level for the first time as it braces for its biggest wave of water in 40 years. It is the fifth round of flooding this season and comes just two days after the fourth…”

https://www.scmp.com/news/china/society/article/3098124/chinese-megacity-chongqing-braces-record-flood


Fires set by poachers are a top cause of habitat degradation in Way Kambas National Park on Indonesia’s Sumatra Island.

“The park is home to critically endangered Sumatran rhinos, tigers and elephants, among hundreds of wildlife species.”

https://news.mongabay.com/2020/08/forest-fires-set-by-poachers-threaten-a-refuge-of-the-sumatran-rhino/


Parts of Queensland, Australia have broken August temperature records and much of the state is in for a warmer and wetter spring than average

“Mareeba and Cooktown in Far North Queensland and Yeppoon in Central Queensland had their hottest August day in decades this week.”

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-08-21/queensland-locations-break-weather-records/12581934


The North Pole ice sheet has thawed so much that it has shattered, climate researchers have discovered.

“Scientists onboard the German research ship Polarstern yesterday reached the Earth’s northernmost point and said they were surprised by how freely the vessel could move in waters typically known to be frozen solid.”

https://www.9news.com.au/world/climate-change-north-pole-arctic-heatwave-polar-ice-cap-melt-historic-heatwave-scientists-global-warming/31862db7-83f1-41aa-af32-a8a16dfacb7c


“…a record of atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations retrieved from the European Project for Ice Coring in Antarctica Dome C ice core showing that …carbon dioxide jumps occurred during both cold and warm periods between 330,000 and 450,000 years ago.

“They relate these pulses to disruptions of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation caused by freshwater discharge from ice sheets. Such rapid carbon dioxide increases could occur in the future if global warming also disrupts this ocean circulation pattern [it already is!].

https://science.sciencemag.org/content/369/6506/1000.full


You can read the previous ‘Climate’ thread here and visit my Patreon page here.

19th August 2020 Today’s Round-Up of Climate News

The Three Gorges Dam in Central China’s Hubei Province on Thursday is set to face the largest ever flood peak since it was built. The reservoir has been ready to confront the challenge by coordinating with dams at its upper stream to retain the flood water, said the Three Gorges Corp.

“The latest hydrometeorological forecasts estimated the inflow flood peak of the Three Gorges project will reach 73,000 cubic meters per second at 8 am on Thursday, the largest volume since it was built in 2003.

https://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1198199.shtml


More than 100,000 people have been evacuated from areas on the upper reaches of China’s Yangtze river as flooding threatened a 1,200-year-old World Heritage Site

“Sichuan, situated along the Yangtze, raised its emergency response to the maximum level on Tuesday to cope with a new round of torrential rainfall.”

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/08/china-floods-100000-yangtze-evacuated-leshan-buddha-risk-200819054517217.html


Cambodia’s biggest lake is running dry, taking forests and fish with it.

“Drought and dams have pushed Tonle Sap Lake into dangerous decline, threatening its swamp forests and the fish nurseries there that provide most of the nation’s protein.”

https://www.nationalgeographic.co.uk/environment-and-conservation/2020/08/cambodias-biggest-lake-is-running-dry-taking-forests-and-fish


Torrential rains in the western part of Jebel Marra in Central Darfur caused flash floods that seriously damaged or destroyed more than 750 houses and washed away several roads last week

“The floods made many roads in the area impassable and some sections were swept away by, which has made the provision of assistance difficult.”

https://www.dabangasudan.org/en/all-news/article/homes-roads-swept-away-in-central-darfur-flash-floods


A zoo in Rome feeds animals frozen fruit and proteins to fight heatwave.

“Animals are fed with frozen fruit and proteins to fight the high temperature.”

Photos:

https://gulfnews.com/photos/news/a-zoo-in-rome-feeds-animals-frozen-fruit-and-proteins-to-fight-heatwave-1.1597765461903?slide=1


A number of French wine regions are facing the prospect of an historically early start to the harvest this year, with several key regions beginning to pick this week, after one of the warmest springs on record and with a big crop to bring in…

“The high mercury in recent days has caused rapid wilting of the vines…”

https://www.thedrinksbusiness.com/2020/08/france-gears-up-for-early-harvest/


The global wheat trade is being shaken up again after extreme weather hurt crops in the European Union while harvests are booming elsewhere.

“Fresh from leapfrogging Russia as the top exporter, the EU will drop to third place this season after drought and floods pummeled crops.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-08-19/drought-and-rain-are-reshaping-global-wheat-flows


Low water levels on the Meuse River may further restrict output from Sunday at EDF’s Chooz nuclear plant in northern France, which already has some capacity offline for maintenance, French grid operator RTE said on Tuesday.

“The two Chooz reactors produce 1.45 gigawatts (GW) of power each. The plant’s entire output could be affected by the curbs, RTE said.”

https://uk.reuters.com/article/france-nuclear/low-water-levels-may-further-restrict-output-at-frances-chooz-nuclear-plant-idUKL8N2FK4X7


The national heatwave [Netherlands] brought to an end by Tuesday’s storms lasted 13 days in total and set several new records, according to figures from the De Bilt weather station near Utrecht…

“The warm weather really began on August 5 and topped 30 Celsius in De Bilt on eight days – a unique record. This was also the warmest week on record, with an average temperature of 33.1 Celsius.”

https://www.dutchnews.nl/news/2020/08/gone-with-the-wind-the-heatwave-lasted-13-days-set-several-new-records/


There could soon be no more talk of the “eternal ice” in Germany. Our glaciers are thawing in record time.

“Soon one of the remaining five will also be gone.”

https://pledgetimes.com/scientists-with-bad-news-german-glacier-soon-disappeared-ice-volume-is-melting-rapidly/


The summer heatwave has killed thousands of fish [in the UK], leaving them rotting in the sun as environment chiefs battle to stop more deaths.

“Countless species have been hit by the blistering heat and vicious rain with rivers, ponds, lakes and canals affected.”

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8642569/Summer-heatwave-kills-thousands-fish-leaving-rotting-sun.html


“Abnormally warm sea surface temperatures are helping provide fuel for the pace of tropical cyclone formations. An enhanced La Niña Watch was also issued, which could further strengthen hurricane activity.

“What people need to realize is that we are still 23 days from the peak of hurricane season, and we are very much on a record pace,” CNN meteorologist Chad Myers said.”

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/08/18/weather/atlantic-hurricane-topical-developments/index.html


As the dry season got underway in the Amazon rainforest this month, it brought a new wave of fear to inhabitants of the Middle Juruá Extractive Reserve, a conservation area in Amazonas, Brazil’s largest state.

“In his 52 years, Manoel da Cunha, manager of the reserve in Carauari municipality, said he had never seen the water level so low in the Juruá River.

“His 88-year-old father, one of the region’s oldest inhabitants, agreed.”

https://uk.reuters.com/article/brazil-forest-drought-wildfire/feature-seeds-of-doubt-amazon-forest-gatherers-dread-drought-and-fires-idUKL8N2FF3F5


California’s governor has declared a state of emergency as the state battles dozens of wildfires amid a historic heatwave.

““We are deploying every resource available to keep communities safe as California battles fires across the state during these extreme conditions,” said Gavin Newsom, the state governor, on Tuesday.”

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/aug/18/california-wildfires-governor-declares-state-of-emergency


“If the past four days of dry heat have seemed uncharacteristic for Flagstaff and northern Arizona, it’s because it has been.

Flagstaff, Seligman and Clarkdale have all broken their heat records during each of the past four days from Friday to Monday.”

https://azdailysun.com/news/local/weather/northern-arizona-sees-sweltering-heat-as-flagstaff-breaks-heat-records-four-days-in-a-row/article_a490149d-356c-5e45-8316-454e1d3dcdb5.html


July was the hottest month on record for the Northern Hemisphere and the Arctic sea ice was the lowest on record, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said Tuesday.

“WMO spokesperson Clare Nullis told journalists at a UN briefing that Western and Central Europe witnessed another heatwave last week with new weather station records.

“She said the 130 degrees Fahrenheit (54.4 degrees Celsius) reading in California’s Death Valley on Sunday was likely “legitimate.”

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/environment/temperature-records-tumble-in-world-s-searing-heat/1946276


You can read the previous ‘Climate’ thread here and visit my Patreon page here.

18th August 2020 Today’s Round-Up of Climate News

July is going to likely to go down as the warmest month ever recorded in a global temperature dataset with observations back to 1850

“Hausfather says what really strikes him is the very strong El Niño year of 1998, once the warmest year ever, is now colder than the last seven years.”

https://www.mlive.com/weather/2020/08/impressive-data-set-shows-july-likely-warmest-of-any-month-since-1850-worldwide.html


The Western US and southwest Canada are bracing for another week of extreme heat as dozens of temperature records are expected to be broken

“”The historic heatwave in the West may last through Wednesday, as nearly 70 cities could either set or tie records,” CNN meteorologist Gene Norman said.”

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/08/17/weather/heat-wave-us-and-canada/index.html


About 3.3 million California homes may lose power during rolling blackouts on Monday and the state’s governor is demanding an investigation into the power outages

“”We have a perfect storm going on here,” said Steve Berberich, CEO of California Independent System Operator (CAISO), which manages most of the state’s electrical grid.”

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/08/17/us/california-blackouts-investigation/index.html


A record-breaking heat wave coupled with rare summer thunderstorms are fueling wildfires across California, with nearly 30 burning more than 120,000 acres as of Tuesday morning

“The current combination of extreme heat, thunderstorms and wildfires across parts of California is an “extraordinary unprecedented historic event,” Brian Garcia, warning coordination meteorologist…”

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/08/18/weather/california-fires-heat-wave/index.html


Tropical Storms Josephine and Kyle dissipated over the weekend, leaving the Atlantic Ocean free of storms.

“But that may not be the case for long. A pair of tropical waves with increasing odds of development are traversing the ocean to start off the workweek, preluding a period of anticipated intense activity that may last into September.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2020/08/17/atlantic-hurricane-activity/


The UK’s wheat harvest is likely to be down markedly this year, according to the National Farmers’ Union, capping a tumultuous year for British farming after consecutive seasons of extreme weather.

“Yields could be down by about a third, with the worst harvest since the 1980s predicted, the farmers’ organisation said.”

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/aug/17/uk-facing-worst-wheat-harvest-since-1980s-national-farmers-union-nfu


The heatwave in Belgium has officially ended, as the maximum temperature dipped below 25°C for the first time in 12 days…

…the heatwave was very “intense”, with eight consecutive tropical days (meaning, warmer than 30°C). Last week was the warmest week since the start of observations in the country…”

https://www.brusselstimes.com/news/belgium-all-news/127180/heatwave-in-belgium-has-officially-ended-after-12-days/


Zimbabwe’s second-largest city halted running-water supplies after problems at two reservoirs as residents reel under a severe drought, ailing infrastructure and an outbreak of waterborne diseases…

“In July, the city was also hit by an outbreak of diseases linked to contaminated water from burst sewers.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-08-17/zimbabwe-s-second-city-halts-running-water-as-crisis-deepens


China’s biggest river, the Yangtze, and several of its tributaries have risen to dangerous levels after days of heavy rain, forcing tens of thousands of people from their homes and triggering an unprecedented emergency response alert.

“The Ministry of Water Resources said on Monday that 38 tributaries on the upper reaches of the Yangtze were now higher than their warning levels, 19 dangerously so.”

https://uk.reuters.com/article/us-china-floods/chinas-rain-swollen-yangtze-river-triggers-unprecedented-flood-alert-idUKKCN25E0CT


Water is crashing on the feet of a 1,000-year-old giant Buddha sculpture in Southwest China for the first time in decades, illustrating the extent of the unprecedented floods along the nation’s longest river…

“This is the first time the 70-meter tall sculpture has had the river’s water touch its feet since 1949…”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-08-18/china-floods-wash-feet-of-buddha-statue-for-1st-time-in-70-years


Philippines — Residents living near the Mananga River in Barangay Bonbon, a mountain barangay in Cebu City, lost their homes following a flash flood on Monday, August 17, 2020.

“This was confirmed by the City Disaster Risk Reduction Office (CDRRMO) Harold Alcontin in a phone interview with CDN Digital on Tuesday, August 18, 2020.”

https://cebudailynews.inquirer.net/334609/residents-in-cebu-city-mountain-barangay-lose-homes-to-flash-flood


In western Siberia the permafrost is sinking, the temperatures are rising, and the landscape is changing fast. What does that really look like on the ground? We have a special report from the far north of Russia…”

Video:

https://www.euronews.com/2020/08/17/special-report-what-s-really-happening-in-the-arctic-and-siberia


Earth’s tropics are expanding poleward and that expansion is driven by human-caused changes to the ocean, according to new research.”

https://phys.org/news/2020-08-tropics-climate-primary-culprit.html


More than 50% of the world’s oceans could already be affected by climate change, with this figure rising as high as 80% over the coming decades, a new study has shown

“The study, published in Nature Climate Change, estimates that 20-55% of the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans now have noticeably different temperatures and salt levels… It also found the Southern Hemisphere oceans are being affected more rapidly by climate change than the Northern Hemisphere…”

https://phys.org/news/2020-08-world-oceans-affected-climate.html


You can read the previous ‘Climate’ thread here and visit my Patreon page here.