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Mon, 30 Nov 2020
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Earth Changes

Cloud Precipitation

At least 36 swans killed, 8 injured during hail and windstorm near Salt Lake City, Utah

A few dozen swans were killed and several were injured in a hail and windstorm earlier this month.
© Paul Child
A few dozen swans were killed and several were injured in a hail and windstorm earlier this month.
A few dozen swans were killed and several were injured in a hail and windstorm earlier this month.

The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources confirmed 36 swans died and eight were injured, with more still being called in from residents in Davis and Salt Lake counties.

"Due to the nature of the blunt force injuries and other indicators, it is believed that the storm forced the birds down, resulting in high-speed impacts with the ground or other stationary objects," a statement by DWR read.

Nearly two weeks ago, heavy winds and hailstorms hit the Wasatch Front on Friday night into Saturday morning, causing damages to property and wildlife.

Cloud Lightning

Lightning kills 7 in central Mozambique

At least seven people died due to lightning strikes that hit several regions in Mozambique's central province Manica on Wednesday, the provincial governor announced on Thursday.

Five of the seven deaths occurred in the district of Mossurize, south of the province and the rest in the district of Manica, said the Governor of the Manica province Francisca Tomas at the opening of a meeting with non-governmental organizations in the province.

"In addition to the fatalities, bad weather, accompanied by rain and strong winds, destroyed several public and private infrastructures," said the governor, adding that a multisectoral team has been created to assess the level of destruction.

"What we can say is that there are seven dead and destruction of infrastructure. It is preliminary information and gradually we will have to update it properly," she said.

There are reports of the destruction of various infrastructures, interruption of access routes and fall of trees in the regions most affected by the rains, added the governor.


Record Denver snowfall is rare for multiple reasons

Children sledding
© Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post
Colorado's latest snow storm is wrapping up, leaving the Interstate 25 urban corridor with a winter wonderland, a mess on the roads and a new spot in the history books.

Denver International Airport tallied 5 inches of snow. This is a record daily snowfall for Nov. 24, breaking the old record of 4 inches set in 1946. Even more notably, it was the first daily November snow record to fall in the city since 1994. Snow totals across the rest of the metro area generally range from 3 to 6 inches, with heavier amounts up to 10 inches in the western suburbs.

This was a rare November snowstorm in the Denver area beyond the record-breaking amount. Another rarity lies within the heavy and wet nature of the snow.

Cloud Precipitation

At least 3 dead, 5 missing after more floods in Kasese, Uganda

Floods destroyed a house in Kasese, Uganda, 24 November 2020.
© Uganda Red Cross
Floods destroyed a house in Kasese, Uganda, 24 November 2020.
Heavy rain in western Uganda has once again caused a deadly flooding in Kasese district.

The flooding occurred in Buhuhira and Bwesumbu sub-counties after the Kuruhe river broke its banks on 24 November.

According to the Uganda Red Cross, a house was destroyed by flood waters in the village of Kinyamagana in Bwensumbu sub-county, leaving at least 3 people dead and 5 more are feared missing. Search for the missing is ongoing.

Uganda Red Cross said "Our search and rescue team recovered the bodies of the three children who were under the rubble. (The) family has lost shelter and has camped at Kinyamagana Full gospel church. We commiserate with the family."

Deadly floods struck in Kasese in May and early November this year.


Astronomers studying novel atmospheric plasma phenomenon 'STEVE' publish paper on 'pure green sky canonballs'

STEVE green cannonballs
Just when you thought "STEVE" couldn't get any weirder, a new paper published in the journal AGU Advances reveals that the luminous purple ribbon is often accompanied by green cannonballs of light that streak through the atmosphere at 1000 mph.

[Below is an abridged version of Dr. Tony Phillip's excellent article-the full version of which is available at spaceweatherarchive.com, dated November 22, 2020.]

STEVE (Strong Thermal Velocity Enhancement) is a relatively recent discovery, first spotted and photographed by Canadian citizen scientists around 10 years ago. It looks like an aurora, but it is not. The purple glow is caused by hot (3000 °C) rivers of gas flowing through Earth's magnetosphere faster than 13,000 mph. This distinguishes it from auroras, which are ignited by energetic particles raining down from space.

"Citizen scientists have been photographing these green streaks for years," says Joshua Semeter of Boston University, lead author of the new paper. "Now we're beginning to understand what they are."

Comment: For more on STEVE, see also:


Severe thunderstorms dump heavy rainfall on metro New Orleans, flooding streets - at rate of up to 7 inches per hour

© David Grunfeld
A line of severe thunderstorms dumped several inches of rain on the metro area early Wednesday evening, flooding streets throughout New Orleans and Jefferson parishes.

According to measurements taken by the New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board, 3.71 inches fell in parts of the Lower 9th Ward, 3.27 inches fell in parts of Lakeview, 3.21 in the Upper 9th Ward, 2.97 inches fell at Orleans Avenue near City Park and Broad Street in Midcity, and 2.82 inches fell in parts of Treme. Many other parts of the city got more than 2 inches.

The National Weather Service issued a severe thunderstorm warning just before 4 p.m. on Wednesday for western Orleans and north/central Jefferson parishes.

The warning is in effect until 4:45 p.m. and the city has lifted restrictions on parking on the neutral ground.

Cloud Precipitation

Cyclone Nivar claims 3 lives in Tamil Nadu, India - up to 9.6 inches of rain falls in 18 hours

Heavy rains have already flooded parts of Chennai
Heavy rains have already flooded parts of Chennai
Three people have died and three others are injured in the wake of Cyclone Nivar in Tamil Nadu, Atulya Mishra, Additional Chief Secretary of Tamil Nadu said on Thursday.

Over 2 lakh people are in relief camps in the State. Further, 101 huts have been damaged and 380 fallen trees have been removed.

Chennai witnessed heavy rainfall and strong winds all through Wednesday night before the cyclonic storm moved towards Puducherry.


Beauty of frozen methane bubbles on the world's deepest lake shown in stunning video

Bubbles of frozen methane seen through crystal clear ice of lake Baikal.
© Stanislav Tolstnev
Bubbles of frozen methane seen through crystal clear ice of lake Baikal.
A tranquil video of white and silver bubbles of methane caught in newly-formed ice was filmed at Maloye More, a strait that separates the lake's largest island of Olkhon from the western shore of Lake Baikal.

'Ice covering the shallow straits and bays begins to form by the end of November, while the rest of Baikal freezes by the middle of January.

'This kind of ice, the purest, can only be seen in some areas of the lake in November and December', said Stanislav Tolstev, 46, photographer and tour guide from Irkutsk.

'The first time I paid attention to these bubbles was about four years ago, then I learned to distinguish methane from air bubbles.


Himalayan black bear attacks couple, mauls woman to death in Uttarakhand, India

When the residents of Vadhuk village were in the forest, they were attacked by a Himalayan black bear (Representative Image).
© iStock Images
When the residents of Vadhuk village were in the forest, they were attacked by a Himalayan black bear (Representative Image).
When the residents of Vadhuk village were in the forest, they were attacked by a Himalayan black bear. The woman's husband climbed a tree and saved himself from the bear attack. Meanwhile, the woman was mauled to death by the bear.

Ashutosh Singh, divisional forest officer (DFO) Badrinath told Hindustan Times that compensation would be granted to the woman's family after the formalities are completed.

According to the forest official, the woman died on the spot. Singh added, "With the onset of winters, bear attacks increase as bears come down from snowy higher reaches in search of food. This is one of the main causes of the surge in man-bear conflict here in winter months."

Comment: Bear attacks increasing worldwide


6.1 magnitude earthquake jolts Balleny Islands region, Southern Ocean

earthquake graph
© Phil McCarten / Reuters
An earthquake with a magnitude of 6.1 jolted Balleny Islands region in the Antarctic Ocean at 2256 GMT on Wednesday, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

The epicenter, with a depth of 10.0 km, was initially determined to be at 61.9292 degrees south latitude and 154.8222 degrees east longitude.

The Balleny Islands are a series of uninhabited islands heavily glaciated and of volcanic origin.