Earth ChangesS


Snowflake

Heavy snowfall in the Alps - 2 feet in 24 hours

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What is forecast to be the biggest snowfall of 2024 so far is getting underway in the Alps, with snow also falling in the Dolomites and Pyrenees.

The snow is expected to keep falling in many areas through the weekend but there have been reports of up to 60cm (two feet) already on high slopes for some areas during the last 24 hours.

Among the big winners so far are Italy's Cervinia posting 40cm (16") and Livigno with 32cm (13") as wewll as Passo Tonale, pictured below. In France Bonneval-sur-Arc posted 30cm (12") and Les Carroz 28cm (11"). Austria's Axamer Lizum has had 25cm (10"), Serfaus Fiss Ladis 20cm (8"), but Switzerland has seen the biggest falls with 60cm (2 feet) for Glacier 3000 near Gstaad (pictured above), which opened at 11am today to allow staff to dig out lifts and make runs safe.


Arrow Down

Two children die in landslide near Shasta Dam, California

Landslide near Shasta Dam claims lives of two children
Landslide near Shasta Dam claims lives of two children
Two children died when they were caught in a landslide early Thursday near a Shasta Dam campground, officials confirmed.

The two children were not immediately identified, but Shasta County sheriff's officials said they were found among the rocks and debris where a hillside had collapsed. Both were pronounced dead at the scene, according to a news release from the Shasta County Sheriff's Office.

Deputies responded at 9 a.m. Thursday to the Chappie/Shasta Off-Highway Vehicle Area, a Bureau of Land Management area that includes campgrounds downstream from Shasta Dam, where the two children were reported to have fallen down the hillside as the land collapsed, sending rocks and debris down the hill toward a nearby river.


Fish

Endangered sawfish have been found dead in Lower Keys, Florida - other fish also dying

Paddle boarder Joyce Milelli came across this sick sawfish .
© Joyce MilelliPaddle boarder Joyce Milelli came across this sick sawfish in late January while leading a tour near Geiger Key. Five days later it was found dead amid an outbreak of deaths among endangered sawfish.
More than a dozen endangered sawfish have turned up dead in the Lower Keys in recent weeks amid an unusual fish kill that has also included goliath grouper, tarpon, stingrays and dozens of other species found dead or behaving erratically.

Early testing has so far ruled out harmful water conditions like low oxygen, temperature or salinity, but did detect elevated levels of a toxic algae found in ciguatera.

Fish that feed on reefs typically carry ciguatera because that's where the algae naturally grows. The toxin can build up, which can make eating the fish dangerous. It's rarely fatal, but symptoms including vomiting and neurologic damage, can be severe and take days or years to go away.

However, the toxin rarely harms fish, suggesting that a different species may be causing problems in the Keys. And having deaths across so many species is rare.


Cloud Precipitation

Brazil - 8 killed in floods and landslides as rain lashes state of Rio De Janeiro

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At least 8 people have lost their lives after heavy rain triggered floods and landslides in the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Stormy weather late on 21 February 2024 swept over southern parts of the state from late 21 February 2024. In just one hour early on 22 February, the Recreio dos Bandeirantes neighbourhood in the West Zone of Rio de Janeiro city recorded 42.8 mm of rain and the neighbourhood of Bangu, also in the West Zone, recorded 43.2 mm.

However, the worst of the damage, in particular landslides, was reported in municipalities outside the state capital, including Barra do Piraí, Japeri, Mendes and Nova Iguaçu.

Videos shared on Social Media showed the dramatic recuse of a mother and her two daughters who were swept away by fast-flowing flood waters through the streets of Nova Iguaçu.


Doberman

Six-year-old boy mauled to death by stray dogs in Uttar Pradesh, India

dog attack
Action is being sought by the municipal authorities against stray dogs after a six-year-old boy was mauled to death by a pack of dogs in Muzaffarnagar while he was playing in the fields.

A six-year-old boy was mauled to death by a pack of stray dogs in a village here, police said on Thursday.

Circle Officer Rupali Devi said Dev alias Golu, a class 3 student, was playing in the fields on Wednesday evening when a pack of dogs attacked him.

Locals nearby rushed to Golu's rescue and rushed him to a hospital where he was declared dead, the CO said.

The officer said that they have informed the municipal authorities seeking action against stray dogs. Further probe is underway.

PTI

Comment: See also: Girl mauled to death by stray dogs in Uttar Pradesh, India - 10TH such fatality in 15 MONTHS for the Bijnor district


Seismograph

Shallow 6.3 magnitude earthquake strikes the East Pacific Rise

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A 6.3-magnitude earthquake struck the East Pacific Rise (February 22) morning, according to the United States Geological Survey.

The natural disaster was located in the southern portion of the mid-ocean rise and centered at a depth of 2.0 kilometers (1.24 miles). The East Pacific Rise, which runs through the Gulf of California in the Salton Sea basin, is located along the floor of the Pacific Ocean and separates the Pacific Plate west from several other plates.

Last week, a 3.8-magnitude earthquake struck California. The natural disaster was located in Ontario and centered at a depth of 13.0 kilometers (about 8.08 miles), according to the United States Geological Survey.

Fire

Thousands urged to evacuate as out-of-control blaze bears down in Victoria, Australia

An emergency warning was issued for residents near Ararat. (ABC News)
© ABC NewsAn emergency warning was issued for residents near Ararat.
Thousands of people in 28 communities are being urged to evacuate a large fire zone as an out-of-control blaze bears down on them in Victoria.

An emergency warning has been issued for the communities west of Ballarat with concerns about a wind change is expected to sweep the area between 6pm and 7.30pm.

Residents in another nine townships nearby have also been advised to leave.

Conditions are not expected to ease until about midnight, Victorian Country Fire Authority chief officer, Jason Heffernan, told reporters on Thursday afternoon.


Cloud Precipitation

San Francisco under flash flood warning as water seen bubbling up from manholes

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Multiple parts of San Francisco were experiencing urban flooding of various degrees Tuesday afternoon after some major downpours.

Low-lying areas of the city that are often flood-prone in heavy rains were filling up with water Tuesday, as seen in some social media posts. KRON4 reporter Sara Stinson posted the video below from Hayes Valley, and KRON4 posted a second video below shot at Franklin and Green streets in Cow Hollow showing significant water bubbling up from two manhole covers.


Attention

Sperm whale dies in Osaka Bay, Japan

A whale confirmed dead in Osaka Bay in Sakai, Osaka Prefecture, on Monday | KYODO
© KYODOA whale confirmed dead in Osaka Bay in Sakai, Osaka Prefecture, on Monday
A whale as long as a train car that died after straying into a port in Osaka last month is set to be buried until it naturally becomes a skeletal specimen for a local museum.

It's the third year in a row that whales have become stranded in the area, raising questions about the reasons why and the cost of handling the incidents.

The animal is believed to be a male sperm whale, about 12 meters (39 feet) long and weighing an estimated 20 tons, and was earlier spotted in the Sakai Semboku Port in mid-January.

It had since been spotted in a number of locations in Osaka Bay, until Sunday, when a boat captain reported to the coast guard that the whale was not breathing. Prefectural officials and experts took a boat out to check on the whale and confirmed its death on Monday, presumably due to starvation.


Tornado1

Indonesia investigates after first large-scale tornado strikes

Indonesia tornado wrecks homes and buildings
Indonesia tornado wrecks homes and buildings
Indonesia was struck by a tornado of a scale previously unrecorded in the country that injured at least 33 people and damaged buildings, government officials said.

After the violent wind swept the town of Sumedang in West Java province on Wednesday, a climatologist at government research body BRIN Erma Yulihastin, said the agency would "reconstruct and investigate the tornado".

In a post on social media app X, formerly known as Twitter, she said it was similar to the kind of violent winds that often occur in the northern hemisphere. Until now, only smaller tornadoes, known as "angin puting beliung" have been recorded in Indonesia.

Indonesia's disaster mitigation agency said the injured people suffered slight injuries.