The Heat Is Online

Extreme Weather Profile: January - June, 2010

At the beginning of the year, a major snowstorm inundated Beijing, closing airports, snarling roads and threatening a spike in food prices more. . .   At the same time, airports were closed, traffic snarled and several people killed when Seoul, Korea was hit with its heaviest snowstorm in at least 70 years more . . .  Just days after intense rains left 75 people dead in Brazil, officials closed the country's nuclear plants because extensive mudslides blocked evacuation routes more . . .   In early January, Britain was hit with its longest cold snap in 30 years, dropping a foot of snow in some places and sending temperatures as low as - 14 F more. . .

The second round of a brutal cold wave swept through the US Midwest and South, imperiling crops in Florida, dropping 10 inches of snow on top of the recent two foot snowfall in Iowa and sending temperatures in North Dakota plunging to minus 52* F more. . .   In Germany, a raging snowstorm stranded more than 160 motorists overnight and cut power to 30,000 people in Poland more. . .   

While brutal cold permeated the US and Europe, parts of Australia sweltered, with Melbourne recording its highest temperatures in 108 years more . . .   At the same time, a protracted drought in Venezuela dropped water levels in reservoirs and forced the government to impose electricity rationing more . . .   In mid January, the heaviest rains in 30 years inundated Israel and Egypt, sweeping away homes, marooning towns and leaving seven people dead more . . .  At the same time, intense cold and severe blizzards in northwestern China  damaged 100,000 homes, killed four people and left a half million people snowed in more. . . 

In southern California, a succession of four major rainstorms triggered the evacuation of 1,200 families left more than 100,000 people without power, triggered a state of emergency and loosed the heaviest  downpour in Arizona in two decades  more. . .    At the end of January, the southeastern US was hit by record snow and ice storms which dropped up to a foot of snow in Tennessee and North Carolina more. . .             

In Mongolia, one of the most severe cold snaps in memory -- with temperatures dropping to - 58* F -- left at least 24 people dead and killed nearly 2 million livestock more . . .   In South Dakota, a massive ice storm followed by a blizzard, left thousands of people without power or water more . . .   In central Mexico, a landslide killed at least 11 people, adding to 18 deaths this week from severe and unseasonable winter storms that closed schools and freeways and flooded thousands of homes more. . .     In early February, a massive blizzard swamped the mid-Atlantic states, leaving hundreds of thousands without power and focing the closure of government offices in Washington, D.C. Satellite photos show the enormous storm stretched from Missouri to the Atlantic Ocean more . . .     In the Washington, D.C. area, the storm cut power to hundreds of thousands of people, paralyzing the region more . . .   Experts tie climate change to Europe's coldest winter in 50 years and record snowstorms in the US more . . .   At the same time, torrential rains in Brazil were replaced by a searing heat wave that claimed the lives of 32 people  more . . .       

In mid-February, for the first time in memory the southern US was blanketed with a light cover of snow that snarled air traffic and glazed highways more. . .  In late February, the northeastern US was hit by its second blizzard in three weeks, snarling flights, closing schools from Cleveland to New Hampshire  and knocking out power to a million  homes more. . .   In Moscow, a succession of four blizzards in as many days dropped  62 inches of snow on the city, breaking a 44-year record more. . .      At the end of February, a violent winter storm ripped through France, Spain and Portugal, killing 62 people and leaving about 1 million others without power more. . .    

At the beginning of March, a seven-hour downpour in Uganda triggered mudslides which buried three villages and left at least 70 people dead and another 250 missing more . . .       In Vietnam, residents are struggling with the country's worst drought in 100 years, with crops failing and the Red River at its lowest level since 1902 more. . .    In Kazakhstan, early spring rains burst a reservoir that destroyed an entire village and left at least 30 people dead more . . .    

In mid-March, intense downpours, coupled with winds of up to 70 miles per hour, left more than a half-million people without power in the northeastern US. By the end of the storm, Boston had received more than 11 inches of rain. more. . .   In Fiji, a massive cyclone, with windgusts up to  175 miles-per-hour, forced thousands of residents to seek refuge in special shelters more . . .   In southwestern China, the worst drought in 60 years cut crops yields more than fifty percent more . . .               

In mid-March, Beijing saw its heaviest sandstorm of the year.  Chinese sandstorms have increased six fold in the past 50 years due to desertification and drought more . . .  In northeastern Australia, a cyclone packing winds of up to 124 mile per hour, cut power to more than 60,000 homes more. . .   In Nigeria, a massive duststorm, propelled by that country's Harmattan winds, threatens to delay the rainy season and spread more desertification more . . .    In the northeastern US intense rains followed record downpours three weeks earlier, triggering states of emergency in several New England states.The governor of Rhode Island declared the flooding to be the worst in 100 years  more . . .  A study released several weeks later said the intensification of rainstorms in the northeastern US could well be a consequence of a warming atmosphere more. . .                                        

In Rio de Janeiro, the heaviest rains in its history paralyzed the city, stranding people in cars, leaving at least 81 people dead and putting thousands of families at risk of homelessness more. . .   At the same time, island nations in the Caribbean were facing the worst drought in the region's history, with such countries as Grenada, Guyana, St. Lucia, Barbados and Jamaica facing riots and unrest due to water scarcity more. . .    

In southwestern China, a once-in-100-year drought has left $3.5 billion in agricultural losses and left 24 million people short of water more . . .   A cyclone packing winds of more than 100 miles per hour destroyed tens of thousands of huts and left 89 people dead in eastern India more . . .   In mid-April, NOAA researchers announced that March, 2010 was the hottest March since reliable records began to be kept, with global temperatures exceeding the March average by 1.39* F. more. . .    In late April, a tornado swept through northeastern India leaving about one million people homeless more. . .     In Taiwan, four days of intense rain caused a hillside to collapse, triggering a mudslide that buried at least four people in three cars more . . .   In April, explorers in the Arctic were shocked to see a spring rainfall some 2,500 miles north Ottawa more. . .    

At the beginning of May, violent weather triggered tornadoes and intense storms dropped 14 inches of rain in the Nashville area leaving at least 29 people dead in Tennessee and Mississippi   more . . .     A week of intense rains in Afghanistan left more than 100 people dead and thousands of others homeless more . . .  In late May, the Vistula River overflowed its banks, driving 100,000 residents of Warsaw, Poland from their homes  more. . .    At the same time, massive downpours in southern China left at least nearly 400 people dead and scores of others missing more. . .   At the end of May, torrential rains killed at least 142 people in Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras and Mexico, as parts of the region received a month's worth of rainfall in one day more. . .                                                        

At the beginning of June, an acrid smell pervaded New England skies as smoke from dozens of wildfires drifted south from Quebec more . . .   In Pakistan, several people died and dozens fainted as temperatures in the city of Mohenjo-Daro reached 129* F. more. . .  In early June, intense thunderstorms left at least five people dead in Ohio and Illinois more . . .   In Arkansas, more than 7 inches of rain fell in about 8 hours, leaving 12 people dead more. . .   In mid-June, torrential rains triggered massive mudslides in southern Bangladesh which left 47 people dead  more. . .    At the same time, Oklahoma City reeled under a torrential downpour which dropped 10 inches of rain on the city in one day more. . .      In southern France, flash floods left 19 people dead, destroyed trees, cars and houses and cut power to some 89,000 people more . . .   In Brazil, intense rains triggered mudslides that killed at least 31 people more. . .   Intense flooding in the normally dry Candian provinces of Alberta and  Saskatchewan has driven up the costs of wheat, soybeans and other grains more. . .  In central Illinois, a flash flood dumped nearly two-and-a-half inches of rain in two hours more . . .   The toll from the torrential rains inundating northeastern Brazil rose as authorities confirmed 44 casualties and some 600 other people missing more . . .