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Fri, 13 Dec 2019
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Earth Changes


Volcano in Guatemala erupts - 3 explosions an hour

The Guatemalan Santa Maria volcano has erupted regularly over November, according to INVISUMEH, the country's institute for volcanology. The organisation reported eruptions at the mountain's summit as much as three times per hour over one week.

According to INVISUMEH, explosions surfaced at Santa Maria one to three times per day from November 20 to 26.

The eruptions sent "avalanches" of material descending towards the east, west and southwest flanks of the mountain.

Explosions also coughed out a billowing plume of smoke into the sky, reaching 1,698-2,952 metres above Santa Maria's 12,000-foot height and drifting towards the west and southwest.

Some of this ash fell locally, around El Faro, Santa Maria, and Viejo Palma.

Snowflake Cold

Heavy snow lowers temperature, disrupts traffic in Xinjiang, China

Braving the cold, police officers and civil border guards patrol a ranch on the border with Mongolia in Changji, Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, on Sunday
© Zhou You
Braving the cold, police officers and civil border guards patrol a ranch on the border with Mongolia in Changji, Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, on Sunday

With an upper-level trough moving east, heavy snow swept northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region from Thursday, drastically lowering temperature and forcing closure of some highway sections.

The lowest temperature in Kuitun City in northern Xinjiang dropped significantly to minus 14 degrees Celsius. Local residents put on thicker clothes to combat the cold wave.

The snow also battered Manasi County in Changji Hui Autonomous Prefecture, with the mercury dipping below 10 degrees Celsius. The local sanitation department dispatched six snow plows to clear thick snow that had already accumulated on roads.

Cloud Precipitation

November flooding in UK 'a once-in-60-years weather event'

Swathes of Yorkshire and Lincolnshire was under water for days
© PA
Swathes of Yorkshire and Lincolnshire was under water for days.

Heavy rainfall which brought
parts of the country to its knees earlier his month - and killed at least one person - was a "once-in-60-years" weather event, experts have said.

The deluge, described by residents in the worst-hit parts of Yorkshire as "almost biblical", resulted in a slew of Environment Agency flood warnings as homes were evacuated, forcing the Government to call a Cobra emergency meeting to deal with the crisis.

Researchers with the Centre for Hydrology and Ecology (CEH) said the 3.1in (77.8mm) of rainfall during a 24-hour period over November 7-8 in Doncaster, which was one of the places badly affected by flooding, was likely to happen only once every 60 years.

Experts found the River Don, which burst its banks, set a new peak flow record.

Elsewhere, flooding around the River Derwent exceeded notable weather events in the last 20 years, the CEH said.

Comment: 'Biblical': Hundreds of flood warnings across England as a month's worth of rain falls in ONE DAY


China Peak Resort in California walloped with 4 feet of new snow in 38 hours

China Peak

China Peak
Ready to hit the slopes?

China Peak Resort will open for the season this Friday after receiving four feet of new snow in 38 hours.

Resort officials say they anticipate they will be open Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

They say anywhere from 48" of snow has fallen at the resort and believe that number will rise through the holiday weekend.

If you plan on heading up to ski make sure you pack tire chains and are prepared for changing weather conditions.


Beautiful circumzenithal arc photographed over Raleigh, North Carolina

Circumzenithal arc over Raleigh, NC
© Susan Bagwell
On Sunday, Susan Bagwell sent WRAL a beautiful image of what appears to be an upside down rainbow.

It appears to be an upside down rainbow, but it's not formed in the same way as a rainbow. It's called a circumzenithal arc and is caused by the refraction of sunlight through ice crystals in the upper atmosphere.

It's similar to a halo around the sun or moon.

To see a circumzenithal arc, the sun has to be at about 22 degrees above the horizon. This happens more often in colder months when the sun's angle is lower and we are more likely to see a mostly clear sky with cirrus clouds.


Canada-U.S. border crossing closed at Coutts, Alberta due to winter storm

A highway camera in Montana shows near white-out conditions near Sweet Grass, Mont., at 7:50 p.m. Wednesday
© MDT Travel Info
A highway camera in Montana shows near white-out conditions near Sweet Grass, Mont., at 7:50 p.m. Wednesday
Thursday, November 28th 2019, 9:07 am - Last time storm caused closure was nearly two decades ago, town official says

A winter storm information alert was issued Wednesday evening, warning travellers to turn back if they're headed to the Canada-U.S. border crossing at Coutts, Alta. and Sweet Grass, Mont.

The border crossing was closed at 6:30 p.m. Highway 4 remains open in Canada, but travel is not recommended, while the I-15 is closed from the border to Shelby, Mont., where multiple vehicles have slid off the highway.

"If you come to U.S. Customs, they're turning you back," said Lori Rolfe, the Village of Coutts' chief administrative officer. "We have lots of snow and lots of blowing so visibility is not great."

Rolfe said the closure was extremely unusual — the last time she recalls a similar incident was in 2000.


Thousands of jellyfish blanket beach after major storm in Crimea

jelly fish
Thousands of jellyfish have washed up on popular beaches along Crimea's Azov Sea after a major storm, giving the shoreline a soft gleam.

The jellyfish washed ashore on Tuesday (November 26) were of the Aurelia aurita jellyfish, commonly known as 'moon jelly' and root-mouth jellyfish species.

Their on-shore appearance is bad for both beachgoers and the jellyfish themselves. Jellyfish start dying the moment they hit the beach and can still sting people if handled.

Source: Reuters

Blue Planet

Shell shock! Mesmerising video shows greatest density of sea turtles ever recorded

© Pexels / Belle Co
One of the largest known gatherings of sea turtles ever recorded has been captured in an incredible video shared online. The beautiful footage was filmed near Costa Rica as the leathery reptiles were preparing to lay their eggs.

The truly mesmerizing footage was uploaded to YouTube this week by marine biologist Vanessa Bézy; using a drone, she captured the turtle swarm swimming in the Ostional National Wildlife Refuge back in November 2016.

"Everybody I've shown this video has an emotional response," Bézy says. "I immediately knew there was something special going on... To this day, I'm still blown away by the video."

Cloud Precipitation

Torrential rain triggers flooding and landslides in Salvador, Brazil - month's worth of rain in just 3 hours

More than a month's worth of rain fell in just 3 hours in the city of Salvador, capital of Bahia State, Brazil on 26 November, 2019.

The city's Civil Defence said 169 mm of rain fell in 3 hours during the morning of 26 November. The monthly average for November is 106.5mm. Civil Defence Salvador added that Liberdade and São Caetano neighbourhoods recorded more than 250mm in 3 hours. Civil Defence had issued timely warnings for the heavy rain, including the sounding of sirens in some districts.

The torrential rain caused flooding and landslides across the city. Civil Defence reported more than 300 incidents. Streets were flooded and around 100 homes damaged. Almost 300 people were evacuated. However, no casualties were reported.

Parts of the city have a high risk of landslides. The government of Salvador recently embarked on a series of risk prevention projects across the city, securing slopes and installing geomats.


Girl mauled to death by 2 dogs in China

canine attack
© Angela Antunes / CC by 2.0
A nine-year-old girl was mauled to death by two shepherd dogs on her way to school in northern China last week, according to Chinese news reports.

The girl, identified only as Ling Ling, was attacked while walking alone on a small rural path between a cornfield and woodland in Quyang county, Hebei province, last Thursday, Shanghai-based news site Thepaper.cn reported on Tuesday.

She cried out as the dogs lunged for her neck and passing pupils ran to the school for help, the Yanzhou Metropolis Daily reported.

Ling Ling's older sister came running and tried to drive the dogs off with rocks but failed and went home to get their parents, the newspaper report said.

The parents drove the animals away but the girl later died of her wounds in hospital.

"Both dogs were big. They jumped on and bit the girl's neck. Her neck was almost severed and her head had wounds, too," the newspaper quoted a villager as saying. "It's so horrific."