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Wed, 19 Feb 2020
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Earth Changes

Cloud Precipitation

Deadly floods and landslides in 2 departments of Peru

Aftermath of the mudslide and floods in Vilcanchos district, Ayacucho Region.
© Policía Nacional del Perú
Aftermath of the mudslide and floods in Vilcanchos district, Ayacucho Region.
Landslides and flooding in the department of Puno in southern Peru have damaged homes leaving dozens of families displaced and at least 2 people dead.

Meanwhile at least 1 person is missing and over 200 families have been displaced after heavy rain triggered a landslide in Ayacucho Region in south-central Peru.

Puno Department

According to Peru's emergency agency, Centro de Operaciones de Emergencia Nacional (COEN), rivers broke their banks in Azangaro Province on 09 February, 2020, damaging at least 150 homes in Asillo District. Three bridges and areas of agricultural land were also damaged.


Mississippi declares Flood Emergency - February rainfall already over 400% more than normal

Hundreds in Mississippi evacuated amid flooding as governor declares state of emergency

Hundreds in Mississippi evacuated amid flooding as governor declares state of emergency
Days of heavy rain caused rivers and dams in Mississippi and Tennessee to rise, prompting evacuations and some flood rescues.

Among the worst hit areas is Jackson, Mississippi, where the Pearl River exceeded Major Flood stage and reached 36.67 feet on 17 February, 2020, it's third highest level on record.

The state government of Mississippi moved quickly in anticipation of the flooding and declared a state of emergency on 15 February. Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves said:

"This is a historic, unprecedented flood. With projections showing the potential of this being the 3rd worst flood in our state's history, I've declared a state of emergency to deploy the necessary resources to take care of all Mississippians impacted...Protect yourself and your family — have a plan in place and evacuate if and when you are asked."


Record breaking snow hits Seoul and parts of South Korea

South Korea snow
© Korea Times
Many parts of South Korea see snowfall during the months of December, January and February. However, this season, snow remained almost absent and very heavy snow was not seen.

However, this Monday was a different one as snowfall pounded many parts of South Korea including the national capital Seoul. This was the heaviest snowfall of this winter season which caused flight cancellations as well as traffic disruptions.

Heavy snow warning was issued for parts of Jeju Island, Gyeonggi Province, Jeolla, Chungcheong. This winter did not see much snow, however record snowfall yesterday was seen in parts including Ulleungdo and Dokdo where snowfall was recorded at 34.8 cm.

Meanwhile, Jeolla provinces and Gangwon Province saw 20 cm of snow with Seoul witnessing 4.1 cm which was a record.

If past statistics are to be seen between December and February 10, only 1.1 cm of snow was seen in Seoul which happened to be the lowest on record. Temperature in Seoul dropped down to -6 degrees Celsius after the snow.


Mystery in Spain's Catalonia as hundreds of dead birds appear on highway

dead birds
Mystery has shrouded Spain's Catalonia as hundreds of dead birds have been found on a highway.

A local resident recorded footage whilst driving down the C-31b highway which connects Tarragona to Salou, sharing the video on social media to alert the police and environmental groups of their strange discovery.

This caught the attention of the Grup d'Estudi i Protecció dels Ecosistemes Catalans-Ecologistes de Catalunya (GEPEC) who believe that the deaths of the starlings may have been caused by a chemical leak in the atmosphere or mass poisoning. They also detail that from speaking to residents in the area that they reported "strong chemical smells in the air."


Waterspout filmed swirling on the edge of Welsh coastline during Storm Dennis

This is the dramatic moment a "tornado" was captured swirling on the edge of a Welsh coastline during Storm Dennis.

The footage shows the moment a rare phenomenon formed over the Menai Strait between Anglesey and Gwynedd in north Wales on Sunday as stormy weather brought strong winds.

The waterspout - the name given to tornadoes when they form over water - was formed at around 12pm on Sunday, reports NorthWalesLive.

Cloud Lightning

Lightning bolt kills 5 family members in Zimbabwe

Five family members were struck to death by lightning in the Muzvezve area of Sanyati district.

Tragedy struck when the family, which was tending their maize field, sought refuge under a tree when it started raining yesterday afternoon in Village 6, Muzvezve 1. A lightning bolt hit the tree. The five who died went under one tree while three other family members who survived went under another nearby tree.

Sanyati district civil protection unit Mr Amigo Mhlanga confirmed the development saying the unit has since been activated to offer assistance.

"Five members of the same family have died after being struck by lightning while being sheltered under a tree. The district CPU has been activated and we are going to the area to assess the situation while also looking at how the family can be assisted because of the magnitude of the tragedy," said Mr Mhlanga.

Bizarro Earth

Adapt 2030 Ice Age Report: Antarctica increasing heat, Arctic increasing ice - Earth's poles behaving strangely

Antarctic ice sheets melting
© YouTube/Adapt 2030 (screen capture)
Record heat in Antarctica brought on by volcanic activity in the peninsula, and Arctic Sea Ice increases the most in 11 years eclipsing the 2001-2010 average. Sea turns red in Kazakhstan and more snowy peaks in Taiwan.

Cloud Precipitation

Storm Dennis, 2nd-strongest bomb cyclone on record in North Atlantic, causes severe flooding in UK

Submerged cars are swept away by flooding in the town of Hay-on-Wye as Storm Dennis brought heavy rain and winds to the UK
© Sky News
Submerged cars are swept away by flooding in the town of Hay-on-Wye as Storm Dennis brought heavy rain and winds to the UK.
Storm Dennis, the second-strongest nontropical storm on record in the North Atlantic Ocean, caused widespread flooding across parts of the United Kingdom on Sunday, along with winds exceeding hurricane force.

The storm, which is producing waves up to 80 feet tall west of the United Kingdom, dumped more than five inches of rain in South Wales, almost an inch more than the area typically receives for the entire month of February. The resulting flooding has prompted numerous evacuations and even cut off some communities.

The U.K. Met Office, which named the storm, issued its first "red" warning for heavy rainfall since 2015, its highest warning category. The country's Environment Agency issued a record number of flood warnings, 594, for a single day, according to John Curtin, executive director of flood and coastal risk management at the Environment Agency.

Comment: UK braced for record flooding as Storm Dennis dumps month's worth of rain in 24 hours


India's birds suffering dramatic population declines, warns scientific report

a fiery battle between a short-toed eagle and a spectacled cobra
© Ramamurthy Karthik
A fiery battle between a short-toed eagle and a spectacled cobra
Growing threat from loss of habitat, widespread presence of toxins, hunting and trapping, it says

Over a fifth of India's bird diversity, ranging from the Short-toed Snake Eagle to the Sirkeer Malkoha, has suffered strong long-term declines over a 25-year period, while more recent annual trends point to a drastic 80% loss among several common birds, a new scientific report jointly released by 10 organisations said on Monday.

The State of India's Birds 2020 (SoIB) assessment raises the alarm that several spectacular birds, many of them endemic to the sub-continent, face a growing threat from loss of habitat due to human activity, widespread presence of toxins including pesticides, hunting and trapping for the pet trade. Diminishing population sizes of many birds because of one factor brings them closer to extinction because of the accelerated effects of others, the report warned. For every bird species that was found to be increasing in numbers over the long term, 11 have suffered losses, some catastrophically.

Of 101 species categorised as being of High Conservation Concern — 59 based on range and abundance and the rest included from high-risk birds on the IUCN Red List — endemics such as the Rufous-fronted Prinia, Nilgiri Thrush, Nilgiri Pipit and Indian vulture were confirmed as suffering current decline, and all except 13 had a restricted or highly restricted range, indicating greater vulnerability to man-made threats.

Ice Cube

Ice balls appear on Lake Michigan beach, wash up 'by the thousands'

Thousands of ice balls formed and washed along the shore of Lake Michigan on Friday.
© Holland State Park/Michigan Department of Natural Resources
Thousands of ice balls formed and washed along the shore of Lake Michigan on Friday.
Goodness gracious, great balls of ice!

A bitter blast of Arctic air that brought dangerous wind chills across the Midwest last week also helped create the conditions for a rare phenomenon known as "ice balls" on a Lake Michigan beach.

The National Weather Service in Grand Rapids said Friday that it "took a while" but the conditions needed to form the balls finally got just right.

"These can usually be seen as early as late December and early January when temperatures fall into the teens and single digits," the Weather Service said.