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Archive for December 2nd, 2013

Britain Set for “Worst Winter in History”

Posted by feww on December 2, 2013

Winter 2013 could be the longest in history

BRITAIN is facing an unprecedented six month winter, with a strong probability heavy snow and sub-zero temperatures would last until May 2014,  said forecasters.

A “widespread snow event” is forecast to wreak havoc on the roads and paralyze transport networks as early as next week.

Winter 2013 could be the worst in 66 years with Polar conditions lasting  into May 2014. A record-breaking period of bitter Arctic winds, paralyzing snowfall and plunging temperatures is forecast to hit the entire country.

A high pressure  system is drawing in freezing air from the Arctic, generating “an exceptionally prolonged period of widespread cold” in Britain that will be colder than in Iceland, Norway and Sweden and even parts of the Arctic region, forecasters said.

snow - britain image apex
Heavy snow and massive drifts are forecast to cause chaos for up to six months [Image credit: APEX/ via Express UK]

“It will be accompanied by snow drifts of several feet and long-lasting snow accumulations on a widespread scale,” said a long-range forecaster at Exacta Weather.

“This period of snow and cold is likely to result in an incomparable scenario to anything we have experienced in modern times.”

“This winter could also be a carbon copy of 1947, the snowiest in history with showers in March leading to seven-meter high drifts,” said the report, “the worst winter since 1814, with continuous snowfall from January 22 to March 17.”

This winter could now parallel the worst winters ever recorded, said a forecaster for Vantage Weather Services.

“Looking back at historical data there is certainly an argument that we may well parallel with severe winters of the past including 1947 and 1962.

“We have had such a cold November, and there is no sign of any change due to a high pressure blocking system.

“When these severe temperatures bed in it becomes like an accumulative effect – like a heatwave but in reverse, we could be looking at the longest winter in history,” he said.

“And this is when you see records breaking, all signs point towards this winter being exceptionally severe, I wouldn’t put anything past it.”

An estimated 40,000 people perished in Britain due to the cold weather in 2012.

“That more people die from the cold every year in temperate Britain than in freezing Sweden is an embarrassment and a tragedy,” said a campaigner.

Related Links: Other Extremes

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Shanghai Air Pollution Shoots Off the Chart

Posted by feww on December 2, 2013

Severe smog fills the air in China’s financial hub Shanghai

Shanghai’s air pollution index for PM2.5 rose above the hazardous level, hitting a maximum of 350, on Monday as smog shrouded the sky, according to various monitoring stations.

PM2.5 concentration of about 25 micrograms per cubic meter pose little or no risk, according to the World Health Organization, however, the reading for the particulate in Shanghai climbed to 14 times the “acceptable” volume on Monday.

“Shanghai saw deteriorating air quality over the weekend. The AQI index rose above 230 on Sunday, when the city held its annual Shanghai International Marathon,” said a report.

The marathon took place  despite the heavy pollution, said the report, with some participants wearing masks.

In Beijing the pollution index for PM2.5 rose to 269 Monday morning.

airpollution levels

Related Links

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November another Month of Bloody Massacres in Iraq

Posted by feww on December 2, 2013

On average 30 – 40 people killed in Iraq each day in November

At least 1,121 people were killed in bloody violence across Iraq in November, according to the Interior Ministry.

The Iraqi ministry of health, however, put the number of people massacred last month at 948, including 852 civilians, 53 policemen and 43 military personnel.

At least 1,349 others were wounded in the deadly attacks which included mass murder by car bombs, IEDs, AEDs, mortar and gunfire, as well as executions by hanging, slitting throats, beheading and sniper fire.

More than 8,200 have been massacred and about 18,000 others wounded in Iraq so far this year, making 2013 the bloodiest year since 2008. 

2013 Casualty Stats for Acts of terrorism and Violence in Iraq released by UNAMI

  • In November, according to UNAMI, 565 civilians (including 120 civilian police) were killed and 1,186 persons (including 239 civilian police) were wounded. Additionally, 94 members of the Iraqi Security Forces were killed and 187 were wounded.  [See above for Nov. stats provided by other sources.]
  • In October 2013, at least 1,095 people were killed and more than 1,900 others wounded.
    • October death toll for Iraq was 979, exactly the same as September toll (!), according to UNAMI.
  • In September 2013, at least 1,220 civilians were killed and about 2,000 others wounded
    • Baghdad, 1 October 2013 – According to casualty figures released today by UNAMI, a total of 979 Iraqis were killed and another 2,133 wounded in acts of terrorism and violence in September.
  • In August 2013, a minimum of 716 civilians were killed (including 106 civilian police) a further 1,936 wounded (including 195 civilian police).
  • In July 2013, at least 928 were killed (including 204 civilian police) a further 2,109 were wounded (including 338 civilian police).
  • In June 2013, a minimum of 685 civilians were killed and 1,610 others wounded.
  • In May 2013, at least 963 civilians were killed and 2,191 others wounded.
  • In April 2013, a minimum of 595 civilians were killed and 1,481  wounded.
  • In March 2013, at least 229 civilians were killed and 853 were wounded.
  • In February 2013 some 418 civilians  were killed and 704 others wounded.
  • In January 2013, at least 319 civilians were killed and 960 others  wounded.
  • In December 2012, 230 civilians were killed and 655 were wounded.
  • In November 2012, 445 civilians were killed and 1,306 others  wounded.

unami civilian death toll

Iraq Death and Injury Toll (Civilians Only) published by the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).

Related Links

Posted in disaster calendar, disaster calendar 2013, disaster watch, disaster watch 2013, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2012, global disasters 2013 | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Egyptian Coup Blueprint Used for Thailand?

Posted by feww on December 2, 2013

High Noon in Bangkok: Thailand PM given “two-day ultimatum” to step down

Thai protest leader says he has met PM Yingluck Shinawatra and given her a “two-day ultimatum” to “return power to the people.”

Eight days of anti-government unrest to oust the PM has left at least four people dead and dozens more injured.

The protest leader Sethup Thaugsuban had already declared Sunday “Victory-Day” in what he called “people’s coup.”

Mr Sethup who claimed to have met the prime minister secretly in the presence of the army, navy and air force chiefs, said: “There was no negotiation and no compromise,” according to reports.

“I told Yingluck [PM Shinawatra] that this is the only and last time I see her until power is handed over to the people.

“There will be no bargaining and it must be finished in two days.”

About 30,000 demonstrators had gathered at various sites, including military barracks, police headquarter, Government House, radio and television stations.

Ms Shinawatra had previously stated that the government would only use minimum force, to disperse the demonstrators. However, the army called in to help the riot police after the demonstrations turned violent on Saturday.

The latest is Thailand’s  worst unrest since 2010, when thousands of red-shirt supporters of then PM Thaksin Shinawatra, occupied strategic points in the capital. At least 100 people were killed in ensuing deadly clashes during the following 10 weeks.

Chronology of Events in Thailand

  • Sept 2006: Army overthrows the PM Thaksin Shinawatra and rewrites the Thai constitution, under direct instruction from King Bhumibol Adulyadej.
  • Dec 2007: Pro-Thaksin People Power Party wins majority vote in the election.
  • Aug 2008: Thaksin Shinawatra flees Thailand before end of a “corruption trial.”
  • Dec 2008: Constitutional Court bans the majority People Power Party, as mass protests paralyze the capital Bangkok; the monarchists assign Abishit Vejjajiva to power.
  • Mar-May 2010: Up to a million pro-Thaksin protesters occupy key locations in Bangkok in a 10-week sit-in; army clears the streets, killing at least 100 protesters.
  • Jul 2011: Yingluck Shinawatra leads Pheu Thai party to general election win
  • Nov 2013: Anti-government protesters begin street protest.

Egyptian Coup

On August 31, 2013 Egypt’s military ruler the Puppet General Sisi gave the democratically elected President Morsi a “48-hour ultimatum” to resolve differences with the Tahrir Square protesters, failing which he threatened to put forward “a roadmap” [translation: military coup] for the country.

Related Links

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