Welcome to Sott.net
Sat, 18 Sep 2021
The World for People who Think

Earth Changes

Cloud Precipitation

80,000 people evacuated from China's Sichuan province as extreme rains trigger floods

china sichuan flood
More than 80,000 people have been evacuated from their homes by the authorities as Sichuan is hit by extreme rains, triggering floods, with nearly half a million people impacted across six cities.

On Monday, the authorities in Sichuan, China, told state-run news agency Xinhua that water levels across the province were dangerously high, prompting the evacuation of 80,794 people.

The authorities said that more than 440,000 people had been impacted by the rains , with extreme rainfall being seen across the state. The highest recorded rainfall was in Qingshen in Quxian County, where 575mm (23in) of rainfall was recorded in just two days.

Comment: As noted above, floods have been ravaging China for weeks now - with one region seeing a year's worth of rain in just 2 days - however this kind of weather pattern is not limited to China, or even Asia: Elsewhere on the planet historic heat and drought is fostering devastating wildfires: For more on the extreme weather and other unusual phenomena occurring on our planet, check out SOTTs monthly documentary Earth Changes Summary - July 2021: Extreme Weather, Planetary Upheaval, Meteor Fireballs

Cloud Precipitation

Torrential downpours flood rail lines, roads and businesses in Glasgow, Scotland

A car abandoned by its owners under Drumchapel railway bridge.
© PA
A car abandoned by its owners under Drumchapel railway bridge.
Torrential rain across Scotland has closed railway lines, flooded streets and led to one car being abandoned after it was submerged in water.

A yellow weather warning for thunderstorms is in place for most of Scotland on Saturday and Sunday, with the Met Office warning it may cause flooding and power cuts.

The torrential downpours are set to continue across Scotland with a warning in place up until midnight on Sunday.


Siberian wildfire smoke reaches North Pole in historic first

Satellite images captured “only a small part” of the smoke stretching 3,200 kilometers east to west and 4,000 kilometers north to south
© MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC
Satellite images captured “only a small part” of the smoke stretching 3,200 kilometers east to west and 4,000 kilometers north to south.
Smoke from wildfires burning across Russia's largest and coldest region has reached the North Pole for what is believed to be the first time in known history last week, according to satellite observations.

The European Union's Copernicus satellite monitoring service has said that the forest fires in the Siberian republic of Sakha (Yakutia) — fueled by hot weather and a 150-year record drought — have already emitted a record 505 megatons of carbon dioxide with several weeks remaining in the fire season.

"This week, wildfire smoke has traveled more than 3,000 km (1,864 mi) from Yakutia to reach the North Pole, a feat that appears to be a first in recorded history," NASA's Earth-monitoring tool MODIS said Saturday.

The thick smoke had blanketed vast swathes of Siberia before reaching the North Pole, sparking evacuations, concerns over deteriorating air quality and orders to clear fire trails of dead wood and fallen trees around endangered settlements.

Smoke has been detected in 1,300 towns and settlements in the Krasnoyarsk region west of Sakha alone, emergency officials said Saturday.


Italy wildfire: 400 people flee raging 'dramatic' blaze as fireball engulfs skyline

More than 400 people have been evacuated

More than 400 people have been evacuated
Hundreds of tourists and residents have been evacuated as wildfires continue to rage in Italy.

More than 400 people have fled from their homes, hotels, and campsites in the seaside district on the Adriatic coast on Sunday, according to fire crews.

Clips of the flames approaching a cafe on social media show thick plumes of smoke billowing through the streets.

A helicopter and firefighting plane have been deployed to aid crews working to douse flames raging on the ground.

The fire is bringing down houses and blocked traffic on state road 16.

Ten hectares of pine forest in Vesuvius Park have gone up in smoke.

Cloud Precipitation

Heavy rain and flash floods affect 4 departments of El Salvador

Flood rescue in San Miguel, El Salvador, 07 August 2021.
© Bomberos El Salvador
Flood rescue in San Miguel, El Salvador, 07 August 2021.
Stormy weather including heavy rainfall since the start of August has caused damaged and flooding in 4 departments of El Salvador.

Storms, strong winds and heavy rain affected El Salvador from 02 August, 2021. Four homes were damaged by floods in southern parts of the city of San Salvador and another in Chanmico canton of the municipality of San Juan Opico, La Libertad department, Civil Defence reported.

Further heavy rain from 06 August caused powerful flash floods in San Miguel city and surrounding areas in San Miguel department. Firefighters rescued people from vehicles in flood water. No injuries were reported, however. El Salvador's Ministry of the Environgment reported over 60 mm of rain fell in 24 hours to 07 August in San Miguel city.

Cloud Lightning

Lightning strikes kill 1,178 people in 8 years across Bangladesh

Deaths from lightning strikes have increased in monsoon in the country, according to the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS).

Lightning strike is another concern during the monsoon in Bangladesh as the country is the third-most lightning-prone region in the world.

"Deaths from the lightning strikes have witnessed a rise in the country in recent years, especially in haor regions. At least 1,178 people died from lightning strikes between 2013 and 2020," DGHS spokesperson Dr Nazmul Islam said in a media briefing on Sunday.

April, May and June are the lightning prone months in the country, he said, adding installing safe electric connection and lightning neutralising method at homes and implementing modern building code should ensure safety from lightning."

Comment: Related: 34% rise in lightning strikes across India in 2020-21 over previous years, leaving 1,697 dead

Cloud Lightning

Lightning strikes claim 17 lives in Jharkhand, Odisha and West Bengal, India

At least 17 people have been killed and several others injured in separate incidents of lightning strike in states of West Bengal, Jharkhand, and Odisha, as monsoon wreaks havoc across the country.

In West Bengal, at least four people have lost their lives due to lightning strikes in two districts of the state. According to a senior official, two persons died in Purba Medinipur district's Nandigram, while two others, including a woman, were killed in Purba Bardhaman district when lightning struck them.

Additionally, seven people were injured in lightning strikes in Purba Bardhaman districts, the official said, adding that all the people were working in agricultural fields.

Comment: Lightning strikes also killed 5 in Jharkhand on July 6 while another 7 were killed a day later in Bihar by what appears to have be a single bolt.


Megadrought shuts down California's Lake Oroville hydro power plant for the first time

lake oroville california drought hydropower

Lake Oroville fell to a record low of 642-feet above mean sea level.
One of California's most important hydroelectric plants has ceased operations due to falling water levels, according to the Department of Water Resources (DWR).

On Wednesday, Lake Oroville fell to a record low of 642-feet above mean sea level. By Thursday, the lake stood at 641-feet above mean sea level. Readers may recall in mid-June, we said if the "640 feet is breached, then officials will likely be forced to close the Edward Hyatt Power Plant for the first time since it opened in 1967."

Hitting the threshold was enough for DWR to declare the hydroelectric power plant had to cease operations. Lake management officials are in a water preservation emergency amid a megadrought and scorching heat waves.

Comment: Indeed, the Lake Oroville complex was in a precarious state in times of too much water. A blessing in disguise?


Dead emaciated seabirds wash up on shores of western Alaska

Dead Seabird
Starting last week, regional residents reported numerous dead seabirds washing up on regional beaches. UAF Alaska Sea Grant Agent Gay Sheffield said the uptick in washed up sea bird carcasses on beaches started last week, July 28. Different species of sea birds were washed on to beaches at Golovin, Solomon, Nome and a dead murre was reportedly found on a beach at Little Diomede.

On Monday, August 2, a Nome resident found 15 dead birds on a 7.2 mile-stretch at Nome's West Beach. The birds were one horned puffin, six murres, seven shearwaters and one kittiwake.

Sheffield said multiple species were found dead and that preliminary analysis found them in a severely emaciated state. Bird carcasses will be shipped to the federal U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which will then send the bodies to the USGS National Wildlife Health Center Lab in Madison, Wisconsin. There, the birds will be examined for disease or harmful algal biotoxins. Sheffield urges the public to report sightings of dead sea birds, to take photos, to note the location and if possible, to bag any freshly dead bird and bring it in for analysis. Report the strandings to Gay Sheffield, UAF Sea Grant Alaska, 907-434-1149 or to Kawerak Subsistence Director Brandon Ahmasuk at 907-443- 4265 or 907-434-2951.

Snowflake Cold

Heavy snow and frost cause problems in Punta Arenas, Chile

During the day, some traffic accidents with minor damages were reported in different sectors of Punta Arenas, as well as falls of people due to snow and frost.

In the early hours of yesterday, a heavy snow began to fall in Punta Arenas, which covered the main streets of the city in white, and even more so in the western sector.

This created problems for drivers, who found it difficult to walk, also considering that in recent days the flow of vehicles increased considerably.