Texas and other parts of the U.S. have suffered unprecedented drought this year, destroying incredible portions of this year’s crops. In a distant universe.. er, on the other side of this climatic globe, record floods are pounding Thailand, destroying huge portions of the world’s rice crop. Who could have imagined that the world would be seeing record floods and record droughts at the same time? (Too bad we don’t have any scientists studying the world’s climate and warning us about such things.)
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The tropical tourist paradise of Thailand is currently suffering through enormously costly floods, resulting from a “weak” La Niña monsoon season. Following September’s extremely heavy rains — five feet of rain for the month — the monsoon season continues virtually unabated into this month, where it also coincided, last weekend, with the highest tides of the month. It is estimated that 10 % of the nation’s rice crop has been destroyed, so far, costing nearly 4 billion USD, and growing. This will have certain impact on global food prices (driving them higher) and on food security for tens of millions of people.
Yep, that’s a graph of U.S. disasters according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Looks a bit like the graphs of greenhouse gas emissions, doesn’t it? Looks completely opposite the trend of Arctic sea ice. Strange…
Heavy monsoon rains over the course of August 2011 have caused widespread flood damage in Pakistan. The southern province of Sindh was hit especially hard. The horrendous flooding has effected close to 5 million people, destroyed millions of homes, killed at least 361 people and displaced 600,000 who are currently living in refugee camps because of the continually rising waters.
Aside from the Northeast’s unprecedented hurricane/tropical storm, Irene, as well as the record-setting, unprecedented drought, heat, and fires in Texas and the wildfires in Arizona, many more regions have been getting slammed with extreme, wild weather and natural disasters recently. Two more examples are Oklahoma and Virginia.
Still recovering from Hurricane Irene, the East Coast is being hit again by remnants of Tropical Storm Lee. Rain comes on and off for the East Coast, sometimes only drizzling, but the rivers and streams continue to rise. Among many of the areas flooded are the many towns along the Susquehanna River. Rural towns are nestled along 444 miles of water that lead down into the Chesapeake Bay. As water surged over flood walls built decades ago to protect residences from potential flooding from the Susquehanna River, 20,000 people were ordered to head for higher ground. This is said to be the worst flooding in the history of Binghamton, at least since the flood walls were built in the 1930s and ’40s. Besides the town of Binghamton, nearly 100,000 people from New York to Maryland were ordered to flee the rising Susquehanna River on Thursday.
The U.S. has already set its new record for most damage caused from extreme weather events in a year. (We haven’t even hit hurricane season and there’s also no end in sight to Texas’ devastating, record-breaking drought). The tab is already over $1 billion this year, with the cumulative total since records began being $35 billion.
Can you guess which major media outlet made that analogy? NYTimes? No, it’s one of the worst sources of climate change news and commentary these days. Washington Post? If only! FOX News? OK, yes, that would be absurd — hope the idea made you laugh, at least.
The first estimate of the amount of radiation that leaked from the damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant in the wake of the devastating tsunami have been released by atmospheric chemists from the University of California, Sa Diego.
Amoeba Kills Humans — Another Global Warming Ramification? (+ Top Science & Extreme Weather Stories)
A deadly, brain-eating amoebe has killed at least one boy and one girl recently. The amoebe proliferates at high water temperatures. Water temperatures are higher than normal due to human-caused global warming. Connect the dots.
Floods, one of the hallmark natural disasters resulting in greater occurrence and strength from climate change, are tearing about homes, cities, and people in Bangladesh and Seoul, South Korea this week. Seoul has seen the heaviest rains in July since 1907 now. At least 59 people are dead and 10 missing, according to the latest reports. About 10,000 people from about 4,800 homes have been left homeless.
South Korea just got nailed with some heavy rain that has triggered landslides in and flooding in and near its large capital city, Seoul. 32 have been confirmed dead so far. (Whatever you do, don’t consider that is has anything to do with climate change, even though this is exactly the sort of catastrophe climate scientists have predicted will become more and more common.)
The American Midwest and northern Plains are preparing for continued flooding, with the threat of above average rainfall expected to continue through the summer, says the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Weather Service, who believe that flooding this year could rival the Great Flood of 1993.
Well, it’s no Fukushima, but the concerning news from Nebraska, where one (Calhoun) nuclear power plant is shut down and waiting for flood waters to recede to start up again (something that may not be until the Fall) and another (Cooper nuclear power plant) has mostly been in operation but is under threat as well now. The news is that, yesterday, a dam (or AquaDam) built around the Cooper nuclear power plant and other flood protection systems broke. And that may just be a sign of things to come….