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Sat, 16 Oct 2021
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Earth Changes

Cloud Lightning

Lightning killed 322 in the Indian state of Jharkhand in 2020-21

Jharkhand recorded 322 human deaths and 882 animal deaths due to lightning strikes in 2020-21 - the highest in the last three financial years - according to data released in the state Assembly in a response to a question by a Jharkhand Mukti Morcha MLA Sudivya Kumar.

This is the first time that the state has released such specific data. Earlier, the Climate Resilient Observing Systems Promotion Council (CROPC), a non-profit organisation that works closely with India Meteorological Department (IMD), released an all-India report in December 20202, which stated that in Jharkhand in 2018-19 and 2019-2020, 118 and 172 people died respectively.

To MLA Kumar's query on the number of lightning deaths and whether lightning rods have been installed in all districts, Disaster Management Minister Banna Gupta responded in writing, "332 and 882 animals died in 2020-21...There is no provision for installing lightning rods through State Disaster Response Fund as per Central government's criteria."

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

Cloud Precipitation

Large hailstones hit the cities of Paraná and Concepción del Uruguay in Argentina

A strong storm of rain and hail hit the cities of Paraná and Concepción del Uruguay at dawn this Monday. In the provincial capital, the stones were registered in the southern area and the residents of the place evidenced their size with photos and videos. Meanwhile, the National Meteorological Service foresees for the day of this Monday, September 13, rains and storms in a large part of the province.

In Concepción del Uruguay, the hailstorm occurred around 6 in the morning and residents of the area shared photos the size of stones on social networks, which they bought with "chicken eggs." Likewise, they published videos in which you can hear the sound of knocks on the roofs of the houses in different parts of La Histórica.


6 killed by elephants in a week in Chhattisgarh, India

Two persons were killed by a wild elephant in separate incidents in Chhattisgarh''s Mahasamund district, taking the toll to six in such attacks in the state over the last one week, officials said on Monday.

The latest attacks took place late Sunday evening in two villages under Mahasamund forest circle within a span of a couple of hours, they said.

In the first incident, an elderly man, identified Raju Vishwakarma, a native of Mahasamund town, located over 50 km from the state capital Raipur, was killed by a tusker near Gaurkheda village when he was travelling along with two others on a motorcycle, Divisional Forest Officer (Mahasamund) Pankaj Rajput said.

After suddenly coming face-to-face with the elephant on the road, the man driving the two-wheeler lost control over it, following which Vishwakarma, who was riding pillion, fell from the vehicle.

Comment: Report says 3,310 people died due to wild elephant attacks in last 7 years across India - Rise in number of deaths 'alarming'

Cloud Precipitation

1.6 million affected by floods in Gujarat, India after 20 inches of rain in 24 hours

Flood rescue in Gujarat, India, September
© Photo: Collector Jamnagar
Flood rescue in Gujarat, India, September 2021.
Severe flooding in the state of Gujarat on the western coast of India has affected over 1.6 million people according to disaster authorities in the country. Some areas of the state recorded more than 500 mm of rain in 24 hours.

The Disaster Management Division of the country's Home Affairs Ministry reported on 13 September that flooding over the last few days has affected 1,660,254 people across 44 villages in the districts of Rajkot, Jamnagar, Porbandar, Valsad and Junagadh.

Evacuations have been carried out and 72 evacuation centres set up to house almost 7,000 displaced residents. As of 13 September, 2,553 people were displaced in Rajkot district, 3,966 in Jamnagar district, 224 in Porbandar district and 5 in Junagadh district.

Flooding has destroyed at least 5 houses and damaged 28 more. Two fatalities were also reported, including one person who drowned in flood water and another who died after a wall collapsed.

Cloud Precipitation

Flash floods after hours of heavy rain wreak havoc in Abuja, Nigeria - 4 people killed

Flood damage in southern Abuja, Nigeria, 12 September 2021.
© FCT Emergency Management Agency
Flood damage in southern Abuja, Nigeria, 12 September 2021.
At least 4 people lost their lives after flash floods swept through areas of Abuja and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) of Nigeria.

Flooding struck after hours of heavy rain on 12 September 2021. Severe flooding affected areas on the southern outskirts of the city, in particular Trademoore, Light Gold, Wisdom and Lugbe.

FCT Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confirmed that 4 people lost their lives and 26 vehicles were swept away, damaged or destroyed. A total of 166 houses were damaged. As of 13 September the Agency was still assessing the full extent of the damage.


Highway closed after fresh snow at Baralacha pass in Lahaul-Spiti, India

Higher reaches of the hills in HimachalPradesh received fresh snowfall during the past 24 hours in the Lahaul-Spiti district.
Higher reaches of the hills in HimachalPradesh received fresh snowfall during the past 24 hours in the Lahaul-Spiti district.
The Manali-Leh highway was on Monday closed for normal traffic after fresh snow at Baralacha pass in Lahaul and Spiti district.

Lahaul-Spiti SP Manav Verma said that according to the information received from Border Roads Organisation, there was fresh snow at Baralacha pass. As a result, traffic movement has come to a standstill on the highway.

The HRTC authorities at Keylong have suspended their bus service between Delhi and Leh since Sunday.

The SP said people were advised to avoid journey towards Leh until the situation improved. Due to fresh snow at Baralacha pass the Manali-Leh route has been closed for traffic till further orders.

"Further updates will be given when the road is cleared by the BRO and traffic resumes over Baralacha Pass," he added.


Finland sees first snowfall

The first ice crystals of the season fell in Finnish Lapland on Monday.

Two centimetres of the white stuff covered the village of Näkkälä in Enontekiö, northwest Lapland, on 13 September around 10am.

However, because the flurries weren't recorded before 9am, Yle meteorologist Seija Paasonen said Monday's sprinkling does not officially qualify as the first snow of the winter season.


Fagradalsfjall Volcano spews fire again in Iceland

In full swing again.
© mbl.is/Kristinn Magnússon
In full swing again.
After taking an apparent break for eight and a half days, the main crater by Fagradalsfjall, Southwest Iceland, once again began spewing fire into the air on Saturday, mbl.is reports.

Scientists visited the site that day and made some interesting discoveries, according to the Facebook page the Volcanology and Natural Disaster Team of the University of Iceland, where they posted the accompanying videos. The team points out that there is every indication the eruption did not stop during this pause in surface activity. Clearly, the opening of the main vent clogged up, preventing magma from flowing into it.


La Palma volcano (Canary Islands): strong seismic swarm suggests magma intruding at depth

A strong earthquake swarm started under the area of La Cumbre Vieja volcano in the southern part of the Island yesterday. So far, more than 350 tremors have been detected, including 14 quakes of magnitudes above 3.0 and 226 quakes between 2.0 and 2.9.

The strongest was a magnitude 3.4 event at 00.46 am local time this morning, which was felt by nearby residents.

Most earthquakes are at shallow depths around 8-12 km, suggesting that new magma is currently intruding into a reservoir under the volcano. Whether or not this might be leading up to new volcanic activity is impossible to say at this stage, as there seem not to be other signs of significant volcanic unrest at this stage. Similar earthquake swarms have occurred in the past as well, most recently in late Dec last year; however back then, the quakes were deeper (at around 30 km depth), which could indicate that magma has now risen higher in the volcano's underground storage systems.

La Cumbre Vieja volcano last erupted in 1971, and it is considered one of the most active volcanoes of the Canary Islands. The situation clearly merits close monitoring.

Snowflake Cold

Larry delivers record-smashing summer snow to Greenland, +"Lives at stake" in European gas shortage

A webcam still showing blizzard conditions at Summit Station, a weather research station at Greenland's highest point.
© Arctic Research Support and Logistics Services
A webcam still showing blizzard conditions at Summit Station, a weather research station at Greenland's highest point.

Hurricane-force gusts topped 100 miles per hour at Kulusuk Airport near Greenland's southeast coast, while record-smashing accumulations of summer snow battered the world's largest island.

The snow reached blizzard conditions at Summit Camp, a weather station at the island's highest point more than 10,000 feet above sea level, with winds and snow so heavy that visibility was reduced to all-but zero.

"Ex-hurricane Larry is still haunting us," wrote the Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI).

"Any way you cut it, this is going to be one for the record books," said Josh Willis, a lead scientist with NASA's Oceans Melting Greenland mission (who I assume will soon be out of a job).