News / Asia

Extreme Weather Dominated 2010

Residents of La Gabriela neighborhood who lost their homes when a landslide buried some 30 houses and trapped dozens beneath mud and rubble following weeks of drenching rains, rest while rescue workers search for survivors in Bello, northwestern Colombia,
Residents of La Gabriela neighborhood who lost their homes when a landslide buried some 30 houses and trapped dozens beneath mud and rubble following weeks of drenching rains, rest while rescue workers search for survivors in Bello, northwestern Colombia,

Worldwide, 2010 will be remembered as the year of extreme weather.  From floods in Pakistan to mudslides in China, nature dominated much of the headlines. 

As Americans greeted winter, state highway departments demonstrated their latest snow plow techniques...  And their mountain of salt for de-icing roads.

Snow plow drivers showed how cumbersome it was to drive a plow... And reflected on 2010's extreme winter.

In February, more than 50 centimeters of new snow fell on top of 90 centimeters of snow from a few days earlier.

On the other side of the globe, snow shut down Beijing with temperatures as low as minus 16 degrees celcius.

But while Washington and Beijing dug out, others sweated it out later in summer.

Hot and cold

"2010 is on track to be one of the three warmest years on record," said Omar Baddour, from the World Meteorological Organization

Here's why: First in Washington -- stiffling summer heat. Earlier in June -- 32 degrees celsius -- in Moscow! A month later in Russia... forest fires...And mass evacuations. August in China, mudslides and torrential rains.

Waterworks

In Pakistan, devastating floods put a fifth of the country underwater. Also in August, a fourth of Greenland's ice shelf fell into the sea.   

A noticable difference can be witnessed by watching time lapse photos over a four year period from the climate change project Extreme Ice Survey.

Bill McKibben has been alerting readers about global warming for the last 20 years.

"The Arctic is melting quickly, Russia caught on fire this summer, Pakistan drowned, the ocean is 30 percent more acid than it used to be.  We are in tough shape with less than a degree of temperature increase," he said.

Scientists say that single degree could increase substantially by the end of this century, even counting colder winters in some places.

Climate change

Amanda Staudt of the National Wildlife Foundation co-authored a study about climate change.

"What surprised me was that 2010 may actually be considered a mild year in 2050 or at least an average or typical year," she said.

So Staudt and like-minded researchers say we should all get ready for more of this.

But American climatologist Patrick Michaels disagrees.

"For all those other threats, we adapted and/or they were exaggerated," he said. "Why would this one be any different?"

Michaels says history has proven that humans always adjust to climate changes.  His prediction is that our bodies, our dwellings, our attitudes will all change.

One thing is sure --  temperatures globally rose in 2010, and, scientists predict, they will rise again in 2011.   It's a trend we'll all have to warm up to, they say.

You May Like

Turkey's Controversial Reform Bill Giving Investors Jitters

Homeland security reform bill will give police new powers in search, seizure, detention and arrests, while restricting the rights of suspects, their attorneys More

Audio Slideshow In Kenyan Prison, Good Grades Are Path to Freedom

Some inmates who get high marks could see their sentences commuted to non-custodial status More

Ali Regained Title in Historic Fight 40 Years Ago

'The Champ' knocked Foreman out to regain crown he had lost 7 years earlier when US government accused him of draft-dodging and boxing officials revoked his license More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisiai
X
Henry Ridgwell
October 30, 2014 11:39 PM
Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid