As Extreme Weather Turns Deadly in the UK, Climate Activists Are Forced to Cancel Meeting
Britain has been battered by back-to-back major storms in consecutive weekends, which flooded streets, submerged rail lines, and canceled flights. The most recent storm, Dennis, forced a group of young climate activists to cancel their first ever national conference, as CBS News reported.
"There's a bleak irony in our being beaten back by climate change," 15-year-old Sophia Coningham from London said in a statement released by the UK Student Climate Network via Greenpeace UK, as CBS News reported. "We are now living in an age of climate storms - where the most extreme weather of the last century is becoming the norm in this one."
On Tuesday, CBS News reported that storm Dennis had turned deadly:
One woman is believed to have died in the flooding caused by Dennis, the second major storm to hit the United Kingdom in two weeks. Two men reportedly drowned in the ocean as high winds churned up huge waves over the weekend, and another man was killed after falling into a river in Wales, Britain's LBC radio news reported.
The UK Student Climate Network had scheduled Sunday's event to take place in Strattfordshire in the middle of England. However, police advised the group to cancel the event since travel to and from the event was unsafe, according to the Independent. The group said that heavy rain made the roads impassable.
"This kind of last-minute cancellation is particularly difficult for young people without the financial resources to travel across the country whenever we choose," Conningham said, as the Independent reported. "We are now living in an age of climate storms - where the most extreme weather of the last century is becoming the norm in this one."
"This is an emergency that's now being felt across the world - from Staffordshire to Sri Lanka," she added.
CBS News reported that the UK government's Environment Agency had issued a record 634 flood warnings on Sunday alone. More than 200 flood warnings remain in place across the UK, including nine severe - or "danger to life" – warnings, as the BBC reported.
Storm Dennis slammed areas that were still recovering from last week's storm, Ciara. Dennis hit with winds reaching 91 miles per hour. It doused England, Scotland and Wales with more than half a month's rain in just one afternoon, as The New York Times reported.
The government released emergency funds to help people recover from the storms.
"We'll never be able to protect every single household just because of the nature of climate change and the fact that these weather events are becoming more extreme," British Environment Secretary George Eustice said, as CBS News reported. He added that authorities had "done everything that we can do with a significant sum of money, and there's more to come."
Michael Byrne, a climate scientist at the at the University of St. Andrews in Edinburgh told the Independent that increased precipitation is a predictable byproduct of a warming world.
"When you warm the planet, the atmosphere holds more water. In many parts of the world, including the UK, rising temperatures go hand in hand with more rain," he said. "These storms are nothing new, going back 100 years, but, because we are now more than 1C warmer as a whole versus pre-industrial times, every degree means 7 percent more water in the atmosphere and more rain in these heavy rain events."
"When they come, they bring more rain, 100 per cent for certain, because of climate change," Byrnes added.
Byrnes' statement backs the findings of a study published in Nature last summer which found that hurricanes were dropping more rain. The scientists also predicted that future warming could increase rainfall totals for the most extreme hurricanes and tropical cyclones by up to 30 percent.
As for the climate activists whose meeting was canceled because of extreme weather, the storm just provided more evidence of the urgent need for action.
"The longer we wait to take the action we need, the harder it will be, and the bigger the risk of it being too late," Coningham said as CBS News reported.
- UN Report: Extreme Weather Displaced 2 Million People in 2018 ... ›
- Record 7 Million People Displaced by Extreme Weather Events in ... ›
- Chance of 40 Degree Celsius Days in UK ‘Rapidly Increasing’ Due to Climate Crisis - EcoWatch ›
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
When Europeans first arrived in North America, Atlantic puffins were common on islands in the Gulf of Maine. But hunters killed many of the birds for food or for feathers to adorn ladies' hats. By the 1800s, the population in Maine had plummeted.
- Experts Recommend Halving Global Fishing for Crucial Prey Species ›
- US Court Upholds Ruling on Vast Marine Monument Established by ... ›
A "major" natural gas explosion killed two people and seriously injured at least seven in Baltimore, Maryland Monday morning.
- Fatal Natural Gas Explosion Rocks Durham, NC - EcoWatch ›
- Gas Explosion Rips Through Maryland Office & Shopping Complex ... ›
Nearly 900 people across the U.S. and Canada have been sickened by salmonella linked to onions distributed by Thomson International, the The New York Times reported.
- Meat Producers Issue Massive Recalls after Salmonella, Listeria ... ›
- Salmonella Outbreaks Could Worsen with Decreased Poultry ... ›
- Major Salmonella Outbreak Exacerbated by Government Shutdown ... ›
In the coming days, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is expected to use its power to roll back yet another Obama-era environmental protection meant to curb air pollution and slow the climate crisis.
- Permian Basin Methane Emissions Found to Be More Than 2x ... ›
- Oil and Gas Operations Release 60 Percent More Methane than ... ›
- 'Extraordinarily Harmful' Trump Rule Would Gut Restrictions on ... ›
- Exxon Now Wants to Write the Rules for Regulating Methane ... ›
By Alex Kirby
The temperature of the Arctic matters to the entire world: it helps to keep the global climate fairly cool. Scientists now say that by 2035 there could be an end to Arctic sea ice.
Melt Ponds Crucial<p>"The prospect of loss of sea ice by 2035 should really be focusing all our minds on achieving a low-carbon world as soon as humanly feasible."</p><p><a href="http://www.reading.ac.uk/search/search-staff-details.aspx?id=10813" target="_blank">Dr. David Schroeder from the University of Reading</a>, UK, who co-led the implementation of the melt pond scheme in the climate model, says, "This shows just how important sea ice processes like melt ponds are in the Arctic, and why it is crucial that they are incorporated into climate models."</p><p>The extent of the areas <a href="https://nsidc.org/cryosphere/seaice/characteristics/formation.html" target="_blank">sea ice</a> covers varies between summer and winter. If more solar energy is absorbed at the surface, and temperatures rise further, a cycle of warming and melting occurs during summer months.</p><p>When the ice forms, the ocean water beneath becomes saltier and denser than the surrounding ocean. Saltier water sinks and moves along the ocean bottom towards the equator, while warm water from mid-depths to the surface travels from the equator towards the poles.</p><p>Scientists refer to this process as the ocean's global "conveyor-belt." Changes to the volume of sea ice can disrupt normal ocean circulation, with consequences for global climate. </p>
- Strongest, Oldest Arctic Sea Ice Breaks Up for First Time on Record ... ›
- Arctic Sea Ice Levels Hit Record Low After Unusually Warm January ... ›
- Why California Droughts Could Increase Due to Arctic Sea Ice Loss ... ›
Russia's Health Ministry has given regulatory approval for the world's first COVID-19 vaccine after less than two months of human testing, President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday.
Putin's Daughter Among Vaccinated<p>The Russian leader also said that one of his daughters has already been inoculated and is feeling well.</p><p>"One of my daughters got vaccinated, so in this sense, she took part in the testing," Putin said.</p><p>After the first vaccine shot, his daughter experienced a slight fever, 38 degrees Celsius (100.4°F). Her temperature came down to just slightly above normal the next day. </p><p>"After the second shot, she had a slight fever again, and then everything was fine. She is feeling well and has a high antibody count," Putin said. </p><p>He didn't specify which of his two daughters, Maria or Katerina, received the vaccine.</p><p>Russian health authorities have said that medical workers, teachers and other risk groups will be the first to receive shots of the vaccine.</p>
Years of Work Reduced to Weeks<p>Russia is the first country to register a COVID-19 vaccine. As <a href="https://www.dw.com/en/germany-coronavirus-vaccine-may-only-be-available-in-mid-2021/a-54362065" target="_blank">countries worldwide race to produce the first vaccine</a>, health experts warn that speed and national pride could compromise safety.</p><p>Scientists in Russia and abroad have questioned Moscow's decision to register the vaccine before Phase 3 trials that normally last for months and involve thousands of people, but Putin emphasized that the vaccine underwent the necessary trials and that vaccination will be voluntary.</p><p>Russian officials have said that large-scale production of the vaccine will begin in September, and mass vaccination may start as early as October.</p><p>Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, meanwhile, has <a href="https://www.dw.com/en/philippines-duterte-volunteers-to-be-putins-russian-coronavirus-vaccine-guinea-pig/a-54523030" target="_blank">lauded Russia's efforts in developing the vaccine</a> and said that the Philippines is ready to work with Moscow on vaccine trials, supply and production. Duterte volunteered to "be the first they can experiment on."</p><p>"I will tell President Putin that I have huge trust in your studies in combating COVID and I believe that the vaccine that you have produced is really good for humanity," Duterte said, adding that he thinks Russia's vaccine will be ready for the Philippines by December.</p>
- Pfizer Coronavirus Vaccine Enters Phase 2 and 3 Clinical Trials ... ›
- Trump Administration Buys up Nearly All the World's Supply of ... ›
- First Trial of Moderna's Coronavirus Vaccine Produces Immune ... ›
A powerful series of thunderstorms roared across the Midwest on Monday, downing trees, damaging structures and knocking out power to more than a million people.