Weather Warnings

[Content Note: Extreme weather; death.]

Many parts of the world are still experiencing extreme weather at the moment, care of the most powerful El Niño in 100 years, which has been strengthened by climate change.

In South America, more than 150,000 people have been displaced by the worst flooding in 50 years.

In Australia, bushfires have destroyed dozens of homes and flooding has "forced the evacuation of almost 500 people and brought saltwater crocodiles into remote communities."

Across the US, flooding and damage from storms and tornadoes have left nearly 50 people dead, and thousands of homes have been damaged, with more storms on the way: "The Mississippi River remained in danger of flooding, with waters approaching record levels."

Britain is experiencing "some of the worst floods ever known" there.

And with all the rain elsewhere, there isn't enough rain in parts of Africa:
El Niño's reach is also being felt in the sun-baked farmlands of rural Zimbabwe, Malawi, and South Africa, where rains that usually start in October or November have simply not materialized this year.

Millions could suffer from famine if the pattern holds through the first few months of 2016 — as forecasters says it almost certainly will.

"Southern Africa is a particular and obvious concern," said Maxx Dilley, director of the Climate Prediction and Adaptation division at the World Meteorological Organization. "A canonical effect of El Niño is drought in that part of Africa."

...One reason for some hope is that El Niño does not always bring season-long drought in southern Africa — and in fact the 1997-98 season produced close to normal rains in the region despite that year's record El Niño.
Let us all hope for rains for southern Africa to avoid devastating famine if they do not come.

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