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New official data issued by the Met Office confirms that world average temperatures have plummeted since the middle of the year at a faster and steeper rate than at any time in the recent past.
Cooling: New Met Office world data shows a big fall from heat spike caused by El Nino this year
The huge fall follows a report by this newspaper that temperatures had cooled after a record spike. Our story showed that these record high temperatures were triggered by naturally occurring but freak conditions caused by El Nino – and not, as had been previously suggested, by the cumulative effects of man-made global warming.
The Mail on Sunday’s report was picked up around the world and widely attacked by green propagandists as being ‘cherry-picked’ and based on ‘misinformation’. The report was, in fact, based on Nasa satellite measurements of temperatures in the lower atmosphere over land – which tend to show worldwide changes first, because the sea retains heat for longer.
It is true that the massive 2015-16 El Nino – probably the strongest ever seen – took place against a steady warming trend, most of which scientists believe has been caused by human CO2 emissions
However, now the drop in temperature is also showing up in the authoritative Met Office ‘Hadcrut4’ surface record, compiled from measurements from more than 3,000 weather stations located around the world on both sea and land.
To the end of October, the last month for which figures have been released, Hadcrut4 had fallen about 0.5C from its peak in the spring.
The reason is the end of El Nino. The natural phenomenon, which takes place every few years and has a huge impact on world weather, occurs when water in a vast area of the Pacific west of Central America gets up to 3C hotter than usual.
It has now been replaced by a weak La Nina, when the water becomes colder than usual. This means temperatures may still have some way to fall.
El Nino is not caused by greenhouse gases and has nothing to do with climate change. It is true that the massive 2015-16 El Nino – probably the strongest ever seen – took place against a steady warming trend, most of which scientists believe has been caused by human emissions.
But when El Nino was triggering new records earlier this year, some downplayed its effects. For example, the Met Office said it contributed ‘only a few hundredths of a degree’ to the record heat. The size of the current fall suggests that this minimised its impact. When February produced a new hot record for that month, at the very peak of El Nino, newspapers in several countries claimed that this amounted to a ‘global climate emergency’, and showed the world was ‘hurtling’ towards the point when global warming would become truly dangerous. Now, apparently, the immediate threat has passed. It would be just as misleading to say lower temperatures caused by La Nina meant the world was into a new long-term cooling.
The Mail on Sunday’s report was picked up around the world and widely attacked by green propagandists as being ‘cherry-picked’ and based on ‘misinformation’
But the big question is: what will happen when both El Nino and La Nina are over and the Pacific water returns to its ‘neutral’, average state?
Professor Judith Curry, of Georgia Tech in Atlanta, who is president of the Climate Forecast Applications Network, said it would take years before it was clear whether the long-term warming trend was slowing down, staying the same or accelerating.
‘The bottom line is that we can’t read too much into the temperatures of a year or two,’ she said. ‘We will need the perspective of another five years to understand what is going on.’
Courtesy by wattsupwiththat.com
THE Public Health Ministry in Thailand said 34 people have died from heat-related illnesses in under two months amid the El-Nino heatwave that has struck the country.
The official figures were released by the ministry on Saturday revealed the number of deaths from the beginning of March until April 22.
The sweltering heat, according to a report in Coconuts Bangkok, is expected to continue for the remainder of the week as the the Meteorological Department has predicted that the rainy season could begin on May 15.
Health Ministry Permanent Secretary Dr Sophon Mekthon reminded the public to remain indoors and to avoid outdoor activities to prevent heat exhaustion.
He added that everyone should drink at least one litre of water hourly, even if they were not thirsty.
Earlier this month, the AFP reported that the El-Nino cycle, which began last year, is expected to dissipate in the middle of this year and would be replaced by the La Nina phenomenon, which brings with it a high potential for flooding in the region.
Last year, 56 people had succumbed to the heatwave, the bulk of which were laborers and those involved in outdoor activities.
The average peak temperature each day in April was above 40 degrees Celsius, with the mercury spiking one day to 44.3 degrees Celsius – just short of the all-time record.
Courtesy of asiancorrespondent.com
AUTHORITIES in Thailand have urged the public to stay indoors to avoid the hot weather as the country was facing the longest heatwave in over half a century.
In the wake of the situation, animals at Bangkok’s zoo were being fed special frozen fruit pops while people are flocking to shopping malls just to soak up the air-conditioning.
Although Thailand is typically hot and sweaty in April, this year’s scorching weather has set a record for the longest heatwave in at least 65 years.
The average peak temperature each day this month has been above 40 degrees Celsius, with the mercury spiking one day to 44.3 degrees Celsius – just short of the all-time record.
The heatwave has also fueled a new record for energy consumption and prompted health warnings on everything from food-borne illness to drowning, both of which rise every April when Thailand’s hottest month coincides with school summer break.
“As of now we can say we’ve broken the record for the highest temperatures over the longest duration in 65 years – and the season isn’t over yet,” said Surapong Sarapa, head of the Thai Meteorological Department’s weather forecast division.
He added that 1960 – the year Thailand began keeping national weather records – was the last time the weather was this hot.
On this very day (April 27) in 1960, Thailand posted its hottest day ever recorded with 44.5 degrees Celsius in the northern province of Uttaradit.
Countries across Southeast Asia are also feeling the heat, which scientists say is triggered by El Niño, a warming of parts of the Pacific Ocean that changes weather worldwide and tends to push global temperatures up. El Niño has also been blamed for causing the worst drought in decades across the region.
Neighboring Malaysia is predicted to endure another two months of hot as the El Niño phenomenon is expected to only dissipate in June, based on an analysis by the Climate Prediction Center (CPC) of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in the United States.
Thailand’s Department of Disease Control has warned people to beware of food poisoning and other food-related illnesses that typically increase during hot weather when bacteria can thrive on unrefrigerated food.
“Stay indoors, try to limit activity outdoors. Wear sunglasses, wear hats with large brims. Drink more water than usual,” the disease control center said in a statement this week.
It also reminded the public of the increased risk of drowning in hot weather as children flock to Thailand’s beaches, ponds and lakes to take a swim.
“Do not let young children out of your sight for even a brief moment,” the statement said, noting that an average of 90 children die every month in Thailand from drowning, but that number increases to about 135 in April.
Courtesy of asiancorrespondent.com
Heatwave continued to grip Haveri district. According to the scientists at State Natural Disaster Management centre, Medleri in Ranebennur taluk recorded a maximum day temperature of 42 degrees Celsius on Saturday. The scientists of the centre told Deccan Herald, “The extreme weather, fuelled by El Nino, is expected to continue for next three days. Parts of the state may receive scattered rainfall.”
Ranebennur and Shiggaon taluks are experiencing blistering hot weather.
Interestingly, there is a difference of at least five degree Celsius in maximum temperature in the two extremes of Haveri district. While Ranebennur and Shiggaon taluks are singing at 41 and 40 degrees Celsius, it is 36.8 degrees Celsius in Hanagal.
Mysuru district, on Saturday, recorded a maximum temperature of 38 and a minimum of 23 degrees Celsius, according to Organic Farming Research Station at Naganahalli in Mysuru.
According to the station, the average temperature is expected to be between 37 and 38 degrees during the day and 23 degrees to 24 degree during the night.
Courtesy of deccanherald.com
AUSTRALIA’S southern states are in the grip of record-breaking heatwaves — with summer-like conditions set to continue for at least another week.
New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia have already experienced above average March temperatures.
Bureau of Meteorology senior forecaster Agata Imielska said weather records had been broken in recent weeks but more looked set to be smashed in coming days.
Sydney has seen 29 consecutive days of temperatures 26C or above, breaking its previous record of 19 consecutive days from March 2014.
“It will probably keep going because Sydney is looking like it’s going to have a nice period of high temperatures with 28-29C this weekend and above 30-32C days forecast from Sunday 30 or 32 each day, ” Ms Imielska said.
The mercury is expected to nudge 30C in Sydney, and higher in the western suburbs, every day next week.
Ms Imielska said Sydney ocean temperatures were sitting on a mild 24 degrees and contributing to the mercury not dropping below 19C overnight more than twice since the start of February.
“It’s a good stretch of nice settled weather spilling over from summer,” she said,
“Summer hasn’t released its grip on our weather just yet.”
Much of Australia is sweltering through the hottest start to Autumn in decade. Picture: BOM
But conditions will be less than idyllic in other parts of the country, from this weekend.
BOM senior forecaster Adam Morgan said west NSW was in for a scorcher with Wagga Wagga and Albury to endure extreme temperatures with the potential to break more records.
“In Albury we’re forecasting seven days in a row above 38C and that will penetrate to eastern SA and west NSW,” he said.
The last time the mercury hit 38C for the region in March was in 2008 and lasted only one day.
VIC is expected to see the worst of the heatwave caused by a blocking high pressure system in the Tasman Sea.
“Most of the heat is going to be focused in the north western ranges,” Mr Morgan said.
“We could easily see some more records broken in Victoria for consecutive hot days.
“Victoria is mostly predicted to be in the high to very high fire danger range today and over the weekend, with a chance of moving to severe fire danger.
“Winds will be light to moderate which might not bump up the fire danger to severe but forecasters are watching it very closely.”
Mr Morgan said Australia was still under the influence of the El Niño event, which was partly responsible for making the first month of Autumn mimicking summer.
“The El Nino is expected to decay by mid this year but for now its effects are still being felt,” he said.
“It’s going to be a while until we see any cold fronts or cool changes yet.”
Courtesy of news.com.au
Marine researchers have found more than 100 dead sea lions — most of them newborns — washed ashore along a relatively small peninsula in northern Chile over the past three months, part of a more widespread die-off being observed elsewhere on South America’s Pacific coast.
“This is happening along the entire coast of northern Chile and we’re getting reports that it’s also happening in Peru, our neighbor to the north,” researcher Carlos Guerra-Correa told CNN. “We could be talking about hundreds of sea lions washing up ashore dead in the entire region.”
The South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens) is the species affected by the die-off observed in the area of the Mejillones Peninsula in Antofagasta province, where the researchers routinely conduct marine studies.
Guerra-Correa said he is concerned that the vast majority of the dead sea mammals are newborns — though some juveniles and adults have been found.
“Some of the dead animals we have found still had their umbilical cord attached,” Guerra-Correa said. “We found one with a placenta.”
Courtesy of edition.cnn
Haiti’s third consecutive year of drought, exacerbated by the global El Niño weather phenomenon, has driven people deeper into poverty and hunger, and doubled the severely food-insecure population, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) said yesterday.
Some 3.6 million Haitians are facing food insecurity, among them more than 1.5 million people who are severely food insecure. This is a key finding from an emergency food security assessment conducted by WFP, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and National Food Security Coordination.
“Without rain for the 2016 spring season, farmers will lose their fourth consecutive harvest on which they normally depend to feed their families,” warned Wendy Bigham, WFP’s Deputy Country Director in Haiti, in a news release.
“We need to help them meet their immediate needs and help build up their resilience,” she added.
According to the agency, the main harvest in 2015 fell below average, with losses of up to 70 per cent in some areas. This is severely threatening food security in Haiti, where agriculture employs half of the working population and 75 per cent of people live on less than US$2 per day.
In addition, the current El Niño phenomenon, which began in early 2015, is one of the strongest on record and is affecting the food security of vulnerable people around the globe, including in Haiti.
In some areas of the country, up to 70 per cent of the population is facing hunger and a recent study conducted by the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the Government of Haiti revealed that malnutrition rates are above emergency levels in several communes.
WFP intends to scale up its food assistance programmes to address the most critical and immediate needs of one million drought-affected people by distributing cash and food rations. The agency also plans to complement the immediate distributions with Cash-for-Assets programmes, in which 200,000 Haitians are paid in cash in exchange for work on watershed management and soil conservation projects to improve local infrastructure for long-term development.
In coordination with the Government, WFP has been distributing food to about 120,000 Haitians since November in areas worst affected by the drought. A two-month food ration feeds a family of five and includes such basic food items as rice, pulses, oil, sugar and salt.
WFP said its assistance to families is essential until at least the next harvest, expected in July. To meet the basic needs of one million Haitians, the agency, which is funded entirely by voluntary contributions, requires US$84 million.
Courtesy of caribbean360.com
Heavy rain between 19 and 20 January 2016 caused flooding in the Manabí and Guayas provinces. The cities of Chone and Portoviejo were some of the worst affected in Manabí. Ecuador’s largest city, Guayaquil, damaged several houses and caused chaos on the city’s roads.
Further heavy rain between 24 and 25 January has once again left parts of Manabí and Guayas provinces underwater. At least 20 homes have been damaged in Portoviejo, Manabí. In Guayaquil, the heavy rain caused surface flooding on roads and problems for traffic.
This time around, the province of Esmeraldas has been worst affected. Local media report that 1 person has died in a landslide in Canton San Lorenzo and that several rivers, including the Esmeraldas, Teone, Súa, Santiago, Ónzole and Mataje, have overflowed, forcing 140 families to evacuate their homes, most of them from the towns of Playa de Oro, Maldonado and Timbiré.
Other affected provinces include Los Rios, where the Quevedo river has overflowed. Several small landslides were reported in Santo Domingo de los Tsachilas . The provinces of Cotopaxi, Imbabura, Santa Elena and Quito have also been affected by the heavy rain.
Ecuador’s meteorological agency and disaster authorities say that the heavy rain is a result of El Niño. Further frequent, intense rainfall is expected in February and March.
Courtesy of floodlist.com