December 7, 2022

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After the recorded heat, Alaska faces the ice blanket

Record heat, snowstorms, hailstorms and ice. Alaska is experiencing extreme weather this week, wreaking havoc on several cities in the northern United States.

The state Department of Transportation says large icebergs in Fairbanks, Alaska’s second largest city, are blocking roads and making traffic impossible. “We are facing unprecedented winter storms. All available staff are working very hard, but we may not be able to clear everything until this weekend.”, Citing officials on Twitter, warned of a catastrophic situation with an iceberg nicknamed “Icemaceton”.

Hours after the state recorded temperatures in December – 19.4 degrees Celsius on Kodiak Island in southern Alaska – heavy rains poured inwards, an event that had not occurred since 1937. Then the air temperature dropped, leading to the formation of massive snow.

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Alaska, Climate Change Outpost

Generally, December is the coldest and driest month for Alaska. North of the Arctic Circle, The atmosphere is warming faster than anywhere else on earth. The average temperature in this part of the world has increased by 1.6 C since 1950, compared to 0.3 C globally.

“More than half of Fairbanks’ population was without electricity during the storm.”, University of Alaska Climate Expert Agencies France-Press Rick Toman. “This kind of phenomenon, high humidity and very hot air, would be just right [l’effet] Expected from global warming, The expert points out.

This is not the first time temperatures in Alaska have reached alarming levels. July 4, 2019 Mercury in anchorage exceeds 32 C, The largest city in the state. The highest precipitation was set on June 14, 1969 at 29.4 C. According to meteorologists, the average maximum temperature in Anchorage for July 4 was 18.3 C.

In the western United States, Washington State and California are also facing heavy rain and snow, causing hundreds of flights to be canceled, blocking roads and evacuating people in the face of flood danger.

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World with AFP

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