18th November - Today's News: Concerns Grow Over UK Drought

Following on from Anglia Water's request for a drought order this winter, more water companies now warn that millions of households face water rationing and hosepipe bans next year. I've been warning of this for months. After a wet start, it now looks certain that November will be our 13th consecutive month with below average rainfall in Evesham. It's also been a very mild start to November - so much so that the weather's gone quackers as ducks born born six months earlier and roses bloom in November - though the roses in my garden have often been blooming at Christmas, so nothing unusual here. And no sign yet of the much publicised cold and snow for October, or, um, November then, er, well, December .....

In contrast, over in the US tornadoes in Southeast kill 6, flatten homes whilst up in Alaska record Fairbanks cold continues as air quality warnings issued

Weather harder to predict, Environment Canada warns

A silent flood misery for 1.8m in Cambodia, Vietnam as the worst floods in a decade go largely unreported.

Charities warn that Afghan drought hit families could be cut off by extreme weather within weeks

In contrast to other parts of the world, deforestation causes cooling in northern US, Canada, study finds.

IPCC chief braced for storms of denial over extreme weather report - well, if it doesn't say what it want it to say then it must be fradulent. Right?

It's been a record long Arctic navigation season but are lemmings turning the Arctic green?

Efforts to cut sulpur emissions work, as acid pollution in rain decreases with emissions, long-term study shows

In Antarctica, the Gamburstev 'ghost mountains' mystery solved - and despite being 'young looking' they actually date back a billion years to the time of Rodinia.

'Lost' continent Gondwana sheds light on formation of world today

And my holistic or complex theory starts to gain ground as a team from Princeton conclude that massive volcanoes, meteorite impact delivered one-two death punch to dinosaurs. It's no longer seen as a simple either/or.

And further back in time, the date and rate of Earth's most extreme extinction pinpointed. The P/T extinction peaked at 252.28 mya and lasted less than 200,000 years. The anthropocene extinction - currently ongoing due to the activities of man - probably started around 50,000 years ago. So we've time yet to make it worse.

The search for extraterrestrial life moves a step forward with the discovery that Jupiter moon Europe has shallow lakes

Finally, there are plans to lift radioactive contamination controls on UK sheep farms imposed after Chernobyl.

Access to wildlife should be a right, not a privilege - I'm not sure I quite agree that but certainly it shold be encouraged and efforts made to ensure everyone has the opportunity to see not just wild life but also wild places. On which note, I hear that according to the JMT the amount of lScottosh land designated 'wild' in the sense that no sign of modern human activity can be seen has halved in the past 20 years. Mostly thanks to windfarms.

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