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Wed, 22 May 2019
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Earth Changes

Bizarro Earth

Massive explosion of Mexico's Popocatepetl volcano caught on VIDEO

© Twitter / Protección Civil Seguridad
The active volcano Popocatepetl, located in Central Mexico, has emitted a large column of ash and smoke after a volcanic explosion rocked the fiery mountain.

The forceful blast rocked the Popocatepetl volcano on Thursday morning. As the very active volcano - and the second highest mountain in the country - is under constant surveillance, the moment of the eruption was caught on video.

The unrestful mountain emitted a large column of ash and smoke, that was some 1km high, according to local emergency services. The volcanic discharge is expected to fall in the southeastern direction, affecting a handful of settlements.

Popocatepetl, which literally translates from Aztec as "smoking mountain," has been very active over the past years, frequently emitting ash and spewing lava into surroundings. The most recent full-blown eruption occurred back in March, when the mountain emitted a whole cloud of hot gas and ash, that reached some 2,500 meters high.


6.2-magnitude earthquake shakes El Salvador, Nicaragua

The western coast of Central America is considered to be a seismically active zone, as it lies in an area where the Cocos plate rubs against the Caribbean plate.

Authorities in the Central American nation of El Salvador have reported a 6.2-magnitude earthquake, according to the nation's Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources.

The earthquake had its epicentre off the coast of the La Union department, about 200 kilometres southeast of the capital San Salvador.

Meanwhile, the United States Geological Survey reported a 5.7-magnitude tremor off Nicaragua.


Australian experts say koalas are now 'functionally extinct'

Koalas functionally extinct
© Shutterstock
They are in danger of going the way of the dodo.

Koala bears have been declared "functionally extinct," the Australian Koala Foundation reports. The fluffy marsupial is down to just 80,000 wild species members, meaning there aren't enough breeding adults left to support another generation of the pouched mammals.

The tree-dwelling species has been ravaged by the effects of rising temperatures and heatwaves, which have caused widespread deforestation and fatal dehydration in koalas, according to the AKF. Only 41 of the koala's 128 known habitats in federal environments have any of the animals left.

If a new disease or genetic pathogen of any kind is introduced, surviving koalas will die off rapidly. Activists are begging local pols to step in.

Comment: See also: Koalas face extinction within 30 years


Circumzenithal arc seen in skies of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Today's Ask Storm Team 11 question: What makes a cloud rainbow?
Circumzenithal arc over Myrtle Beach, SC
© Eva Higginson

This question was submitted by Eva Higginson. A cloud rainbow could be either a circumzenithal arc or what we call iridescence. The photo that Eva submitted, pictured is likely a circumzenithal arc.


Mediterranean island of Corsica witnesses heavy snowfall in May - almost 12 inches

Cold weather and heavy snow blanketed the island on Wednesday, taking many locals by surprise.

Summer may be around the corner but the Mediterranean island of Corsica is firmly gripped by winter.

"It's very rare and very remarkable to have snow in Corsica in May, but we need a little more hindsight to decide just how exceptional this is," Patrick Rebillout, head of Meteo Meteorological Center of Meteofrance in Ajaccio, told AFP news agency.

"In May, the weather is usually nice, but there can still be big cold descents," he added.

As much as 30cm of snow was reported at some of the mountain stations. Even away from the peaks, the snow proved heavy.


Early snowfall in Dunedin, New Zealand as temperatures plummet

Snow on the Rock and Pillar Range, near Middlemarch.
Snow on the Rock and Pillar Range, near Middlemarch.
Snow flurries have been reported on Dunedin hill suburbs, as temperatures plummet.

Snow was spotted falling on suburbs more than 100m above sea level on Thursday afternoon, but just like the sun, it did not overstay its welcome.

The snow was believed to be the first near an urban area this year, a Metservice spokeswoman said.

"This is the lowest fall we have seen so far."

Cloud Precipitation

Emergency declared as rivers rise in Croatia and Bosnia

Flooding in Bosnia, May 2019.
© Federalna Uprava Civilne Zaštite
Flooding in Bosnia, May 2019.
The same weather system that caused flooding and landslides in northern Italy has also affected parts of Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.


Strong winds of up to 70 km/h (43 mph) in Zagreb, capital of Croatia on 12 May, 2019, damaged buildings, downed trees and power lines. Firefighters said they responded to more than 300 interventions. Four people were injured.

Heavy rain in the country caused rivers to rise rapidly. Croatia Water (Hrvatske vode) figures show, that, as of 15 May, the Una river at Hrvatska Kostajnica (4.64 metres) and Korana at Karlovac (7.87m) are both at red alert levels. Meanwhile the Sava river at Jasenovac (8.05 m) is at orange alert stage.

Civil Protection have raised flood defences in Hrvatska Kostajnica and Karlovac. Local media said fire services have been called on to rescue several people from flood waters.


Strange noises from the sky heard in Tulcea, Romania

Strange sounds (stock)
On April 20, 2019, YouTuber 'Dumitru Daniela' posted video footage of strange noises she heard in the skies of Tulcea, Romania on March 20, 2019:
Hi guys! I really need your point of view about this strange noise. There wasn't any sign of plane or helicopter, no wind, no explosion, no asteroid.

She comments that the nearest airport was 16 km from her city and hadn't been operating since 2014. Nobody heard anything from the area of the city's stone quarry either.

The sound was bizarre enough that she notes the effects she saw and felt then:
The strange thing about the noise is that he [it] was going straight ahead and coming back but not rise up... and more than that, the sound was so powerful like you could feel the vibration of it, like when you are staying next to a speaker.


Strange rumbling noises heard in Kurseong, West Bengal sky

strange sounds (stock)
On May 1, 2019, You Tuber 'Abhigyan Rai' shared video of strange sounds he heard in the sky of Kurseong, West Bengal:


Nor'easter brings at least 4 inches of May snow to Vermont and upstate New York

Snow also covered areas in Stratton Mountain and Mount Snow, Vermont

Snow also covered areas in Stratton Mountain and Mount Snow, Vermont
Winter just won't go away for certain parts of the US.

Four inches of snow fell in Vermont and parts of upstate New York overnight just a day after a hail storm hit North Carolina.

Parts of western Maine and northern New Hampshire were getting snowfall Tuesday morning
, but most folks were seeing more rain.

Several Vermont residents took to social media to blast Mother Nature for bringing more snow to the state.

'I blame myself. Sunday I said, "At least I can feel confident that it's not going to snow anymore." Mother Nature: "bahahahahahah,"' one user wrote.

Rangers at Vermont State Parks tweeted: 'Another 4″ at Woodford State Park overnight. Park staff are shoveling instead of raking to get the park ready to open.'

Comment: Winterlike weather pattern tightens grip on U.S. Northeast, unloading snow in some areas