Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

There are no current tropical storms.

NewsBytes:

Lebanon – A winter storm battering Lebanon has displaced hundreds of Syrian refugees and flooded tented settlements while further bad weather threatens thousands more. The UNHCR in Lebanon has launched an extreme weather response as thousands of refugees across the country are in need of supplies, food and temporary accommodation after refugee settlements in low lying areas flooded. Winter storm Norma has submerged streets across Beirut, closed roads and forced thousands of schools to shut their doors.

Zimbabwe – AS flash floods continue to hit parts of the second capital city, Bulawayo, City officials, in an effort to prevent the recurrence of flooding, have warned residents against obstructing the free flow of water.

Global Warming

Climate change is destroying Lebanon’s biblical cedar trees

The cedar trees of Lebanon have survived for millennia. King Solomon is said to have used the tall, strong evergreens to build his temple in Jerusalem. The Phoenicians chopped them down to build ships, the ancient Egyptians to make paper.

But conservationists are warning the usually resilient trees are now facing the biggest threat to their existence – climate change. Today in the Chouf Biosphere Reserve south of the Lebanese capital Beirut, black branchless trunks jut from the ground where young, healthy ones once stood.

The cedars, which grow in Lebanon and a handful of other Mediterranean countries where they enjoy the high altitude and humid climate, are suffering from the longer, hotter summers and drier winters.

In the 1950s, it typically rained or snowed here 100 days a year or more. The relatively cool temperatures through winter would keep snow on the ground for months. However, the last few winters have seen an average of just 40-50. Temperatures, meanwhile, have risen 2 degrees.

The warming earth has encouraged greater numbers of sawflies, the Cephalcia tannourinensis, which burrow into the cedars’ trunks and feast on their needles. While the larvae first began to appear in the 1990s, they have previously gone unnoticed because their cycles did not interfere with the trees, now, the insects mostly target the relatively younger trees – those aged between 20-100 years. Last year, 170 trees dried up completely and died. It was like a fire had ravaged the forest.

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Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Gl sst mm

In the Eastern Pacific Ocean: Tropical Storm Bud is located about 30 mi…50 km nne of La Paz Mexico with maximum sustained winds…40 mph…65 km/h. Present movement…n or 355 degrees at 13 mph…20 km/h.

Tropical Depression Four-E is located about 110 mi…180 km s of Acapulco Mexico with maximum sustained winds…35 mph…55 km/h. Present movement…stationary.

In the Western Pacific Ocean: Tropical Depression (td) 08w (Gaemi), located approximately 115 nm south of Taipei, Taiwan, is tracking east-northeastward at 12 knots.

Tropical Storm (ts) 07w (Seven), located approximately 132 nm northeast of Kadena AFB, Okinawa, Japan is tracking east-northeastward at 35 knots.

NewsBytes:

Lebanon – Heavy rain on Wednesday and Thursday resulted in massive floods at the Christian village of Ras Baalbak in the northern Bekka Valley of Lebanon, where at least one person, Shahira Balis, was killed, as mud and water broke into her home. The village’s electricity system was disrupted completely, as the floods knocked down all electricity polls, and destroyed a still unaccounted number of shops, fields, crops, and merchandise. School walls collapsed, and cars were smashed by the floods, while trees were uprooted. The ceilings of many older homes caved in.

India – Floods triggered by heavy rainfall over the past three days have claimed the lives of 12 people in the Northeast and affected nearly four lakh people across the region. Several rivers are flowing above danger level and landslides, submerged roads and railways tracks have affected movement of traffic at several places and led to cancellations of some trains. According to Assam State Disaster Management Authority, seven districts — Hojai, Karbi Anglong East, Karbi Anglong West, Golaghat, Karimganj, Hailakandi and Cachar — have been affected. Nearly 36,000 displaced people are residing in 116 relief camps.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Gl sst mm

In the Western Pacific Ocean: Tropical Depression 05w (Five), located approximately 121 nm east of Da Nang, Vietnam, is tracking northward at 06 knots.

NewsBytes:

Mid-West, USA – Driving rain led to dangerous floods in the Mid-Atlantic States on Sunday, adding to the weather misery across the sodden region. Flood warnings were in effect Sunday in Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and Washington, D.C., snarling traffic and causing streams to surge out of their banks.

Lebanon – Humanitarian organizations launched an emergency response in Arsal Saturday night, after heavy rains damaged around 200 tents in three Syrian refugee camps near the northeastern town.

New Zealand – Rivers in the Tolaga Bay area rose rapidly after midnight after torrential rains. Several families had to be rescued from their inundated homes. Civil Defence now believes the worst is over and the floodwaters are receding.

Thailand – The municipality of the northeastern province of Khon Kaen was flooded after strong winds and heavy rain battered the city on Sunday. Several roads in Muang district were inundated. Mittaphab Highway, the main inter-provincial road, was flooded for five kilometres with the water level up to 50 centimetres high.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Gl sst mm

In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone 06s (Berguitta), located approximately 622 nm south-southwest of St Denis, Reunion, is tracking south-southwestward at 17 knots. The final warning has been issued for this system.

Newsbytes:

Lebanon – High winds and torrential downpours overnight led to small-scale damage across Lebanon Friday, toppling billboards, littering streets with debris and closing many sea ports. For the first time this year, wind speeds surpassed 70 kilometers per hour. Streets in the northern district of Akkar and around the southern city of Sidon were transformed into swamps, while trash, fallen trees and other debris blocked roads temporarily. The southern sea ports of Sidon and Tyre remained closed, after fishermen had Thursday lifted their boats from the water or fastened them securely to piers in anticipation of storm surges.

Washington State, USA – The National Weather Service in Seattle issued a flood watch for the Washington coast through Thursday night, and by afternoon, surging waves were flooding roads, rolling over seawalls and pouring over jetties all along the coastline.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Tropical cyclone Pam is located approximately 350 nm north-northeast of Noumea, New Caledonia and is tracking south-southwestward at 11 knots.

Tropical cyclone Nathan is located approximately 229 nm north of Cairns, Australia and is tracking east-northeastward at 02 knots.

Tropical cyclone (tc) 19s (Olwyn), located approximately 83 nm south-southwest of Learmonth, Australia, and is tracking southward at 13 knots.

Tropical storm 03w (Bavi), located approximately 173 nm northeast of Pohnpei, and is tracking westward at 12 knots.

NewsBytes:

Iran – Flash floods in the Iranian port city of Bandar Abbas has claimed the life of one person. The eight-hour downpour caused substantial flood damage to buildings and roads.

Lebanon – A mudslide triggered by heavy rainfall has injured two people and blocked the main Hasroun-Bsharri road in north Lebanon.

Hawaii – A fresh round of wintry weather struck high elevations of the tropical Hawaiian Islands, with blizzard conditions on the summit of Mauna Kea halting construction of the Big Island’s new Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT).

Angola – Floods caused by torrential rains have killed 62 people – 35 of them children – in the Angolan city of Lobito. The flood water has reached 3m (9.8ft) in some areas of the city since Wednesday. Scores of homes have been destroyed and rescue teams are still searching for missing people.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Tropical cyclone (tc) 14s (Glenda), located approximately 586 nm east of Port Louis, Mauritius, and is tracking south-southwestward at 07 knots.

NewsBytes:

Afghanistan – A series of avalanches have struck north of the Afghan capital, Kabul, killing at least 124 people. The snowfall has been concentrated in Panjshir province, where two schools and a mosque and around 100 homes had been destroyed.

Lebanon – A deluge of rainwater flooded the streets of Zahrani Wednesday, forcing Syrian refugees to abandon their swamped tents in the southern village.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

No current tropical storms.

NewsBytes:

Lebanon – A rare snowstorm in Lebanon has claimed the lives of two Syrian man and a young boy, bringing misery to thousands of Syrian refugees. The heavy snowfall cut several roads in mountainous areas. The storm also forced the closure of all Lebanese ports and briefly shut Beirut’s international airport.

Lebanon snowstorm natural disasters 2015

Wildfires

Wildfires

Northern Lebanon

An enormous wildfire erupted in the forests near the northern village of Chekka Sunday, after several other blazes broke out around the country.

Civil Defense teams spent hours battling the blaze, which broke out in Al-Shaqaa hills of the Hiri village near the Lady of Nouriyeh Marian shrine.

Earlier, another fire started in an empty lot not far from fuel reservoirs and a main shopping center in Dora, on the northern outskirts of Beirut, but Civil Defense managed to extinguish it quickly.

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Washington State

Firefighters made progress Sunday battling a large wildfire that has burned thousands of acres of mountain wilderness in Washington state.

The wildfire — the largest of numerous ones burning in the West — started July 8 in Mills Canyon in Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, which encompasses more than 4 million acres along the eastern slopes of the Cascade Range.

The fire has burned 34 square miles and is 25% contained, said Daniel O’Connor, a U.S. Forest Service spokesman at the fire command centre.

Siberia

The area of wildfires in Russia’s Siberia has increased from 20,500 hectares on Sunday to 52,300 hectares on Monday, where 158 wildfires have been registered, press service of the local forestry authority reports.

Most wildfires are registered in the Irkutsk region (51 fires at 34,200 hectares) and in the Krasnoyarsk Territory (73 fires at 17,500 hectares). Besides, wildfires were registered in Buryatiya, Tyva and in the Tomsk region.

On Sunday, 61 wildfires at 2,300 hectares were extinguished in Siberia. From the beginning of the season, the local authorities have registered 6,659 wildfires at 1.212 million hectares.

The most frequent reasons of wildfires are inaccurate handling of fire and lightning strikes.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms

In the North Indian Ocean:

Tropical cyclone Madi is located approximately located about 560 km east-northeast of Chennai, India and 820 km north-northeast of Sri Lanka.

The cyclonic storm Madi situated over the southwest Bay of Bengal waned on Monday evening and moved northwards on Tuesday and will not have any major effect on Kerala, India.

NewsBytes:

Lebanon – Winter storm. The UN says it is “extremely concerned” for Syrian refugees in Lebanon as a fierce winter storm bears down. There has been snow, rain, high winds and freezing temperatures in the north of the country and the Bekaa Valley, home to more than 200 informal camps. Syrian refugees are living in makeshift homes in the harsh winter conditions. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees said it was “working harder than ever” to protect the more than 800,000 Syrians sheltering in Lebanon. At least 80,000 refugees will have to spend the winter in tents. Many others are living in unfinished or unheated buildings with only slightly more protection. Items have been stockpiled to help refugees whose shelters might be damaged or destroyed, including plastic sheeting, floor mats, blankets and mattresses.

Wildfires

Forest Wildfire in Lebanon

A forest fire hit the southern Sidon town of Maghdouche causing the evacuation of students and teachers at the nearby Al-Aila School. One rescue soldier was injured. The Army along with a helicopter have been dispatched to the area.

Lebanon forest fire firefighters

 

Two die in wildfires in Zimbabwe – vast areas razed

The Zimbabwe Environmental Management Agency has said at least two people have died as wildfires burned nearly a million hectares of remote bush land.

State radio said Monday the agency reported two confirmed deaths in sparsely-populated areas of Mashonaland East province.

The fires were fanned by winds a month before seasonal rains are set to start around November.

Wildfires

Wildfire in Lebanon

Firefighters are battling forest fire in Lebanon. The fire is burning on a hill between the villages of al-Bira and Sendyaneh.