California: From drought to deluge, preparing for weeks of Katrina-style flooding


From drought to deluge, preparing for weeks of Katrina-style flooding

California has spectacularly emerged from one of its driest periods on record and ended its five-year drought by enduring one of its wettest periods on record. Its reservoirs, lakes, and mountainsides are now brimming with water and snow, though scientists caution that underground aquifers are a long way from having the same bounty that is visible on the land surface. Meanwhile, due to abnormally large amounts of snow in Sierra Nevada, nearby communities are preparing for weeks of potential Katrina-style flooding.

Between October 2016 and April 2017, California saw a 175% of the long-term average of rain, courtesy of numerous atmospheric river events. For both scientists and public, this was an unexpected turn of events which led the state to end the official drought emergency in all but four of its counties. As of April 18, just 18% of California was in some form of drought and 23%, almost entirely in southern California, was abnormally dry. As recently as December 27, 2016, the Drought Monitor reported 82% of the state in some measure of drought.

With more than five months still to go, California’s northern Sierra Nevada has already achieved its wettest water year in recorded history, the National Weather Service office in Sacramento announced earlier this month. The mountains saw an incredible amount of snow this season, with a number of stations recording over 16.2 m (638 inches). As of Thursday, April 13, 2017, the Northern Sierra 8-Station Index has surpassed the mark for the wettest water year (October 1 – September 30) on record with 2.28 m (89.7 inches), the office said. The previous water year record was 2.23 m (88.5 inches) set in 1992 – 1983.

Snow totals for winter season 2016 - 17, Sierra Nevada

Sierra snowpack bigger than last 4 years combined

New NASA data show that snowpack in the Tuolumne River Basin in California’s Sierra Nevada, a major source of water for San Francisco and California’s Central Valley, is currently larger than the four previous years of snowpack combined. NASA’s Airborne Snow Observatory (ASO) measured the Tuolumne Basin snowpack on April 1, a critical annual measurement of snow for states and their inhabitants, at 1.5 cubic km (1.2 million acre-feet), JPL said.

“In such a huge snow season, the data available from ASO will provide critical guidance for water managers as we enter into the peak melt season later this spring,” Frank Gehrke, chief of the California Cooperative Snow Surveys of California’s Department of Water Resources, said.

The 2017 California snowpack is close to the largest on the record, which consists of decades’ worth of snow measurements made at ground level. ASO mapping showed that Tuolumne Basin’s snowpack is twice the volume of last year’s snowpack and 21 times larger than the snowpack of 2015, the lowest on record. The combined April 1 snow water equivalent of 2013 through 2016, years when California was in an intense drought, added up to only 92% of this year’s April 1 measurement. In much of the Central Sierra, snow lies 8 m (25 feet) deep. In some high mountain basins, it’s deeper than 24 meters (80 feet). And since April 1, it has continued to snow.

In the San Joaquin River Basin in California’s Central Valley, this year’s April 1 snow water equivalent was about 3.6 cubic km (2.9 million acre-feet). “This is a critical path to better water management for the San Joaquin River and Friant Dam, particularly in a year like this one, where annual inflow from snowmelt might be 10 times the operating capacity of our reservoir,” Jeff Payne, water resources director for Friant, said.

Snow water equivalent – the water content of snow – in the Tuolumne River Basin in 2015 and 2017. Lighter blue indicates less snow, deeper blue is more snow (see the color bar at left). The 2017 snow water equivalent was 21 times greater than 2015, which was the lowest snowpack on record. Credit: NASA

Preparing for weeks of Katrina-style flooding

Such huge amounts of snow in the mountains are now posing a serious flooding threat and nearby communities are preparing for potential disasters when huge snowpack starts to melt. According to Reno Gazette-Journal, Nevada could see weeks of Katrina-style flooding when warm spring and summer sunshine melts the massive snowpack blanketing the Sierra Nevada.

That’s according to the Nevada National Guard and other emergency planners and responders who briefed Gov. Brian Sandoval on potential disaster scenarios. “Typically, Nevada experiences flash flooding,” Col. Cory Schulz told Sandoval, referencing hurricane flooding in 2005 that devastated New Orleans and southern Mississippi. “This will be saturation flooding, much like Katrina.”

The state has already endured two flood situations that triggered federal disaster declarations in February and March for western and northern parts of the state. Nearly three months later the Sierra snowpack has grown to record levels in some places and communities in the Carson and Walker river basins are at risk. The melting rate is expected to quicken as the weather warms in May and rivers could be at high levels deep into summer.

“Obviously, we are in the midst of … one of the three greatest water events in the history of Nevada,” Sandoval said. “We could get a warm rainstorm and it might get down faster than we would like.”

California water storage at 112% of the long-term average

The California Department of Water Resources, which tracks 46 major reservoirs, reported on April 18, 2017, that water storage stood at 112% of the long-term average for the entire system.

These six satellite images show key reservoirs in California near their lowest and highest points over the past three years. All images were acquired by the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8. The image pairs were chosen to match seasons and to avoid cloud cover over each scene. Tan bands around the shorelines (left image in each pair) are sands and sediments that were exposed as water levels dropped and the lake bottom became exposed.

The images below show Trinity Lake, the third largest reservoir in the state (after Lake Oroville and Shasta Lake). The artificial lake in northern California connects to the Trinity River and is part of the Sacramento basin. On April 29, 2015, Trinity stood at 59% of its historical average level for that date; by April 2, 2017, it stood at 114%. As of April 19, the lake was filled to 95% of its 2.45 million acre-foot capacity (and 117% of average water levels).

Trinity Lake water reservoir - 2015 vs 2017

Trinity Lake – images acquired on April 29, 2015 and April 2, 2017. Credit: NASA/EO

Don Pedro Reservoir, California’s sixth largest, stands in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada and connects to the Tuolumne River and the San Joaquin Valley Basin. It is just miles from New Melones Lake, which is visible in the downloadable large image. When Landsat 8 acquired an image on February 26, 2015, the reservoir stood at 61% of its long-term average level. By March 3, 2017, it had risen to 134% of average.

Don Pedro reservoir - 2015 vs 2017

Don Pedro – images acquired on February 26, 2015 and March 3, 2017. Credit: NASA/EO

The third image pair shows Castaic Lake, which is the 24th largest reservoir in California but the largest water storage in the Los Angeles area. It stood at just 42% of average water levels on February 11, 2015; by February 1, 2017, it was back up to 98%.

Castaic Lake - 2015 vs 2017

Castaic Lake – images acquired February 26, 2015 and March 3, 2017

“Reservoirs at the surface are only a partial measure of California’s water health,” cautioned Bill Patzert, a climatologist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. “From space, it looks like we are out of five years of punishing drought. But the depleted aquifers, 100 million dead trees, and $1 billion in flood damage will take decades to deal with.”

“Drought or deluge, we use more water than we have, and California suffers from chronic water scarcity,” said Jay Famiglietti, a hydrologist from JPL and the University of California-Irvine who leads the applied research effort. “That’s because California grows virtually all of the produce for the United States, as well as a tremendous amount of dairy. That level of productivity simply requires more water than is available on an annual renewable basis (snowmelt, rivers, and reservoirs). The water shortfall comes from groundwater, and that groundwater has been in decline for nearly a century. This winter will provide a slight replenishment bump, but that’s it.”

Drought monitor

California

Drought monitor - California - April 18, 2017

Nevada

A year ago, 93% of Nevada was in some state of drought while today such conditions are present in just 6% of the state.

Drought monitor - Nevada - April 18, 2017

Featured image credit: NASA/NOAA Suomi NPP/VIIRS. Acquired: April 14, 2017

https://watchers.news/2017/04/21/from-drought-to-deluge-preparing-for-weeks-of-katrina-style-flooding/

*NEW* map will prompt more *State of Emergencies* | California on the Brink!

April 21, 2017: NOAA’s Regional Climate Center has released updated precipitation totals for the Sierra Nevadas and California as of April 21, 2017 and the numbers simply put “Mind Bending”…they equate to a *Recipe for Disaster*. Flood is imminent in the coming weeks as temperatures rise and this Herculean pile of snow transforms from solid to liquid it will be just way to much for the already juiced water management systems in place down below, that just weren’t designed with this in mind…not by a long shot!
http://www.dailynews.com/government-a…
http://now8news.com/california-sinkin…
http://floodlist.com/asia/kazakhstan-…
https://watchers.news/2017/04/21/from…
#MrMBB333

At least 25 killed after massive floods hit Iran


Note: Heart-wrenching footage of some of the worst flooding in memory, sending prayers and waves of healing-love-vibrations to everyone in Iran affected by the flooding. Blessings, {~A~}

April 15, 2017: An unbelievable flood is underway in NW Iran that has swept away 50 villages, overwhelming roads dramatically sweeping cars away as if they were toys. Yet another “Atmospheric River” has apparently caused the intense flooding. Very dramatic footage coming out of Azerbaijan.

At least 25 killed after massive floods hit Iran

At least 25 people have been killed and 16 others are missing after heavy rain caused massive floods and landslides in Iran’s northwest over the past couple of days. Parts of the region saw water levels not seen in the past 40 years. The heaviest downpours were registered on Friday, April 14, 2017.

According to Esma’eel Najjar, the head of the country’s Crisis Management Organization, the affected provinces are East Azerbaijan, West Azerbaijan, Kordestan, and Zanjan Provinces.

The worst affected were Azar-Shahr and Ajab-Sheer counties of East Azerbaijan, where at least 19 people were killed and 16 remain missing. Khalil Sa’ei, the head of crisis management at the Provincial Governor’s Office, said the province had witnessed the heaviest downpours of the past several years on Friday. The Ajab-Shir and Azar-Shahr counties had borne the brunt of the disaster, amid reports that water levels in the latter region had risen to levels last seen 40 years ago, Axar reported.

Video courtesy PressTV (April 14, 2017)

Video courtesy Focus Iran (April 14, 2017)

PressTV said Kordestan Province was hit by both flooding and landslides.

Shahin Fat-hi, of the Iranian Red Crescent Society’s Search and Rescue Department, meanwhile, told ISNA that the operations had provided assistance to as many as 1 150 people in 33 cities and villages.

Damage reports are still coming in and search and rescue operations are underway. Military and law enforcement forces have been asked to assist.

Latest reports mention severe damage to infrastructure and at least 50 villages destroyed.

Featured image: Massive floods in Iran’s East Azerbaijan province on April 14, 2017. Credit: PressTV

https://watchers.news/2017/04/15/at-least-25-killed-after-massive-floods-hit-iran/

Floods Ravage Over 2,000 Houses In Kaduna, Nigeria


Channels Television.
Updated September 21, 2015
 

kaduna floodAt least 2,000 houses in some parts of Kaduna State, Northwest Nigeria, have been submerged by flood as a result of a heavy rainfall.

The flood was said to have been caused by an unusual heavy downpour that lasted for over 48 hours.

The rainfall which started on Saturday night till Monday morning, caused massive floods at Abubakar Kigo road new extension, Barnawa, Ungwar-Rimi, Gonin-Gora, Karatudu, Kachia, Romi among others.

More than 30, 000 people had been forced out of their homes following the incident.

Many roads had also been blocked, making it difficult to get help and supplies to affected areas.

Flooding is common in most parts of Kaduna State during the rainy season.

Channels Television’s Correspondent in Kaduna, said that poor drainage in the affected areas was the cause of the  flood.

In 2012, flood killed about seven people,  destroyed several houses and farmlands, in what officials said was the worst natural disaster ever to befall the state.

Since then, the State Emergency Management Agency had set up an early warning system to monitor the weather.

About 30 houses were affected by flood in the area as a result of heavy down pour in August.

The residents had, however, refused to comply with NEMA’s directive due to claims of fund to secure new homes.

Instead, they attributed the flood to lack of dredging of the Kaduna River and the opening of a dam by the Cameroonian authorities.

Residents have called on the State Government to dredge the river for easy flow of water during the rainy season.

As the rains continue to pour out, some of the affected residents have started moving out their properties to safer places.

http://www.channelstv.com/2015/09/21/floods-ravage-over-2000-houses-in-kaduna/

LLoyd’s Emerging Risk Report – 2015: Food System Shock


Note: From Dani at RemovingtheShackles:

I have posted the entire PDF of Lloyd’s Emerging Risk Report – 2015:  Food System Shock Below.   please share this information around as it is more important than most of the crap the MSM is putting out there- this is the NOTICE that is being handed to us.

“There is a pressing need to reduce the uncertainty surrounding the impacts of an extreme shock to the food supply. Sudden disruptions to the supply chain could reduce the global food supply and trigger a spike in food prices, leading to substantial knock-on effects for businesses and societies. The food system’s existing vulnerability to systemic shocks is being exacerbated by factors such as climate change, water stress, ongoing globalisation, and heightening political instability
Lloyd’s commissioned the development of a scenario of extreme shock to global food production in order to explore the implications for insurance and risk. Experts in the field of food security and the economics of sustainable development were asked to develop a scenario describing a plausible, relatively severe production shock affecting multiple agricultural commodities and regions, and to describe the cascade of events that could result. ….
A shock to the global food supply could trigger significant claims across multiple classes of insurance, including (but not limited to) terrorism and political violence, political risk, business interruption, marine and aviation, agriculture, environmental liability, and product liability and recall. These losses could be compounded by the potential for a food system shock to last for many years; and the ability of insurers to pay claims quickly is expected to be an important factor in post-shock recovery. More broadly, the insurance industry may also be affected by impacts on investment income and the global regulatory and business environment.
The insurance industry is in a position to make an important contribution to improving the resilience and sustainability of the global food system. As businesses become increasingly aware of the threat posed by food system disruption, they may invest more heavily in comprehensive risk transfer structures, and a severe shock could motivate individuals and businesses to address gaps in their risk management. As such, global food supply shock could also represent a substantial opportunity for insurers, who will have a key role in assisting clients to understand their risk exposure and to tailor appropriate risk transfer solutions.
Scenarios are an important method of exploring emerging risks; they are not predictions or forecasts. The following scenario is simply one of a multitude of events that could occur. When the scenario considers actions or events by individual governments or individuals within specific countries, it is not stating that Lloyd’s is predicting that the events will occur. Many of the comments are based on events that have occurred in the past – either in the countries mentioned or extrapolated from other regions. However, individual countries are only named specifically to give realism to the event and allow appropriately detailed calculations to be made – events could occur in different countries or not at all, and to illustrate this some alternative scenarios are provided. Lloyd’s firmly believes that the insurance industry will be stronger by considering a variety of scenarios around mega-risks, and the only way to do this consistently is to give sufficient detail. This has long been the approach within the Lloyd’s Realistic Disaster Scenario process. Lloyd’s has chosen to share this work openly because it believes that a debate within the insurance industry, and beyond, will strengthen the global community

PDF:http://www.scribd.com/doc/270677775/LLoyd-s-Emerging-Risk-Report-2015-Food-System-Shock

First decade of 21st century: unprecedented high-impact climate extremes since measurements began!


The first decade of the 21st century was the warmest for both hemispheres and for both land and ocean temperatures. High temperatures were accompanied by a rapid decline in Arctic sea ice, and an accelerating loss of the ice sheets of the world’s glaciers.

Earth experienced above-average precipitation, including one year – 2010 – that broke all previous records. 2001 – 2010 period was also marked by dramatic climate and weather extremes such as the European heatwave of 2003, the 2010 floods in Pakistan, hurricane Katrina in the United States of America (USA), cyclone Nargis in Myanmar and long-term droughts in the Amazon Basin, Australia and East Africa.

Extreme floods, droughts and tropical cyclones were all experienced across the world and throughout the decade. More than 370,000 people died as a result of these, representing a 20 per cent increase in casualties from the previous decade. This increase is due mainly to the dramatic increase in the total reported deaths arising from heatwaves in 2003 and 2010.

Impact of Extreme events during 2001-2010 compared with 1991-2000. Total number of loss of lives

Temperatures

The average land and ocean-surface temperature for the decade 2001-2010 was estimated to be 14.47°C, or 0.47°C above the 1961–1990 global average and +0.21°C above the 1991–2000 global average (with a factor of uncertainty of ± 0.1°C).

The decadal rate of increase in the global temperature accelerated between 1971 and 2010. The global temperature increased at an average estimated rate of 0.17°C per decade during that period, compared with 0.062°C per decade for the entire 1880-2010 period. The average 2001-2010 decadal temperature was 0.21°C warmer than 1991–2000, which in turn was +0.14°C warmer than 1981-1990.

Every year of the decade except 2008 was among the 10 warmest years on record. The warmest year ever recorded was 2010, with a temperature estimated at 0.54°C above the 14.0°C long term average of 1961-1990 base period, followed closely by 2005.

Above-average temperatures were observed over most parts of the globe in 2001-2010. This was particularly marked in the higher latitudes of the northern hemisphere. Greenland recorded the largest decadal temperature anomaly, at +1.71°C above the long-term average and with a temperature in 2010 of +3.2°C above average.  Africa experienced warmer than normal conditions in every year of the decade.

Decadal global combined surface-air temperature over land and sea-surface temperature (°C) obtained from the average over the three independent datasets maintained by the HadCRU, NOAA-NCDCand NASA-GISS.The Horizontal grey line indicates the long term average value ( 14°C).

Results from WMO’s survey showed that nearly 94% of reporting countries had their warmest decade in 2001-2010 and no country reported a nationwide average decadal temperature anomaly cooler than  the long term average.

Some 44% of countries in the survey reported nationwide hottest temperature records in 2001-2010, compared to 24% in 1991-2000.  Coldest daily minimum temperature absolute records showed an opposite pattern:  In 1961-1970, nearly 32 % of the countries reported nationwide lowest minimum temperature values. The percentage decreased to 11% in 2001-2010.

Droughts

Drought affected more people than any other kind of natural disaster due to their large scale and long-lasting nature. Some of the highest-impact and long-term droughts struck Australia (in 2002 and other years), East Africa (2004 and 2005, resulting in widespread loss of life) and the Amazon Basin (2010) with negative environmental impacts.

Flooding and heavy precipitation

Numerous high-impact flooding and heavy precipitation events were recorded during the decade. WMO devoted special case study to the large-scale flooding event which occurred in Pakistan in July 2010. It affected more than 20 million people and claimed some 2 000 casualties.

The 2001-2010 decade was the second wettest since 1901. Globally, 2010 was the wettest year since the start of instrumental records.

Most parts of the globe had above-normal precipitation during the decade. The eastern USA, northern and eastern Canada, and many parts of Europe and central Asia were particularly wet.

According to the WMO survey, floods were the most frequently experienced extreme events over the course of the decade. Eastern Europe was particularly affected in 2001 and 2005, India in 2005, Africa in 2008, Asia (notably Pakistan, where 2 000 people died and 20 million were affected) in 2010, and Australia, also in 2010.

According to the 2011 Global Assessment Report, the average population exposed to flooding every year increased by 114% globally between 1970 and 2010, a period in which the world’s population increased by 87% from 3.7 billion to 6.9 billion.

Heatwaves

Anomalously warm weather that lasts for several days or weeks and has a severe impact on society is often referred to as a heatwave. Extreme heatwaves occurred in Europe in summer 2003 (more than 66 000 deaths in France, Germany, Italy, Portugal and Spain, together) and in the Russian Federation in 2010 (more than 55 000 related deaths).

Severe storms

More than 500 cyclone-related disaster events were recorded killing nearly 170,000 people, affecting over 250 million, and caused estimated damages of $380 billion. The number of people exposed to severe storms almost tripled in cyclone-prone areas, increasing by 192%, in the same period.

According to NOAA-NCDC, 2001 – 2010 was the most active decade since 1855 for tropical cyclones in the North Atlantic Basin. An average of 15 named storms per year was recorded, well above the 1981 -2010 long-term average of 12 named storms per year. The most active season ever recorded was 2005, with a total of 27 named storms, of which 15 reached hurricane intensity and seven were classified as major hurricanes (Category 3 or higher).

The North Indian Ocean saw the deadliest tropical cyclone recorded during the decade, when Tropical Cyclone Nargis struck Myanmar in early May 2008. More than 138 000 people were reported killed or missing, eight million people were affected and thousands of homes were destroyed.

Composition of the atmosphere

In addition to analyzing global and regional temperatures, it also charted the rising atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, finding that global concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere rose by 39 per cent since the start of the industrial era in 1750, nitrous oxide concentrations rose by 20 per cent and methane concentrations more than tripled.

According to the WMO Greenhouse Gas Bulletin, global-average atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide rose to 389 ppm1 in 2010 (an increase of 39 per cent compared to pre-industrial times), methane to 1 808.0 ppb1 (158 per cent) and nitrous oxide to 323.2 ppb (20 per cent). This changing composition of the atmosphere is causing the global average temperature to rise, which, in turn, exerts a significant influence on the hydrological cycle and leads to other changes
in climate and weather patterns.

Humanity’s emissions of chlorofluorocarbons and other chemicals have also changed the atmosphere by damaging the stratospheric ozone layer that filters out harmful ultraviolet radiation.

Cryosphere

The record warmth of the decade was accompanied by the melting of ice caps, sea ice and glaciers and the thawing of permafrost. In addition to being a sign of a warming climate, melting ice and snow also affected water supplies, transport routes, infrastructure, marine ecosystems much more.

This image compares the average sea ice extent for September 2007 to September 2005; the magenta line indicates the long-term median from 1979 to 2000. September 2007 sea ice extent was 4.28 million square kilometers (1.65 million square miles), compared to 5.57 million square kilometers (2.14 million square miles) in September 2005. This image is from the NSIDC Sea Ice Index. Image courtesy of the National Snow and Ice Data Center, University of Colorado, Boulder.

The sea ice in the Arctic Ocean dropped below the previous all-time record set in 2007. This year also marks the first time that there has been less than 4 million square kilometers (1.54 million square miles) of sea ice since satellite observations began in 1979. This animation shows the 2012 time-series of ice extent using sea ice concentration data from the DMSP SSMI/S satellite sensor. The black area represents the daily average (median) sea ice extent over the 1979-2000 time period. Layered over top of that are the daily satellite measurements from January 1 — September 14, 2012. A rapid melt begins in July, whereby the 2012 ice extents fall far below the historical average. The National Snow and Ice Data Center (www.nsidc.org) will confirm the final minimum ice extent data and area once the melt stabilizes, usually in mid-September.

​The report concludes that understanding the Earth’s climate and trends in temperature, precipitation and extreme events is of vital importance to human well being and sustainable development. As the report confirms, climate scientists can now link some natural oscillations to seasonal climate trends. They also understand the mechanisms by which humanity’s greenhouse-gas emissions are raising global average temperatures.

While climate scientists believe that it is not yet possible to attribute individual extremes to climate change, they increasingly conclude that many recent events would have occurred in a different way – or would not have occurred at all – in the absence of climate change. (WMO)

In this overview of WMO publication we provided only a glimpse at the extreme climate conditions Earth has experienced in the first decade of 21st century. Many scientists still argue as to why this weather extremes are happening; whether growing human civilization is the source of extreme weather events or they are just the part of natural occurring process. For more facts WMO released please read the summary or the full report for even more data. Links are provided below. 

Sources: UN, WMO

  • WMO’s summary report can be found here.
  • Full report can be found here.

Featured image: Sunset variations by http://www.flickr.com/photos/66521457@N03/9209601874

http://thewatchers.adorraeli.com/2013/07/06/first-decade-of-21st-century-unprecedented-high-impact-climate-extremes-since-measurements-began/

At least 15 dead in Indonesia floods and landslides


Our prayers go out to all the injured and to families who lost loved ones, to all the suffering villagers struggling to survive the chaotic earth changes rocking the islands in the SW Pacific Ring of Fire. It’s impossible to imagine the difficulty they’re experiencing or the depths of their despair…

BBC News
Mon, 18 Feb 2013
Indonesia flood

© AP
Search-and-rescue teams are in the areas affected by the landslide.

Flooding and landslides in the Indonesian province of North Sulawesi have left at least 15 people dead, officials say.

On Sunday thousands of people fled their homes in the provincial capital Manado and surrounding areas to escape the floods.

The water was up to 2m (6ft 6in) deep in some places, a government official told Reuters news agency.

Rescue teams and residents are digging through debris to search for survivors.

Bulldozers and other equipment are being sent to affected areas.

The bodies pulled from the mud on Sunday included those of three children, North Sulawesi police chief Brig-Gen Dicky Atotoy told the Associated Press (AP) news agency.

Residents say they were cleaning debris from a previous landslide when mud and rocks fell down the hills.

“It was horrible. We were immediately fleeing, but some failed and (were) buried in the ground,” local official Lucky Sumakud told AP.

 

Thailand Worst Flooding on Record, Bangkok in State of Emergency


Uploaded by on Nov 3, 2011

Over 400,000 people have been effected by the worst flooding to strike the Metro area of Bangkok in recent history. There has been 400 fatalities reported, the damage cost have also moved in to the Billions of dollars across the area pushing fears that it will take the region years to recover.

This video is a quick recap and forecast, plus a slide show near the end

Two dead, hundreds stranded in Irish flooding ~ Dublin declares “State of Emergency”


Two people died and hundreds were stranded in northern and eastern Ireland after torrential rain closed roads and rail lines, left shops and homes under water and led to the capital, Dublin, being put on an emergency footing.

More than one month’s rain fell on Dublin in 24 hours, causing several rivers to break their banks and flooding the country’s largest shopping centre in the south of the city.

Dublin City Council said the amount of rain that fell on the east coast on Sunday and Monday was unprecedented, damaging hundreds of properties and forcing many people to evacuate their homes.

Police said an unidentified body was washed up on the banks of a river outside Dublin and local media said it was probably that of a policeman who was swept into the river on Monday when trying to help stranded motorists.

Emergency services found a woman’s body in the basement of a flooded house in south Dublin, police added.

Eighteen people, including two young children, were rescued by firefighters in boats in the northern county of Tyrone when flood waters engulfed their homes.

The country’s largest shopping centre in south Dublin remained shut on Tuesday after a nearby river burst its banks and flooded the ground floor. One of the capital’s main courthouses was also closed because of flood damage.

The rain stopped overnight before resuming early on Tuesday. Ireland’s meteorological service said there was a risk of heavy rain in the east and north of the country but that it expected mainly dry weather for the rest of the day.

– Reuters

Shocking Video of FLASH FLOOD to hit Italy


Link to more video:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/video/2011/oct/26/italy-flash-flooding-monterosso-liguria

Uploaded by on Oct 26, 2011

Uploaded by RussiaToday on 26 Oct 2011
Rivers of mud caused by torrential rains have swept through villages in Nothern Italy, killing up to 8 people. Some parts of what is a popular tourist destination were cut off because of flooded, blocked or destroyed roads. It’s Italy’s second weather disaster in a week – after Rome was hit by a violent storm that brought transport to a halt and forced many to stay indoors. Torrential rains lashed country from the Alps to Sicily. The storm Wednesday spared few areas, but Liguria and Tuscany were the hardest hit. Roads and the railway line were blocked.

RT on Twitter http://twitter.com/RT_com
RT on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/RTnews

2010 – 2011: Earth’s most extreme weather since 1816?


Posted by: JeffMasters, 1:32 PM GMT on June 24, 2011

Every year extraordinary weather events rock the Earth. Records that have stood centuries are broken. Great floods, droughts, and storms affect millions of people, and truly exceptional weather events unprecedented in human history may occur. But the wild roller-coaster ride of incredible weather events during 2010, in my mind, makes that year the planet’s most extraordinary year for extreme weather since reliable global upper-air data began in the late 1940s. Never in my 30 years as a meteorologist have I witnessed a year like 2010–the astonishing number of weather disasters and unprecedented wild swings in Earth’s atmospheric circulation were like nothing I’ve seen. The pace of incredible extreme weather events in the U.S. over the past few months have kept me so busy that I’ve been unable to write-up a retrospective look at the weather events of 2010. But I’ve finally managed to finish, so fasten your seat belts for a tour through the top twenty most remarkable weather events of 2010. At the end, I’ll reflect on what the wild weather events of 2010 and 2011 imply for our future.

Earth’s hottest year on record
Unprecedented heat scorched the Earth’s surface in 2010, tying 2005 for the warmest year since accurate records began in the late 1800s. Temperatures in Earth’s lower atmosphere also tied for warmest year on record, according to independent satellite measurements. Earth’s 2010 record warmth was unusual because it occurred during the deepest solar energy minimum since satellite measurements of the sun began in the 1970s. Unofficially, nineteen nations (plus the the U.K.’s Ascension Island) set all-time extreme heat records in 2010. This includes Asia’s hottest reliably measured temperature of all-time, the remarkable 128.3°F (53.5°C) in Pakistan in May 2010. This measurement is also the hottest reliably recorded temperature anywhere on the planet except for in Death Valley, California. The countries that experienced all-time extreme highs in 2010 constituted over 20% of Earth’s land surface area.


Figure 1. Climate Central and Weather Underground put together this graphic showing the nineteen nations (plus one UK territory, Ascension Island) that set new extreme heat records in 2010.

Most extreme winter Arctic atmospheric circulation on record; “Snowmageddon” results
The atmospheric circulation in the Arctic took on its most extreme configuration in 145 years of record keeping during the winter of 2009 – 2010. The Arctic is normally dominated by low pressure in winter, and a “Polar Vortex” of counter-clockwise circulating winds develops surrounding the North Pole. However, during the winter of 2009 – 2010, high pressure replaced low pressure over the Arctic, and the Polar Vortex weakened and even reversed at times, with a clockwise flow of air replacing the usual counter-clockwise flow of air. This unusual flow pattern allowed cold air to spill southwards and be replaced by warm air moving poleward. Like leaving the refrigerator door ajar, the Arctic “refrigerator” warmed, and cold Arctic air spilled out into “living room” where people live. A natural climate pattern called the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), and its close cousin, the Arctic Oscillation (AO) were responsible. Both of these patterns experienced their strongest-on-record negative phase, when measured as the pressure difference between the Icelandic Low and Azores High.

The extreme Arctic circulation caused a bizarre upside-down winter over North America–Canada had its warmest and driest winter on record, forcing snow to be trucked in for the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, but the U.S. had its coldest winter in 25 years. A series of remarkable snow storms pounded the Eastern U.S., with the “Snowmageddon” blizzard dumping more than two feet of snow on Baltimore and Philadelphia. Western Europe also experienced unusually cold and snowy conditions, with the UK recording its 8th coldest January. A highly extreme negative phase of the NAO and AO returned again during November 2010, and lasted into January 2011. Exceptionally cold and snowy conditions hit much of Western Europe and the Eastern U.S. again in the winter of 2010 – 2011. During these two extreme winters, New York City recorded three of its top-ten snowstorms since 1869, and Philadelphia recorded four of its top-ten snowstorms since 1884. During December 2010, the extreme Arctic circulation over Greenland created the strongest ridge of high pressure ever recorded at middle levels of the atmosphere, anywhere on the globe (since accurate records began in 1948.) New research suggests that major losses of Arctic sea ice could cause the Arctic circulation to behave so strangely, but this work is still speculative.


Figure 2. Digging out in Maryland after “Snowmageddon”. Image credit: wunderphotographer chills.

Arctic sea ice: lowest volume on record, 3rd lowest extent
Sea ice in the Arctic reached its third lowest areal extent on record in September 2010. Compared to sea ice levels 30 years ago, 1/3 of the polar ice cap was missing–an area the size of the Mediterranean Sea. The Arctic has seen a steady loss of meters-thick, multi-year-old ice in recent years that has left thin, 1 – 2 year-old ice as the predominant ice type. As a result, sea ice volume in 2010 was the lowest on record. More than half of the polar icecap by volume–60%–was missing in September 2010, compared to the average from 1979 – 2010. All this melting allowed the Northwest Passage through the normally ice-choked waters of Canada to open up in 2010. The Northeast Passage along the coast of northern Russia also opened up, and this was the third consecutive year–and third time in recorded history–that both passages melted open. Two sailing expeditions–one Russian and one Norwegian–successfully navigated both the Northeast Passage and the Northwest Passage in 2010, the first time this feat has been accomplished. Mariners have been attempting to sail the Northwest Passage since 1497, and have failed to accomplish this feat without an icebreaker until the 2000s. In December 2010, Arctic sea ice fell to its lowest winter extent on record, the beginning of a 3-month streak of record lows. Canada’s Hudson Bay did not freeze over until mid-January of 2011, the latest freeze-over date in recorded history.


Figure 3. The Arctic’s minimum sea ice extent for 2010 was reached on September 21, and was the third lowest on record. Image credit: National Snow and Ice Data Center.

Excellent read with video’s, interactive maps and more, and it’s  all continued here:

http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/comment.html?entrynum=1831

Officials say serious flooding ‘imminent’ on Missouri River lowlands


Local residents on the AboveTopSecret.com forum are saying there are several towns in the area going under and that it’s not believed that people will be coming back. In addition, hundreds of thousands of acres of farmland are being flooded and it’s rumored that corporate farms will take over the lands to plant corn – which just went from $2 bushel to $6. Of course it will take 2-5 years for the land to recover from the flooding and by then most family farms will have gone bankrupt. Predatory capitalism appears to be hard at work behind the scenes…

KETV flooding coverage :

http://www.ketv.com/missouri-river-flooding-extended-coverage/index.html

Slideshow Gallery:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/quimbydogg/sets/72157626889466594/show/

Two levee’s breached:

http://www.ketv.com/missouri-river-flooding-extended-coverage/28220976/detail.html

Nebraska City, Neb. —

Fremont County Emergency Management has scheduled a 7 p.m. meeting today at the Hamburg Fire House regarding Missouri River flooding that is being described as “imminent.”

Emergency Management Coordinator Mike Crecelius is encouraging residents in flood-prone areas to make plans ahead of time and start moving stuff.
The meeting focus is on properties on the south end of Hamburg, but anyone with flooding concerns may attend.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is reporting that releases from upstream reservoirs is reaching record high levels.

Raised levels are forecast for the Nebraska City area by June 7, but some residents are report being told that the river will not crest until mid-June.

“Protecting lives is our number one priority right now,” said Brig. Gen. John McMahon, commander of the Northwest Division of the corps of engineers. “We are working closely with state and local emergency management teams to identify potential flood areas and provide residents with the most current information.”

Dale Thummel, who lives a mile east and 1.5 miles south of the Sapp Brothers Truck Stop, said he received a telephone call Monday advising him to evacuate.
He said water in 1993 was running eight feet from his house, but higher flows are being forecast now.

“It almost run me out of here in 1993 until the levy broke down south, otherwise it would have,” he said.

Thummel, a 49-year-old truck driver, said he is busy today moving everything out.
His closest neighbor, about a two miles away, is also evacuating.

Thummel said the flooding in 1993 was due mostly because a nearby creek had no where to drain and there was seeping from the water table below the ground.

“This time they say it’s going to be the river,” he said.  “They are telling everyone on the bottom they have to evacuate and it’s going to be longterm.”

Hamburg, Iowa, empties out, may never be the same after flood

Radio Iowa reports that residents in Hamburg in extreme southwestern Iowa already are evacuating.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers predicts some of the worst flooding in coming weeks will be in Hamburg, where eight to 10 feet of water could accumulate as the Missouri River swells. The Corps is expected to release a record amount of water from the upstream reservoirs in the next week or so.

Water could remain high for two months.

Hamburg Fire Chief Dan Sturm told Radio Iowa that the town may not survive the flood. He said many of those leaving before the flood waters hit may never be back.

Hamburg is a town of 1,100 in Fremont County.

http://blogs.desmoinesregister.com/dmr/index.php/2011/06/02/hamburg-iowa-empties-out-may-never-be-the-same-after-flood/

Lake Champlain inching again toward destructive level


Lake Champlain, responding to the immense volume of rainfall that struck northern Vermont and the Adirondacks last Thursday, has risen to 102.75 feet above sea level as of 2 p.m. Sunday and will keep rising toward a potentially destructive level, the U.S. Geological Survey and National Weather Service reported.

To put that into perspective, the lake is not only nearly three feet above flood stage, it has now been at or above the highest level recorded in the last 184 years for all but a few days over the past month.

As a result, the all-too-familiar National Weather Service refrain remains in play: A flood warning is in effect. “Major flooding is occurring and major flooding is forecast,” the weather service bulletin today reads, as it has for numerous days since late April.

Vermont State Police in Franklin County said today they continue to receive calls from residents in flooded areas on Hathaway Point Road in St. Albans Town and Georgia Shore Road in Georgia concerning non-residential motor vehicle traffic and pedestrian traffic. The complaints include calls about vehicles being parked on private property and on the roadway — inhibiting flood-related repairs along damaged road and causing congestion on roads with limited access.¶
Sgt. Roger Langevin, a patrol commander assigned to the St. Albans barracks, said the public is reminded that area flood waters continue to rise and fall depending on the amount of rain. The roads can be open one day and closed or lanes reduced the next day after a storm, he said. Homeowners and town officials need access to areas damaged by flooding and encourage anyone not living in a flooded area to refrain from visiting those areas until conditions improve , he said.¶

Go here to read more and see slide show:

http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/article/20110529/NEWS02/110529024/Lake-Champlain-inching-again-toward-destructive-level

Natural Disaster and Sever Weather update


My goodness Mother Nature is has been busy over the last week with huge cracks in the Earth appearing in Peru, freak hailstorms in Pakistan, snow in San Francisco, tornado’s, floods, volcano’s acting up and so much more….

Overwhelming Number of Natural Catastrophes in 2010


“So far in 2010 there have been over 80 natural disasters, including the Haiti earthquake that killed 230,000 people and the recent floods in Pakistan that have affected 21 million people.”

That’s the 10-month record for 2010. But how about this for the past week alone:-

• Three days of incessant rains in Bangladesh have left at least 17 people dead and
41 fishermen missing. Tens of thousands of people are stranded as waters triggered by
a tidal surge have inundated thousands of homes in the low-lying coastal zone
• More than 1,000 villages flooded on China’s Hainan island following the heaviest
rain for decades. More than 210,000 people had been evacuated by late Thursday,
with more downpours forecast for Friday. The torrential rains have been falling for more
than a week and are the worst on the island off China’s southeastern coast since 1961.
• Hope faded Thursday for people listed as missing after floods killed at least 49 in
central Vietnam. In Quang Tri, roads and agricultural land remained inundated. “This
will certainly affect rice production for the winter-spring season.”
• More than two dozen earthquakes have shaken north central Arkansas in the first
eight days of October. All were minor but it begs the questions what’s causing the
tremors and could the next one be stronger?
• AUSTRALIA – Roads are cut and thousands lack power after up to 250mm of rain was
dumped on southeast Queensland over the weekend.

Didn’t a near Earth object whizz by us in the last few days? And we still have almost three months to go before we hit 2011….

Floods Kill 49 People in Vietnam


Floods in northern and central Vietnam have killed at least 49 people in the past week, including 18 in the capital, Hanoi, state media have said.

Much of the city – hit by the worst flooding in two decades – is submerged under 1m (3ft) of water, and more rain is expected in the next few days.

Crops have been destroyed in affected areas and the price of food has soared.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/7703672.stm

%d bloggers like this: