Natural disasters across the world. Latest events.
From one corner of the globe to another, severe weather is causing chaos. Natural disasters and extreme events are becoming all too common, and it's hard to ignore the signs of an ongoing climate crisis. Let's zoom in on some recent incidents that highlight the impact of these weather shenanigans.
Hawaii is covered in snow.
Hawaii's tallest peaks got a touch of winter magic on Friday, December 1st. A Kona weather system that brought rain to the lower lands painted the mountain tops with a beautiful layer of snow. This snowy spectacle graced the summits of Big Island's highest mountains, Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa, standing majestically at nearly 14,000 feet above sea level. Friday saw about five inches of snowfall, turning these volcanic giants into a winter wonderland. While snow on Mauna Kea, a dormant volcano, and Mauna Loa, an active one, is not a rare sight, it's always a breathtaking reminder of nature's diverse beauty. Back in 2016, these peaks were blanketed with about two feet of snow, creating a truly enchanting scene.
Heavy snow causes havoc in northern England.
Northern England faced the brunt of a winter onslaught on Sunday, December 3rd, as heavy snowfall wreaked havoc. Motorists found themselves stranded or opting for an unexpected overnight stay in their vehicles due to the challenging conditions. The picturesque landscapes of Cumbria turned into a snow-covered maze, with over 2,500 customers losing power. Trucks struggled on highways, jackknifing and causing roadblocks that turned short trips into hours-long endeavors. The Cumbria Fire & Rescue Service worked tirelessly throughout the night to rescue individuals trapped in their snowbound cars. Schools and churches transformed into emergency shelters, providing solace for stranded travelers. As the snowfall disrupted normal life, more than 2,500 people were without power in Cumbria. The utility company aimed to restore electricity by late Sunday night, hoping to bring relief to those affected by the unexpected winter storm.
Mount Etna erupts again.
On the enchanting Italian island of Sicily, Mount Etna, Europe's tallest volcano, decided to showcase its fiery prowess at dawn on Friday, December 1st. The eruption transformed the night sky into a mesmerizing dance of fire and ice, providing a spectacular display for onlookers. Standing proudly at 3,057 meters, Mount Etna has been consistently active over the past decade, and this recent eruption is part of its dynamic nature. Fortunately, this fiery spectacle poses no threat to individuals, with no reported injuries or imminent danger. The volcanic activity witnessed in recent days on Mount Etna is described by volcanologists as a series of Strombolian eruptions. Named after the nearby island of Stromboli, these eruptions are characterized as moderately explosive yet brief, adding to the volcano's ongoing narrative of geological drama.
Cyclone Michaung brought heavy rains to southern India.
India's southern states, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, are currently bearing the brunt of a severe cyclonic storm named Michaung. The onslaught of heavy rains and strong winds accompanying the storm has resulted in unfortunate casualties, claiming the lives of nine people, including a child. The impact of the cyclone is vividly evident in flooded residential areas, with distressing images showing cars afloat in the deluge. Cyclone Michaung has officially made landfall between Nellore and Kavali in Andhra Pradesh, as reported by the state chief minister's office. The storm will unleash winds reaching speeds of up to 110 km/h, gradually diminishing as the cyclone loses strength after hitting land. In response to the impending crisis, approximately 9,500 individuals in Andhra Pradesh have been evacuated to 211 designated relief camps, illustrating the proactive measures taken to safeguard vulnerable communities from the cyclone's fury.
11 hikers died in Indonesia due to the volcano Merapi eruption.
Mount Merapi, one of the world's most active volcanoes in West Sumatra, unleashed a powerful eruption on Sunday, December 3rd, propelling hot ash and volcanic debris as high as three kilometers into the sky. Unfortunately, this eruption took the lives of 11 climbers, with rescue efforts underway to locate the missing. Indonesian rescuers, despite the challenges posed by sporadic eruptions, have diligently searched for survivors. So far, three individuals have been found alive on the volcano, while at least 12 climbers remain unaccounted for. Another official has suggested that the number of missing could be as high as 22. Mount Merapi stands at an imposing 2,891 meters and is nestled on the island of Sumatra. Authorities have long imposed restrictions, barring both residents and tourists from venturing within a three-kilometer radius of its crater to ensure their safety.
Death toll from Kenya floods rises to 120.
Devastating floods in Kenya have claimed the lives of at least 120 people, displacing nearly 90,000 households, as announced by officials last Tuesday. Kenya, alongside its neighbors Somalia and Ethiopia, is grappling with flash floods exacerbated by the El Niño weather phenomenon. These recent floods have submerged extensive farmlands, leading to the loss of tens of thousands of livestock and rendering hundreds of thousands homeless. The deluge follows the country's worst drought in 40 years, leaving many in dire need. The most severely impacted regions include Tana River, Garissa, Wajir, and Mandera in eastern Kenya. The relentless heavy rainfall is anticipated to persist until at least January 2024.