17th May - Today's News: Wildfires Decimate Slave Lake, Alberta

Recent rain has ended the heath fire season in Britain (at least for now), and despite the area being reported as looking like Mordor, I'm pleased to say Peanmeanach bothy was unaffected by the big fire on Ardnish earlier this month. But elsewhere things have been much more serious as wildfires decimate Slave Lake in Alberta

In Louisiana, thousands flee as floodgates open while in Canada, Assiniboine River flood crest in sight.

In Australia, La Nina is dead, here comes La Winta: BOM says get out your stockings

Lack of rain already causing crop failures, DEFRA warns - especially in East Anglia, where most of our grain is grown, which has been exceptionally dry. Bad news for beer? Incidentally I recall after the droughts of the early 1990s a proposal to build a big pipeline down the country to bring water from the NW to the SE. Never got built .... But it's not just us with France in crisis as drought worsens.

This follows the warmest April on record in Britain. Globally, it was the seventh warmest on record as reported by NOAA. Not bad given La Nina, low solar activity and supposedly an imminent ice age ......

And talking of cold weather, Severe heatwave hits north India

Iceland's glacier shrink every year


The headline isn't unusual: 1,000 year Arctic storm linked to climate change. What's more unusual is that this study was of an event in 1999, 12 years ago, so it's not an ill-informed, scaremongering, political reaction as often seems to be the case when such announcements linking a severe weather event with climate change are made (the 2009 floods in Cumbria, for example).

And finally, have we found the first habitable exoplanet?

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