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Wed, 27 May 2020
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Earth Changes


Indian and Bangladesh mango fields devastated by cyclone Amphan

An aerial view of cyclone Amphan affected areas in West Bengal, Friday, May 22, 2020.
An aerial view of cyclone Amphan affected areas in West Bengal, Friday, May 22, 2020.
Cyclone Amphan has dealt a crushing blow to Bangladesh's mango growers, as they are confronted with huge losses from the widespread damage it caused to orchards and fruits ripe for its seasonal harvest.

The cyclone barrelled into the country's southern coasts from the Bay of Bengal on Wednesday and carved a trail of destruction as it moved inland at night generating strong winds and heavy rainfall.

At least 22 deaths have been reported from eight coastal districts in Bangladesh until Thursday noon as the storm tore down homes and foliage while ravaging the power supply. Initial government estimates put the figure of damage incurred by housing, infrastructure, fisheries and livestock, water resources and agriculture in Bangladesh at Tk 11 billion (€121 mln).

Bdnews24.com reported that in several districts in the west and south-west of the country, thousands of hectares of lands are used for the cultivation of mangoes. Primary data indicates the cyclone laid waste to 176,000 hectares of crop yields across the country, Agriculture Minister Abdur Razzaque said an online media briefing. The government estimates that the storm damaged 10 percent of the 7,384 hectares used to cultivate mangoes.


Snow walls of up to 16 feet high along road in East Iceland - snowfall considerably more than was once typical

The snow tunnel into Mjóafjörður is five meters high.
© Vegagerðin
The snow tunnel into Mjóafjörður is five meters high.
Summer may have officially started in Iceland on April 23, but you definitely couldn't tell from the weather in Mjóifjörður, East Iceland, where authorities just spent four days digging a traversable roadway through snow walls of up to five meters [16 ft] in height. RÚV reports that the road into the village there has been more or less closed since October.

Fourteen people live in Brekkuþorp in Mjóifjörður year-round (up to 40 during the summer), and the village has its own church, school, tourist office, post service, and coffeehouse. Fishing and aquaculture are also local industries. There is only one road into the fjord, however, and given the immense amount of snowfall that it regularly receives, it is only possible to reach the village by sea during the winter.


Pikes Peak covered in snow as Memorial Day weekend storm hits Colorado

Denver Snow Takes Some By Surprise In Colorado's Foothills & High Country

Snow Takes Some by surprise in Colorado's foothills & high country
A cold and soggy Memorial Day Weekend storm produced snow in Colorado's high country on Sunday with the snow level as low as 8,000 feet in some spots. The flakes started just after sunrise in areas around Steamboat Springs.

The snow caused some traffic issues along Highway 285 between Denver and Fairplay early Sunday afternoon. Higher up on Pikes Peak at 14,115 feet it was cold enough for the snow to accumulate with a temperature of 23°F at 3:30 pm.


Carcasses of 2 whale species washed ashore on coast in 24 hours at Dahanu, India

The carcasses of a Baleen whale and a Pygmy sperm whale washed ashore different coasts of Dahanu between Saturday and Sunday.

On Saturday, the highly decomposed carcass of a Baleen whale, around 45 feet and 8 feet width, washed ashore Parnaka in Dahanu.

The carcass that left a stinking smell in the surrounding attracted the attention of locals who informed the forest department.

Comment: Another dead whale washed ashore on the 24th of May in Kendrapara, Odisha.

Off North America a humpback was found dead near Moriches Inlet, New York on May 22, a deceased gray whale was found at Seaview, Washington on the 20th while the same species also turned up dead off Santa Cruz, California on the same day.

Over the same week at Hines Bay in Australia a rare (for the region) Sei or fin whale was discovered dead on the 18th.

Cloud Lightning

Skies over Beijing, China plunge into darkness following huge thunderstorm, as CCP gathered for delayed "Two Sessions"

Dark skies over Beijing, China as CCP gather
© YouTube/Infotainment (screen capture)
On May 21st at 3:45 pm local time, the skies over China's capital Beijing suddenly plunged into darkness as a huge thunderstorm rolled in. After delays due to the coronavirus it coincided with the Chinese Communist Party's biggest political gathering of the year, "Two Sessions", taking place.


Magnitude 5.8 earthquake strikes New Zealand near Wellington

Map of the seismic activity near Wellington, New Zealand, on May 24
Map of the seismic activity near Wellington, New Zealand, on May 24.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was rattled live on television during a 5.8 magnitude earthquake in Wellington.

The strong Monday morning earthquake was centred 30km north west of Levin, a town around an hour's drive north of the New Zealand capital.

It was felt most sharply around the South Taranaki Bight, and the closest major town, Wellington, some 100 kilometres south.

Tens of thousands of Kiwis reported feeling weak rattling as far north as Auckland and as far south as Dunedin.

In the capital, it brought sustained shaking for around 15 seconds as Kiwis prepared for their day at 7.53am NZST (5.53am AEST).

The earthquake was 37km deep according to seismic monitoring agency GScience.

Cloud Lightning

Extremely bright 'jellyfish' sprites easily visible with naked-eye over Colorado

Jellyfish Sprites over Bethune, Colorado
© Michael Gavan
Jellyfish Sprites on May 23, 2020 @ Bethune, Colorado
Have you ever seen a sprite? Some say it's impossible. The strange and fleeting forms of red lightning materialize above thunderheads, usually disappearing again in less time than it takes to blink. Yet storm chaser Michael Gavan had no trouble seeing these on May 23rd.

"Extremely bright 'jellyfish' sprites were easily visible naked-eye through evening twilight!"says Gavin. "This is a framegrab of the brightest one I managed to capture with my astrophotography-modified Canon T3i."

Gavin saw the display from northwestern Kansas. "Clear skies to the northwest afforded fantastic views of an MCS (Mesoscale convective system) moving through the Nebraska panhandle," he says. Over the weekend, a low pressure system got stuck in the area, producing ferocious electrical storms with abundant lightning and sprites.

Comment: Less than two weeks ago giant red sprites flashed so brightly over Texas they also could be observed without special equipment.

With the surge in sightings of red sprites in recent years (which are still considered 'rare' by some) it seems the electrical nature of our weather and changing atmosphere is becoming more apparent: For more, check out SOTT radio's: Behind the Headlines: Earth changes in an electric universe: Is climate change really man-made?


Western Australia hit by worst storm in a decade

Western Australia storm
© JMA/Himawari-8, RAMMB/CIRA
Western Australia was hit by its worst storm in a decade on Sunday, leaving about 50,000 homes and businesses without power as the weather bureau recorded wind of up to 130kph.

Up to 100 millimetres of rain is expected to fall along the west coast, while tides are predicted to swell before reaching a peak of 8 metres on Monday.

The storm was caused by the remnants of a tropical cyclone meeting a cold front, and emergency services have warned of flooding and dangerous seas.

Officials said conditions were expected to worsen overnight as the severe storm progressed.


A week before summer: It starts snowing in Carpathian Mountains, Ukraine

Snow late in spring
© facebook.com/chornogora.rescue
Snow late in spring
A downpour across the entire Ukrainian territory may last for almost the entire week.

It started snowing in the Carpathian Mountains on Sunday, May 24.

As of 13:15 on May 24, the air temperature on Mount Pip Ivan of Chornohora was +2 °C, the southwest wind was 7 meters per second; it was snowing," the Chornohirsky mountain search and rescue post said on Facebook on May 24.


Late May snowfall in Eastern Turkey - nearly 4 inches

The Limni Lake Natural Park, located in Turkey's Eastern Black Sea region, was covered with 10 centimeters (3.9 inches) of snow this week, giving visitors the unique opportunity to enjoy the beautiful winter scenery one last time as the summer months approach.

Surrounded by pine and spruce trees, the park offers a pleasant view of the snow-covered mountain.

Located 45 kilometers (27.9 miles) from Gümüşhane's city center, Lake Limni is situated on the foothills of Mount Zigana.