Earth Changes


12 dolphins trapped in Maldives lagoon die, 22 others freed

The pod of dolphins trapped in Nadella island's lagoon.
22 out of the pod of dolphins trapped inside Nadella Island's lagoon have been freed and released into the ocean but 12 had died, the island's council said on Saturday.

Faisal Najeeb, the island council's chair said that 38 dolphins had accidentally wandered in to the island's - located in Gaafu Dhaalu atoll - lagoon. He added that there were about four dolphins left to free.

"We caught the dolphins on a net and released them into the ocean" Najeeb said "12 of them died in this process".

"Catching them with nets was the only option we had" he continued.
Cloud Precipitation

Over 12 inches of rainfall in just 12 hours in Córdoba, Argentina

Streets were turned into raging torrents after a particularly severe rainstorm
Local media in Argentina are reporting that heavy rain has caused deadly flooding in the province of Córdoba, central Argentina.

La Nacion say overflowing rivers caused flooding that has left 6 people dead, 4 missing and forced 400 to evacuate.

La Nacion say that as much as 320 mm of rain fell in just 12 hours in some areas. WMO report that 79 mm of rain fell at Cordoba Airport in 24 hours from 14 to 15 February 2015.

The severe weather has affected several part of the province, including the city of Córdoba, where authorities have declared an "alert and climate emergency" for 72 hours. Power has been cut off to prevent electrocution.


Three Suns in the sky over Chelyabinsk

© Screenshot from YouTube user Shuriksandr
Citizens of Chelyabinsk, near Russia's Ural mountains, were awed by a rare optical illusion produced by ice crystals in the winter air on Tuesday.

"Weather in the Urals fell to -23 to -25 Celsius. This led to the formation of tiny hexagonal ice crystals in the air above, which cannot be seen by the naked eye. The sunlight refracts through them, creating the halo effect," regional meteorologist Galina Sheporenko told TASS news agency


Tsunami and evacuation warnings after M6.9 offshore quake in Japan

An earthquake measuring at 6.9 magnitude has struck off Honshu island in northern Japan, the US Geological Survey said. A tsunami warning has been issued for Iwate Prefecture.

The quake was recorded at around 8 am local time at a depth of approximately 10 kilometers. The epicenter was located off the Sanriku Coast, extending from southern Aomori prefecture, through Iwate prefecture and northern Miyagi prefecture.

Japan Meteorological Survey has issued a tsunami advisory for the Iwate Prefecture, warning that the waves may reach 1m in height.

Meanwhile, an evacuation order has been issued for coastal towns in Iwate prefecture. Thousands of people are reportedly leaving their homes while boats are sailing out of the harbor.

There were no irregularities reported at the Onagawa and Higashidori nuclear plants in nearby Miyagi and Aomori prefectures, the facilities' operator Tohoku Electric Power Co. said. A spokesman for TEPCO also reported no irregularities at Fukushima Daiichi and Fukushima Daini plants.
Ice Cube

New Jersey woman found frozen to death near her home

Olivia Benito NJ
© facebook
A New Jersey woman was found frozen to death in the snow near her home on Sunday morning, authorities said.

Olivia Benito, 66, had stopped by a neighbor's house for drinks after they left a benefit event at an Elks Club in Lakewood, New Jersey, Al Della Fave, spokesman for the Ocean County prosecutor's office, said in a news release.

The neighbor told police that Benito had some alcoholic beverages during the course of the evening, Della Fave said. She left the neighbor's townhouse at about midnight to walk to her home two doors away, he said.

The neighbor said she discovered Benito face down in snow when she went out to clear her car of snow at about 7 a.m. on Sunday, Della Fave said. She was pronounced dead at the scene by ambulance personnel, he said.
Ice Cube

Record breaking winter in Boston; 16.2 inches of snow during blizzard

Gov. Charlie Baker asked Bay Staters to stay off the roads on Sunday as another powerful winter storm pounded the region.

"Driving conditions will be very difficult and we continue to urge everyone to stay off the roads for the entire day," Baker said in a morning news conference.

Boston measured 16.2 inches of snow in the storm, making this winter the city's third-snowiest on record. Blizzard conditions were verified in Chatham, Plymouth, Hyannis, Martha's Vineyard and Falmouth, where visibility was one-quarter of a mile or less with 35 mph-plus winds for three hours or more.

"There's a little bit of déjà vu all over again," Baker said.

The snow was expected to stop by midday, but the central and eastern parts of the state are under a blizzard warning through Monday morning because high winds will blow snow and reduce visibility.

With the storm falling on a weekend and students set to start February vacation on Monday, no travel ban was issued.

"The most important thing people need to do today is stay safe and take care of themselves," Baker said. "Someone who gets trapped out there. . . it's just going to be a very bad day to be on the roads."

MBTA service was suspended for the entire day on Sunday, and a decision will be made in the afternoon on Monday' service. Flights are not expected to leave or arrive at Logan Airport before mid-afternoon.

Transportation Secretary Stephanie Pollack said more than 3,000 pieces of equipment are treating the roads.

"We're going to need time," she said. "Just because it stops snowing in your area does not mean you should clear your car out and get out there right away."

Another push of arctic air to freeze Midwest, Northeast U.S. this week

Old Man Winter will be unrelenting across the Northeast and Midwest this week as yet another blast of arctic air dives into the regions.

This next push of arctic air is expected to bring air that is just as cold, or even colder than the air that brought subzero lows to the Midwest and Northeast during the weekend.

Millions will shiver from Chicago to New York City as record lows are challenged during this bitter blast. Records may also fall across parts of the Southeast where temperatures manage to fall into the teens and single digits.

Floridians will even experience a taste of the arctic chill with temperatures dipping down to the lower 30s in cities such as Orlando.

The worst of the cold is expected to focus on the Midwest on Wednesday before shifting east over the Northeast for Thursday. RealFeel® temperatures below 0 F will be common across the regions during the daytime hours, including cities along the Interstate 95 corridor. These values can then drop by as much as 20 degrees during the overnight hours, making for a bitterly cold morning commute.

It is possible for some snow showers or flurries to accompany the arrival of the harsh cold, especially across the Tennessee and Ohio valleys. This could drop a few inches of snow, leading to some slick travels.

Snow showers are also likely to develop downwind of the Great Lakes late in the week even though the lakes are quickly becoming covered in ice.

Rare beaked whale found dead near Byron Bay, Australia

Rare beaked whale washes up dead
A rare whale has been found washed up on the state's far north coast.

The Gray's Beaked whale was discovered on Seven Mile Beach, south of Byron Bay.

Lawrence Orel, from the National Parks and Wildlife Service, said whales which beach themselves are usually sick.

He said scientists will be keen to examine the skeleton.

"The beaked whales are quite rare," Mr Orel said.

Dead sperm whale found near Glenburn, New Zealand

The 14m sperm whale carcass found on a South Wairarapa beach at Glenburn near Honeycomb Rock.
Workers from Ngati Kahungunu ki Wairarapa iwi yesterday recovered the bones and teeth of a 14m-long sperm whale found dead on a South Wairarapa coastal beach.

Iwi authority chief executive PJ Devonshire said the carcass of the whale - an adult male weighing about 48 tonnes - was discovered washed up and lying between rocks on a beach south of Glenburn near Honeycomb Rock a week ago Saturday.

A Department of Conservation ranger believed the animal had died of old age.

He said the DoC Honeycomb walkway extended along the stretch of coast where the whale was found and a group from the iwi had travelled to the location on Tuesday, securing and blessing the carcass in a ceremony during which the whale was also named Te Pani o te Moana - orphan of the ocean.
Cloud Lightning

Weatherman goes berserk over 'thundersnow' in Boston

Cantore stands in front of the camera as a Thundersnow bolt of lightning strikes
It's always nice to see a man enjoying his job.

Just take the Weather Channel's Jim Cantore as an example. The 51-year-old meteorologist displayed the infectious enthusiasm of a child while reporting on Sunday's blizzard in Massachusetts, US.

In the video below, which has gone viral over the past 24 hours, Cantore can be seen tramping around in knee-deep snow when the screen suddenly flashes pure white in a rare example of 'Thundersnow' - when lightning occurs during snowfall.

"Oh yes! Yes! Yes!" he exclaims. "We got it baby! We got it! We got it! Woo! Woo! We got it! Yes! Listen to that! Listen to that! Oh baby!"

Just as Cantore begins to regain his composure, the screen again flashes white, setting the excitable weatherman off on another bout of wild celebration. "Oh again! Again!" he shouts, throwing a handful of snow into the air. "That's a two-fer. That's a two-fer, baby. Oh my goodness!"

Four further flashes illicit similar exultations, as the meteorologist gives up any pretence of hiding his excitement.