A year of astonishing weather events and devastating natural disasters came to a dramatic end last month, ruining Christmas celebrations for many. Unusual atmospheric conditions and a severely looping northern jet stream brought record warmth to the Arctic and Western Europe, where back-to-back storms pummeled the UK, Ireland and Norway with record-breaking rainfall and hurricane-force winds. A similar situation developed on the opposite side of the globe, where, for the second year running, the most intense North Pacific storm ever recorded slammed into Alaska and brought intense flooding to the US Northwest.
December 2015 was a ‘tale of two USAs’, with the western half generally experiencing record cold, record snowfall, and ice storms, while the eastern states experienced record warmth, fatal tornado outbreaks and record flooding. Incredibly, it was warmer on Christmas Day in Boston and New York City than it was on July 4th. Severe flooding affected all continents, with over 100,000 people displaced in the capital of Congo, Kinshasa; another 160,000 displaced in central Latin America; and 300 killed by ‘the worst flooding in over a century’ in southern India.
There were also multiple volcanic eruptions last month, spectacular meteor fireball sightings, gaping sinkholes swallowing homes, and localized storms of such intensity that falling hail turned streets into rivers of ice in northern Argentina, while tornadoes touched down in New Zealand. The animal kingdom is also feeling the effects of global upheaval: mass fish kills continue apace; enormous whales continue washing up on sea shores; and, for the second time in 5 months, a giant squid was filmed coming up to the surface… Does something stir in the deep?
These were the signs of the times in December 2015.
To understand what’s going on, check out our book explaining how all these events are part of a natural climate shift, and why it’s taking place now: Earth Changes and the Human-Cosmic Connection.
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